7 Things To Know Before Getting A Komondor Puppy
Did you know that the plural of Komondor is actually “Komondorok”? And that’s not even the most bizarre thing about this breed! Komondor dogs are a breed of contradictions. They are large and powerful but also fast and agile. They have the most absurd coat in the canine world but they don’t actually shed much. They are calm and quiet at home but need lots of outdoor exercise. So, is this the right breed for you? Let’s get into some specifics below.
What are the key characteristics that make Komondor dogs special?
Komondor dogs are a fantastic breed. These giant Hungarian guard dogs are very loving and gentle toward their families but they are also fierce and over-protective toward strangers.
Does this mean that they are not suited for family pets?
Not at all, Komondors can make excellent family pets as they get along with children very well. However, you should make sure that your Komondor is properly socialized and is taught not to bark at or be aggressive with strangers.
The next obvious note about these dogs is their coat and the extra care (mainly trimming) it obviously requires.
If all this sounds fun to you, you’re probably ready to get a Komondor. But before you make that decision, here are a few extra details.
The 7 things you should know before getting a Komondor
1. Komondors are quiet and calm indoors but really need lots of time outdoors
The first thing any dog owner needs to ask themselves before getting a dog is “Is this breed right for my home?” That’s because some dog breeds are more indoorsy and need very little outdoor time while others grow restless if they don’t spend at least half the day in the sun.
Where does the Komondor fall in this regard?
Somewhere in the middle. These guard dogs are calm enough indoors as long as there’s enough space. They are 25.5 - 27.5 inches tall (65 - 70 cm) and weigh around 80 - 100 lbs. (36 - 45 kg) so they are not exactly Chihuahuas. Komondors also don’t mind sleeping through the day right next to you.
However, these dogs do need lots of outdoor time too!
What does this mean?
A good amount of daily outdoor time will include:
- Two long walks every day
- One extended visit to the dog park
- At least a few hours in a large and well-fenced yard
So, as you can see, while the Komondor feels fine at home, this is not an apartment dog breed!
On the bright side, because the Komondor is a guard breed and not a hunting dog, they don’t really need to visit new parks every week – just every once in a while is enough.
2. This breed is playful and energetic as puppies and grows up into dignified and self-reliant adults
The Komondor is surprisingly playful for such a large breed. That’s especially the case when they are still young – Komondor puppies can be very energetic and playful, perfect for families with kids!
When Komondor dogs grow into adulthood their character tends to settle a little bit and they become much more self-reliant and calm. They still like to play, however, so don’t worry about being ignored!
3. Komondors need a lot of socialization and anti-bark training
As a guard breed, the Komondor is naturally distrustful toward strangers, whether they are humans or other animals. That’s what the Komondor has been bred for over the years after all.
If you want a Komondor family pet, however, you’d do well to socialize it early on. Doggy socialization is fairly easy to do but many people skip it anyway. All it includes is just introducing your young Komondor pup to new people and new animals every day. This should be done both at home and outdoors and you should make sure that these interactions are positive for your pup.
The goal of this exercise is to teach your Komondor that strangers are OK and don’t need to be barked or snarled at. Even if you do that, a Komondor won’t be as friendly to strangers as other dog breeds are but that’s to be expected – it’s a guard breed after all.
Training your Komondor to not bark is also crucial. This is a part of their guard dog nature as well and it’s important to train it out of the Komondor early on,
4. These dogs love their human pack members deeply and selflessly, including kids and babies
The positive side of guard dogs like the Komondor is that they love their humans more than anything else. It’s literally in their genes to do everything for their people and to always make sure we are safe and happy.
How great is that!
What’s awesome is that this also includes kids – Komondors are a very good breed for families with small children or even toddlers. Granted, some “baby training” is required, as is the case with any other breed, but that’s normal. A properly trained Komondor will be the near-perfect companion for your child growing up.
As a side note – do be careful when your kid has playdates with other kids and your Komondor is around. This breed’s guard dog nature can trigger around strangers, as we said, and this includes strangers’ children. This is another reason why it’s crucial that your Komondor receives proper socialization and training.
5. The Komondor is surprisingly agile and quick on his feet
Komondors may look like giant and immovable piles of wool but they are actually surprisingly springy and agile dogs. They like jumping around and chasing stuff, and they are incredibly fast to react when startled or excited about something.
This is one of the reasons why you need to have a spacious home if you are to get a Komondor. These dogs are both big and springy so you can’t expect them to just always walk around slowly and carefully as their demeanor suggests they would.
6. Komondors need A LOT of grooming!
The first thing everyone notices about the Komondor is their coat. These dogs have one of the most unique coats of all dog breeds and this is as much a reason to love them as it is to be wary before getting a Komondor.
Have you ever seen a Komondor swim? It’s one of the most hilarious and yet mesmerizing sights you’ll ever see!
This does mean that you’ll have to take good care of your Komondor’s coat, however. Here are a few base tips:
Don’t brush or comb your Komondor’s hair – it’s corded so trying to brush is pointless.
Trim your Komondor’s coat instead. This will make your dog’s life (and cleaning your home) much easier.
Trim your dog’s hair as short as you want. You can effectively trim it extra short at which point your Komondor won’t even look like a Komondor anymore. If you live in an especially warm climate, this is usually a good idea.
Regular baths are necessary but come with a very long drying time.
Trim and clean your Komondor’s hair around the ears to prevent infections. Trim the fur between the paw pads as well. These two are a must even if you don’t want to trim the rest of your Komondor’s hair too short.
Clip your dog’s nails and pay attention to its dental needs. Brushing a dog’s teeth sounds funny to some people but it’s often a necessary part of grooming.
All this sounds tiresome and it certainly can be. You should only get a Komondor if you’re ready and willing (and you’ll enjoy) to give the dog all the necessary grooming care.
On the bright side, Komondor dogs don’t shed too much and are generally recommended for people with mild allergies. Who would’ve guessed?
7. This breed is relatively healthy but there are a few things to watch out for
The Komondor breed falls somewhere in the middle when it comes to their health – they are not too sickly but are not as healthy as some other breeds either.
What does this mean for you?
Overall, it means that if you take good care of your dog, perform regular and adequate grooming, feed him well, give him enough exercise, monitor the dog’s health well, and go to routine vet checkups, you should end up with a healthy and happy Komondor.
Naturally, it’s always important that you get a healthy puppy from a reputable breeder and with a health certificate too.
If you miss out on some of those steps, however, or if you (and your dog) are unlucky, some of the problems you may face include:
- Hip dysplasia
- Juvenile cataracts
- External parasites (due to improper grooming)
- Entropion (eyelid problems)
- Sensitivity to anesthesia and certain tick or flea medications (another reason to perform excellent grooming)
- Remember to consult with your veterinarian about these issues ahead of time and to take the necessary precautions and preventive measures.
Who are Komondor dogs “right” for?
Due to their protective nature, their need for at least a moderate amount of exercise and outdoor time, and their inclination to barking, Komondors are best-suited for life away from the city. If you do want to raise a Komondor in an apartment you’d better make sure that it’s a really spacious apartment, that you teach the dog not to bark, and that you give it enough outdoor time every day.
Aside from that, “the right” Komondor owners must really enjoy grooming their dogs too for obvious reasons.
How to prepare for getting a Komondor?
If you have the right home for a Komondor (spacious indoors with a fenced yard), the rest is a matter of getting ready to take care of the dog. Make sure that you learn how to:
- Socialize your Komondor puppy
- Train your dog not to bark
- Groom your Komondor’s absurd coat regularly
If you’re ready and willing to do those things, you’re ready for a Komondor!