Existence of herding dog at risk in Turkey due to dwindling sheep farming

Xinhua Net
By: Burak Akinci
Photo: Pxhere

Original content from Xinhua Net.     

ANKARA, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- The Kangal dog, huge and adorable and possibly the best herd-protecting dogs in the world, is a national icon in Turkey, but their existence is now at risk due to dwindling sheep farming.

But their main mission and even existence is at risk because sheep farming which was once a primary source of income has been hit by modern technology or bad economy and sheep flocks decrease by the year.

The huge watchful dogs of intimidating size are farmers best friends and are capable of killing wolves, jackals, bears and scare also sheep thieves.

"This is the best herd protecting dog breed. They are not shepherd dog. They protect the sheep," Yahya Ozdemir, a breeder from the Kangal town, told Xinhua.

The 37-year breeder, who works in a state-owned farm, explained that he always had an interest for this fearless dog since he was a boy in his remote village of the rugged high plateau, 350 km east of the capital Ankara.

"We breed only pure blood Kangals, the typical livestock guardian dogs of Anatolia. We have 50 of them right now," explained Yahya, adding that a couple of female and male pups sell for 1.75 Turkish Liras (450 U.S. dollars).

Read the rest of this story at Xinhua Net.