The Canine Chronicles Directory
The Kuvasz (pronounced KOO-vahz) has a white or ivory double coat. The outercoat
is moderate in length and the undercoat is thick. The hair is short on the head
and feet but can be as much as 4 to 6 inches long on the body. The hair is either
straight or wavy and the abundant mane stretches from the neck and covers the chest.
The legs are feathered and the coat is more substantial during the winter months.
The skin generally has a dark pigment. They have a distinct stop and slightly tapered
muzzle. Their almond shaped eyes are dark and their v-shaped ears are pendant. The
teeth should meet in a scissor-like bite and the lips and inside of the mouth should
be black in color. Their abdomen is slightly tucked up and their round feet are
tight. The tail is carried low and is raised when the dog is excited.
Kuvasz' are curious, bold, strong-minded, and fearless dogs. They are extremely
territorial and have keen protective instincts, making them an excellent guard dog.
Although they are not very affectionate, they are devoted to their families, protecting
them ardently. They are an independent breed and may seem aloof. If this breed is
to be raised with children, then their parental lines should be reviewed for affirmative
behavior towards children. Kuvasz' are generally gentle and well-behaved around
their family's children, however they should not be trusted around other children,
being supervised at all times. This breed is very distant and suspicious of strangers.
Due to this, they should be socialized extensively from an early age. Some lines
have a more subdued personality than others. Puppies are generally accepting of
other animals however; as adults they can become combative, especially among males.
They should not be left alone with other dogs until you are certain they will not
fight. Make sure to choose from a line that has not been bred to be aggressive.
They can be gentle around pets and livestock, but need special training. The Kuvasz
has been known to defend flocks against wolves, coyote, bears, etc. They should
not be left alone or tied up for long periods of time or they will become destructive
and vicious. They do best in large enclosed yards.
Male Height: 28-30" ; Weight: 100-115 lbs.
Female Height: 26-28" ; Weight: 70-90 lbs.
Kuvasz are prone to hip dysplasia, osteochondritis dissecans, skin problems and
allergic reactions. This breed may drool and slobber. Brushing your dogs' teeth,
hard biscuits and rawhide chews help to limit tartar buildup and gum disease.
It is not recommended that this breed live in an apartment. They do best with a
large yard. If this dog is left alone for long periods of time, they can become
destructive. Leaving this dog chained outside can lead to viciousness. They do best
in colder climates and are very uncomfortable in warmer climates.
This breed needs daily vigorous exercise. Proper exercise should take care of the
digging and chewing problems.
About 10-12 years
The long and thick coat of this breed should be brushed weekly. Its coat naturally
sheds dirt so only bathe when absolutely necessary. Dry shampooing or a rub with
talcum powder is all this breed needs. Check behind the ears for matting. They shed
heavily in warmer climates and occasionally in cooler climates.
The origin of the Kuvasz is still unknown; however, there are a couple of theories
concerning this breed. The first theory is that they have existed since the age
of the Huns. The other theory is that in 1200, Turkish refugees brought them with
their flocks to Hungary when fleeing the Mongolians. It is believed that the name
Kuvasz came from the Turkish word "kavas", which means "protector". During the late
15th century, this breed was very popular with the Hungarian nobility. This breed
was also given as royal gifts for many centuries. They were used to hunt big game,
such as bear, wild boar, etc. The medieval King Matthias was so enraptured by this
breed that he claimed to trust them more than the people around him. The first written
reference concerning this breed came from the 16th century. Many years later the
Kuvasz became popular as a sheepdog with local villagers and herdsmen. This breed
is believed to have contributed to development of the Polish Tatra Sheepdog, the
Marema Sheepdog, the Great Pyrenees and the Anatolian Shepherd. Due to the introduction
of other sheepdogs, the number of Kuvasz began to diminish and only thirty Kuvasz
remained worldwide by the end of World War II. After this, several breeders began
reviving this noble breed. They are recognized by the AKC and the UKC.
AKC Working, UKC Guardian Dog