Anatolian Shepherd Dog (Kangal): Dog Breed Information

Country of origin: Anatolia / Turkey
Shoulder height: 71 – 81 cm
Weight: 40 – 65 kg
Age: 10 – 11 years
Colour: all
Use: protection dog, guard dog

The Anatolian Shepherd Dog ( Kangal, or Turkish Shepherd Dog ) comes from Turkey and belongs to the group of Molossia mountain dogs. With its imposing size, its strong personality, and its pronounced protective instinct, this breed of dog only belongs in the hands of connoisseurs.

Оrigin and history

The Anatolian Shepherd Dog originated in Turkey and was used to herd and protect livestock. Its origin probably goes back to the large hunting dogs of Mesopotamia. As a companion of sedentary settlers and nomads, it has adapted over time to the extreme climatic conditions of the Anatolian highlands and tolerates hot, dry climates as well as very cold temperatures.

The breed term Anatolian Shepherd Dog is an FCI ( Fédération Cynologique Internationale ) umbrella term that encompasses four regional breeds that differ only slightly in appearance. These are the Akbas, the Kangal, the Karabas, and the Kars hound. In Turkey, the Kangal is considered a separate breed.


With a shoulder height of over 80 cm and a weight of more than 60 kg, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog is an imposing and defensive appearance. His body is powerfully muscular but not fat. The fur is short or medium length with a dense, thick undercoat.


The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is balanced, independent, very intelligent, agile, and fast. A livestock guardian, he is also very territorial, alert, and defensive. Male dogs in particular are considered to be extremely dominant, they do not tolerate foreign dogs in their own territory and are suspicious of all strangers. Puppies, therefore, require early socialization.

The Anatolian Shepherd Dog is not just a family companion dog, it needs experienced leadership. He needs a lot of living space and a task that meets his guard and protective instincts. He only subordinates himself to clear leadership, but will always act independently if he deems it necessary.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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