Boz Shepherd – Everything You Need To Know

Turkish Boz Shepherd (also known as Boz Shepherd) is a breed of dog best known for its guard dog skills. These dogs keep livestock safe from predators, other farm animals, and people who should not be on the property. They are mostly used in the mountainous areas of Turkey to keep watch over sheep. These dogs are intelligent and retain what they are taught to do even when they are not supervised. Boz Shepherds are medium-sized, solidly built, long-coated dogs with long, low, and wide bodies. He has drooping ears and a curled lip. They primarily have light gold skin with black markings on the face, legs, and tail.

Turkish Boz Shepherd Pros and Cons

Large, muscular, and strongTendency to bark at strangers
Great guard dogNeeds a lot of socialization 
Lots of compassion & patienceMay struggle with social interactions

Boz Shepherd Basic Information 

  • Name: Turkish Boz Shepherd
  • Origin: United Kingdom
  • Group: Purebred
  • Size: Large
  • Height: Male: 28-35 inches; Female: 26-33 inches 
  • Weight: Male: 120 – 190 pounds; Female: 100 – 170 pounds 
  • Coat: Dense but short (possibly with a soft undercoat)
  • Color: Light gold (with a black mask)
  • Energy: Low – medium
  • Activities: Romping in the ocean, swimming, playing hide & seek, and fetching
  • Barking Level: Medium to high
  • Shedding Level: Medium
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Litter Size: 6 puppies 
  • Other Names: Turkish Akbash dog, Boz Shepherd
  • Breed’s Original Pastimes: Skiing, therapy dogs
  • Life Span: 10 – 15 years 

Turkish Boz Shepherd History

Turkish Boz Shepherds evolved naturally rather than through deliberate breeding. Although closely related to the Kangal, Anadolu, Kars, and Akbash breeds, they remain distinct from them. Unlike many other breeds, Turkish Boz Shepherds have been largely bred by natural forces rather than through breeding programs. The rugged Northern Urfa Mountains in Turkey required the Boz Shepherds to resist the weather of all types naturally. It is one of the oldest dogs in the world, dating back thousands of years. Due to their natural evolution, they tend to have fewer health issues. Turkish Boz Shepherds are known for their instinctive need to bond with their family and animals. The Boz Shepherd is a large breed that can grow up to 2 feet tall. These ancient Shepherd dogs were used by the ancient nomadic people called Bozoklar (which means Brown Arrows) from the Boz Mountains area. Boz means ‘Big Strong Fighting Man.’

Types of the Boz Shepherd

The Turkish Boz Shepherd originated naturally rather than through deliberate breeding. Despite being closely related to the Kangal Shepherd, Anadolu Shepherd, Kars, and Akbash breeds, they remain distinct from them.

1. Kangal Shepherd

Kangal dogs are large, powerful, heavy-boned dogs whose size and proportions have developed naturally as a result of their continuous use in Turkey as guardians against predators. Their heads are broad, moderately wide, and have drop ears. 

2. Akbash Shepherd

The Akbash is a rare breed of purebred dog from Turkey. They are loyal, alert, and intelligent. Their guarding instincts are strong, and they protect their families. Larger homes with yards or yards near open areas where they can run are better suited for these dogs.

3. Kars Shepherd

The Kars Shepherd is a breed of dog that originated in the city of Kars in Turkey. It is well-known for its capacity to guard livestock and property. However, the Kars Shepherds are loyal to their owners and can be hostile to strangers.

Turkish Boz Shepherd Highlights

  • Turkish Boz Shepherds are highly intelligent and easy to train.
  • Turkish Boz Shepherds are loyal to their owners and their families.
  • They have a great sense of loyalty and protect the home and family from danger.
  • They have intense alertness, so they can sense a predator after smelling or hearing them.
  • They are strong and can take down predators.

Boz Shepherd Personality 

Boz Shepherds are in a league of their own. With heights of up to 36 inches and weights of up to 190 pounds, that’s a lot of dogs! Because they are as high as they are wide, they have a solid build and a muscular appearance. Their muzzles are narrow, and their heads are elegant. These characteristics give the Boz the speed and endurance they need. They have a substantial bone structure, a deep chest, and long straight legs. In the winter, they must be capable of traversing snow due to their thickly padded paws and webbed feet. They have a dense, short coat with possibly a soft undercoat and are adapted to both hot and cold temperatures. Their appearance is light gold and covered with a black mask. These giants have a heart of gold and will protect their homes, family, or stock at any cost.

Friendliness Overview

  Affection level   Medium to high
  Family-friendly   High
  Kid-friendly   Medium to high
  Pet-friendly   Medium
  Stranger -friendly   Low to medium

Adaptability Overview

  Good for apartment living   Low
  Good to new owners   Medium
  Sensitivity level   Medium
  Tolerates being alone  Low
  Cold-tolerance   Medium to high
  Heat-tolerance   Medium

Boz Shepherd Physical Features 

Head: The head of a Turkish Boz Shepherd should always be in proportion to his size and bone structure, and his cranial notch should be approximately 35-40% of his shoulder height. The eyes are medium-sized, yellow to brown, and almond-shaped. It has V-shaped ears that are rounded at the apex and are not higher than the plane of the head, and the muzzle is strong, long, proportional to the head, and proportional to its structure. Generally, the nose is solid black and standard, although solid liver noses are also acceptable, and the jaws are powerful.

Neck: The neck should be proportionate to the body, somewhat arched, robust, and strong. 

Topline: The top line of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is a black and white pattern that resembles the shape of a Boz. While walking, the topline can be visible.

Body: The body of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is long and lean, with a square head, a broad muzzle, and large ears.

Tail: The Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is a medium-sized dog with a long, thin, and bushy tail. The coat color of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog can be either dark brown or black.

Forequarters: The forequarters of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog are well-defined and proportional. The head is broad, with a slight curve, and it has a robust and muscular body that is well-proportioned with a broad head and deep chest. Boz Shepherds’ eyes are almond-shaped and dark brown. The forelegs are long, well-boned, well-muscled, parallel, and proportionate to the body. Elbows, on the other hand, are aligned from the shoulder to the wrist, pointing directly to the rear, and are neither turned in nor turned out. The feet are large and well-arched with webbed toes.

Hindquarters: The hindquarters of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog are very long and muscular. The back is broad, with a deep chest and flat, wide ribs. The shoulder blades are large and well-spaced, and the front legs have a long, straight bone that extends to the knee. The forelegs have powerful muscles that allow them to carry up to 25 pounds over rough terrain.

Coat: This dog has a coat of black or dark brown hair with white markings on the chest, belly, and legs. Its coat is short and thick with a soft, fine undercoat. The coat is short and coarse, with less density during warmer temperatures or seasons. Over the winter, a soft, very dense undercoat grows with softer and longer guard hair. The hair on the ears, face and head is very short, whereas the hair on the neck and mane is thicker and longer, especially in males. 

Color: Depending on the region where they are found, the color of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog’s coat varies. The color can range from light brown to chestnut, black and white, or mixed with other colors like red or black. Any color is acceptable, but coat color is typically a gradient blend based on one predominant color, the most common fawn, and cream.

Gait: They have short steps with a high stride, often evident when they are on the move or walking in circles to keep their balance when herding sheep.


  • Extremely aggressive with livestock.
  • Lack of speed while running and agility.
  • Head disproportionate to body; blocky or very delicate head.
  • Cropped ears or cropped tails.
  • Overly overshot or undershot bite; superfluous lips or jowls.
  • The structure of bone is overly fine
  • Narrow chest and barrel ribs.
  • Tail – excessively long with hair.
  • Colors – solid black, brindle, or pinto.

Boz Shepherd Temperament

Turkish Boz Shepherd dogs’ temperament is recognized as a rare and valuable trait. It has been said that it results from crossbreeding two breeds, Turkish sheepdogs and Anatolian Shepherds. Turkish Boz Shepherd dogs are known for their intelligence and loyalty to their owners. They are also very protective and have a lot of energy, making them great family pets. An even-tempered dog, this dog accepts change and remains calm, assured, and actively observant in new environments

Boz Shepherd Training

The Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is intelligent and can learn tricks quickly and excel at obedience. This makes them perfect for both working with humans and working with livestock. They are also very loyal to their family members, including children, dogs, and other animals they may encounter on the job. Training of the Turkish Boz Shepherd dog starts at a young age when they are around six months old until they reach maturity at around seven years old or older. They require lots of exercise to stay healthy and happy while training and maintaining their skill set throughout their careers.

Trainability Overview 

  Easy to train Medium to high
  Intelligence High
  House TrainingMedium
  Barking and Howling tendencies Low to medium
  Prey drive Low
  Wanderlust tendencies  Low

Boz Shepherd Exercise Needs

The Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is a type of dog that originally comes from Turkey. It is a medium-sized, short-haired, and hairy dog. They are very friendly and can be trained to do many different things. Boz Shepherd dogs’ exercise needs differ from other breeds of dogs. Due to the breed’s size, they need ample space to move around and be walked or given some form of outdoor activity daily. These dogs require to exercise every day. They need a long walk or jog outside to burn off their excess energy. They love going to the park or playing fetch with you at home.

Exercise Needs Overview

  Energy level   Medium
  Exercise needs   Medium to high
  Intensity   High
  Playfulness   Medium

Boz Shepherd Grooming

Boz Shepherd dogs are a popular breed of dog that originated in Turkey. They have long and thick coats with various colors, such as black, white, brown, gray, and red. The process of grooming takes approximately two hours per dog. The first step is to remove the mats from the hair using a slicker brush or comb it out with your fingers or a metal comb. The second step is the bath which will last about 20 minutes per dog, depending on how dirty they are. Finally, it is time for the blow dryer to dry and be done with this process.

Grooming Overview

  Easy to groom   Medium
  Drooling tendency   Medium to high
  Amount of shedding   Medium

Boz Shepherd Health

The health of this breed is an important concern for breeders, owners, and veterinarians. The average lifespan of the Turkish Boz Shepherd is 10-15 years. Health diseases and conditions are uncommon in dogs, but elbow and hip dysplasia have been reported in some, and minor health concerns include ear infections, obesity, and other small diseases. Turkish Boz Shepherds do not suffer from many common health conditions that plague giant breeds.

Health Overview 

  Overall health   Medium to high
  Weight gain tendencies   Medium
  Size   Large

Hip Dysplasia: The term ‘hip dysplasia’ derives from the Greek word days, meaning abnormal, and places, meaning formation. It is an abnormal hip joint formation that can cause pain in joints and hips. dogs with the condition are born with incomplete ossification, which leads to incomplete development of the bones in the joint. Hip Dysplasia is one of the serious health problems in dogs. This disorder is not well understood, and there are many theories as to its causation, but too much pressure on the joint during growth can result in injury or arthritis.

Elbow problems: The Turkish Boz Shepherd is an ancient breed of dog. They are typically used as Shepherds in the mountains of Turkey. Although these dogs are typically strong and healthy, they can experience elbow problems.

Legg-Calve Perthes Disease: The blood supply of the femur is decreased, due to which the pelvis begins to disintegrate, and the hip becomes gradually weakened. Symptoms include limping and atrophy of the leg muscle. The diseased femur can be corrected with surgery. 

Bloat: Also known as Gastric Dilatation Volvulus, is a condition in which a dog’s stomach twists when it fills with gas, food, or liquids. GDV appears out of nowhere and can progress swiftly. There is always a situation that requires immediate attention. 

Ear Infections: Ear infections are common in Turkish Boz Shepherd dogs. The shape of the ear canal can trap debris and bacteria, leading to infection. However, the problem can be solved by cleaning the ears regularly with a damp cloth or cotton ball.

Obesity: Large-breed dogs are prone to obesity if proper diet and exercise are not provided. They may also get diabetes, which may be another cause of obesity. 

Recommended Tests for the Boz Shepherd

  • A complete physical examination by a veterinarian is recommended
  • X-rays of the hip and elbow
  • Examination of the ear
  • Testing and analysis of blood
  • Tests of Blood Work and Serum Chemistry

Boz Shepherds Diet and Nutrition 

Turkish Boz Shepherd dogs love to eat and need ample food to keep them healthy and strong. A Turkish Boz Shepherd dog’s diet should be rich in protein, fat, minerals, vitamins, and carbohydrates. These dogs need to be fed a balanced diet with high-quality protein sources, such as lamb, beef, or chicken. It also needs to be fed vegetables such as carrots, spinach, or broccoli. The type of food you feed your Turkish Boz Shepherd dog will depend on its age, size, activity level, or breed type.

Boz Shepherd’s Living Condition

The Turkish Boz Shepherd dog is a longhaired, high-chewing breed known to live up to 10 to 15 years. They are large breeds and cannot live in an apartment. This breed can do well in large yards and Turkish Boz Shepherd dogs work hard all day long, which can put a lot of stress on their joints. They will need a cool room in the summer and a warm temperature in the winter.

Did You Know?

  • The Boz Shepherd dog is an ancient breed; many believe it is one of the oldest breeds in the world.
  • These dogs were originally a vital livestock guardian breed from Central Asia.
  • They have been used as sheepdogs for thousands of years.
  • It has been suggested that the Boz Shepherd dog may have been used to round up livestock for the first time since 1650.
  • A Boz Shepherd is a very intelligent dog capable of learning over 200 commands and can read human emotions. They are perfect pets for families and people who want a companion.

Adding a Boz Shepherd to Your Family

Things to Remember Before Adding a Boz Shepherd to Your Family

Getting a Boz Shepherd puppy from a reputable breeder is best to prevent inevitable circumstances like health diseases and provide you with vaccination certificates. In addition, it is best to check with the puppy’s parents to ensure their health and happiness. 

Cost of a Boz Shepherd puppy

Suppose you are looking for Boz Shepherd puppies in the United States. Depending on the breeder and location, they cost you between 3000 and 5000 dollars. Their rarity makes them expensive; that makes them unique. However, you can find them for about 500 dollars in Turkey because they are common in that country.

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Turkish Boz Shepherds running with the herd from an early age

Turkish Boz Shepherd

Boz Shepherd

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