Bakharwal Dog Breed Information – All You Need To Know

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The Bakharwal is a majestic guardian dog of livestock and settlements, native to northern India. These serious dogs have a virtually ancient origin as a working breed in the Himalayas. With wise eyes and a fluffy, dense coat, the Bakharwals are fiercely loyal and courageous dogs! 

To complement their intense temperament as guardians is their calm, relaxed demeanor around humans. Bakharwals can be endearing companions like none other- whether you want to go swimming, trekking, or play football!

Are you curious about this one-of-a-kind breed? You will find all your answers below!

Bakharwal History

Bakharwal Dog Breed Information All You Need To KnowPeople often fondly call the Bakharwal “Kashmir’s Knight in Furry Armor.” The nomadic Bakharwal and Gujjar tribes of Jammu & Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh in India are their traditional breeders. The Bakharwals most likely descend from ancient Asian Molosser breeds.

Some scholars speculate that the Bakharwal is a cross between the Tibetan Mastiff and the Indian Pariah Dog. Others believe the breed to be the oldest Indian breed, thriving among tribes for centuries.

Bakharwal Characteristics

Bakharwals are almost an unrecognized breed outside of India. They are gentle yet passionate, often ready to tackle predators that are relatively larger than them. You could say that the Bakharwals are a low-maintenance breed, not demanding much besides plenty of affection and support! 

How Big Do Bakharwals Get

Bakharwals are typically medium to large. They have heavy bones, deep chests, and a whole lot of muscle. Bakharwals, regardless of their gender, usually weigh between 85-130 lbs and grow as tall as 24-30 inches.

How Long Does the Bakharwal Live

Like a typical canine, the Bakharwal also has an average life expectancy of about 10 to 12 years. These guardians are hardy and healthy dogs in general when in their natural environment. A Bakharwal female usually gives birth to just a single litter with two to three puppies each year- so this breed is rare.

How Much Does a Bakharwal Cost

It isn’t easy to find Bakharwals outside of India- and they don’t prefer living anywhere besides their original habitat! However, the cost of a Bakharwal can range from $850 to $1400, depending on where you get the puppy.

Bakharwal Temperament/Personality

There has been a lot of stress on the seriousness and intensity of the Bakhwaral so far, but don’t let it mislead you! These canines are indeed fierce, strong-minded, and courageous. On the opposite side of the coin, they are charming and cuddly with their family!

When it comes to their duties, Bakharwals are aggressive and ferocious. They are ever-ready to take on all kinds of roles, from watchdogs to herders to attackers. Bakharwals are excellent with those they consider family, regardless of age. They are affectionate with children, though you may need to be careful due to their size and weight.

They are not too tolerant of strangers and other animals due to their inherent qualities. These canines are ferociously territorial- a trait that makes them wary of other dogs outside of their “herd.” They can be dangerously aggressive in this context.

Bakharwals are incredibly independent dogs with excellent decision-making skills and perception. They don’t mind staying on their own and do not risk developing separation anxiety. It also makes these dogs slightly challenging to train- they are likely to get bored quickly if you subject them to repetitive commands.

These furry knights are nomadic dogs, so traveling should not be a problem. However, Bakharwals’ travel inclinations and are restricted to their natural, cold Himalayan conditions. If they are outside of them, they may develop diseases or depression.

Bakharwals are not lap-dogs that will be satisfied staying indoors as mere family companions, so they need to have a sense of duty to feel happy.

Caring for Bakharwals

The self-sufficient nature of Bakharwals makes caring for them relatively simple. As long as you understand a few fundamentals of their care, you will be good to go!

Bakharwal Nutrition

Bakharwals are unique, but one characteristic that may surprise you beyond others is their vegetarian nature! They thrive on vegetables, Indian flatbreads, and dairy products- remember to avoid garlic, onion, chili, and tomato. Bakharwals have an immense food intake, requiring a diet plan with 50% carbs, 30% protein, 5% fibers, and the remaining vitamins and minerals.

How to Groom a Bakharwal

While otherwise easy to care for, the grooming needs of Bakhwarals are extensive. They have super dense double-layer coats with straight, medium-length fur, susceptible to matting and knotting in addition to deposits. You must brush your dog thoroughly twice or thrice weekly and bathe the canine only a few times each year. Take extra care of the eyes, teeth, ears, and nails.

Bakharwal Activity Levels

These canines are lively and energetic, requiring plenty of exercise and movement. They have a lot of stamina and excellent problem-solving skills due to their nomadic nature, so you must ensure that the canine uses them. Their activity levels must remain high, with long walks each day- preferably a minimum of 16 miles every week. Stimulating activities for an hour each day is necessary.

Caring for Bakharwals

These relaxed, alert dogs may not demand too much care besides grooming; you must give them proper time and affection. Bakharwals are intelligent, so they need mental stimulation also. The personality of these dogs calls for trainers and commanders who are patient, determined, and assertive.

Bakharwal Health

Bakharwals are generally hardy dogs with a naturally healthy mind as well as body. A few health issues that could affect a Bakharwal include Canine Hip Dysplasia, Gastric Dilatation Volvulus, Obesity, and Cryptorchidism. Routine appointments with the vet are essential to keep track of your dog’s health and avoid these issues.

Vaccinations are critical, and so is deworming. In addition to these, note that the health of a Bakharwal relies upon the habitat and living conditions too. These dogs are not supposed to live in hot regions.

Breeds Similar to Bakharwals


Best Dog Food For Bakharwal

Taste Of The Wild Pacific Stream Grain Free Dry Dog Food

The Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Grain-free Dry Dog Food is the best available dog food for the Bakharwal. The product provides a properly balanced diet for the breed to help nourish the body and mind. The food contains essential proteins, real smoked salmon, peas, and sweet potatoes that are easily digestible and provides energy; it has added antioxidants with minerals and vitamins for the Bakharwal’s healthy growth.

  • The product contains omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat.
  • The food is made from real and organic fruits and vegetables. 
  • The product has no added preservatives, soy, corn. No added color or flavor.

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Best Puppy Food For Bakharwal

Purina Pro Plan Puppy Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula With Probiotics Dry Dog Food

The Purina Pro Plan Puppy Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula with Probiotics Dry Dog Food is the best puppy food available for the Bakharwal pup. The product contains real chicken, fats, and carbohydrates to help build muscles and gain energy and also contains DHA from omega-rich fish oil to help your Bakharwal’s brain and vision development. The product is highly digestible.

  • The food contains calcium, phosphorus to help build strong bones and teeth.
  • It also contains antioxidants to help develop a good immunity system.
  • No added preservatives, corn, soy. 

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Best Dog Crate For Bakharwal

Midwest Ultima Pro Double Door Collapsible Wire Dog Crate

The MidWest Ultima Pro Double Door Collapsible Wire Dog Crate is the best available dog crate available for the Bakharwal. The crate comes in multiple sizes and is easy to set up. The crate is made up of a sturdy steel frame, has a water-resistant base; also, it is lightweight and features a carrying handle so that it can be taken around.

  • The crate can be set up really easy. No tools are required.
  • The crate features rubber feet for protecting the floor.
  • Side and front door access with bolt latches.

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Best Dog Bed For Bakharwal

BarksBar Snuggly Sleeper Orthopedic Bolster Dog Bed w/Removable Cover

The BarksBar Snuggly Sleeper Orthopedic Bolster Dog Bed w/Removable Cover is the best dog bed for the Bakharwal. The bed comes in 3 standard sizes-small, medium and large, and it is made up of durable orthopedic memory – foam. The bed features a rim which is cotton-padded to help support the dog’s neck.

  • The bed is luxuriously soft and machine washable. 
  • It is an ultimately comfortable and durable bed for your pet.
  • The bed features a non slip rubber backing on the bottom to prevent slip or slide.

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Best Dog Harness for Bakharwal

Petsafe 3 In 1 Reflective Dog Harness

The PetSafe 3 in 1 Reflective Dog Harness is the best available harness for the Bakharwal as the harness comes in 3 standard sizes and colors. The harness is comfortable, durable, adjustable, and safe for everyday use. The harness has different leash attachment options – standard back clip, the no-pull solution with the front clip, and the car safety, helping you to monitor and control the dog’s movements.

  • The harness features 5 adjustable points for comfort and security.
  • It also features reflective nylon stitching that adds visibility in the dark.
  • Neoprene-lined strap padding for added comfort.

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