Height: 19-24 inches
Weight: 35-55 pounds
Coat Type: Double coat
The Canaan dog is the national dog of Israel and it is known as Kelev K'naani n the local language. Native to the Middle East, this dog breed has been used for herding and guarding the flock. Canaan dogs have also gained repute as family dogs over the years. These dogs are believed to be present even during the biblical times, making them one of the oldest dog breeds. They are known to be very loyal and devoted to their family and are excellent when given the right training. The article dwells at length on the origin, appearance and the temperament of Canaan dogs. Read on to know more about this dog breed.
The Canaan dog is one of the oldest dogs, dating back to the biblical times. A rock carving in the Sinai Desert depicts a dog that is similar in size and shape to the Canaan dog. Dr. Rudolphina Menzel decided to use these scavenger dogs to guard the scattered Jewish settlements in the 1930s. Canaan dogs were found to be highly adaptable, trainable and also easy to domesticate. A selective breeding program was started in 1934 to produce the breed that is today recognized as Canaan Dogs.
The Canaan dog is a medium-sized and squarely proportioned dog. The head is in the shape of a wedge, with a shallow, bur defined stop. The tapering muzzle is the same size or slightly longer than the skull. The teeth meet in a scissors bite. The slightly slanted eyes are almond shaped and have hazel shades. The ears are erect and mobile, while the neck is well arched. The legs are straight, with the cat-like feet having hard paws. The tail is set high. The Canaan dog breed has a double coat, with the outer coat being harsh and lying flat, while the undercoat being straight and soft. Coat colors for Canaan dogs include solid black, tan, brown, sandy, red, liver, white, or in a patched pattern of liver and white, brown and white, black and white.
The Canaan dog is not just an excellent herder, but has also proved to be good in a variety of tasks, where agility and obedience is required. These dogs work well as a team, though they have the tendency to think independently at the same time. They respond well to positive, motivational training but the owner will have to guard against repetitions as these dogs get bored quickly. The Canaan dogs are very intelligent and are known to be devoted, gentle, loyal and obedient. They like their families and are naturally protective of them. They make excellent watchdogs and guard dogs. Canaan dog breed needs an authoritative owner. These dogs are very friendly with familiar people and are wary of strangers. Canaan dogs should be socialized right from an early age and be given the right amount of exercise.
There are no genetic diseases known to the Canaan dog breed. It is known to be one of the healthiest dogs, though hypothyroidism, epilepsy, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), cryptorchidism, hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, luxating patella, and osteochondritis dissecans (OCD) can sometimes affect the dog.
The Canaan dog is quite easy on maintenance. It is a very clean breed with no dog odor. This easy to groom dog is to be combed and brushed once a week. However, extra care is required when it is shedding. This dog breed is a seasonal heavy shedder.