General Information

Dog NameCroatian Sheepdog
Other NamesHrvatski ovčar
Scientific NameCanis lupus familiaris
Breed TypeSheepdog
Breed ForHerding Cattles
Country of OriginCroatia

Physical And Size

Min Life Span13
Max Life Span14
Min Ideal Weight for male13
Max Ideal Weight for male19
Min Ideal Weight for female13
Max Ideal Weight for male19


Intelligent Rank
Affection Level
Social Needs
Watchdog Ability


TemperamentLoyal, Highly active, Smart
Prey DriveYes
Fighting DogNo


Stranger FriendlyLow
Child FriendlyMedium
Cat FriendlyLow
Dog FriendlyLow
Office FriendlyLow
Apartment FriendlyLow
Senior Citizens FriendlyLow
Service DogLow
Search and Rescue DogLow
Biting PotentialLow
Country of OriginCroatia
Nicknames and Other NamesHrvatski ovčar, Kroatischer Schäferhund
Scientific NameCanis lupus familiaris
Breed TypeSheepdog
GroupHerding Group
Bred ForHerding Cattles
Recognized ByAKC, FCI, UKC
Life Span13-14 years
Ideal Weight29-44 pounds (male and female)
Ideal Height16-20 inches (male and female)
Fur TypeDouble-coat, wavy to curl, soft
Common ColorsBlack
AvailabilityModerately available
Suitable for ApartmentsYes
Used in World WarNo
Most Similar ToMudi

The Croatian Sheepdog is small to a medium-sized dog which is originated from Croatia. It is categorized under herding breed used to herd sheep and cattle. They have a slightly rectangular body shape with curly or wavy hair and a spitz-like face. Their eye shape comes in an oval with brown color. The ears are triangular medium-sized that stands high on the skull.

Croatian Sheepdog have double coat where undercoat is heavy and outer coat is soft and wavy or curly. Their tail is small sized with long fur that goes high up when alert and is mostly docked.

Origin and History

Croatian Sheepdog is a herding dog used to herd sheep and cattle. They date back to the 14th century and some experts believe that their origin goes back to the 7th century. Croatian Sheepdog is descended from dogs that were brought by Croats from their original land when migrating to Croatia.

Croatian Sheepdog appearance has not changed much since the 14th century. The written documents about Croatian Sheepdog by veterinarian Prof. Dr. Stjepan Romic from 1374 was found and studied.

The United Kennel Club (UKC) recognized this breed on July 1, 2006. The American Kennel Club (AKC) has not recognized this breed as of March 2019. However, the Croatian Sheepdog was added to the Foundation Stock Service Program in a Board meeting on November 2017.

Is Croatian Sheepdog Child-Friendly?

Croatian Sheepdog gets along well with children of any age. They are friendly, affectionate and energetic, so makes a great playmate with children. However, children should be supervised and taught how to approach dogs. Younger children might unknowingly pull the hair or tail, which can lead Croatian Sheepdog to bite and become defensive.
Croatian Sheepdog with his people

Behavior, Temperament and Personality

Croatian Sheepdog is of loyal, alert, active and athletic temperament. They are very energetic and loves to be engaged in some kind of work. As a herding breed, they have a high instinct of herding which makes them excellent watchdogs.

Croatian Sheepdog is intelligent and should be occupied with works, exercise, and games. With physical exercise, they also equally need mental stimulation, otherwise, they will show destructive behavior. They do well with other dogs if properly socialized and raised with them from an early age. As with strangers, they are little reserved and might bark at them if they find anything suspicious. Proper socialization will help them get along well with people.


Croatian Sheepdog is quite dominant and can be hard to train for a first-time owner. However, with firm leadership and positive training methods, they are very easy to train as they are intelligent and responsive. The owner should be confident and gentle and should know his ways with dogs.

Croatian Sheepdog Protection Training

Include fun mind game like hide& seek, fetching and some tricks. This will keep them mentally stimulated and they will remain focused on training. Reward them with treats and a gentle pat on the back after a task is done, which will keep them motivated.


  • Croatian Sheepdog is the country oldest breed.
  • Croatian Sheepdog can give birth to 4-6 puppies at a time.
  • The average life span of Croatian Sheepdog is 12-15 years.

Health Issues

General HealthHealthy
Common Health IssuesCataracts, Hip Dysplasia, Heart Disease,
Hypothyroidism, Bloat, Patellar Luxation
Vaccination RequiredCanine Parainfluenza, Rabies,
Canine Coronavirus, Canine Distemper,
Canine Parvovirus, Leptospirosis,
Kennel Cough
SheddingModerate Shedding
DroolingLow Drooler
GroomingEasy and Minimal Grooming Required
Weight Gain PotentialLow to Average
Separation AnxietyModerate Chance
Diets and SupplementsProtein: 27%
Fat: 12%

Croatian Sheepdogs are herding breeds and are usually healthy. the only possible health problem it may face is body injuries during running and herding. They are also prone to a few health-related problems and they are:

  • Patellar Luxation
  • Whelping Difficulties
  • Retained Testicles
  • Bloat

Coats and Colors

The Croatian Sheepdogs have double coats where undercoat is dense and outer coat is curly or wavy. The hair inside the ear is long but the hair outside the ear is short. The coat hair color is black and few white hairs can be seen in some Croatian Sheepdog

Croatian Sheepdog Puppy


The average cost of a Croatian Sheepdog puppy is $1000- $1200 USD. If you prefer adopting than it will cost relatively low. The cost only includes vaccination and taking care of the puppy which is usually between $200- $300.

Adoption is a great idea as a homeless, helpless puppy gets a good home to grow up.


The average height of a Croatian Sheepdog is between 16 to 20 inches. The average weight of a medium Croatian Sheepdog is between 15-35 lbs and large is 35-55 lbs.

Dog Breeds Similar to Croatian Sheepdog

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