Temperament: Loyal, Fearless, Sweet
- Height: 28-30 inches (male), 26-28 inches (female)
- Weight: 100-115 pounds (male), 70-90 pounds (female)
- Life Expectancy: 10-12 years
- Group: Working Group
The Kuvasz is Hungary's majestic guardian breed and hunting companion of kings. A working dog of larger size, the imposing, white, thickly-coated Kuvasz is beautiful, intelligent, independent and profoundly loyal.
A working dog of larger size, sturdily built, well balanced, neither lanky nor cobby. White in colour with no markings. Medium boned, well muscled, without the slightest hint of bulkiness or lethargy. Impresses the eye with strength and activity combined with light-footedness, moves freely on strong legs.
About the Kuvasz
Imposing, impressive, majestic, massive, mighty—pick the adjective you like best, they all apply to the Kuvasz (pronounced KOO-vahz; the plural is Kuvaszok, pronounced KOO-vah-sock). This snow-white livestock guardian of luxuriant coat can stand as high as 30 inches at the shoulder, and weigh between 70 and 110 pounds. Despite their size and strength, Kuvaszok are quick-moving, nimble-footed protectors when meeting a threat. The breed’s fans say that the elegantly proportioned head “is considered to be the most beautiful part of the Kuvasz.”
NUTRITION The Kuvasz should do well on a high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treats can be an important aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times. Like many large dogs, the Kuvasz can develop bloat, or gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV), where the stomach distends and twists. The causes of bloat aren’t fully understood, but experts agree that multiple, small meals per day and preventing vigorous exercise around mealtimes may help reduce the chances of it happening.
GROOMING The Kuvasz has a double coat, consisting of guard hair and fine undercoat. His coat is very easy to care for, needing only weekly brushing to remove debris and reduce shedding. Beyond that, an occasional bath will keep him clean and looking his best. His nails should be trimmed every month or so if not worn down naturally, as overly long nails can cause him discomfort.
EXERCISE Having been developed as a strong, active working dog, the Kuvasz requires daily activity for his health and happiness. A fenced yard is essential for this large and agile dog. Adequate and controlled exercise is a necessity for the rapidly growing Kuvasz puppy.
TRAINING The Kuvasz possesses keen intelligence and determination and is extremely devoted to his family. While these qualities make them wonderful companions, they can also challenge the novice dog owner. Early socialisation and puppy training classes are a must for the Kuvasz puppy. Training a Kuvasz takes patience, as this independent breed matures slowly. Sensitive problem-solvers, Kuvasz do not respond well to harsh or repetitive training techniques. The Kuvasz was bred to guard livestock, and he is a natural guardian and will protect family, house, and property.
HEALTH The Kuvasz is a healthy breed overall, and responsible breeders will screen their stock for health conditions such as elbow and hip dysplasia, autoimmune thyroiditis, patellar luxation, cardiac conditions, and progressive retinal atrophy. No ethical breeder will object to questions regarding health testing results of their breeding stock. Large and deep-chested breeds can develop bloat, a sudden, life-threatening distention of the stomach that can be accompanied by twisting. Owners should learn what signs to look out for and what to do should they occur.
Recommended Health Tests from the National Breed Club:
- Hip Evaluation
- Elbow Evaluation
- Thyroid Evaluation