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Breed Notes

The Komondor (plural, Komondorok) is considered the king of the world's shepherd dogs, although he is actually more of a guard than shepherd. He is one of the oldest European canine breeds. He was brought into Europe a thousand years ago by the Magyar people when they migrated from Central Asia to settle the area of modern Hungary. From Hungary, they spread across Europe into England. He was introduced into the United States in 1935 and recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1937. A unique aspect of the breed is its long and heavily corded white coat (see below).
The Komondor is a courageous dog who is very faithful to his master and family. Typical of sheepdogs that spend their lives away from people, the Komondor is often wary of strangers. He is better suited for country life than urban life.
The skull of the Komondor is slightly arched. The drop off from skull to muzzle (stop) is moderate. The length of the muzzle is shorter than the length of the skull. The top of the muzzle is straight and parallel to the top of the skull. The jaws are powerful with a scissors bite. The nose must be black. The ears are set low and hang alongside of the head. The eyes are medium-sized, almond shaped and dark brown in color. The neck is muscular and of medium length. The chest is deep and powerful. The legs are straight and muscular. The body is moderately long and level. The back and loins are wide. The rump is wide, muscular and slopes slightly to the tail. The tail reaches to the hocks and is carried curved slightly upward at the end. The entire body of the Komondor is covered with a long, soft, woolly, dense undercoat and a harsh, coarse white outer coat of varying lengths on different parts of the body. As the dog matures, his coat will form long, heavy cords. If left uncared for, the coat will become very shaggy and matted. Minimum height for the Komondor is 25 1/2 inches for males and 23 1/2 inches for females. There is no maximum height as the bigger the dog the better. Average weight is between 85 and 135 pounds.

horwithlong@netnitco.net of U.S. writes on 8/15/01:

Loyal family guardian.
We adopted our Komondorok from a rescue society. We quickly bonded. We live on a farm and he learned his borders, never straying from our yard. He loved to herd the horses in the pasture. I was also told by an obedience instructor that Komondors have a mind of their own and are nearly impossible to obedience train. The dog and I did attend obedience and he passed, but it was not easy. When I had my son, he became quite jealous. For the first month, he often growled and sulked about the house. Because he was always kept indoors, we considered finding him a new home. Instead, we decided to allow him supervised time with the baby. When my son began to crawl, the dog learned that this little guy had the Food Gods with him. This turned into a mutual admiration society between the two - my son would present himself covered in food and the dog would "clean" him off. Until the day he died, he was fiercely protective of my son and daughter. He watched over them in the yard and was playful with us, but no one else could come between him and his kids. He also had a dislike for most men. With the exception of my husband, my father, and one close friend, he bit every man that ever set foot in our yard. We think he may have been abused in his first home by a man. However, living rurally and being home all day with small children, you want protection and he was fiercely protective. The only thing we noticed that was strange about him was that he had a funky "yeasty" odor. We found that he was more comfortable being shaved like a poodle, and with frequent bathing, the odor was not as noticeable. As he got older, he was prone to ear infections and hot spots. You couldn't ask for a more loyal guardian than a Komondor. Would I have one again? In a heartbeat.

hedge@pcisys.net writes on 3/12/01:

A perfect farm and guard dog.
Komondorak are very rare, and we've only had one, a bitch adopted from a breeder who found her unsatisfactory. As an outdoor dog on a small homestead, she was perfect. She never had to be taught not to harm poultry. She somehow knew the exact borders of the property, even the unfenced side, and would allow no strange dogs to pass onto our land. She was gentle with and protective of everything 'hers'-- cats, poultry, sheep, goats, children. Fiercly territorial, she often kept visitors confined to their cars until we could go out to greet them, but she never bit anyone. She was a bit of a loner and seemed to require less attention than other breeds, and had little interest in spending time inside the house. The stoic Komondor is not the perfect dog for someone who is looking for a playful companion, but aside from their novel and rather unthreatening appearance, I can't think of a better gaurdian. Sheila embodied an ideal union of size, power, loyalty, gentleness and level-headed wisdom.

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