Illyrian Sheepdog

Breed Information

Breed Group: Not AKC Recognized
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Grooming Needs:
Exercise Needs:
Good With Dogs:
Watchdog Ability:
Commonly referred to as the Sarplaninac, this ancient livestock guardian originated in Yugoslavia. Until 1970 this breed could not be legally exported from their native country. They are not well known in the United States and are considered to be rare and difficult to obtain.
A medium-sized breed, the Illyrian Sheepdog displays extraordinary strength and makes a formidable opponent. They are well-built, muscular, agile, and fearless.
The Illyrian Sheepdog is not affectionate or loving and is not well-suited as a companion or family pet. Their main focus is their flock. They do not trust anyone: family, friend, or stranger. The Illyrian Sheepdog breed is overly protective of any animal on their property. For this reason dogs and other household pets are not recommended. They do well with older, considerate children, although children are generally not given any attention.
Illyrian Sheepdog's require regular brushing to remove dead hair and debris. Bathing should only be done when absolutely necessary. Due to the rarity of this breed there are no known health issues.
A double coat breed, the Illyrian Sheepdog has an outer coat that is long, straight, and rough in texture. The under coat is fine, short, and dense. The hair is longer and more profuse on the tail, breeches, back of legs, and neck.
The Illyrian Sheepdog is highly intelligent and very defiant. They are not meant to be socialized. Any training is futile with this independent breed as they do not respond to commands.
The Illyrian Sheepdog breed is not recommended for city or apartment living. The Illyrian Sheepdog does best in a rural setting on a working farm where it is able to protect livestock.
Male: 77-99; Female: 66-88 lbs
Male: 24; Female: 22.5 inches
Black, tan, white, gray. May be solid or a blending of the colors.
Grooming Needs:
Exercise Needs:
Good With Dogs:
Watchdog Ability:

Expected Budget: Buying vs. Owning in 2022

Learn what to expect when researching the price of Illyrian Sheepdog puppies.

How much do Illyrian Sheepdog puppies cost?

The cost to buy an Illyrian Sheepdog varies greatly and depends on many factors such as the breeders' location, reputation, litter size, lineage of the puppy, breed popularity (supply and demand), training, socialization efforts, breed lines and much more. Review how much Illyrian Sheepdog puppies for sale sell for below.

The current median price for all Illyrian Sheepdogs sold is $0.00. This is the price you can expect to budget for an Illyrian Sheepdog with papers but without breeding rights nor show quality. Expect to pay less for a puppy without papers, however, we do not recommend buying a puppy without papers.

Looking for a dog with a superior lineage? Are you trying to determine how much a puppy with breeding rights and papers would cost? You should expect to pay a premium for a puppy with breeding rights or even for a puppy advertised as show quality with papers. You should budget anywhere from $0 upwards to $0 or even more for an Illyrian Sheepdog with top breed lines and a superior pedigree. The average cost for all Illyrian Sheepdogs sold is $0.

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What can I expect to pay for a puppy?

Median Price: $0.00
Average Price: $0.00
Top Quality: $0.00 to $0.00

*Data sourced from the sale of 0 Illyrian Sheepdog puppies across the United States on

Annual cost of owning an Illyrian Sheepdog puppy

Before buying a puppy it is important to understand the associated costs of owning a dog. The annual cost or "upkeep" is often overlooked when determining an Illyrian Sheepdogs true ownership cost. When calculating your budget make sure you account for the price of food, vaccines, heartworm, deworming, flea control, vet bills, spay/neuter fees, grooming, dental care, food, training and supplies such as a collar, leash, crate, bed, bowls, bones, and toys. All of these items can add up quickly so make sure you estimate anywhere from $500 - $2,000 or more for the first year then about $500 - $1,000 or more every year thereafter to meet the annual financial obligations of your growing, loving dog.

Most Popular Illyrian Sheepdog Names for 2022

We've compiled the top 0 male and female names for 2017 after analyzing the sale of 0 Illyrian Sheepdog dogs.

Finding a Puppy

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Considering a Puppy?

  1. Choose the RIGHT Illyrian Sheepdog Breeder and the RIGHT breed
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  3. Get the full scoop on all the New Puppy Basics
  4. Happy Puppy = Happy Owner: Dog Training Commandments
  5. Why should you Spay or Neuter Your Dog?

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Breed Q & A

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Anonymous asked:
Do you think it will be good to keep a Illyrian Sheepdog puppy as a pet in England?

1 Comment


The Illyrian Sheepdog is a loyal, protective, powerful breed of livestock guardian origins. The weather in England varies and so it can be a bit of a concern, however, if you take precautions and make sure that your dog is well taken care of, then he/she should be fine. Making sure the dog is well groomed to allow for ventilation of the coat, allowing the dog inside when it is too hot or too cold out, and having fresh water and shade / shelter both inside and outside at all times. If those things are done, then the Illyrian Sheepdog should do just fine.

lyreje asked:
Can you keep an Illyrian Shepherd in warm Southern California weather? I know Illyrian Shepherd's are heavy coated large dogs and they come from mountainous regions and they are workhorses. I am wondering if 6 months of heat will negatively affect the disposition of this dog, on a generalized basis.

1 Comment


As long as the dog is allowed to be inside where there is A.C, then the dog should be fine.

Anonymous asked:
More Information regarding the breed. I'd like to let people know that the Illyrian Sheepdog won't respond to commands. It will follow you to the deepest forest, it will even put its life in front of yours, but it will not listen to you. They live in numbers and usually surround the target before they start barking, and that is an indication to tell you to walk away, amazingly they give you a second if not a third chance to think about your moves.

If faced in the wild, look for sheeps or any other animal that needs guardian dogs, if you see any, run. If it's alone, feel free to approach, the breed is very respectful and will even ignore you to express its harmless intentions in case if it senses fear. You can still find wild ones in the Sharr mountains, both on the Kosovo and Macedonian side.

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Anonymous asked:
Can I keep a Jack Russel and an Illyrian Sheepdog in the same yard?



Not really. The locales have surprised me when I heard that they sort of see it as half black bear, similar to Husky/Akita's Wolf ancestors story. They do not like indoor living, in fact, they love patrolling. I witnessed a group of 6 of them, but you could never see the 6th one since it was taking a turn in patrolling the area. If these indications don't convince you, two Illyrian sheep dogs can kill an adult female black bear, imagine the Jack Russel in that position!

Also, they tend to kill their bully family members, especially the Elders, their bark is the final word and there is huge respect for hierarchy. DO NOT expect feelings from them, they are ice cold. KFOR Nato troops reported seeing them living wildly in nature, but mysteriously they do not attack people if they are not "owned".


Illyrian Dog is originally from Kosovo, Albania. Kosovo was under Serbian occupation and all you know that Serbia was one country of the Yugoslavia and that's why this dog is called sometimes Yugoslavian Dog, but in reality he has nothing to do with Slavic country. This dog has exactly the same temperament as an Albanian. 1. Intelligent, 2.Honorable, 3. He never lets you down, even when he's going to die as well, 4. He is a strong dog, that he can kill 2 wolves at the same time, 5. He does not listen to you much 6. He never attacks first (if he's fighting with another dog). He is a native dog in Balkan, you easy can find him in Albania, Western Macedonia, Kosovo and Southern Serbia (Albanians Territory ).


To answer your question about keeping the two breeds together.... we have had no problem with our 6 Shar Mountain dogs along with two other smaller dogs at the same time even with the size differences the Jack Russell and a Wheaton Terrier mix. They all seemed to get along fine. The hierarchy got established soon in the relationship and for over 10 years there were no issues.

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Updated: 8/15/2022