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The Canaan Dog breed And Some Essential Information About Them

Jun 17, 2008
The Canaan Dog is sometimes mistakenly believed to be a pariah dog which roams throughout the Middle East, however this is incorrect. The Canaan Dog is a true breed which has survived in the desert for more than 2000 years. In the 1930s the Israelis began a program of re-domestication of these dogs, recognizing their potential as guard dogs to guard their settlements .

Their history as a desert breed has contributed strength and endurance to the genetic makeup, to say nothing of the fact that they are relatively disease free. Their bodies have developed in much the same way as the Arabian Horse, strong lungs and resistance to extremes of weather are part of their heritage.

The Israelis have been careful to preserve these characteristics and have also been careful not to mix in any other type of dog into the breeding program. On occasion they do bring in more of the Canaan Dogs from the wild deserts to continue to improve the domesticated stock. This is more difficult as the spread of civilization has made the existence of these desert dogs more tenuous and there are fewer places where they can still be found living in the wild.

The Canaan Dog can be any shade of tawny desert yellow or tan with white markings and also black with white markings. The coat is double and fairly short. Ears are prick, the tail is long and curves over the back when excited. They are of medium size, with surprising strength and agility, possessing great endurance and lung power.

The dogs readily adjusted to civilization and are loyal and very affectionate family pets. Their major use is that of a dog guard that will protect outlying settlements from predators and give warning when strangers come. They are also useful as herding dogs for the flocks of goats. The Canaan Dog does not require harsh training methods and adapts to family living easily.

This is a comparatively rare breed and has only recently made an appearance in the Dog Show Circuit in the United States. They are classified as members of the Herding Group. Their numbers are gradually increasing. They are a relatively easy care dog and are happy as an urban resident or on the farm. Owners of the Canaan dog have found that they are generally not stubborn, are quite intelligent and make very good pets. They should show reserve with strangers but have proven themselves to be affectionate and loyal. The American Kennel club describes their temperament as "alert, vigilant, devoted and docile with his family".

Factors which contribute to the usefulness of this dog as a family pet are their easy care coat and their general good health. Owners of Canaans can expect that these dogs will present few vet bills in comparison to other breeds! They are known to be easy to train without stubborn tendencies or hyperactive traits. They are inquisitive and because of their history of survival of the fittest are independent thinkers but appear to have a great deal of common sense.
About the Author
For more information on the canaan dog or a complete list of dog breeds visit this Dog Behaviour website.
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