Tatra Breed History Poetry in Motion Polish Tatra Standard Questions to ask a Breeder
Description: Tatras were developed as working dogs. They serve a dual purpose and act as both a herding dog and also a guardian dog. Its imposing attitude and beautiful appearance make it a good companion dog. Tatras generally do not attack predators but stand their ground, and stay with their charges (be it sheep, goats or their human charges).
The Tatra is a large dog. He has heavy bone, a massive body and is powerfully muscled. His profuse coat is generally pure white. They are hardy strong dogs able to work on a minimal diet and withstand cold, harsh temperatures as well as hot, dry heat. The Tatras require early socialization and then throughout its entire life.
Other Names: Polski Owczarek Podhalanski
Height: Female -
24”-26”, Male – 26”-28”
Weight: 80 - 130 lbs.
Colors: Pure White-no color markings with black pigmented
nose leather, lip and lid edges, dark footpads.
Coat: Heavy double coated. Top coat hard to the touch, straight or slightly wavy. Profuse, dense undercoat.
Temperament: This hardy breed is courageous, lively, and alert. He is an agile, swift runner. He is naturally gentle and calm and must never be treated harshly. Loyal to his owner and affectionate with children, he watches over his territory and family. Independent, self-thinking, highly intelligent, able to assess situations without human guidance.
Children: Generally very gentle with well
behaved and mannerly children. Will not tolerate
abuse from children or adults
With Pets: Generally gets along well with other pets. Not highly dog-dog aggressive.
Watch-dog: Very High: Territorial of home and surroundings. Loud warning barks at anything it deems
suspicious or strange - will bite eventually if challenged or pushed
Guard-dog: Very High: Wakeful and vigilant during night hours. If left outside will patrol property and territory. Will bark at anything out of place or unusual. Has been known to deter wolves and bears.
Care and Exercise: Daily exercise is required. Sheds its undercoat profusely twice a year and must be brushed and groomed. If the dog remains indoors, it will shed year round. It stays clean even when shedding due to its self cleaning coat. Dry mouthed – does not drool. Teeth, ears and nails must be tended to weekly.
Training: Needs an owner who is intelligent, preferably with prior big dog experience. Owner must be a strong alpha leader, fair and very consistent with all rules. Needs early socialization and then throughout its entire life. For harmonious family living inside a home, basic obedience is a must.
Learning Rate: Independent, self-thinking, highly intelligent, able to assess situations without human guidance.
Activity: The Tatra is still being breed to be a Livestock Guardian Dog (LGD) and is happiest when given a job to do such as guardian/protecting his flock (be it goats, sheep, or humans).
Living Environment: Not suitable to apartment/condo living or small yards with close neighbors. While not excessive, their instincts to bark at strangers and strange occurrences can be problematic. Needs considerable space and exercise, also good fencing is a necessity and mandatory.
Health Issues: Hip Dysplasia occasionally. Very few reported cases (less than 1%) of Patellar Luxation, Juvenile Cataracts, Epilepsy, Allergic Dermatitis, and Bloat (gastric torsion).
– 12 years
Litter Size: 5 - 8 occasionally more
Country of Origin:
History: The Podhale, where this
breed originated, is a small region in southern
Outside interest in the handsome dog, which had been guarding sheep in the mountain meadows for centuries, began in the middle of the 19th Century when mountain climbing became popular.
War II brought the breed to the brink of extinction. This is truly a breed that
“refused to die”. The Polish Kennel Club
worked to re-establish the Tatra Dogs following the War. By the 1960’s the Federation Cynologique
International (FCI) reinstated the breed. In 1981 the first Polish Tatra Dogs
were documented as coming into the
Registries: Polish Kennel Club/FCI, UKC,or American Rare Breed Association (ARBA) or in the