Middle Asian Ovcharka (Central Asian
Country of Origin: Russia
Current Standard FCI No:
335 (New Standard FCI No:335, please note that this standard is
still waiting for FCI approval. There are some major changes we
won’t withhold you)
SHORT HISTORICAL ESSAY:
The shepherd dogs from Central Asia are dogs of
above average and great size of a coarse constitution, strong,
bold, wary of strangers, not very demanding, who adapt easily to
different climatic conditions. All that allows the shepherd dog of
Central Asia to be used widely in the different regions of the
country. The principal regions of penetration of the Central Asia
shepherd dogs are the republics of Central Asia and the regions
The Central Asian Ovcharka is one of the
largest breeds that has been created in the result of interaction
and fight of two mighty forces - man's necessities of life and
natural selection conditioned by severe nature of the region. The
breed formed in the vast territory stretched from the Caspian Sea
to China and from the South Ural to Afghanistan. The breed has the
blood of the ancient dogs of the Tibet, the shepherd dogs of
different nomadic people and of the fighting dogs of Mesopotamia.
The Central Asian Ovcharka is related to the Mongolian Ovcharka,
Tibetan Mastiff, Ovcharkas of Afghanistan and Iran. In West Europe
there is also the relative of the CAO, it is the Spanish Mastiff.
In the territory of origin the CAOs are used as the guard and
shepherd dogs, and also when hunting large animals.
TYPE OF CONSTITUTION:
Coarse, with a massive bone structure and a powerful
musculature. One often comes across dogs of this breed who have a
tendency to being soft, lacking in energy. The thick skin with a
well-developed and sufficiently elastic sub-coetaneous tissue,
often forms folds in the region of the neck.
A Central Asian
Ovcharka is a dog of the large height, strong, brave,
self-respectful, unpretentious, easily adaptable to various
weather conditions that makes it possible to use this breed for
different work. Dogs have the rough built type, massive bone and
strong musculature. FAULTS: Obesity MAJOR
FAULTS: Weak constitution, rickety. Muscular weakness.
CHARACTERISTICS OF BEHAVIOR:
Type of great nervous activity; balanced and calm.
The predominant reaction is of defense in an active
Confident, balanced, quite behavior. The characteristic
reaction is the active-defensive one. Has the inborn sense of
property and territory. Unconfident behavior and excessive
excitability are the major faults that make dog's breeding value
lower. FAULTS: Lack of excessive energy. Timid
character. MAJOR FAULTS: Great excitability.
Cowardice. DISQUALIFYING FAULTS: Coward, choleric,
Males 100-105, females 102-108. FAULTS: Slight deviation from the indicated format index. MAJOR
FAULTS: Important deviations in relation to the format index.
Well accentuated. The males are more virile,
stronger and more massive than the females. The sexual dimorphism
is clearly obvious.
The format is slightly long (more often in
females than in males). The low height limit for males is 65 cm,
for females - 60 cm. If a dog is proportionally built, it should
be more. The sex types are clear. Males are larger and more
massive than females. MAJOR FAULTS: Males of feminine
type. Unilateral and bilateral cryptorchids. FAULTS: Dry or loose built; leggy, poor bone. DISQUALIFYING
FAULTS: A dog in a famine type. Total or unilateral
cryptorchism, the underdeveloped testicles.
Massive, wide in the skull region with strongly
developed zygomatics. Forehead flat, stop hardly visible. The
muzzle is a little shorter than the length of the skull, wide
between the eyes, hardly narrowing towards the nose. Seen from the
front and from above, the muzzle appears rectangular, whereas in
profile it has a truncated shape with an heavy upper lip which
hangs at the corners of the mouth. The nose is strong and black.
In light colored dogs a brown nose is allowed.
SKULL: The skull is broad with well-developed but
clean cheeks and slightly marked supra orbital ridges. The occiput
is flatted because of the well-developed musculature. The forehead
is flat or slightly rounded.
MUZZLE: Blunt, slightly shorter than the length of
the skull, well filled under the eyes, wide and deep, almost not
pinched to a nose. At the front and side view a muzzle is square,
at the view from above - from the rectangle to the massive almost
not narrowed wedge form. The lower jaw is massive and
NOSE: Big, black. The light nose is admissible when
white and light-fawn color.
LIPS: Thick fleshy, completely
covering the lower jaw. FAULTS: Light head. Zeugmatic
arches very prominent. Bulging forehead. Very pronounced stop.
Superciliary arches prominent. Short or long muzzle. Wrinkled skin
on the head. MAJOR FAULTS: Narrow head. Light head.
Pointed and upturned muzzle. HEAD FAULTS: Short,
light, un proportional. A domed forehead, well marked cheekiness.
The well marked wrinkled skin on a head; the fluttering lips
forming flews. STOP FAULTS: Abrupt. NOSE
FAULTS: Butterfly, brown or pink (do not mix with a light
nose when white or light fawn color). Any color admits a light
nose, but the white and light fawn ones.
White, strong, fitting tightly. The incisors are set
at the base in one line. Scissors bite.
White, large, tightly
set; a full tooth-formula (42 teeth). It is admissible when the
first premolar is doubled. The incisors bases are set in a line.
Scissors, level bite or compact undershot bite (without break).
The broken incisors that can't prevent from determining the bite,
don't influence the mark. FAULTS: Worn teeth in such
way disproportionate to the age. Presence of broken teeth without
deformity of the bite. Absence of more than two first premolars or
absence of a first and a second premolar. Slight yellowing of the
teeth. MAJOR FAULTS: Teeth small, sparse. Incisors
irregularly placed. All deviation in relation to the normal
scissors bite. Absence of one incisor or one canine. Absence of a
third or fourth premolar or of one molar. Teeth with badly damaged
enamel. FAULTS: Small, widely spaced, rather broken.
Lack of one tooth. DISQUALIFYING FAULTS: All
deviations from the standard bite.
Average of tooth system in CAO on
traditional keeper, %
Type of dog
*Oligodontiya-meaning not fully complex of
teeth- understanding of those not fully complex of teeth
with birth defect only; tooth been lost in the fight...are
Teeth: white, large, tightly set; a full
tooth-formula (42 teeth). It is admissible when the first
premolar is doubled. The incisors bases are set in a line.
Scissors, level bite or compact undershot bite (without
break). The broken incisors that can't prevent from
determining the bite, don't influence the
Dark, wide apart, rounded, set straight.
oval, looking straight ahead, set deep and well apart. The eyelids
are rather close fitting, the marked third eyelid is admissible.
The complete eye rims are desirable. FAULTS: Light
eyes or set on the slant. Drooping lids. White speck on the
eye. FAULTS: Protruding, round, close set. The haw
eyes partially opening the sclera. DISQUALIFYING
FAULTS: Blue, eyes of different color.
Small, hanging, low set, of triangular shape
(cropped short on puppies).
Not big, triangular, hanging, low
set - the ear set is on the eye level or slightly lower. Shortly
cropped when a puppy.
FAULTS: High set ears. Not
cropped. FAULTS: High set (the ear set is on a
forehead level), not cropped.
Short, muscular, carried low, forming an angle of
about 30° till 40° with the line of the back.
round in section, a wide neck set, equal to the head length. Set
at an angle of 35-40° to a back line. The dewlap is
admissible. FAULTS: Long neck with insufficient
muscle. Dewlap very obvious. FAULTS: High
High, well defined, especially in males. The
height at the withers is of 1 or 2 cm superior to the height at
the rump. Back is strong, straight, wide.
High withers, not
long, well marked. The height in withers is little more or equal
to the height in rump. A back is strong, straight, broad, it's
musculature is well developed. WITHERS FAULTS: Withers
low, insufficiently marked above the line of the back. BACK
FAULTS: Soft back or arched. MAJOR FAULTS: Hollow
or humped back. TOPLINE FAULTS: A sway or roaches
back. The croup is much higher than withers.
Wide, muscular, almost
horizontal. FAULTS: Rump a little on the
slant. MAJOR FAULTS: Narrow, short, very oblique. Rump
Short, wide, slightly rounded.
slightly sloped, reasonably long. FAULTS: Long loin,
straight or too rounded. MAJOR FAULTS: Long loin,
narrow or hollow. FAULTS: Narrow, short, abruptly
Wide, deep with rounded ribs. The lower line of the
chest is either at elbow level or lower.
Lowered to an elbow
line or lower, long, broad, rounded in section. The ribs are well
rounded, the false ribs are well developed. A front part of the
chest is well developed and prominent in comparison with the
glenohumeral joints. The well-defined under chest can intensify
the general impression of the massiveness of the body front
part. FAULTS: Flat chest, rather small. Skin
definitively hanging below the chest. MAJOR FAULTS: Very flat chest, narrow and small, insufficiently
developed. FAULTS: Flat, narrow, shallow,
underdeveloped. The blades are short, the shoulders are straight,
the ligaments of the wrist and elbow joints are weak.
Moderately tucked up.
Reasonably tucked up,
slightly higher than a lower chest line. FAULTS: Abdomen (belly) too tucked up (as in Greyhound) or drooping
High set, in shape of sickle, hanging; reaches the
hock. Docked short
High-set, thick in set. The undocked tails
are admissible, they are sickle curved and reach the hock
joints. FAULTS: Not shortened.
Seen from the front; straight and parallel.
length of the legs to the elbows (from the ground to the elbow) is
slightly superior to half of the height of the dog at the withers.
Angle of scapular-humeral articulations is about 100°. FOREARM:
straight, massive, long; PASTERNS: short, wide, strong,
At front view - straight, wide and parallel set. The
blades are long and sloping in set.
FOREARM: The shoulder
blades are long, sloping in set. An angle of the shoulder-blade
joint is about 100°.
shoulders are muscular, the forearms are massive, rounded in
section, straight, set deep under the body. The length of the
forelegs up to the elbows is a bit longer or just the same as the
half of height in withers.
Massive, strong, slightly
sloping. FAULTS: Slight deviation of the angle of the
shoulder articulation. Feet slightly toeing in or out. Pasterns a
little soft. MAJOR FAULTS: Straight shoulder or too
closed. Deformation of leg bones. Weak pasterns. Feet badly toeing
in or out. LEGS DISQUALIFYING FAULTS: The joints are
not enough fixed (flexible).
Set parallel, slightly open at level of stifle and
hock joint. Legs short, Metatarsales thick, straight set.
rear view straight and parallel, set slightly wider than the
THIGHS: Wide, muscular.
upper thigh bones are of the medium length, slightly sloping in
LOWER THIGHS: Of the medium length.
PASTERNS: Of the medium length, massive,
upright. See Image
FAULTS: Slight deviation in relation to
parallelism of hindquarters. Hocks a little close. Hind
angulations a little straight. MAJOR FAULTS: Definite
deviation in relation to parallelism of the legs. Bowed legs. Hind
angulations excessively straight. LIMBS FAULTS: The
hindquarters too far under, too straight in stifle and in hock. A
Front and hind: strong, oval, compact.
oval, arched, cat-like. The dew claws must be cut off.
stifle and hock angulation is average marked, clearly
angulated. FAULTS: Splayed feet, long and
flat. MAJOR FAULTS: Badly splayed feet, very flat.
The heavy shortened trot and gallop are the most
characteristic gaits of this breed of dogs.
trot the legs must move in a straight line, with a certain coming
together of the forelegs.
The typical gaits are reachy, not
stretching trot and gallop.
joints of the fore-and hindquarters unbend freely, the withers,
back and loin are slightly springy and on the same
level. FAULTS: Slight deviation in relation to normal
gaits. MAJOR FAULTS: Restricted movements,
hobbled. FAULTS: Bindy or unbalanced. Uncorrected
Thick, not too elastic, with well-developed sub
dermal fat tissue, very often forms the dewlap and under
Coarse hair, straight with a well developed
undercoat. On the head and on the fore face of the legs, the hair
is short, flat against the skin.
dogs are distinguished according to the length of their
1) long-haired (7-8 cm) on the back and the surface
of the body, especially on the ears, the neck, the back of
the fore- and hindquarters and on the tail.
(3-5 cm) and smooth.
The hair is coarse, straight, undercoat is
well developed. Depending on the hair length they distinguish two
- with short (4-5 cm) taut outer hair, without any
sighs of furnishing hair;
- with long (7-8 cm) outer and cover
hair and well developed furnishing hair on the ears, neck, the
rear sides of the legs and on the tail. MAJOR FAULTS: Very short coat without undercoat. Hair soft, wavy or
curly. DISQUALIFYING FAULTS: Soft, curly, wavy.
White, black, gray, straw, ginger (rusty),
gray-brown, brindle, piebald and speckled.
Any color, but not
liver or blue (all the variants). DISQUALIFYING
FAULTS: Liver or blue (all the variants).
Height at the withers: males not less than 65 cm,
females not less than 60 cm.
The low height limit for males is
65 cm, for females - 60 cm. If a dog is proportionally built, it
should be more. FAULTS: Height at the withers between
60 and 64 for the males, between 58 and 60 for the
females. MAJOR FAULTS: Height at the withers below 60
cm for males, and below 58 cm for females.
Table of average sizes of CAO
Index of bones
Length of head
ELIMINATING (DISQUALIFYING) FAULTS:
All deviations in relation to the correct scissors
Absence of one incisor or one canine, a third
premolar or a fourth premolar or of one molar.
Males should have two apparently normal testicles
fully descended into the scrotum.