Used as flock herders and guardians in the Russian Steppes this native breed is a direct descendent of the wolf crossed with the local shepherd and sight hounds. Large and robust with a thick, dense double coat, wolf is not the first species that will come to mine. The Ovcharka features a long, thick double coat much like a Sheepdog and the coloring can be, gray and white, white, white and yellow, or what is sometimes called “dead grass.” The breed is lean but with an impressive bone structure and strongly developed muscles.
Active, balanced, courageous and lively for the work they were bred to do, sometimes these dogs are also noted as being nervous. They take their breed instinct for guarding seriously and are very attuned to their environment and act as sentinels of their home even if it is not requested of them. Highly intelligent, they are not often described as affectionate or playful—can you blame them, they were bred for serious work! Socialization from an early age is very helpful for these dogs to help them cohabitate with other animals and socialize with people. Also helpful is plenty of exercise and large areas to run for their boundless energy levels and large size.