Bukovina Sheepdog


Quick Facts

  • Weight: 70 to 90 pounds (sometimes up to 120 pounds)
  • Height: 25 to 30 inches

The Look of a Bukovina Sheepdog

Bukovina Sheepdogs have varying lengths of coarse, rough fur covering a thick gray skin. They have a white base of fur with black, charcoal-sand, or brindle patches. The fur is longest on the body, and forms a mane and a bushy tail. The fur on the backs of the limbs is longer.

This is a large, muscular, powerful dog, though its true stature is hidden by its massive coat. With its proud stance and big head, this breed certainly deters strangers from approaching. That said, their eyes are a little small for their massive heads.


  • Great “lion’s mane”
  • Massive, muscular body
  • Gray skin
  • Stable, calm, playful nature
  • Lifespan: 10 to 15 years

Ideal Human Companion

  • Owners who will exercise this dog daily
  • Families (small children need to be supervised)
  • Suburban or country dwellers
  • Those looking for a formidable guard dog
  • Those looking for a formidable guard dog that is fluffy

What They Are Like to Live With

Unlike many other flock guard dogs, the Bukovina Sheepdog is not a loner. These dogs keep close to their shepherds in the mountains of Romania and are usually well socialized, with a focus on protecting and guarding the family and their property.

As companion animals, Bukovina Sheepdogs are loyal and affectionate. Their playfulness must be monitored so they don’t run the whole family over in their exuberance. This is a high-energy dog, used to being continually active. Be prepared for lots of exercise (it’s fairly certain you two won’t be disturbed while jogging).

The Bukovina Sheepdog has a stable temperament and tends to be very gentle with children but also very protective of them.

This breed’s thick fur requires frequent grooming and maybe even daily brushing.

Things You Should Know

Because Bukovina Sheepdogs are so good at their job of guarding, they are often territorial and suspicious of strangers. You will need to socialize your dog very early on with outsiders and other canines and train it to drop its guard when told.

Be prepared for the Bukovina Sheepdog to patrol the house or grounds and expect to hear its deep, sonorous bark if anything is out of place. It is essential for this dog to work, so you must be tolerant of having a sentinel, day and night.

There are no recorded health problems specific to the Bukovina Sheepdog, although hip dysplasia and bloat are possible.

Bukovina Sheepdog History

The Bukovina Sheepdog is native to the Carpathia region in northeastern Romania and is probably a descendant of various types of Mastiffs. It is also known as the Bukovina Shepherd Dog, Dulau (Shepherd’s Dog), and Romanian Shepherd Dog.

The dog was first seen in the 18th century and was bred to guard sheep and sometimes cattle. The emphasis has been placed on the breed’s working skills and courage rather than its look. They are very courageous and can combat dangerous predators such as bears and wolves.

Today, Bukovina Sheepdogs are seen almost entirely in Romania.

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