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Kaleb Kanaani Breed Description

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Breed Organization

The Canaan Dog Club of America

Native Country

Other Names
Canaan Dog, Dog of Canaan, Canaanite Dog, Kaleb Canaan, Kelef K'naani

Life Expectancy
Approximately 10-13 Years

Litter Size
Average 4-6 Puppies

Breed Group
AKC Miscellaneous Class

General Description

The Canaan dog is a typical primitive dog in appearance. It is a medium-sized square built dog, with a wedge-shaped head, medium-sized, erect and low set ears with a broad base and rounded tips. Its outer coat is dense, harsh and straight of short to medium-length. The undercoat should be close and profuse according to season. Color ranges from black to cream and all shades of brown and red between, usually with small white markings, or all white with color patches. Spotting of all kinds is permitted, as well as white or black masks.

Breed Standard

Head: Moderate length. Skull neither domed nor flat. Stop not pronounced. Muzzle of moderate length and width. Powerful jaws. Tight lips.
Ears: Short, fairly wide, slightly rounded tips. Wide set low on the head. Carried erect.
Eyes: Almond shape. As dark as possible. Dark rims.
Body: Square body outline. Straight neck. Pronounced withers. Moderately broad chest. Ribs well sprung. Belly well tucked up. Arched loin.
Tail: Medium length. Bushy. Carried over the back.
Hair: Short to moderately long. Straight, harsh texture. Dog has a ruff. Undercoat varies with the seasons.
Coat: Tawny to reddish brown, white or black, black, white and brown, with or without mask.
Size: 50 to 60 cm (19.7-23.6 in).
Weight: 18 to 25 kg (39.7-55.2 lb).


This very ancient breed originated in Canaan (modern day Israel). It was the result of crosses of various half-wild pariah dogs from regions of Northern Africa and the Near East. Selective breeding of the Canaan Dog began in the 1930s. It has been used as a messenger and rescue dog in the army. The Canaan Dog was only recently recognized by the American Kennel Club. The breed is also being developed in Europe.


This rustic, lively dog has great endurance. He forms a strong bond with his owner and is very gentle with children. The Canaan Dog is extremely vigilant and wary of strangers. He is a good defense dog, though is not naturally aggressive toward humans. This breed is aggressive with other dogs. Firm training is required.

The Canaan Dog needs exercise and space to run. Regular brushing is required.


Canaan dogs can compete in dog agility trials, obedience, showmanship, flyball, tracking, and herding events. Herding instincts and trainability can be measured at noncompetitive herding tests. Canaans exhibiting basic herding instincts can be trained to compete in herding trials.


This is a generally healthy breed.

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The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA®) was the first humane society to be established in North America and is, today, one of the largest in the world.

Our organization was founded on the belief that animals are entitled to kind and respectful treatment at the hands of humans and must be protected under the law. Headquartered in New York City, the ASPCA maintains a strong local presence, and with programs that extend our anti-cruelty mission across the country, we are recognized as a national animal welfare organization. We are a privately funded 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, and are proud to boast more than 2 million supporters across the country.

The ASPCA’s mission, as stated by founder Henry Bergh in 1866, is “to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States.”

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Jeff Gold, Founder, Rescue Me! Animal Rescue Network

Jeff Gold lives in Watkinsville, Georgia on the same property as Rescue Me's Animal Rehabilitation Center, with 18 rescue animals. Shown with him in the photo to the left are Maggie, Izzie and Cortez. In 2003, after learning there was nobody doing boxer rescue work in Georgia, Gold founded Boxertown, an organization which helped find homes for over 500 boxers during its first two years. Based upon this success, Gold came up with the vision for Rescue Me! ― a network which helps all breeds of dogs, cats and other animals find good homes, anywhere in the world. is also a free service of Rescue Me! and provides the world's largest and most up-to-date directory of animal rescue organizations for all breeds of dogs, cats and other animals, including a comprehensive directory of wildlife rehabilitators in over 150 countries.