(Karst Sheepdog) (Istrian Sheepdog) (Krasky Ovcar) (Kraševec) The Karst Shepherd is a medium-sized, compactly built sheepdog, with a long haired, double coat. The hair comes in different shades of grey, from iron to silver to very dark. Those with darker coats will have a lighter color on the legs. The hair is short on the head and on the front of the legs, and long and thick over the rest of the body, with a mane at the next, a flag tail, and feathering on the hind legs. The hair lies flat along the rest of the body. The Karst has almond-shaped, dark brown eyes, framed by long ears that lie flat against the skull. The face is masked.
The Karst Shepherd is an independent breed, and does not like to be made to feel subordinate. Obedience training is a must - the training must be patient, and the dog must be made to feel as if it were a partner. The dog is not aggressive, and will become attached to its owner. The Karst is a reliable guard dog.
The Karst has no known chronic diseases. With proper care, the Karst lives up to 12 years.
The Karst Shepherd or sheepdog is the oldest indigenous breed in Slovenia, and has been named a national treasure. (The karst region in Slovenia, which partially extends into Italy, is called the Carso, and is where the first scientific research of a karst topography was made. The karst is "An area of irregular limestone in which erosion has produced fissures, sinkholes, underground streams, and caverns.") It was internationally recognized in 1939 as the Illyrian Shepherd, and re-recognized under its current name of “Kraševec” in 1968. The Karst Shepherd was long felt to be a good flock guard, and still fulfills that function in Slovenia. However, as with all flock guards it makes a friendly family member.
The Karst sheepdog needs regular brushing.
The Karst sheepdog is not suited to apartment life. It needs at the very least a home with a large backyard, so that it has room to roam and exercise. It should also receive regular walks of at least an hour a day. Because it is well-protected by its thick coat, it can stay outside all-year, as long as it has some type of shelter.
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