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Alabai Dog: Central Asian Shepherd Dog

Alabai Dog: Central Asian Shepherd Dog

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The Alabai dog – also called Central Asian shepherd dog – is a challenge that not everyone can cope with. The keeping of this dog is only possible with a lot of dog experience, time and patience. The Central Asian Shepherd needs a lot of space and exercise. So no need to say that this definitely isn’t a beginner dog.

Origin & History

The origin of the Alabai dog breed lies throughout Central Asia. Different types have developed in the different regions through breeding and natural selection.

Their ancestors, Shepherds from the region around the Oxus River lived 8,000 to 10,000 years ago. They even protect cattle and humans from large wild animals, such as bears and wolves.

The Central Asian Shepherd dog is related to the Kangal and the Tibetan Dog. Overall, however, this group is probably also an ancestor of European mountain dogs.

This dog breed was bred as a shepherd dog. It protects the herd from wild animals. The brave dog is also used as a watchdog, which scares strangers simply because of its size.

The Alabai Dog Breed Info

A Central Asian Shepherd looks impressive due to its size and physique. The dogs come from the Central Asian regions and were kept here as work animals. Due to the large distribution area, the dogs often differ in appearance. The nature of the different types can also vary.

The Alabai from desert regions is lighter than the representatives from the mountain regions. He has a slimmer, longer-legged body. It also has a rather rectangular body shape. Dogs from mountainous regions, on the other hand, are rather massive, with a wide physique and a compact body shape. However, the transitions between the different types are fluid.

The Alabai dog from close looking at the camera
The Central Asian Shepherd needs a lot of space and exercise. So no need to say that this definitely isn’t a beginner dog.


All Central Asian Shepherds are large and muscular. The breed standard only prescribes a minimum height. It should not be less than 30 inches for a male dog and not less than 25 inches for a female dog.

Due to the different regional characteristics, there are dogs with medium-long and short hair. However, due to their origin, all dogs have a very dense undercoat that protects against cold, rain and snow. The coat colors are diverse, from black to gray, straw and fox to white. The colors appear spotted or with patches.

Many of the dogs stand out due to wrinkles and “slack” skin. The thick skin sometimes wrinkles in the neck, which gives the molosser its special appearance. Originally, the ears of the Central Asian Shepherd were cropped. However, today ear cropping is banned in many countries.


The Central Asian Ovcharka should only be run by very experienced dog owners. The upbringing of the sometimes stubborn dog is time-consuming and must be carried out with great consistency. Since the dogs are very strong, they are physically superior to most people. This can become problematic, as dogs can often react suspiciously and sometimes even aggressively.

Since the dogs were bred for defense against large animals, they are very courageous. Without much warning, even seemingly abandoned dogs attack in the event of a threat. Dealing with the Central Asian Ovcharka requires a loving consequence and a strong self-confidence.

In general, the breed is known for its serenity. However, his reaction to threats can be very violent. If a Central Asian Shepherd is not consistently trained from the beginning, he can become aggressive towards humans and animals. In general, the dogs are not very well tolerated by other dogs.

This breed should not be kept in a small apartment. They can be good family dogs, but only if trained well.

Many dogs form a close bond with their people. However, it is important that he has daily contact with his owner. An isolated attitude promotes aggression.

A dog sitting with his tongue out
This breed should not be kept in a small apartment. They can be good family dogs, but only if trained well.


The Alabai dog is a robust breed. It places little demands on food. In their regions of origin, the dogs are fed rather sparingly. That’s why adult dogs need little food.

When feeding the large dogs, there are some special features that should be taken into account. A balanced diet is particularly important in their youth. During growth, the dog needs sufficient nutrients. At the same time, the large-growing dog needs little protein in the first year.

Special dog food for puppies and young dogs of large breeds is adapted to the needs of these animals in growth. Young dogs should get low-protein food. The feeding should be divided into several portions per day.

Even in adulthood, it makes sense if you feed special dog food for large breeds. Especially when feeding with dry food, the large pellets are better.

Caring for a Central Asia Shepherd

They need fairly little grooming. The coat does not have to be brushed often even with the long-haired representatives of the breed.

Get your dog used to the brush from an early age. That way you will keep the shedding at a minimum.

Always make sure that the joints of the dog are protected. Inappropriate nutrition and unfavorable movements can promote joint diseases. This includes, for example, hip joint dysplasia (HD), which is also heritable.

Your young Alabai dog should not move too much. Especially jumping and climbing stairs should be avoided. Instead, the dog should burn his calories during long walks.

One thing that is very important with Central Asian Shepherds is that you start the socialization process early on. Only that way can he feel comfortable around strangers and other animals.

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