Among Russian guard dogs, there is a unique Moscow Watchdog, which combines great watching and guarding abilities with the tenderness of a companion pet.
The Moscow Watchdog is a Russian dog breed, developed in the Soviet Union after WWII. This Soviet dog is very large and heavy, it has a massive, usually black-masked head, and a muscular, powerful body, covered in a thick, medium-length double coat of mostly white color with red, orange, or brown patches.
Height: 27-32 inches (68-81 cm) Weight: 99-180 lbs (45-82 kg) Lifespan: 9-11 years
Now becoming more known and popular outside its native country, the Moscow Watchdog still remains one of the Russian rare dog breeds and is not yet recognized internationally. The first litter of these dogs was born in the US only in 2015.
The Moscow dog was developed in the 1950s at the Russian army’s “Red Star” kennel by crossbreeding Caucasian Shepherd (Ovcharka) and Saint Bernard, with some additions of Russian Harlequin Hound, German Shepherd, and Russian wolfhound. Saint Bernard gave this new Russian guard dog its large size and gentle temperament, while its second major contributor, the Caucasian Shepherd, passed its great guarding and assertive traits.
This new dog breed was finally standardized in the late 1960s with its Russian name Moskovskaya Storozhevaya Sobaka ("sobaka" means dog in Russian). The Soviet military considered it to be a perfect service dog, able to respond the same way to any handler.
Gentle Giant or Warrior?
Aside from military service, the Moscow dog can be both a property protector and a loving family member. This dog looks very impressive but at the same time, it has a humble temperament. With its family, it is a benevolent, affectionate pet.
Moscow Watchdogs have a balanced psyche, and they are usually calm and quiet. They get along well with children if they know the children from a young age.
On the other hand, being a typical Russian guard dog, the Moscow Watchdog will fight with all its strength and firmness to protect its family from any threat. These dogs are equipped with strong guard and protection instincts, and they look very frightening if they get angry. Every threat makes them nervous and can make them act aggressively.
Moscow dog is reserved and skeptical towards strangers, and should never be harassed. Its distrust towards strangers refers not only to humans but also to animals. Therefore, caution from the owner is always necessary.
Health and Care
This breed is characterized by strong health and good stamina but because of its large size, it may be prone to hip dysplasia and other big dogs’ problems. Therefore, an annual visit to the vet is recommended. The dog’s mouth, ears, and nose should also be checked regularly.
Already at the creation of the Moscow Watchdog, it was decided that this breed should be robust, efficient but at the same time unpretentious. It doesn't need any special grooming, though has to be brushed on a regular basis, especially during the coat change. Contrary to other “gentle giants”, this Russian dog doesn't salivate a lot.
Owning a Moscow Watchdog
A small apartment is surely not the best place for this dog. It is desirable to keep it in a house with fenced land. Also, daily walks are advisable.
Moscow Watchdog is not for beginners. It is recommended to experienced owners who have enough space and some free time. It is a good choice for rangers and farmers, especially in the northern regions.
The owners should have a strong character and toughness. Moscow Watchdogs are prone to dominance, they try to take a leading position and like to "argue". They are quite independent and can be stubborn. Consistent education is needed, therefore, to correct this behavior. This should be done before the dog has grown up and become uncontrollable.
When buying a Moscow Watchdog, the owner takes on the responsibility for this large and strong dog breed. Such a dog will fearlessly protect his family, but he needs a strong hand and early socialization.
Moscow Watchdog Size:
Height: 27 to 32 inches (males 29-32, females 27-29)
Weight: 99 to 180 pounds (males 130-180, females 99-140)
Moscow dog, Moscow Watchdog, Russian watchdog, Moskovskaya Storozhevaya Sobaka, Russian: Московская сторожевая
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Comments ( 9 )
James G violante says
I currently have a beautiful Russian Watchdog named Whiskey. He came to me from Afghanistan purchased there by contractors. Whiskey was almost a year old when he was shipped to the U.S. The person that was to bring him home had to give him up as his wife was afraid of him.
Poor Whiskey was then confined to a cage where he wasn’t fed or watered. He was shipped to a kennel who then contacted me.
The kenned contacted me as when my son was serving in the army as a scout in Afghanistan he unit recued twelve puppies. The army ordered them to kill all dogs and they refused hiding their puppies in an Afghan police station who cared for the dogs. When my son shot me an e-mail about the plight of the dogs, I started a month long campaign to stop the order. I was up approximately 24 hours a day in contact with dog lovers all over the world that sent thousands of e-mails to the military. Finally, the military allowed the dogs to be sent to each soldiers home in waiting for their buddies to come home. So, the kennel offered me the dog or he would be put to sleep.
The shape that Whiskey was in was appalling, very skinny and a bare spot on his nose where he must have been hit. I cannot tell you how many times he bit me back then, approximately two years now. We had a pack of seven rescued dogs living here and it was a chore to get him acclimated to pack living. I kept cooking special meals for him and had to feed him in a spare bedroom. Once Whiskey gained trust in the fact that all we wanted was to provide a safe happy home for him, he became a huge puppy. We are down to two dogs now, Whiskey and a long haired miniature Dachshund. Whiskey will sit straight up next to his pal and wait his turn for home made hand feed cookies to them. All my dogs have lived to twelve and thirteen and now that Whiskey has fatten up and grown to full size I am confident he will be with us for a long time. He is constantly by my side or my wives side. Sitting and enjoying TV in the evening has Whiskey on top of us keeping us safe.
Whiskey loves to play but can get pretty rough. We love him like crazy and I love the fact that he craves his hugs and kisses. When my wife gets home from work, Whiskey is constantly by her side. I am retired military and Whiskey has become an extension of myself, always with me and leaning or touching me in some way.
Whiskey is a quick learner when he wants to be. I only have organic treats for them such as various baked cookies fit for humans also, beef, chicken, lamb just anything healthy for them. I was teaching Whiskey to sit and give me his paw. Well, to my surprise, when I point or verbally command Whiskey to sit, he automatically raises his paw upon sitting. We are very alert to the fact that Whiskey has PTSD due to his year in a war zone. So, that makes two of us, me PTSD from Nam and Whiskey from Afghanistan. We love our Whiskey but are aware of his moods which is slowly diminishing.
Much love and attention was given to Whiskey and he is a super happy addition to our family. I would have loved to had him as a puppy and trained him from the start but we are happy to have rescued this huge loving buddy. We love to take him for car rides and he loves walking along the beach. I laughed at him the first time he walked along the bay around the corner of the house and then the ocean. I wondered what he thought and had a fun time with him each time the waves came in and watch him jump to avoid getting drenched.
We have been rewarded many times over for adopting this loving pal. My wife and I can’t keep our hands off of him. Whiskey is an attentive listener and loves when we talk to him. I love that beautiful face and how his ears lift as you speak to him. When I look at Whiskey, he flops down on his back waiting for his belly rubs. It is wonderful that he also craves hugs, kisses, rubdowns and just plain old petting as much as we love doing it. Just the way Whiskey looks into our eyes is heartwarming. It took much love and patience over time to win Whiskey over and I would do it again.
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i just need a better dog
i need a dog because there are no better dogs in lagos
Beste ik heb een nestje puppy's van de moscowwatsch dog.
De puppy's mogen het nest verlaten op 03-06-2011.
Fotos zijn op de site te bekijken . alsook die van de moeder en vader van de puppy's .
Bij intresse ,mail naar : mystery-of-the-dark [at] hotmail.com .
Het is het eerste nestje in BELGIE
Lily, why don't you make an ad with some pictures of your Moscow Dog pups in our free dog classifieds section
kyle hunt says
i want to know where and when i can buy a male puppy and how much it will cost
Likewise. I had a beautiful Moscow Watchdog. I got him just a year ago, when he was 8. He died at 9, due to a severe injury to his leg, and poor prognosis for rehabilitation. I can’t believe I miss him so much, when I barely had him for a year. He’s one if the very best dogs I ever had, or even met in my life.
I’m hoping to find a breeder in the US, and get a puppy, preferably male.
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