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Black Russian Terrier

BlackRussiaTerrier

A Courageous & Dependable Family Dog

Protective, sociable, playful

Black Russian Terriers are lively, intelligent, and friendly, giant dogs. These terriers generally get along with children and other pets, but can be a bit reserved around strangers and dominant dogs if not socialized properly at an early age. They make great companions for families with older children, active individuals, and those who enjoy the outdoors. They require a long walk or active play daily, and love to romp through fields and lakes.

Understanding their unique needs will help keep them healthy and create a strong bond between the two of you. Explore this page to learn more about the breed’s history, health concerns, characteristics, and care needs.

Breed Details

Height:26-30 in. Weight:80-145 lb Lifespan:10-11 years

Size
4

1=small 5=large

Grooming requirements
3

1 = little grooming - 5 = much grooming

Energy level
2

1 = low energy - 5 = high energy

Ease of training
3

1 = difficult - 5 = easy

Affection toward owners
4

1 = independent - 5 = very affectionate

Friendliness toward strangers
1

1 = shy - 5 = very friendly

Grooming: They have a coarse, dense coat that doesn't shed much, but you'll need to brush their coat at least twice weekly, and have them professionally groomed two or three times yearly.

Dental: Black Russian Terriers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

Ear Care: Clean their ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

Black Russian Terriers are huge, calm and confident, friendly with other dogs, love the kids, and, if necessary will protect them.

Positive Traits:

  • Lively, with a friendly personality

  • Highly intelligent, playful, and energetic

  •  An excellent family dog that loves human companionship

  •  An excellent guard dog, courageous and dependable

  • Adaptable to a wide variety of living conditions

Negative Traits:

  • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog

  • Overprotective of family and territory if not socialized properly

  • Can be headstrong when negative-reinforcement training methods are used

  • Willful and stubborn if you don’t show strong leadership

Whether you are considering adding a new Black Russian Terrier to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Black Russian Terrier will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. 

By exploring the health concerns specific to the Black Russian Terrier you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

Some health issues a Black Russian Terrier could encounter:

  • Bloat

  • Bladder or Kidney Stones

  • Thyroid Disease

A prized offspring from Soviet Union, this dog breed is the result of a Soviet Party selective breeding program designed to create a reliable, sturdy working dog. They succeeded in a giant way: this is a huge dog with a calm, confident temperament that craves human contact and loves children and other pets. They are naturally suspicious of strangers, but not aggressive unless necessary. Take charge of your puppy early, and they'll vigilantly guard your home and family. Black Russian Terriers typically have few health problems, but watch carefully for joint problems as they age.

Consult with a veterinarian if your Black Russian Terrier shows signs of the following:

  • Dry heaving or a large, tight, painful abdomen

  • General reluctance to run or play

  • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine

  • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

  • Coughing, especially at night or upon rising after sleeping, rapid breathing at rest

  • Cloudiness to eye lens

  • Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

  • Coughing, fainting episodes, tiring easily

  • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine


  • Care

    Grooming: They have a coarse, dense coat that doesn't shed much, but you'll need to brush their coat at least twice weekly, and have them professionally groomed two or three times yearly.

    Dental: Black Russian Terriers generally have good teeth, and you can keep them perfect by brushing them at least twice a week!

    Ear Care: Clean their ears weekly, even as a puppy. Don’t worry—your veterinarian can show you how!

  • Characteristics

    Black Russian Terriers are huge, calm and confident, friendly with other dogs, love the kids, and, if necessary will protect them.

    Positive Traits:

    • Lively, with a friendly personality

    • Highly intelligent, playful, and energetic

    •  An excellent family dog that loves human companionship

    •  An excellent guard dog, courageous and dependable

    • Adaptable to a wide variety of living conditions

    Negative Traits:

    • Can be rambunctious and rowdy, especially as a younger dog

    • Overprotective of family and territory if not socialized properly

    • Can be headstrong when negative-reinforcement training methods are used

    • Willful and stubborn if you don’t show strong leadership

  • Health Concerns

    Whether you are considering adding a new Black Russian Terrier to your family or you already have one as a companion, it is important for you to know about the genetically linked diseases known to occur more often in this breed. Of course not every Black Russian Terrier will have these problems, but research shows your pal is more at risk than other breeds. 

    By exploring the health concerns specific to the Black Russian Terrier you will become a knowledgeable and confident pet parent. Be sure to speak with your veterinarian about breed risks every time you visit and educate yourself on the most important signs to watch for at home. She’s counting on you to be her health expert.

    Some health issues a Black Russian Terrier could encounter:

    • Bloat

    • Bladder or Kidney Stones

    • Thyroid Disease

  • History

    A prized offspring from Soviet Union, this dog breed is the result of a Soviet Party selective breeding program designed to create a reliable, sturdy working dog. They succeeded in a giant way: this is a huge dog with a calm, confident temperament that craves human contact and loves children and other pets. They are naturally suspicious of strangers, but not aggressive unless necessary. Take charge of your puppy early, and they'll vigilantly guard your home and family. Black Russian Terriers typically have few health problems, but watch carefully for joint problems as they age.

  • Watch Out For

    Consult with a veterinarian if your Black Russian Terrier shows signs of the following:

    • Dry heaving or a large, tight, painful abdomen

    • General reluctance to run or play

    • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine

    • Dull coat, hair loss, sluggish, weight gain

    • Coughing, especially at night or upon rising after sleeping, rapid breathing at rest

    • Cloudiness to eye lens

    • Dilated pupils in daylight, or increased "eye shine" at night

    • Coughing, fainting episodes, tiring easily

    • Pain or straining to urinate, bloody urine


Black Russian Terrier Discussions

Share your thoughts and experiences, ask questions, or just show your love for the Black Russian Terrier breed here!

Select Another Breed

To view the sources for the information listed on this page, see our Dog Breed Guide Reference page.

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