Home > Sarplaninac



The incorruptible protector

Pinscher and Schnauzer - Molossoid Breeds - Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs

Original Name : Šarplaninac

Type : Molossoid

Other Names : Sharplaninac, Yugoslav Shepherd Dog

Male size : Average 24½ inches. Large males are preferred. Males below 22 inches are excluded from reproduction.

Male weight : 77-99¼ lbs

Female size : 23 inches. Females below 21¼ inches are excluded from reproduction.

Female weight : 66-88 lbs

Degree of grooming :

Countries of origin : Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of


Sarplaninacs are robust, solidly built, well proportioned dogs of above average size. Covered with long thick hair, which is fairly coarse to the touch, emphasizing their compact bodies. These devoted, incorruptible dogs are calm and even tempered, protective but never snappy.


In proportion to the body. With a total length of approximately 10 inches, which is about 40% of the height at the withers.



Slightly longer than it is high (ratio 8/10 in males, 10/12 in females).



Solid color. All colors are acceptable, from white to dark brown, almost black. Greenish gray (iron gray) and dark gray are most prized.



Drooping, falling flat against the cheeks, V shaped and of average length.



Long and reaching at least to the hock.



Short hair on head, ears and front of the legs, long, almost flat, somewhat coarse hair on neck, body, back of the legs and tail.


Sarplaninacs have been bred since time immemorial in the mountainous regions of the southern Slav states. They derive their name from the Šar Mountains, - Šar planina – where they are most common, but they are now bred in much of the former Yugoslavia. The breed was first registered by the F.C.I. in 1939 as the Ilirski Ovcar (Illyrian Shepherd Dog). In 1957, the name was changed to Yugoslav Shepherd Dog Sharplaninac on the request of the Yugoslav canine authorities. The origin of the breed is a matter of conjecture. Dogs belonging to the breed were likely brought to Europe from Asia by migrating tribes. The primitive breed type is found only in regions where extensive sheep breeding is practiced and these dogs are used to guard and defend flocks from wild animals.

Did you know ?

There is some leeway when it comes to the Sarplaninac’s general appearance. While the standard states that “the topline is horizontal or slightly sloping towards the croup,” in dogs bred in the mountains the croup may actually be slightly higher than the withers.


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