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Karelian beardog/Russo-European Laika

If you are wondering what is the right dog for you, this is the place to be. In this introductory forum we talk about topics such as breed vs. mix, size, age, grooming, breeders, shelters, rescues as well as requirements for exercise, space and care. No question is too silly here. This particular forum is for getting and giving helpful, nice advice. It is definitely not a forum for criticizing someone else's opinion, knowledge or advice. This forum is all about tail wagging and learning.

  
Baby

What'd you say?- I wasn't- listening.
 
 
Barked: Wed Aug 22, '12 5:36pm PST 
My mom ran into someone with what they are told is a Karelian beardog (got from a rescue). Well, the daughter of the people my mom met. The daughter visited or something and after just one week with the dog there I guess it got really territorial and what not.

The parents are concerned and feel that this dog could end up biting.

I read up on it in a breed book I had, I guess at some point the breed split into another breed called the Russo-European Laika. The book says they're essentially the same breed though the Russo is bigger and fiercer.

It also said there are mixed reviews on the Karelian and it's behavior. Loving to most and easy to train vs hard to train and a bit of a wild card. If the book is right about the difference of the breeds mainly being aggression and what not maybe that's why all the mixed reveals or something?

Anyone know more about this breed? Is the book right? Have you met or worked with any? What's the best way to handle such a powerful breed with high guarding and hunting tendencies?
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Nare

Woo-woo- whineybutt
 
 
Barked: Wed Aug 22, '12 6:17pm PST 
Hi Baby.
I'd be very skeptical of a rescue listing a dog as a KBD-- They usually aren't. Many of the KBDs I've seen listed on Pet Finder are Akita, Border Collie, or some other type of mix. Lots of times its an uneducated guess, or it's used because the 'rareness' of the breed might appeal to some adopters.

I've met KBDs and KBD / Laika mixes. We had one that went to our dog park, and we've met the mixes that work as bear dogs for Washington parks.

I might be remembering wrong, but I dont remember Laikas referred to as fiercer-- actually the mixes that I've met were more 'dog'-like that the full breed who was imported. The Laika mixes actively engage with their handlers, and enjoy eachothers companionship.. The KBD we met wanted nothing to do with me or my dog, muchless his owner. He was the true definition of aloof, but not at all aggressive.

It is impossible to know whether the dog was being territorial, fearful, or aggressive just by this post.

It is more probable that the dog just isn't socialized. These dogs aren't hard to train, they're more like.. uncooperative. You need to work with the dog to find what motivates them, otherwise it is like trying to get a kid to do homework. From what I understand about these breeds-- they are aloof, okay with you loving on them but not too willing to engage, they're perfectly content with laying by the fireplace instead of following you around and attached at the hip. They're more like cats.

Also a note, a lot of the breeders of KBDs in the USA are mixes.

If you are worried that this dog is going to bite, he will pick up on that and push harder. They need to evaluate the situation, figure out if it is real aggression, and then manage, set boundaries, or rehome the dog.

These dogs are one of my heart breeds, I really loved seeing them work, but they're probably too much dog for people who aren't 100% dedicated.

I wish the family goodluck.
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Baby

What'd you say?- I wasn't- listening.
 
 
Barked: Fri Aug 24, '12 10:32am PST 
Thanks for the heads-up. Very helpful.
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Saya

I want to play!
 
 
Barked: Fri Aug 24, '12 10:39am PST 
I don't know much on laika or karelian beardogs, but I do like reading on them wouldn't mind meeting one in person someday..

I sent you two a message might help or not..
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Baby

What'd you say?- I wasn't- listening.
 
 
Barked: Sat Aug 25, '12 5:07pm PST 
Thank you
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Niki

1229379
 
 
Barked: Wed Aug 29, '12 7:38pm PST 
I've heard similar things about the breed split and the more fierce Russo. However, I think that was more in the past than modern day. Russos have been crossed with other breeds to make them more suitable for household living.

Karelians also get a fierce reputation, but I human aggression should never be tolerate (and bred into their lines). It is not a desirable or known trait of the breed.
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Niki

1229379
 
 
Barked: Wed Aug 29, '12 7:39pm PST 
I'd also second it being a rare breed, and even harder to find in rescue. It's much more likely the dog is a border collie or shepherd mix.
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Alva BH

I ordered the- best dog for me- & got her
 
 
Barked: Thu Aug 30, '12 1:51pm PST 
I don't actually know this breed but the breed descriptions I read told me that the Karelian bear dog should be friendly towards humans but it is common - even mentioned in the breed standard (Finnish) - that KBD is dog aggressive. It is bred for hunting bears and other animals like moose. Thus it must be tough and courageous in the woods. KBD finds the game by its nose and stops it by barking at it. KBD is not a shepherd or a retriever that are often bred to be trained for obedience tasks. A hunting spitz must work independently but still cooperate with the hunter. The breed has strong instincts for hunting and excels in that job. The spitzes have also a history of guarding their homes. So I would not expect this breed to be an easy dog when kept as pet only.

I somehow admire the hunting spitzes but can never have one because I don't hunt. I guess these breeds are pretty rare outside of Finland.
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Baby

What'd you say?- I wasn't- listening.
 
 
Barked: Sat Sep 1, '12 6:35pm PST 
Thanks for all the info.

I'm drawn to the hunting spitzes too though I don't think I'll ever own one. My list of wanted dogs is long, haha.
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Sanka- I'll Miss- You

The ground is my- newspaper.
 
 
Barked: Sun Sep 2, '12 2:03pm PST 
I met a purebred Karelian bear dog at the dog park the other day. Her owner was a Karelian bear dog nut! She hat the shirt and hat to prove it.laugh out loud

They are much smaller than I thought! But very fluffy. I've only met one, so I can't really say much, but I do know it was pure as the lady knew the dog's parents and grandparents and great grandparents and so on.

The dog was perfectly fine in the park. Didn't care much for other humans and promptly ignored everyone. A bit on the aloof side, but not overtly serious. She kept tabs on her human and was content to observe, although occasionally would get the urge to just have a good run by herself. Very neat looking dogs.way to go
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