South Russian Ovtcharka

The South Russian Ovtcharka is also known as Ioujnorousska�a Ovtcharka, South Russian Sheepdog, Ukrainian Ovcharka and south Russian Shepherd Dog. It is a large, long haired native Russian sheepdog that was developed in Russian Steppe in 1790s as a ferocious guardian of flock from such predators as wolves, mountain lions and bears. This is an ancient breed and as is the case with most old breeds, its exact origination is cloudy and debatable. Some researchers believe that this dog originated from European breed known as Austrian Shepherd which was imported to Russia. This belief stemmed from the fact the the South Russian Shepherd has very similar hair type as Austrian Shepherd. Documentary evidence prove that these dogs were indeed imported to Russia(now Ukraine) along with merino sheep but they proved too small to cover vast areas though their protecting skills were unparallel. So the Austrian Shepherds were bred with "tatar" (Caucasian) shepherds, Hungarian Komondor and Crimean Greyhound. The progeny of these cross breeding were large hardy dogs with aggressive temperament. These dogs became the ancestors of the South Russian Sheepdog.

This large size dog stands atleast 25 inches minimum and weighs between 108-110 lbs. It is a robust dog with lean and massive bone structure and strongly developed musculature. The dog comes with an elongated head and slightly rounded forehead. The big nose is black. Small and triangular ears are hanging down. Eyes are oval shaped. A South Russian Sheepdog has a straight and strong back, a short broad and rounded loin. The deep chest is reasonably broad and slightly flattened. The belly is moderately tucked up. Muscular body and strong limbs enable the dog to run as fast as wolves. It has a very long coat that is harsh to touch and comes in white colour though shades of grey and white and yellow dogs are also seen.

This breed is NOT recognized by AKC however it is recognized by FCI and UKC as guardian dog.

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