Black Russian Terrier Dog Breed Facts & Information

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If you're thinking about adopting a dog, you need to find the right breed that fits your lifestyle. Details like size, energy level, and personality can really affect not only your home but the happiness of your new furry friend. Doing your due diligence and researching is a great way to start off the adoption process!

If you have the right kind of life for a smart, brave, and at times stubborn dog then you might want to consider the Black Russian terrier.

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The Basics

The Black Russian terrier is a large-sized dog with an adult dog weighing 80-130 pounds, according to The American Kennel Club. Male Black Russian terriers can be up to 27-30 inches tall and females can get up to26-29 inches tall. Life expectancy of the Black Russian terrier is 10-12 years.


The History

Under the leadership of Colonel G. Medvedev of the Central Military School of Working Dogs, The Red Star Kennel, the breed was developed in the Soviet Union (thus their name!). Gradually the Black Russian terrier spread to the Baltic Countries, the Ukraine, and Siberia. As they grew in popularity, they spread abroad as well to Finland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia and eventually to the United States!

The Black Russian terrier was officially recognized by the AKC in 2004 and is in the company of the Alaskan malamute, Rottweiler, and Bernese mountain dog in the working group!


The Personality

Calm, confident and courageous is just a few of the characteristics to describe the Black Russian Terrier. According to Animal Planet, Black Russian terriers are reserved with strangers and very attached to and protective of their family.

They are fast learners but can be very stubborn at times. They are also very affectionate and sociable dogs who want to be around people. They are great with children but need to be watched around other dogs and have proper introductions.


The Appearance

These dogs look unlike any other. The weigh as much as 140 pounds and stand as high as 30 inches at the shoulder! These large dogs have an all-black double coat, which is how they survived as military dogs in some of the coldest places on earth, like the Soviet Union.

Black Russian terriers are equipped with a strong body to help them perform their duties as a reliable guard and military dog. They are large-boned and well-muscled.

Black Russian Terrier Essential Facts

  • Personality: Smart, confident, courageous, sometimes stubborn; protective of loved ones, aloof with strangers
  • Energy Level: Somewhat active
  • Barking Level: Barks when necessary
  • Shedding: Seasonal
  • Grooming: Weekly
  • Good with Children: Better with supervision
  • Trainability: Responds well
  • Height: 27-30 inches (male), 26-29 inches (female)
  • Weight: 80-130 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 10-12 years

Interested in other breeds? Check out this article to find out if dogs really do like to eat homework and this list of different breeds of shaggy dogs.