Russian Bear Dog: Caucasian Shepherd Breed Info, Facts & More

Russian Bear Dog

Russian Bear Dog also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, is a large, powerful dog that was originally bred to protect flocks of sheep from predators in the Caucasus Mountains. These dogs are known for their strength, courage, and independence, and they make excellent guard dogs.

These are typically large and muscular, with males standing 27-30 inches tall at the shoulder and weighing up to 200 pounds. Females are slightly smaller, but they are still very imposing dogs.

If you are looking for a large, protective dog, the Russian Bear Dog is a good choice. However, these dogs are not for everyone. They require a lot of space and exercise, and they are not suitable for inexperienced dog owners. Let’s know more about Russian Bear Dog:

History of the Russian Bear Dog:

  • This dog’s real name is Caucasian Ovcharka, meaning ‘sheepdog of Caucasian.’
  • It goes back 2500 years in time. It comes from really old Molossers.
  • It comes from the mountains of Caucasus, Russia.
  • Long ago, people made this big Russian dog to keep sheep safe from big animals like bears and wolves.
  • Even today, they still do this job in the Caucasus mountains in Georgia.
  • Around 1920, they started guarding important places like government buildings and factories because they were so good at protecting them.
  • After that, people in other countries started liking them too, places like Azerbaijan, Russia, Germany, Georgia, and more.
  • In 1930, they went to a special dog show for the 1st time.

How the Caucasian Hunting Dog Looks:

  • This big dog is often called the Gentle Giant because of a good reason. It keeps away animals that might hurt sheep and other animals by looking strong and muscular.
  • It has a face kind of like a bear, with eyes that are deep and dark like ovals. Its ears are tall and shaped like triangles, and its nose area gets smaller as it goes towards the nose, which can be black or brown.
  • It is considered the biggest dog in the whole world.
  • Male Ovcharka dogs can be 28 to 35 inches tall and weigh 110 to 200 pounds. Female dogs are 26 to 31 inches tall and weigh 100 to 180 pounds.
  • Its thick fur helps it stay warm in really cold places.
  • Around its neck, it has a thick “mane” of fur that keeps it safer if it has to fight wolves.
  • Its fur is like a coat with two layers. The outside layer has long and rough hair, while the inside layer has short and smooth hair.
  • These dogs can have different fur colours, like grey, fawn, brown, white, black, tan, piebald (with white marks), and brindle (with three colours).

How the Russian Bear Dog Acts:

  • These dogs were made to protect sheep, so they naturally like to keep everyone safe.
  • They’re strong and can protect their family from danger.
  • These dogs are known for being careful around strangers and for being kind and calm with their own families.
  • They might get very serious if they see something strange or if someone is not in their usual place. So, getting used to different things is important.
  • But don’t think they’re always very active sometimes they can be lazy.
  • Even if they’re lazy, they still need walks and stuff.
  • If this dog feels scared or doesn’t trust someone, it might get angry. (Remember that!)
  • Although people might think bad things about this dog, I want to explain about if it’s good for families.
  • This dog loves its family a lot, and it becomes more protective as time goes on.
  • If you want a dog to guard and protect, having a Russian bear dog is a good idea.
  • But be careful if you have kids – these dogs are big and strong, and that might be difficult for children.
  • Kids often bother pets until they react, and this dog might look serious, which could upset kids.
  • Taking care of these big dogs isn’t easy. It’s better if only adults are in the family.

How the Caucasian Ovcharka Exercises and Eats:

  • You might be surprised, but they don’t have a lot of energy. But they do need a regular walk every day (about 1 hour).
  • You can take them for hikes and long walks because they can keep going for a long time.
  • They like being outside, so going to the park for playing and walking is good.
  • When you walk, you should be in front so they know you’re the leader.
  • Don’t make young Russian bear dogs exercise too much, as it could hurt their joints.
  • They enjoy games like catching and fetching, which are also good exercises.

Eating Right for Your Dog:

Since this dog is big, it needs special good food made for large dogs.

How much it should eat depends on how heavy it is. Check here:

  • If it’s around 100 pounds, it needs about 2000 calories a day.
  • If it’s around 115 pounds, it needs about 3000 calories a day.
  • If it’s around 200 pounds, it needs about 4000 calories a day.
  • Feed them slowly and steadily so their bones don’t have problems later.
  • They like lots of protein in their food because they’re meat-eaters.
  • Give them food two times each day, evening and morning, to keep them strong.
  • Stay away from food with fake stuff and fillers because it’s not good for them.
  • And remember, what kind of food to get depends on how big and how old your dog is.

Teaching and Taking Care of Your Russian Bear Dog

If you’re bringing this big dog home, you need to teach it some things. Why? Small dogs can’t make big messes, but big dogs can. So, let’s learn about Ovcharka dog training. Here we go:

  • It’s not simple to train a Russian bear dog because it’s stubborn and likes to do things on its own.
  • Only use nice ways to train it. Being mean will make it act angry.
  • Train it in an open place where it can run around.
  • Start teaching this dog breed when it’s 5 to 7 months old. It gets more stubborn as it grows, so it’s harder to teach.
  • Teach it confidence, kindness, and patience first. Little puppies won’t cause trouble, but grown-up ones might in new situations.
  • It’s important to help it get used to other dogs and people early on. It’s not great with them, so it needs practice.
  • A positive way means giving it treats and saying nice things. That way, it will know what’s good behaviour.
  • Train it to do things you say, like “Sit down,” “Leave it,” and “Be good.”
  • To keep it clean, you’ll have to spend time making its fluffy fur look nice and stay healthy.

Keeping Your Russian Bear Dog Clean:

  • This dog has thick fur that comes off (sheds) sometimes, but not too much. It sheds a lot for just two times in a year. This is when it loses all its inside fur. (This is called ‘Blowing.’)
  • Whether its fur is long or short, it needs the same kind of care because its mane is thick.
  • Its fur can get tangled fast. So, brush it every day. Fur tangles don’t look good, and they can block the pup’s view.
  • You should brush it for about 3 to 4 minutes each day.
  • Clean its paws, ears, tummy, and back legs.
  • You may take it to a special fur-cutting person (groomer) once a week or month.
  • Don’t cut its fur too short, or its skin might show. The thick fur helps it handle different weather.
  • Trim its nails often because they grow quickly.
  • To stop ear problems, clean out earwax and dirt.

Common Caucasian Shepherd Dog Health Issues:

  • People might think their name is about looking like a bear, but it’s because they used to hunt bears in Russia’s Caucasus region.
  • Russian dogs even come into use in prisons to control bad people.
  • They’re not just good guards and police dogs. They’re also great at protecting prisons in the US.
  • Female Russian bear dogs are able to have babies only once a year.
  • They come in 3 fur lengths: long, medium, or small.
  • If they’re trained well, they can even help people feel better as therapy dogs.
  • In 1989, one of them worked as a dog for patrolling near the Berlin Wall in Germany.

Taking Care of a Russian Dog’s Health:

Now that you know how to take care of a Russian dog, let’s learn about its health. Generally, it’s a healthy breed and can live for around 12 years. But like all puppies, it has some things that might not be so strong.

Sometimes, purebred dogs have health problems because they’ve been bred within their family for a long time.

Caucasian shepherd dogs might have a few health problems they can inherit, such as:

  • Hip Problems
  • Elbow Problems
  • Getting Too Fat
  • Bloat (When the stomach gets too full and twisted)
  • Eye Problems (Cataracts)
  • Knee Problems (Luxating patella)

These dogs often have hip problems. To stop this, don’t let your dog jump out and out of the car or use stairs too much. These things can hurt its hips and joints.


What is a Russian Bear Dog?

The Russian Bear Dog, also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, is a large, powerful dog breed originally from the Caucasus Mountains of Russia. They were bred to guard livestock and property from predators, including bears.

What are the characteristics of a Russian Bear Dog?

Russian Bear Dogs are large, muscular dogs with thick coats that can be white, black, brown, or a combination of colours. They are known for their courage, loyalty, and protectiveness. They are also intelligent and trainable.

How big do Russian Bear Dogs get?

Male Russian Bear Dogs typically stand 26-30 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh 100-170 pounds. Females are slightly smaller, standing 24-28 inches tall and weighing 80-140 pounds.