Breed Introduction: Karelian Bear Dog

Karelian bear needs a big space to do zoomies!

Breed Introduction: Karelian Bear Dog

The Karelian Bear Dog is a Finnish or Karelian breed of dog. In its home country, it is regarded as a national treasure. KBD will hunt a variety of animals. The Karelian Bear Dog has small ears that are cocked and pointed outward slightly. They are lined with dense fur, reducing the risk of frostbite. The shorthaired all-weather coat consists of straight, stiff hair, while the under-layer is soft and dense. The thighs are covered in thick hair. Like the Russo-European Laika, the breed has a distinctive black and white coat, which is unusual for northern Spitz-type dogs.

A copper tint is typical. Black speckles in the white are considered a fault. The dog should be primarily black with white markings, which are distinct and occur on the head, neck, chest, abdomen and legs. The jaws are immensely powerful. The tail is long. The small eyes show intense concentration. The tail curls over the back in a typical Spitz arch. Robustly built, well-boned and of moderate size, the Karelian Bear Dog is slightly longer than he is tall. The head is shaped as a blunt wedge. The body is sturdy and the back is well developed

Breed Origin

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The area once known as Karelia in northern Europe has always been populated by tough and big-game hunting canines. For a long time, similar dogs had been bred in Karelia for hunting large game. These dogs were known to have followed the first settlers to Finland thousands of years ago. These early tribes of people survived on what they could hunt. This made dogs that were hardy, brave and tough enough to tackle bear, wolf and lynx important. The Karelian Bear Dog closely resembles the Russo-European Laika. It evolved in the part of Finland claimed by the Soviet Union in the early part of the 20th century.

Its numbers declined in the 1960s, but its popularity has been on the rise and it is now being bred in North America and many European countries.

Breed Characteristics

Life expectancy is about 10-12 years.

The Karelian Bear Dog is not recommended for apartment life. It should have acreage or a farm, so it can run. These animals do not like to be confined. They can be kept in an outdoor kennel as long as they get plenty of chances to run.

It has a Height: 19 – 23 inches (48 – 58 cm) and Weight: 44 – 50 pounds (20 – 23 kg)

The all-weather coat is easy to care for, requiring little attention. Use a metal comb when the dog is shedding for easy removal of the lose hair from the undercoat. Like other Arctic dogs, the Karelian Bear Dog does not have dog odour. This breed is an average shedder.

Update: October 21, 2017.

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