Gary Admin
 added a post  to  , Tzar

Hey there Alaa - welcome back.. :) missed your interesting comments and posts here. Hope all is well.

Tzar
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Hi there .. I am interested to learn about the different types of CAS; Central Asia is a vast area with different terrains; for example only:  How many types/strains?  What are the physical differences between the different types e.g. CAS from the steppes, CAS from the mountains etc?  How can the different types be identified?  Does 'type' = 'strain'?  What are the different traits between the different types, or do all CAS's have the same trails?  What do different types of CAS excel in over the other e.g. steppe type can jump higher than the mountain type?  Not sure what else ..

Please note that the intention behind this post is not about which strain or type is better so please let us not get into that; I just want to learn about the different strains and types of CAS please .. Thank you ..

  • Hello Tzar,

    I took a look back at the profile we have for the Central Asian Shepherd Dog and am sharing this tidbit as I think it addresses your post.

    Central Asian Shepherd Dogs had existed in many different types of varying sizes, coats, colors and temperaments, depending on their primary use and region of origin.

    To this day, it can be said that the Russian dogs differ from dogs found in Turkmenistan, both of these types being very different from those of Afghanistan and Pakistan, which in turn aren't the same as the dogs of Iran, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and so on. But, until these countries develop strict standards for their dogs and get recognized as separate breeds, the name Central Asian Shepherd Dog is being used for all of them. Some consider even the Sage Koochee and the Sarmatian Mastiff to be nothing more than types of the Central Asian Ovcharka, but this notion is understandably disputed by the fanciers of those breeds.

    Only the Alabai of Turkmenistan and the very rare Tobet of Kazakhstan are somewhat standardized and on their way to possible separate recognition, while most of these other countries aren't showing any interest in doing that, due to their general disregard for the Western ways. Their dogs are bred for work, not for show and that's the way it has been done for thousands of years.

    Thank you for starting this discussion - let's see if others have comments. 

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    • Ah, here in the 'west' we demand standards for supply and demand markets - so establish CAO standards for safety and profit....  

      Merry Christmas everyone.   smile

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      • That is so true knichol5, most of our breed clubs are commercial entities out for profit and really don't have the original intent of breed preservation any more. Look at what the AKC has done to the German Shepherd and the Neapolitan Mastiff.

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        • Yes, Gary_Sicard, true profit is the breeds' helping us with the tasks at hand along with loyal spirit and wise discernment (function of good training noted).

          Godspeed in good stewardship.

          Kevin

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        • Hi Gary

          A very valuable piece of information; thank you; it sums it up nicely; it also confirms my understanding that there are varying types and strains; however, I don't think that the response fully addresses the post, as a question is about both the physical and temperament differences between CAS types and strains.

          To start and without being fussy, does Type = Strain? I am just trying to narrow the discussion as much as possible, and as a dog owner not a breeder, I am really eager to learn and don't mind being spoon fed :)

          The most interesting part in your response for me is that there are still some countries that focus on dogs that are bred for work, and not for show; thank God for that :) Applying the rule of elimination from what you said, these countries are: Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgystan.

          Having said that, I believe that the Russian CAS produced by the late Red Star Kennel was very successful in producing exceptional quality of guard CAS; where they also exceptional as shepherds; I wonder what happened to the Red Start Kennel, who inherited their breeding stock, and again what are physical and temperament differences between the Russian CAS and the rest?

          The more I think about it, the more I realise how large the topic is .. So, if you may please allow me, I will come back to where I started:

          What are the physical differences between the different types?  How can the different types be identified?  What are the different traits between the different types?  What do different types of CAS excel in over the other? 

          Perhaps, it might be easier, as a starting point, to classifying CAS according to their terrain: Mountain Type, Steppe Type and Desert Type - And build up from there ..

          Thank you for your time, and I would like to take the opportunity to wish you a Blessed Festive Season and a Happy 2020 :)

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          • To start and without being fussy, does Type = Strain? 

            What are the physical differences between the different types? 

            How can the different types be identified? 

            What are the different traits between the different types? 

            What do different types of CAS excel in over the other? 

            Perhaps, it might be easier, as a starting point, to classifying CAS according to their terrain: Mountain Type, Steppe Type and Desert Type - And build up from there ..

            Type = Strain - Yes this is loosely used to mean the same thing though in some cases a type is an established subset of a population. The Mountain Type - would be a good description, not mountain strain. A breeder can produce a strain from that type - say a particular coloring or maybe a lighter boned strain. It is good to find out how the terms are used before deciding on the relevant meaning. In my case, I use type to be established and recognized and strain to be a particular variant of the type.

            Physical Difference - are mainly the three that you mentioned and have to do with morphology. Mountain types are usually heavier boned and greater mass on the body. Longer coated with a double coat, heavier blockier heads, deep wide chest, and large paws - all adopted to moving on the mountain and snow. Steppe are not as heavily built have the body type that is between the plains type and the mountain type. Of course, this is dictated by habitat and function. Look for lighter-colored, narrower dogs that can traverse the large expanses of land quickly and efficiently.  Longer legged, slightly longer blocky muzzle deep-chested, well tucked up and powerful well-coupled structure. Plains version (desert type) by necessity are slightly built animals with long legs, deep chest, strong lithe muscles, and narrower heads compared to the mountain type. Colors would range more to fawn, straw and multi-colored including a good dose of white. Have a look at some photos here.

            You will see many Turkmen Alabai and other types. Some look like Caucasians with docked tails - possibly mountain type and some may resemble the Kangal or Anatolian but with different coloring.

            This one is Russian: 

            Have a look at Murat that was used as a fighting dog - http://sicard.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=1051

            This one is a Russian import to Israel.

            http://sicard.net/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=1905

            Temperament is a function of breeding and work. it takes about three generations to completely change the temperament in a breeding kennel. The tasks that the dogs is bred for will dictate their temperament.   Will continue the discussion later - Christmas calls. :)

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            • Gray; this is a grand reply; thank you; I noticed that breeders often avoid this subject; not only here but also on Facebook; not sure why exactly such a basic topic may become sensitive; I enjoyed reading your thoughts on this topic and I look forward to learn more especially about the difference in temperament between the 3 main types of CAS; this would be very interesting to read (on the root of the discussion please); thank you :)

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            • So the temperament is going to be a function of the breeding and the work that the dogs are engaged in doing. Regardless of type, the CAS should be protective, wary of strangers, and belicose. Breeders tend to breed for what the market demands and, as such, you will find that the temperament is being diluted and softened by breeding the weakest dogs to other weak dogs - removing the behavior that may not be welcomed in today,s litigious environment. Removing or softening the exact behavior that made the breed special in the first place.

              Breed clubs also want their "breed" to be accepted by the mainstream dog clubs and that required a softening of the dogs so they are acceptable to strangers getting in their faces.  Thus, the breed, once accepted by the major kennel clubs are changed forever.

              So, when looking for a dog it is important that you select your breed and then find a breeder that breeds dogs to do the work that you envision.  Not an easy task today.

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              Tzar
               added an album 

              Details have emerged of a photo taken in the Black Sea province of Rize showing a shepherd girl and her dog carrying a newborn goat and its mother in their backpacks, which went viral on social media.

              The shepherd girl in the photo has been identified as 11-year-old Hamdu Sena Bilgin, and the photograph was taken in the village of Yagcilar, 10 kilometers away from the center of the ?kizdere district of Rize.

              The story behind heart-warming photograph of shepherd girl in Turkey’s Rize

              The photo was taken while Bilgin was returning home with her sheep and goats after realizing one of the goats had started to give birth.

              After the birth she put the newborn goat in her school bag and placed it on the back of her sheepdog, named “Tommy,” and took the mother goat in her own backpack. 

              The story behind heart-warming photograph of shepherd girl in Turkey’s Rize
              The photo, which spread rapidly on social media, was taken by Bilgin’s 15-year-old brother Ali Rahman, while she and her dog were struggling home through the snow.

              The girl has said she was trying to carry the goats back to the barn after the surprise birth.

              The story behind heart-warming photograph of shepherd girl in Turkey’s Rize

              “When the goat suddenly gave birth, I used my school bag to carry them home. I put the baby goat in the backpack and made my dog wear it. I also placed the mother goat in the other bag and that’s how we got to the barn,” Bilgin said.

              Read the story

              • This is a wonderful story. That is a very courageous girl doing something that most western girls at that age would not even consider. 

                And what an awesome Kangal dog she has with her for protection.

                Alaa - thanks for sharing this.

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                Admin
                 added a post  to  , Tzar

                Hello Alaa,

                Can you tell me why she was rehomed? I am just curious and non-judgemental.  I know you love her very much and the decision was not easy.  Please share if you can.

                Best wishes,

                Gary

                • Hi Gary; this is the same dog that there was a big fuss about when she was 8 months old; do you remember the story re post title CAO Assessment? Tzarina is now two and half years old and no signs of improved guarding or shepherd ability; she kept jumping the fence to play with our alpaca, and our alpaca kept hurting her legs; at 2.5 years old she still wees out of excitement meeting a visitor for the first time; not even a bark to alert us to a 4x4 driving into our drive way even after a big scary dude got out of the utility vehicle; she is 'perfect' for someone who is after a pet or a sweet companion dog; I loved Tzar dearly that nearly two years after his death and am still not recovered from his loss; Tzar was a superior LGD; Tzarina is a ballerina that is useless but sweet; basically, for me she is a dud dog; I had enough of looking after her; she will be happy in her new 16 acres home and her owner will be happy with her; it was the best for both of us.

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                  • Yes, I remember very well as you were concerned about her temperament. It seems that she did not improve her guarding abilities.  It is something that I am finding with many of the rustic breeds in the west now. They are completely watered down and basically useless as guardians.  Thankfully, we still have two good COs.

                    Terrible sorry about Tzarina not coming into the typical CAO temperament.

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                    Admin
                     added a post  to  , Tzar

                    Hello Alaa,

                    Do you have any dogs news from down under?  I found one and posted it just now and it will appear in a couple of hours on the site.  If you find any good stories perhaps you can put a snippet in a post with a link so we can have a look.  I am trying to get more activities on the site. :)

                    Gary Admin
                     added a post  to  , Tzar

                    Hi Alaa,

                    I sent you my contact details in an email.  Best regards.

                    • Thank you Gary; will be heading back to Australia on Friday and will get it then; hope that you and all is well; always best ...

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