Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Caucasian Mountain Dog: Breed Guide, Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Caucasian Mountain Dog: Breed Guide, Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Caucasian mountain dog

The Caucasian Mountain Dog, also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog, is a huge dog that can reach upwards of 220 pounds. While they usually average out at 100+ pounds, that’s a lot of dog to train and raise. These gorgeous dogs are as fierce a dog as you can get, but they are also loyal to a fault.

Breed Overview


22 – 34 inches


100 – 220 pounds


10 – 12 years


White, brown, red, black

Suitable for:

Experienced dog owners and trainers, those with enough property to house this massive breed


Loyal, courageous, fierce, protective, territorial, intelligent, bold

Originally bred to guard livestock and protect people’s lives in the dangerous mountain regions from which they got their name, they are always willing to work hard and are extremely intelligent as well. They are fiercely protective of their owners, as they were bred to fight off wolves, jackals, bears, and even trespassers on their owner’s land. It’s best if this breed is adopted by someone who is very experienced with dogs, or a trainer who has the patience and the space available for this massive dog to roam.

If you’re considering adopting one of these dogs, then we’ve got everything you need to know about them to help you make the right decision. Remember, a giant dog is a lot of responsibility, so think carefully before deciding to take one of these gorgeous pets home.

Caucasian Mountain Dog Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.

divider-dog paw

Caucasian Mountain Dog Puppies

Before you buy a Caucasian Mountain Dog puppy, it’s important to note that they grow up to be absolutely massive in most cases. These dogs are both muscular and protective as adults. However, before they grow into giant animals, the Caucasian Mountain Dog is a fluff ball of cuteness.

Due to their size, these adorable puppies need a firm hand when it comes to training. Since they are stubborn and strong-willed, they can resist training, so they need an owner with a firm yet patient hand to teach them.

While your puppy will be fine in a small space for a few weeks, it’s not going to last. So, if you don’t have room where he can get out to run and get exercise, then this isn’t the right choice of pet dog for you.

Temperament & Intelligence of the Caucasian Mountain Dog

While this breed can be calm, loyal, and gentle with family, they have a varied range of personalities. The fact that this breed is protective of their territory and can be aggressive when it comes to defending their families makes training them challenging, especially when they decide to be stubborn.

This breed is intelligent and can be trained, but it’s best for them to go to an experienced trainer who can handle them. Once they are trained, however, they make excellent guard dogs, work dogs, and therapy dogs, as they can be gentle and loving.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

This dog breed has a fierce need to protect and will make a good guard dog. They love their families, but they still aren’t the right choice for families that have children. Since they’re so large, often weighing in at 200+ pounds, it would be super easy for them to seriously hurt a younger, slight child just by running over them accidentally.

This isn’t to say that you can’t have a Caucasian Mountain Dog as a family pet. However, it takes an exceptional amount of training by an exceptional, experienced trainer to do so. If you’re not an experienced trainer or don’t have one in the family, then it’s best to keep this breed to a family that doesn’t have small children.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Since this breed is so territorial, they do have a difficult time living with other animals. The Caucasian Mountain Dog has a difficult time living with other animals, especially small pets.

Small pets tend to bring out the prey instinct in this breed. However, if they’re trained early and socialized as puppies, there’s no reason that this breed can’t reside in a household that has other pets. You just need to be careful with them.


Things to Know When Owning a Caucasian Mountain Dog:

Now that you know quite a bit about the Caucasian Mountain Dog, it’s time to move into a few other things you need to know before deciding to purchase one as your own. In this section, we’ll go into food and diet requirements, exercise, training, grooming, and any major and minor health conditions you might have to deal with after you’ve brought one of these gorgeous animals home.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

As you might expect, it takes quite a bit of food to feed a 200+ pound dog. Also, they have very high nutritional requirements, so you can’t feed them food that’s cheaply made and inexpensive.

It’s important to note, however, that this breed gains weight easily. You want to be very careful how much you’re feeding your dog in a day. It’s best to dole out his food in small portions to prevent him from gobbling it up and becoming obese.

If you feel that your dog is gaining too much weight, make an appointment with his vet to see the best food type to feed him.

Exercise 🐕

Surprisingly, this breed doesn’t require much exercise even though he is a big breed. As with any other dog, he’s going to need his daily walks, and it’s a good idea to get out and play with him when you can.

Since they are so massive, it takes some energy for this breed to get moving, so walking 30 minutes a day and throwing in a little extra playtime should suffice in the exercise department.

Training 🎾

As previously mentioned, this breed can be stubborn and are truly difficult to train. Highly intelligent and strongly independent, this breed isn’t going to learn from a novice trainer. It’s important for extensive training to begin when your dog is a puppy and needs to be done by an experienced trainer.

The last thing you want to do is not properly train a Caucasian Mountain Dog. An unruly 200-pound dog is not something you want to deal with, trust us.

Grooming ✂️

With a thick, heavy coat, the Caucasian Mountain Dog is full of fur. Your pet needs to be brushed at least twice a week, possibly three times a week. Failing to groom your pet correctly can end with their fur becoming matted and messy.

Be prepared because while this breed sheds daily, they shed massively yearly. Make sure you have the brush, the vacuum, and the broom ready to deal with the hair that will be all over your home.

Health and Conditions 🏥

As with any pet, there will be a few severe and minor conditions you should watch out for. This breed of dog is no exception, so we’ll go into the conditions to watch for below.

Minor Conditions
  • Cataracts
Serious Conditions
  • Hip dysplasia

Minor Conditions:

Cataracts are something else to watch out for in Caucasian Mountain Dogs. One symptom of cataracts is a milkiness in your pet’s eyes. While not looked at as a major problem, cataracts that go undetected can end up with your pet losing their sight completely. If you suspect your dog is developing cataracts, it’s essential to take him to your local vet to be checked out.

Serious Conditions:

The dog is a solid breed that has very few serious health problems to watch out for. The biggest issue is hip dysplasia. While this can happen to all pets, it happens most often in larger breeds of dogs, and this breed is massive.

The condition causes rubbing and pain. Eventually, it will cause your pet to be unable to move. There’s nothing that can be done for this condition, but you can help your dog live a comfortable life by properly managing the condition. If you’re unsure if your Caucasian Mountain Dog is showing signs of this condition, make an appointment with your vet. He’ll give you tips on how to manage the condition after diagnosing it.


Male vs. Female

The male and female versions of this breed are pretty even in temperament. However, there are a few differences you’ll want to note when deciding which gender to purchase. Females usually reach a maximum of 180 pounds and grow to be around 28 inches. The males of this dog breed, however, can top out at 220 and reach 27 to 30 inches in height.

Either of these Caucasian Mountain Dog breeds would make an excellent pet for the right person, so choose wisely and bring home the right pup for your needs.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Caucasian Mountain Dog

1. The Caucasian Mountain Dog Has Many Different Names

As stated at the beginning of our article, the Caucasian Mountain Dog is also known as the Caucasian Shepherd Dog. What many future owners don’t know is that the dog has a few other names as well. They are known as Caucasian Sheepdog, Baskhan Pariy, Russian Bear Dogs, and quite a few more.

If you’re looking to adopt a Caucasian Mountain Dog, don’t be confused by the many different names, they all come from the same dog breed.

2. Caucasian Mountain Dogs Make Great Guard Dogs

This breed of dog is very territorial, so if you’re looking for a guard dog, this is the dog you need. Known for fighting wolves and bears to protect their family, they are still courageous, loyal, and extremely protective of the ones they think of, like their family.

3. They Make Great Therapy Dogs

It’s hard to believe that a dog that can grow to be so massive could be compassionate and friendly, but the Caucasian Mountain Dog fits the bill. They make good therapy dogs and can be very gentle. However, it takes quite a bit of extensive training to make them the gentle dogs they can be.



This concludes our guide on the Caucasian Mountain Dog and tells you everything you need to know to make a final decision. Remember, these dogs are fiercely protective, and while they make superior guard dogs, it’s probably not the best idea to keep them as a family pet unless they’re trained by a highly experienced trainer.

Once trained, however, the Caucasian Mountain Dog is lovable, and intelligent, and makes a great work dog or even a therapy dog for the right person. With proper care, training, and socialization, this will make an excellent pet for someone who has patience, a firm but gentle hand, and plenty of space for this massive animal to roam.

Featured Image Credit: Jagodka, Shutterstock

Our vets

Want to talk to a vet online?

Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

Our vets