Should I Get a Komondor?

Are you considering getting a Komondor? Take a look at the advice Komondor experts have for first-time owners of this rare dog breed.

By Joy Levy | Posted: Dec 31, 2012, 4 p.m. EST

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If you are contemplating getting a Komondor, the first thing to realize is that this dog breed, especially the male, is a lot of dog to handle, for at least two reasons. First, the Komondor is a big, powerful dog. Second, this dog breed has been bred successfully to be a decision- making animal. The Komondor decides who is the enemy and protects his possessions from danger in whatever way he sees fit. Any male Komondor must be obedience-trained before one year of age if he is to be managed by more than one person. Even with obedience training, Komondors should not run without a leash unless one person devotes his full attention to controlling the dog.

Komondors needs a lot of socialization, being handled by many different people if he is later to be in contact with many people. Like most guard dogs, a Komondor usually likes only people he knows. If you want to keep a Komondor friendly, you must be sure that he “knows” a lot of people. Most Komondors like children and put up with a great deal from (even unfamiliar) children, though unfamiliar adults are not tolerated lightly. Komondors also need a family to attach themselves to. By six months of age, a Komondor can be loyal and devoted. Every member of the household is included in his devotion—the children, the cleaning woman, any regular visitors and the other animals, including dogs, cats, birds, anything.

Like all of the livestock guard dogs, Komondors should tolerate any animals that are yours. A working dog will cut out a new flock member but not harm it. Komondors like cats, and cats like them as well. They are good with birds, from cockatiels to emus, and generally have no hunt and/or chase instincts. You can rarely get them to chase a squirrel or a deer. Komondors like to watch other animals; they act as we do when we watch television. They are generally gentle with any young animals. Grown Komondors do not usually welcome strange dogs on their property, though in some cases they fall in love with another animal—dog, cat, goat, etc.—and try to bring their friend home. This dog breed enjoys having a companion, whether it is another dog or a cat. An older dog is often rejuvenated by the entry of a younger dog into his life. People with working dogs find that an older Komondor will teach a younger one all of the rules. Komondors are devoted forever to the people and animals they grow up with.

The Komondor is an alert dog, and he requires an alert owner. Improper handling can occur in many situations with well-meaning owners, and the Komondor can then be suspected of having a bad temperament when he in reality does not. If you fail to show your dog his duty, he will certainly make a job for himself, and you may not like the job he chooses.


Excerpt from Komondor, part of the Comprehensive Owner’s Gide series, with permission from its publisher, Kennel Club Books, a division of BowTie Inc. Purchase Komondor here.
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