Bakharwal - Dog Breed Info, Temperament & Facts


The Bakharwal breed of dog is a unique livestock guardian breed that originated in the Himalayan mountains. Developed by nomadic tribes centuries ago, these dogs are known for their bravery and dedication in protecting their herds from predators. Despite their friendly nature towards humans, they can be aggressive towards other dogs. Interestingly, the Bakharwal breed has a preference for consuming bread, milk, and other dairy products rather than meat. Due to their rarity and difficulty in breeding, it can be challenging to find a Bakharwal dog for adoption outside of the Himalayas.

Ahead, we look at Bakharwal dog breed, its history, personality, pros and cons of owning an Bakharwal, characteristics, and must-know facts. We will also examine how to care for this breed and a lot more. Prepare for a tail-wagging adventure into the world of Bakharwals!

Dog Breed Bakharwal
Weight 85-130 lbs (average)
Height 24-30″ (average)
Location Himalayan Mountains
Ancestry Ancient Molosser Breed
Date of Origin Ancient Times
Group Livestock Guardian
Life Expectancy
Family Canidae
Scientific Name Canis Lupus Familiaris

📖 Breed History

The Bakharwal, an ancient breed developed in the Himalayan mountains, has a history that remains largely unknown. It is believed to have originated around 300 years ago with the Gujjar people, a nomadic tribe. Originally used as livestock guardian dogs, particularly for protecting sheep and cows during the tribe’s travels, they continue to fulfill this role today, although their lifestyle has become less nomadic. The breed has remained unchanged for centuries and is among the rarest herding dogs, with its numbers decreasing over time.

The Bakharwal is thought to have genetic ties to the Tibetan Mastiff and is considered a descendant of older molosser breeds such as the Hyrcanian Mastiff, Saih Sag, and Tuvan Sheepdog. Despite its historical significance, the Bakharwal is virtually unknown outside of India and has not yet been officially recognized by breed registries like the American Kennel Club or the Federation Cynologique Internationale. Consequently, there is little to no demand for this breed outside its native mountains in India. The decline in demand can also be attributed to a shift towards a less nomadic lifestyle, which requires fewer dogs overall.

During the 1857 uprising in India, many Bakharwal dogs were enlisted into service, often on the front lines. Unfortunately, this resulted in heavy casualties for the breed. Additionally, the Bakharwal has a slow breeding rate and smaller litters, with females typically producing only one to three offspring per year. These factors further contribute to the decreasing population of this unique canine breed.

🐕 Bakharwal Appearance

This dog is a huge, heavilyboned dog with a deep chest and a lot of muscle, similar to other molosser breeds, albeit it is a little bit slimmer than most Asian molossers. These dogs often have a huge head and a broad, muscular neck, are over two feet tall at the shoulder, and weigh between 85 and 130 pounds at maturity. They have medium-sized dangling ears, almond-shaped brown or amber eyes, and slightly short but well-built muzzles with black noses. The Bakharwal breed of dogs has an extraordinarily thick coat of hair that comes in a variety of hues, including tan, beige, black, white, and even piebald. This coat of hair serves to both protect the dogs from other predators as well as the cold in the northern highlands. Often, the skin of dogs with piebald coats, or coats with sizable portions of both white and another color, is naturally pigmented to match the topcoat.

👀 Eye Color Brown
🐽 Nose Color Black
🐕 Coat Color Black, White, Pied, Fawn, Sable

Fun Fact:

🐶 Traits & Temperament of Bakharwal

For hundreds of years, these dogs have only been raised as livestock guardians, and they take their jobs very seriously. Bears, lions, and wolves are among the most terrifying and hazardous predators that the Bakharwal successfully defends its flock from. The Bakharwal breed is notorious for being extremely possessive toward other animals, particularly other dogs. Although this breed is typically accepting of people of all ages, particularly those within its family who the Bakharwal regards as part of its flock. They are normally quite benign and friendly toward kids, but because they are enormous, energetic dogs, they could be a little too raucous for the younger crowd. This dog has also learned to make decisions on its own, making it a highly clever creature who gets bored easily and is not very interested in obeying directives. Due of this, teaching the Bakharwala may be quite challenging, thus the trainer must have great leadership and confidence while working with this dog.

🤝 Are Bakharwals Friendly or Aggressive?

🐩 Bakharwal Care & Maintenance

The Bakharwal is fairly prone to picking up burrs and foxtails despite having an extraordinarily dense double layer coat that normally only needs washing a few times a year. These dogs often only require one or two thorough brushing sessions each week, but it is crucial to make sure the entire coat, not just the top layers, are brushed and detangled. Sometimes cutting the coat is necessary because of its density. Remember that this dog won’t flourish on a conventional dog’s food as well. In general, Bakharwal dogs do not digest meat well and are frequently given a combination of bread, milk, and other milk products. A hectic, demanding schedule should keep the nails under control, but periodically check to make sure they are in good length and shape.

🍖 Food: We recommend 3 cups daily, costing you about $1.50 – $1.90 daily, or around $39.00 – $52.00 a month.

🐾 Exercise:

This dog breed requires to be walked for roughly 16 miles per week, which equates to about 60 minutes of physical activity daily. This consistent moderate exercise regimen will help maintain their physical wellness and significantly contribute to their mental stimulation. Consciously setting aside this time for your furry friend can dramatically enhance their life quality, helping them stay energetic, healthy, and mentally alert.

Did you know:

❤️‍🩹 Bakharwal Health & Issues

Some of the major concerns for Bakharwal Dog Breed can be:

  • Canine Hip Dysplasia (Chd)
  • Bloat

While minor concerns include:

  • Patellar Luxation
  • Obesity

🤧 Important: Is Bakharwal hypoallergenic? .

Bonus: Check out cool, creative, and funny names for Bakharwal.

⚡ Bakharwal Dog Breed Facts

What makes the Bakharwal a great choice for families with young children?
The Bakharwal breed is a great choice for families with young children because they are generally tolerant and affectionate towards people of all ages, including children. However, due to their large size and playful nature, they may be a little too boisterous for smaller children.

Is the Bakharwal breed considered a suitable breed for apartment living?
No, the Bakharwal breed is not considered suitable for apartment living. They are active and require a lot of space to roam and exercise. Living in a confined space like an apartment may lead to boredom and behavioral issues.

How much exercise does a Bakharwal require compared to other breeds?
The Bakharwal breed requires a significant amount of exercise compared to other breeds. They have been bred as livestock guardian dogs and have high energy levels. Daily exercise, such as long walks or playtime in a large, secure area, is necessary to keep them physically and mentally stimulated.

Is the Bakharwal breed known for being good with other pets?
The Bakharwal breed is known for being aggressively territorial towards other animals, particularly other dogs. They have been bred to protect their flock and may not get along well with other pets. It’s important to socialize them from a young age to mitigate any potential aggression issues.

What are other low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Bakharwal?
Some low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Bakharwal include the Great Pyrenees, Kuvasz, and Anatolian Shepherd. These breeds are also livestock guardian dogs and require similar care and exercise.

What are the common health issues that Bakharwals are prone to?
Bakharwals are generally a healthy breed, but they can be prone to certain health issues. These may include hip dysplasia, bloat, and eye problems. Regular vet check-ups and a proper diet can help minimize the risk of these health concerns.

Are Bakharwals known to be easy to train compared to other breeds?
Training the Bakharwal breed can be challenging. They are independent thinkers and may get bored with repetitive commands. Strong leadership and confidence are necessary, and positive reinforcement techniques are usually more effective than harsh methods.

Are Bakharwals more prone to separation anxiety compared to other breeds?
Bakharwals can be prone to separation anxiety, especially if they are not properly socialized and trained from a young age. They form strong bonds with their family and may become anxious when left alone for long periods.

Are there any dog breeds similar to the Bakharwal that are suitable for people with allergies?
If you are looking for dog breeds similar to the Bakharwal that are suitable for people with allergies, consider hypoallergenic breeds such as the Poodle, Bichon Frise, or Portuguese Water Dog. These breeds have hair instead of fur and produce less dander, which is often the main cause of allergies.

What sizes of dogs similar to the Bakharwal are best for individuals or families with limited space?
For individuals or families with limited space, smaller-sized dogs similar to the Bakharwal may be more suitable. Consider breeds such as the Shetland Sheepdog, Border Collie, or Australian Cattle Dog. These breeds are still active and require exercise but can adapt better to smaller living spaces.

Is the Bakharwal breed known to be good with children with special needs?
The Bakharwal breed can be good with children with special needs, particularly those within its family. Their tolerant and affectionate nature can make them a suitable companion for children who require extra care and attention. However, supervision and proper socialization are important to ensure a safe and harmonious interaction.

How does the grooming and shedding needs of the Bakharwal?
The grooming and shedding needs of the Bakharwal breed can vary. They have a thick double coat that requires regular brushing to prevent matting and to control shedding. During shedding seasons, they may require more frequent brushing. Overall, their grooming needs are moderate compared to other breeds with similar coat types.

We use reliable and publicly available data and resources such as AKC and American Canine Registry to ensure that Bakharwal dog breed information is accurate and up to date. If you spot an error, please don’t hesitate to bring it to our attention.

Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy is a seasoned writer and an enthusiast of dog breed expertise. Having dedicated over 5 years to studying the intricacies of different dog breeds and their unique characteristics. His profound insights and love for our four-legged friends have made him an invaluable part of our team.


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