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Armenian Gampr: Dog Breed Information

Armenian Gampr (Armenian Wolfhound) is an aboriginal breed of the Armenian highlands, which, according to breeders, does not need to be specially trained to protect the owner and his property, all this is in the blood of the Gampr. Smart, strong loyal and beautiful dogs deserve worldwide recognition, but so far the breed is not officially recognized by the International Cynological Federation, only the International Cynological Union (IKU).

History of the Breed

Dogs of this type have been common throughout the Armenian Highlands since ancient times. This is evidenced by rock carvings in the historical regions of Armenia. About 20% of petroglyphs are devoted to dogs, which practically do not differ in appearance from the modern Gampr. The rest depict animals and dogs that have disappeared in our time. Gampr is one of the few aboriginal breeds that has not undergone rigorous selection. The expansion of the gene pool in most cases was facilitated by spontaneous mating with local wolves, which sometimes occur today.

On February 10, 2011, the recognition of the Armenian Wolfhound Gampr by the International Cynological Union (IKU) took place.

The word “gampr” in translation from Armenian means: “strong, powerful, big”. In Armenia, the breed is known under different names that reflect its functionality. With these dogs, they hunted big game for centuries, the dog was used by shepherds to protect the herd from predators and ill-wishers, at home she was the only guard and protector. In addition, the Gampr worked as part of the rescue teams, mainly to search for people in the mountains under snowdrifts.

Appearance

The Gampr is a very large, sturdy dog ​​with an athletic build, slightly elongated format. The height at the withers in males should not be lower than 67 cm, in females – 63 cm. Weight varies from 45 to 70 kg.

The head is well-defined, large. The skull is broad with a soft stop. The forehead is straight. The jaws are very powerful. The cheeks are dry. The ears are set slightly below eye level. The eyes should be darker than the color of the coat, relatively small, almond-shaped, set deep, and slightly oblique. The typical serious and severe expression appears in puppies as early as a few weeks of age. Teeth strong, white, well developed, scissor bite.

Physically and psychologically, Gampr is fully formed by the age of two.

The neck is strong, powerful, of the medium slope. The body is lengthened due to the chest. The chest is wide, deep with a slightly rounded sternum, dropping below the elbow joint. The belly is slightly tucked up. The withers stand out. The back is straight, broad, strong, and muscular. The loin is short. The croup is elongated and wide. The tail is set high, drooping. During movement or excitement, it rises above the back in a crescent shape or in a ring. The forelegs are straight, parallel, very massive. The hindquarters are straight and parallel, slightly aligned at the hocks and knees. The lower leg and thighs are long. The knee joint is well expressed. Feet are strong, round, well-knit, with soft pads.

Outwardly and in character, the Gampr is very similar to the Turkish Kangal, which allows dog handlers to talk about family ties or common ancestors. It is likely that dogs in neighboring territories have crossed each other many times.

The skin is very thick. The wool of the Gampr is rough to the touch, very dense, thick. She is able to protect the dog not only from weather disasters but also from the teeth of a predator. The average length of the hair is about 4 cm, according to the standard from 2 to 6 cm. The undercoat is very well developed. On the paws and muzzle, it is slightly shorter. There is also a long-haired type, but so far it is recognized only in Armenia. The colors are varied and all are judged equally. Only hepatic and its shades are not allowed. A dark mask on the face is welcome, the absence is not considered a disadvantage.

Personality

Gampr is calm, independent, brave, and alert has a balanced temperament and strong character. He is able to make decisions on his own and has a vivid instinct for self-preservation. Willingness to protect the owner and his property is in the blood of the Gampr. In addition, he is distinguished by exceptional human friendliness, which is an important factor for a family dog.

Gampr is very attached to people, considers himself a member of the family. This is especially true for dogs that live in close contact with humans. If the owner ignores the Gampr, he will respond in kind. Proud and self-confident, he will not devote himself to the owner if he does not need it. A relationship with a Wolfhound is like a friendship that must be guarded and maintained.

I wonder how Gampr builds relationships in the family. Before he recognizes the head, he will show affection for the younger family members, women, and children. Then he will try to take a leading position and, if the owner does not allow this, the dog will remain in his place. Gampr shows a similar attitude towards pets. First of all, he takes care of the lambs and kids. Only by making sure they are safe will the adult animals be protected. With males, tribesmen arrange fierce battles for leadership. If socially adapted is absolutely indifferent to cats and other small animals.

Without mental and physical intimacy with the family, Gampr loses the meaning of life. But at the same time, in order for the dog to show all its positive qualities, the owner must become a real leader for the dog.

Care

Gampr is absolutely undemanding in terms of care. If the dog lives in the yard, hygiene procedures are reduced to periodic combing during the seasonal molting period and very rare bathing. Eyes and ears should also be kept clean, but usually do not require regular cleaning. From time to time, the dog is completely examined in order to notice signs of infection in time.  Gampr claws need to be cut as they grow.

Health

Gamprs are strong and healthy, very hardy and adaptable dogs. Today the breed is positioned as genetically safe. However, there is evidence that Gampr may have hip dysplasia, heart disease, and other internal organs. Possible skin and ear problems. It is difficult to say if these problems are hereditary or related to inappropriate care, nutrition, and maintenance.

Life expectancy is usually 10 to 12 years. A dog needs standard veterinary preventive measures no less than any other. The strength of health and immunity, which breeders talk about, does not allow owners to save on the maintenance and nutrition of the Wolfhound.

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