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The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog: Features and More!

czechoslovakian wolfdog

The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog comes from a hybrid of a German shepherd and a Carpathian wolf. These dogs can be over 64 centimeters tall, and weigh at least 26 kg. They have a temperament similar to that of wolves. Therefore, these dogs need a lot of stimulation and they need to see the purpose of each task.

The male is slightly larger and more robust than the female, being the minimum height at the withers of 65 cm and 26 kg for males and 60 cm and 20 kg minimum for females.

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Characteristics

  • Height: Minimum male 65cm, female 60cm
  • Weight: Minimum male 26kg, female 20kg
  • Purpose: Working and company dog
  • Temperament: Independent
  • Hair: Short to medium
  • Color: Silver gray, dark gray and yellowish gray
  • Origin: former Czechoslovak Republic.
  • FCI classification: Group 1, section 1 «Sheepdogs», without proof of work.

History and original purpose of the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

The wolfhounds Czechoslovak began crossing German shepherd dogs and wolves Carpathian (Eurasians).

In the 1950s, engineer Karel Hartl ran a Czech military breeding program. The project tried to cross the training capacity of German shepherds with the strength of wolves.

The project lasted several years. This is because it took three years to find a male German Shepherd that could mate with a wolf!

The researchers documented the project, even photographing the first successful mating!

The first and second generation of this hybrid could not be effectively trained. However, his offspring were trained for various military tasks.

The American Kennel Club lists the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog as a working dog.

Czechoslovakian wolfdogs as pets

The new dogs soon found their way into civilian homes. They began to steadily grow in popularity.

From 1982 to the end of the country in 1990, the breed was the national animal of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic.

The breed remains popular in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. As well as in nearby countries like Italy and Germany.

But, it is still very rare in the US and other countries outside of Europe.

Curious facts about the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog is formally known as the Czechoslovakian Vlcak . This is the name used by the breed records. Translated, the name means Czechoslovakian German Shepherd.

The pronunciation of “Vlcak” is vul-chARk (more or less). It is not an easy word to pronounce if you are not used to the western Slavic languages. Vlcaks are more commonly known as “wolfhounds” in English-speaking countries!

Appearance of the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

These wolfhounds look more like wolves than German shepherds.

They have an outward appearance, with a thick gray wind and water resistant coat. Its large ears are erect and its amber eyes are narrow. For many, having a pet that looks like a wild animal is a big part of the appeal.

The temperament of the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

They are specifically bred for endurance. So they need a good outlet for their energy. Otherwise, they can get bored, frustrated, and destructive.

The wolfhounds Czechoslovak need strong leadership, a clear structure and purpose tasks. This can be difficult for new dog owners.

Because these dogs need a lot of physical and mental stimulation, it is important to find the time to train them. Also, they need regular activity in their life. This can be anything from daily runs to being part of a dog sled team.

Wolf hybrids

The wolfhounds Czechoslovakian were made by mixing a high energy dog domestic and wolves. Owning a wild animal hybrid is controversial and potentially dangerous.

Mixing wild and domestic animals reintroduces wild DNA to domesticated animals. Therefore, their behavior can be unpredictable and inappropriate for a home environment.

Before buying a Czechoslovakian Wolfdog, think carefully about whether it is the right one for you. Decide if you can give them the right training and environment for them.

Despite their rarity, wolf hybrids caused 14 deaths between 1979 and 1998. Because some owners deliberately mislabel their dogs, the true figure is believed to be even higher.

For these reasons, regular training and exercise are crucial for this breed.

Training and exercise for your Czechoslovakian wolfdog

As intelligent and energetic wolf hybrids, Czechoslovakian wolfdogs need special training. As with any breed, it is important to train and socialize dogs while they are young.

Due to their strong prey drive, the American Kennel Club (AKC) recommends keeping Vlcaks on a leash or in a fenced-in area.

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog Health and Care

Before adopting, it is important to be aware of health problems that can affect your dog’s quality of life.

The Czechoslovakian Wolfdog started with four wolves and many more German Shepherd dogs. So today’s Czechoslovakian wolfdogs are genetically more like German shepherds than wolves.

German Shepherds come from a very small gene pool. So the health problems of the first German Shepherds became the health problems of the entire breed. These problems have also been transmitted to Czech wolfdogs.

The following are conditions that the Canine Health Information Center associates with the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog .

Hip dysplasia

Hip dysplasia occurs when the ball joint in the hip does not form properly. This causes the top of the thigh bone to sit too loosely in the hollow.

Because the two bones do not come together properly, they rub against each other when the dog moves. This causes more damage over time.

Hip dysplasia is common in many large dog breeds, including German Shepherds. Hip dysplasia is partly genetic. So Czech wolfdogs inherited this from their German shepherd relatives.

Czech Wolfdogs should have a hip exam prior to mating. Your breeder should discuss the results with you before you commit to bringing a puppy home.

Elbow dysplasia

Like hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia is the incorrect formation of a joint, that of the elbow. It can lead to lameness and arthritis.

Several factors can cause elbow dysplasia. But genetics is the main determinant. Like hip dysplasia, German Shepherd Dogs have passed their unfortunate genes on to Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs.

To prevent the problem from escalating in Czechoslovakian wolfdogs, all breeders should check their dogs’ elbows before breeding. Also, only dogs with healthy elbows should be parents.

Degenerative myelopathy

Degenerative myelopathy is a progressive deterioration of the spinal cord that causes lameness in the hind legs. The condition is ultimately fatal.

The problem is similar to ALS in humans, and like ALS it is currently incurable.

The cause of degenerative myelopathy in dogs is unknown. However, carrying two copies of a faulty gene called SOD1 is associated with an increased risk of developing it. This gene is prevalent among both German Shepherds and Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs.

Dogs can be screened for the faulty gene. Also, two dogs that have it should not be mated. A reputable breeder will be happy to share the results with the puppy’s parents.

Other conditions

The Canine Health Information Center recommends screening Czech wolfdogs for dental problems, heart irregularities and autoimmune thyroiditis.

Additionally, all dogs used for breeding should be checked regularly for signs of genetic eye conditions. This should be done by a veterinarian registered with the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmologists.

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog Health Summary

Czechoslovakian wolfdogs are prone to many problems and come from a small gene pool. But their DNA doesn’t show much evidence of inbreeding.

With continued rigorous selection and careful mating, breeders can reproduce some of these heritable conditions.

Are Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs Good Family Pets?

Most people have companion dogs rather than working dogs. Therefore, it is important to channel your energy productively.

For Czechoslovakian wolfdogs, this means spending a lot of time training and socializing them. As a wolf hybrid, the Czech Wolfdog is a high-risk breed for bites and should not be treated as a domesticated breed. It is important that these dogs know how to behave in domestic and public environments.

Are Czechoslovakian Wolfdogs Good With Children?

Czech wolfdogs are not suitable for households with children. Unlike fully domesticated dogs, they are unpredictable.

Wolf hybrids are among the three most dangerous dog breeds. They are responsible for many dog ​​bite deaths, just like German Shepherds.

Because they are a new breed, there are not many reliable sources on their behavior.

Czech wolfdogs are also high maintenance in terms of exercise and training.

Rescue a Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

Unfortunately, there are no specific rescues for this breed. But, it may be possible to find one through a general rescue organization.

Find a Czechoslovakian wolf puppy

As of early 2018, approximately 200 Czechoslovakian wolfdogs live in the United States. Naturally, such a small population makes avoiding inbreeding a challenge.

The Czechoslovak Vlcak Club of America has only three recognized breeders in the United States: one in California, one in Texas, and one in Michigan. To be fair, very few homes are suitable for this unique mix.

The rarity of Czech wolfhounds and the shortage of breeders make finding a Vlcak puppy a waiting game.

In reality, Czechoslovakian Wolfdog puppy breeders screen prospective owners long before the puppies are conceived. In fact, all you can do is show interest and be willing to travel not just to pick up your puppy, but for a pre-interview.

Czechoslovakian Wolfdog Price

Unfortunately, well-bred Czechoslovakian Wolfdog puppies are rare. This means that they are not cheap.

Breeders may also need to recoup some of the cost for the extensive health exams required before the Vlcaks mate. Since the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog population is dispersed, it may also be necessary to recoup the cost of transporting parent dogs for mating.

A Czech Wolfdog puppy could easily lose you several thousand dollars.

Czechoslovakian wolfdogs and the law

If you are tempted to buy a Czechoslovakian Vlcak, it is important to address the legality of owning one where you live. The law varies greatly from region to region.

In fact, most American states ban wolf hybrids completely while others allow them with restrictions. For example, only dogs older than five generations removed from their most recent wolf ancestor. In some states, the laws vary by county.

In fact, because wolfdog ownership is a recent development, the law is constantly changing as legislators decide their positions.

So before contacting a Czechoslovakian wolfdog breeder, find out what rules apply in your area!

Create a c achorro Czechoslovakian wolf dog

Caring for a vulnerable Czechoslovakian Wolfdog puppy is a huge responsibility.

There are some great guides to help you with all aspects of puppy care and training.

Similar breeds

If you like the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog, you may also like these more common wolf-like dogs:

For other similar breeds, check out our articles on strong dogs and dogs that look like wolves.

Photos of Czechoslovakian Wolfdog

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I love the animals. Reading and writing about them, their customs, their peculiarities or the attention they require is exciting, and I also believe that it makes us better people. I share articles that solve the questions that dog caregivers face on a daily basis.

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