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Black Russian Terrier

Tags: working, Large-sized, Protective guardian, Requires firm, dedicated training, Calm temperament

Forget the "terrier" part. We're working guard dogs. But we're really from Russia -- developed in the early 20th Century by crossing Rottweiler's with Giant Schnauzers and Airedales to get a dog that would guard military installations. And we're really, really black -- with maybe some gray hairs amongst our long coat, beard, mustache, mane, and bushy eyebrows. Guarding that secret Russian stuff required a muscular, sizable dog, so Chiorny (our Russian name) stand 25-28 inches at the shoulders and weigh up to 88 pounds. The Black Russian Terrier was recognized by the AKC in 2004 and placed in the Working Group -- which proves we're terriers no more.

Rave review

  • Affectionate, devoted family friend
  • Agile and active
  • Always alert
  • Born to run, happy to walk
  • Busy is better than bored
  • Calm as a clam
  • Confident and self-assured
  • Courageous canine

Report card

  • Independent thinker
  • Intelligent and ready to learn
  • Lives to work
  • Outdoors enthusiast
  • Perfect protector
  • Caters to the country, tolerates town
  • Training must be firm, patient, consistent
  • Wary of strangers
  • Willing watchdog

What to expect

All through my training and throughout our cordial lives together, I need you to respect my bred-in instinct for guarding -- and keep me from going overboard. The Cold War is over! Peace! We still have our secrets, and that guarding instinct is mine. That, and I'm kind of fussy about how my mustache is combed.

Watch for

A generally healthy and long-lived (10-14 years) breed. Watch for hip and elbow dysplasia as well as eye conditions including PRA.

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