The Kangal Shepherd Dog is one of the most famous dog breed in Sivas. Initially the kangal shepherds were called as Anatolian Shepherd while considered as a separate breed by many canine registries. Later, the Anatolian shepherd is now popular as kangal Shepherds, named by Turkish Kennel Club. The kangal shepherds is a breed of an early Mastiff type with a solid plate tan or sabled coat with a black mask.
Similarly, the Kangals can also be brindle or have black tan pattern. They can also have white markings while can be with or without any mask. Official Kangal Shepherd Dog organisations in Turkey, the Cynology Federation of Turkey (Köpek Irkları ve Kinoloji Federasyonu, KIF) and the Ankara Kangal Association define these features.
On other hand, the Kangal Shepherd Dog is generally referred to as a sheep dog while it is not a herding dog. Rather the kangal dogs are a flock guardian that lives with the flock of sheep to actively fend off predators of different sizes. That’s the reason the dogs are used as protection against wolves, bears, and jackals in Turkey. Moreover, to many African countries like Namibia and Kenya, the breed had been exported.
The Best Protector
The kangal shepherd breed has a best ability of protection, through which the local herds from lions, cheetahs and big cats. Moreover, due to their intimidating size and ability of effective guardian, they successfully protect the endangered predators.
Along with capability of protectiveness, the Kangal shepherd is famous for their loyalty, and gentleness. Their gentle attitude towards small children and animals has led to its growing popularity as a guardian for families. They guard the families with loyalty and extreme devotion.
The name of Kangal shepherd dogs are derived from the contemporary Central Anatolian town of Kangal in Sivas Province. Similarly, some believe that dog belongs to the same root as the Turkic tribe known as the ” Kankalis “.
Appearances of Kangal Dog
The height and weight of this breed varies from 65 to 78 cm. The reports of KIF do not differentiate between male and female statistics of this dog breed. Interestingly, the height and weight is different in UK and America and is different in Turkey.
Although, the Kangal Shepherd Dog is not as heavy as Mastiff breeds while having greater speed and agility than other large dogs. They can reach to the speeds of up to 88 km (55 miles) per hour. Similarly, the under-layer of these dogs provides insulation against both severe Anatolian winters and extreme rays of summer sun. On the other hand, the outer-layer is helpful in repelling water and snow. Enriched with other qualities, this combination of coat helps dogs to regulate the temperature efficiently and provides enough dense to repel rupture from wolf bites. Although the measures of coat color in this breed varies in different regions of the world.
Temperament of Kangal Dog
The Kangal Shepherd Dog are very protective and loyal. This specie falls in very calm, controlled, independent and powerful category. Sometimes, they aloof towards strangers while most of the times they socialize well with visitors and especially children.
Furthermore, they are never shy or vicious rather very well-trained. They have the ability to be sensitive and alert to changing situations in case of responding to threats with warnings. They make very good protectors and good guardians of livestock and families.
Kangal/ Anatolian breed
During July 2013, the Kennel Club of UK announced its reorganization of the Kangal Shepherd Dog as a breed. Moreover, they also stated that the dogs of these breeds registered as Anatolian Shepherd Dogs may be eligible to be recorded as Turkish Kangal Dogs.
Similarly, the Australian National Kennel Council recognizes the ANKC Kangal as being the same from the ANKC Anatolian Shepherd after 2012.
On 15 June 2018, the FCI finally approved the breed name change of Standard No. 331 Anatolian Shepherd Dog to Kangal Shepherd Dog. They also stated that the breed population of FCI Kangal Shepherd Dogs is as same breed population as FCI Anatolian Shepherd Dogs.
The Cultural Icon
The Kangal shepherd dog is popular as ancient and protective dogs. They are also popular in many neighbors of Kangal including Tokat, Malatya and kayseri. At the same time, they are popular in other parts of the world as cultural icon of Turkey. These dogs reflect strength and loyalty. The Turkish people love these dogs. Due to the friendly nature of Kangal Shepherds dogs, they count among the best guardians and adorable for children. If looking for the most popular and best breed of Turkey, the Kangal shepherd dogs are the best breed. Locals also call it as Sivas Kangal Kopegi