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     KIF (Turkish) BREED STANDARD      


General Appearance and Character 

The Kangal is a molossus type dog. Its constitution is robust, even rough. Compact body is covered with thick hair. Body is of rectangular shape.

Height: Height at the withers is 65-78 cm with +/- 2 cm tolerance.

Important proportions: Head length is 39-40% of height at the withers. Skull length is 56-60% of head length. Profile lines of the nozzle and the skull are divergent. Body length is 10-12% greater than height at the withers.


Harsh while guarding the entrusted property or flock, otherwise benign and of a peaceful temperament, bold and dignified. Loyal to the master and completely calm in his presence. Fearless and unbribable.


1.1. Skull: must not be flat. Should be rounded from all sides. Orbital arches are visible but are not overly pronounced. The furrow in the forehead is visible, but not deep. Occiput is visible but not overly expressed. Head width is 52-57% of head length. Length of the skull along the longitudinal axis is greater than width of the skull along the transversal axis. The skull gradually narrows towards the facial region.

1.2. Stop: stop angle is well over 90 degrees. Stop is clear but not overly pronounced.

1.3. Muzzle: is shorter than the skull. Nozzle length is 40-44% of head length. Nozzle width in the area where skull region turns to nozzle region is 24-38% of head length. Muzzle depth in that area is 32-36% of head length. Muzzle is in the shape of a blunt wedge that is lightly tapering towards the nose. Nozzle line from stop towards the nose is gently sloped.

1.4. Nose: must not be above or under the nozzle line. It must be large with nostrils of sufficient size. Nose and the inner side of the nostrils must be pigmented. All dogs should have dark pigmentation.

1.5. Lips: must be well adhering to the bone basis. Are of medium thickness. The upper lip slightly overhangs over the lower lip. Joining of the lips is weakly pronounced. Lower lip must be tight, well-adhering to the lower jaw, and must not be hanging. Edges and mucous membranes of the lips must be pigmented.

1.6. Jaws/Teeth: Jaws must be well developed and powerful. Teeth are regularly arranged in the jaws. Powerful teeth. Scissors bite, pincer bite or reverse scissors bite are accepted. Lack of first premolars (P1) does not affect the assessment.

1.7. Eyes: large, almond-shaped. Neither bulging nor sunken. Eye color must be in accordance with hair color. Darker eyes are more desirable. Eyelids adhere to the eyeballs tightly. Eyelid rims should be pigmented. Gaze should be calm and fearless.

1.8. Ears are set at the height of an imaginary line that connects the tip of the nose with the inner corner of the eyelids, or slightly lower. Ears are triangular in shape. Hair color on the ears is preferred to be the same as hair color of the mask. Front edge of the ears, if not cropped, should overlap the head.



Of medium length, 35-40% of height at the withers. Upper line of the neck is slightly rounded, while the lower line is straight. The angle that the neck forms with a horizontal line should be 35-40 degrees. The neck is merging to the body and head without sharp transitions. Skin on the neck must be tightly attached to the muscular base. No dewlap.


3.1. General appearance: the body must not be squat in appearance. It must be muscular, well connected and balanced. Body length is 10-12% greater than height at the withers. It is a breed characteristics that the dogs are high at the rear, as the rump is up to 4% higher than the withers. Back line, form the withers to the rump is not straight, but slightly sagging. Midpoint of the back is 4-5% lower than the withers.

3.2. Withers: Powerful, well connected and mildly prominent.
3.3. Top line: must be strong and broad, not too long. In motion, top line should be as still as

3.4. Thoracic section of the back: Muscular, powerful, well connected to the withers and loins.

3.5. Loins: Powerful, short, may be a bit longer in bitches. Observed from the side, slightly convex. Muscular, well connected to the thoracic section of the back and croup.

3.6. Croup: Of medium length, 30-35% of height at the withers. Muscular, well connected to the loins. Croup line and horizontal line form an angle of 25-30 degrees.

3.7. Ribcage: must be spacious. Ribcage circumference is 10-15% larger than the height at the withers. Chest depth is 33-45% of height at the withers. Chest width (measured behind the shoulder blades) is 27-37% of height at the withers. Ribs are powerful and never barrel shaped.

3.8. Chest: muscular and strong. Tip of the chest bone is at 65-75% of height at the withers.
3.9. Bottom line and belly: Belly is slightly recessed. Bottom line slowly rises from the sternum

profile to the hips.


Upper line of the tail forms a continuous line with the croup line. Ideally the tail set shoud be level with the height of the croup, but it may also be 5-10% lower (than height of the croup). Tails is very powerful at the base, while its thickness gradually decreases towards the tip. When relaxed, it reaches the hock hanging down vertically, though it appears shorter as it is slightly curved at the tip. Curvature of the last third can be so strong that it can form a circle. In action preferably the tail is carried higher than the back line forming a circle. (This circle may also touch the medial line of the back, may be carried behind the back without touching it or may be carried almost vertical with the last third forming the circle at the tip.) Curved tail shouldn’t be carried on the side of the body below the back line.


5.1. Forequarters: Bones of forequarters are powerful. The carpal circumference is 20-22 cm. Muscles are lean and hard. Forequarters are parallel. Elbow height is 50-55% of height at the withers.

5.1.1. Shoulders: Of medium length, adheres to the body well. Forms an angle of 45-55 degrees with the horizontal. Shoulder angle is 90-110 degrees.

5.1.2. Upper legs: Must be muscular and strong. Leans to the body. Upper legs are parallel.

5.1.3. Lower legs: Bones are strong and muscles are well developed. Elbow is located in the line that is parallel to the medial vertical plane of the body. Elbow angle is 110-130 degrees. Elbows should be kept very tight to the body and shouldn’t be loose.

5.1.4. Front feet: Located at the extension of the vertical line of the lower leg. Must be strong and well connected.

5.1.5. Front pastern: Observed from the front, pasterns are located on the vertical line that passes through the lower leg axis. It forms an angle of 20-30 degrees with the vertical.

5.1.6. Paws: Roundish. Fingers must be strong, rounded, and not splayed. Nails are pigmented darkly. In dogs with lighter hair color, nails should be lighter. Cushions must be elastic, full, firm, and pigmented. Swimming skin is developed.

5.2. Hind quarters: parallel relative to each other. They must be strong, but not too heavy. Stance must be regular, with adequate angles.

5.2.1. Loins: wide, muscular and powerful. Length of the loins is 33% of height at the withers. Loins are parallel respective to each other, as well as to medial axis of the body. Loins form an angle of 55-75 degrees with the horizontal.

5.2.2. Lower leg: Muscular, strong. Lower legs are parallel relative to each other. Lower legs form an angle of 110-145 degrees with the upper leg (knee).

5.2.3. Hock: Must be firm and wide and end at the rear pastern harmonically. Height of the hock (from the ground level to the joint) is 25-35% of height at the withers. Hock angle is 120-150 degrees.

5.2.4. Rear pastern: Strong and well developed. Height varies depending on height of the hock. Presence of dewclaws is possible.

5.2.5. Rear feet: A bit more elongated than the front feet, other characteristics identical with those of the front feet.


Gait must be elegant and harmonic. There should be no jerks or spasms in motion. Back line should be as still as possible during movement. Arching of the back during movement is not tolerated. Kangal's favorite gait is trot of medium length, while gallop is not characteristic. However, If the dog gallops, then the jumps are long but the gallop is stolid. Final grade of dogs with bad gait should be lowered regardless of the exterior.



Of medium thickness, well adhering to the head and body. Must not form a dewlap. skin color depends on hair color, but skin must be pigmented.

Mucous membranes

All visible mucous membranes must be pigmented. Intensity and color of the pigmentation depend on color of the dog. Dark pigmentation is preferred with all accepted colors of the breed.


Thick and lush. Covers the body well. A bit shorter on the head and legs than on the body. It should not be silky or thin. It should be firm. Undercoat is thick and finer than the upper coat. Length of hair at the withers is 3-7 cm, depending to the season.


Color should be from crème to dark gray in all nuances. Base white color is not allowed. Body is of a solid color. Lighter color is possible on the legs, with acceptable darker flecks or spots. Brindle is allowed but is not desirable. White color is allowed only on the chest and the tip of the tail, wherein the diameter of the white field on the chest is not larger than 10 cm. Presence of the mask on the head is obligatory. The mask should be black up to the eye level and lighter on the skull. Preferably the ears are black like the mask. Tip of the tail may be white or black, but colored in such way no longer than 5 cm, observed from the tip to the base.


Any departure of the foregoing points must be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.



  • Overshot and undershot bite, wry mouth

  • Monorchism and cryptorchism

  • Absence of more than 2 of the P2

  • Absence of any teeth than P1 and P2

  • Ectropion, entropion

  • Sable tail without the circle

  • All hair colors than the above described.

  • Aggressiveness

  • Colored and/or differently colored eyes.

    N.B.: Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

General Appearance

Large, well muscled and of balanced proportions, with a sound and impressive stance. Important features of the breed include an impressive head, without any exaggeration, with black or dark coloured mask covering muzzle and with black or dark ears. Ears are medium sized and pendant; the double coat is short and dense, ranging in colour from cream through all shades of fawn to grey. When alert the tail is carried in an open curl over the back, forming a circle. Must have size, stamina and speed. Dogs noticeably masculine, bitches feminine. 



Active breed used as a guarding dog for sheep and livestock; they guard the flock rather than herd. Capable of hard work and enduring extreme temperatures. 



This is not by nature an aggressive breed but it can be dominant and territorial. Steady and bold, naturally independent, very intelligent. Proud and confident, but can be aloof with strangers. Loyal to its master. 


Head and Skull

Skull large, broad and slightly rounded. Appears flat between the ears when alert. Slight furrow in forehead. Moderate stop. Ratio of skull:muzzle approximately 3:2. Mature males have broader heads than females. Slightly pendulous lips giving a square profile to the foreface. The muzzle tapers slightly towards the nose, which is large and black with wide, open nostrils. The face always has a characteristic dark mask covering the muzzle. The mask may extend beyond the eyes. 



Medium sized, almond to oval in shape. Tightly fitting eyelids showing no haw. Golden to brown in colour, harmonising with coat colour. Darker eyes preferred. Eye rims well pigmented. 



Medium sized, triangular in shape, rounded at tips. The ears are set slightly below the top of skull, pendant and carried flat to the cheeks, higher when alert. Ears should be darkly pigmented to complement the hallmark dark mask. 



Teeth are large and well placed with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to jaw. Level bite or reverse scissor bite is acceptable. Jaws strong. Lips black. 



Slightly arched, powerful, muscular, moderate in length, rather thick, slight dewlap permissible. 



Shoulders well muscled and sloping. Forelegs set well apart, straight and well boned, of good length, being 50-55% of the total height of the dog. Strong pasterns, slightly sloping when viewed from the side. Elbows close to sides. 



Chest deep to point of elbow, ribs well sprung. Body powerful, well muscled, never fat. Body slightly longer than height at withers = 10:9. Withers slightly prominent, with a very slight dip behind, rising to strong, slightly arched loins. Moderate tuck up. 



Powerful, lighter than forequarters; moderate turn of stifle with firm, strong hocks. 



Strong, round to oval, with well arched toes, back feet more elongated than front feet. Nails black or grey. The pads are well cushioned and strong. Hind dewclaws can be seen in some individuals. 



Long, reaching at least to hock. Set on rather high. The hair on the tail tends to be slightly longer than on the body, without feathering. When relaxed carried low with a slight curl. When alert carried high in an open, central curl over back, especially in males. It should never fall to either side of the hip. 



Relaxed, even gait, with impression of latent power, very supple movement. Noticeable straight line of head, neck and body, giving impression of stalking in some dogs. Great drive when viewed from side. As speed increases however, the legs converge to a central line and there is a tendency to single track. 



Short, dense and weatherproof with thick undercoat. Flat, close lying, neither fluffy nor wavy. Slightly longer and thicker at neck, shoulders and tail; no feathering on ears, legs or tail. 



The Kangal dog is a whole coloured dog, ranging from cream through fawn, to dun or steel grey, with characteristic dark or black mask and ears. Small amount of white on chest, toes and chin permissible, but not to be encouraged. Black or white tip to tail acceptable (no more than 5cm). Dark pigmentation preferred. Brindle undesirable. 



Height at shoulders:

Dogs 74-81 cms (29-32 ins)

Bitches 71-79 cms (28-31 ins). 



Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog and on the dog’s ability to perform its traditional work. 



Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.

Key differences between standards



Dogs 74-81 cms (29-32 ins)

Bitches 71-79 cms (28-31 ins). 



Height at the withers is 65-78 cm with +/- 2 cm tolerance

Colour (specifically presence of white)


Small amount of white on chest, toes and chin permissible, but not to be encouraged


White color is allowed only on the chest and the tip of the tail, 


Slight dewlap permissible


No dewlap

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