This large Molosser is said to be a result of crossing the mountain-type Albanian Cattledogs and Sheepdogs with the wolf, but there are supposedly records stating that the Sarplaninac, the Spartan Sheepdog and the Greek dogs played a role in its creation as well. The Albanian Wolfhound is very rare today, believed by many to be extinct. There is some confusion tied to its name, since there is also an Albanian Greyhound breed which is sometimes referred to as the Albanian Wolfhound. It is estimated that there is less than 50 examples of this breed left in existence today.
Used as a large game hunting dog in the past, it also makes an excellent flock guardian and watchdog. Often described as overly vicious, the Albanian Wolfhound is an aggressive and independent breed, best suited for rural environment. This is a deep-chested and well-boned Moloss, leaner and more agile than other Albanian dogs. The head is large and round, with a lupoid muzzle and high-set ears which are sometimes cropped. The body is squarely built, with a straight back, strong neck and long legs. The tail can be docked or left in its natural state.
The medium-length coat is rich and harsh, commonly wolf-grey, fawn and reddish-brown in colour, with or without white markings on the feet, chest and tail. Average height is around 30 inches, but smaller dogs are common.