Anatolian Shepherd Dog

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Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Anatolian Shepherd Dog Overview

Large and in charge, the Anatolian Shepherd Dog is an ancient Turkish breed, with its canine ancestors dating back 6,000 years to the Bronze Age. Anatolian Shepherd Dogs were bred to watch over and protect (not herd) livestock on Turkish farmland. They are sturdy, nimble and hardy dogs that can withstand harsh conditions and temperatures. They have beautiful light coloured coats with dark muzzles and ears and a strong facial bone structure. With a calm temperament, Anatolians are fiercely loyal and loving toward their families but are wary of strangers and are often used as guard dogs. They don’t require more than an hour’s worth of exercise every day and are quite content hanging out in a well fenced back yard. They’re not the type to love playing fetch or frisbee, and prefer long leisurely walks instead. Anatolians also don’t eat too much relative to their size, saving you a bit of cash on your dog food bill. These dogs are highly independent and can be tricky to train because of that. You’ll need to assert your dominance over your Anatolian early on and start socializing and obedience training your puppy as soon as possible.

Did you know?

Traditionally, Anatolian Shepherd Dogs wore thick spiked collars to protect them from predators who attack the neck.

Anatolian Shepherd Dog Stats

  • Kid-Friendly Kid-Friendly

  • Good with other animals Good with other animals

  • Working dog Working dog

Popularity ranking**
27-29 in / 80-150 lbs (L)
Average lifespan
11-13 years
Activity level
Vocal and protective
Barking level
Vocal and protective
Coat length

Caring for your breed

Daily serving

Daily kibble serving

3-5 cups

Daily exercise

Daily exercise

2 hours


Grooming frequency

Brushed regularly

Dog Food

Feeding your Anatolian Shepherd Dog

Anatolian Shepherd Dogs have different dietary needs than most other domesticated breeds. In their native environment of Turkey, Anatolians ate a mostly vegetarian diet, meaning that they don’t do very well on high protein commercial foods or beef-based foods. They also have a relatively small appetite compared to other large breeds. It’s not uncommon for Anatolians to voluntarily fast during periods of hot weather or travel. It’s best to feed your Anatolian a high quality lamb and rice or chicken and rice based food. Talk to your vet about nutritional supplements you can add to your Anatolian’s food as well.


*Contrary to popular belief, there are no 100% hypoallergenic dogs. There are breeds, however, that have non-shedding coats and are suited well to allergy sufferers.
**The breed popularity ranking is based on the most current ranking of the American Kennel Club (AKC)

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