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Karst-Schaferhund Breed Description

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Breed Organization

United Kennel Club (UKC)

Native Country

Other Names
Karst Shepherd Dog, Karst Sheepdog, Krasky Ovcar, Berger Du Karst, Istrian Sheepdog, Krasevec, Pastor de Karst

Life Expectancy
Approximately 11-12 Years

Litter Size
No Information Available

Breed Group
FCI - Molossoid and Swiss Mountain and Cattledogs

General Description

The Karst Shepherd Dog is of medium size, harmonious, robust, endowed with a well-developed musculature and a strong constitution. The tail and ears are hanging. Their hair is well furnished, long, flat, with abundant undercoat. The head the front edges of the ears and the front part of the legs covered with short hair. The back edge of the ears has longer and more supple hair. In its upper region, the neck has long hair, stiff and very bushy forming a mane; in its lower part, the hair is longer and more supple forming a ruff which is wider at the set of the neck. The trunk and belly have long hair which becomes less hard on the belly. The tail regularly bushy, does not form a plume. On the back side of the forequarters, the long hair is very supple forming fringes. On the back side of the hindquarters, the hair is even longer and bushy forming culottes. Coat is iron grey; especially on the back, a dark shade is preferred; towards the belly and the limbs, the color turns without visible transition to a light grey or sandy color, with a dark streak on the front parts of the limbs. The dark mask on the muzzle spreads on to the skull. On the back part of the head it is bordered with grey or sandy or pale fawn hair overlaid with black.

Breed Standard

Head: Broad and noble. Slightly convex skull. Stop not accentuated. Straight, broad forehead.
Ears: Lie flat against the head in a V.
Eyes: Almond-shaped eyes set slightly oblique. Chestnut or dark brown color.
Body: Strong, slightly rectangular, and well-muscled. Broad, muscular neck. The deep chest long is well let down. Straight, wide back. Wide and slightly sloped croup.
Tail: Set on high, of medium length. Saber tail. Richly clad with long hair.
Hair: Short on the head and front of legs. Long and abundant over the rest of the body. Lies flat. Mane at neck; flag tail. Feathering on the hind legs.
Coat: Iron gray, dark nuances desirable, particularly on the withers, the abdomen, and the feet. Dark mask on the head.
Size: Dog: 57 to 63 cm. (22.5-24.3 in).Bitch: 54 to 60 cm. (21.3-23.5 in).
Weight: Dog: 30 to 42 kg. (66-93 lb).Bitch: 25 to 37 kg. (55-82 lb).


This sheepdog lives in the mountainous region of Karst (or Kras). He is a tireless defender of the herd. This breed was mentioned for the first time in 1689 and was officially recognized in 1939 under the name of Illyrian Sheepdog, which also included the future Sarplaninac. The Karst Sheepdog and the Sarplaninac were separated in 1968.


This dog is brave and courageous, but not aggressive. He is of excellent character and easy-going. Devoted to his owner, he makes an excellent pet. Wary of strangers and not easily won over, he is a good guard dog and will protect his owner. Firm, but not harsh training is appropriate for this breed.

This breed needs space and exercise. Regular brushing is required.


Sheepdog, Guard Dog, Pet.


No Information Available

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