The Black Russian Terrier.

Black Russian Terrier

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Quick Facts

  • Weight: 80 – 143 pounds
  • Height: 25 – 29 inches

The Look of a Black Russian Terrier

Black Russian Terriers have large, hearty frames covered in thick, black, somewhat disheveled coats. Their broad, powerful heads have oval-shaped eyes, bearded muzzles and big, black noses. They have small, V-shaped ears that hang close to the cheek. Black Russian Terriers have strong necks, deep chests, sturdy backs and thick tails that are usually docked and carried high.


  • Stout
  • Bold
  • Calm
  • Dependable
  • Versatile

Ideal Human Companion

  • Experienced dog handlers
  • Active singles
  • Families with older children
  • Outdoorsy types

What They Are Like to Live With

Bred to guard and protect across many different climates, the Black Russian Terrier is a watchful, inquisitive and adaptable dog. It also passionately loves its family. Warm and engaging with adults, this dog is naturally protective and loving with children. This is a confident canine, but it needs lots of attention and affection to feel complete. No matter how big your house or yard, the Black Russian Terrier will want to be close to you.

Things You Should Know

The Black Russian Terrier can live as long as 12 years with relatively few genetic health problems. Some may develop hip dysplasia or ear infections. Its wiry coat should be brushed several times a week and clipped by a professional several times a year.

Because it tends to relax indoors, the Black Russian Terrier will be happy living in an apartment as long as it gets several good daily walks. It also loves the occasional romp through fields and lakes, so if you can arrange that in a protected area, it will truly have a ball.

Black Russian Terrier History

Developed by the Soviet Union, the Black Russian Terrier derived from a mix of Giant Schnauzers, Rottweilers, Newfoundlands and Airedale Terriers. Bred to be a dependable and robust police, guard and working dog, the Black Russian Terrier eventually made its way out of Russia to Siberia, Nova Scotia and the United States.

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