The Canaan dog breed is a medium-sized dog bred in what is now modern Israel to be a watchdog and herder. They are known for being loyal to their owners and very smart. They are well alert dogs and are cautious around unfamiliar people and animals. Once one trusts you, they show their better qualities as affectionate and playful dogs.
The Canaan dog breed is known for being fairly energetic, but usually using that energy intelligently. Even with that energy, they are calm and precise in their actions. This is expressed in their athletic and agile movements. The breed’s more natural energy creates a canine companion that keeps your company and is not a nuisance at the same time. Like most dogs, they are happiest when they work off excess energy through exercise or play.
All dogs are bound to face some sort of health issues during their lifetime. That’s why it is important to be aware of them, as some breeds are more prone to certain health problems than others. Altogether, however, the Canaan dog is a relatively healthy breed.
All owners should be able to provide the necessary healthcare for their dog. While not all Canaan dogs are bound to be affected by any of these health issues, it’s important to know the risks when buying the breed.
The Canaan Dog is light-footed and can turn on a dime, making him a natural for agility classes where dogs must race nimbly over a canine obstacle course. However, this assumes that you have the skills to train him! Canaan Dogs are independent thinkers who resist repetitious training, which they find boring. Motivate them with variation, praise, and occasionally food.
Canaan Dogs come from pariah dogs, which were feral (half-wild) dogs who hung around Middle Eastern villages. So they are a somewhat "primitive" breed with strong survival instincts. As such, they are keenly alert and will sound the alarm at every strange sight or sound. This makes them a great watchdog. But not a guard dog – rather, they will retreat and observe from a safe distance. You must do extensive socialization with a Canaan Dog puppy so that his natural caution doesn't morph into extreme suspiciousness or fearfulness.
The Canaan's dense undercoat allows him to spend time outdoors in all kinds of weather, but when his people are home, he should be a housedog. He requires a securely fenced yard to protect him from traffic and from altercations with other dogs. With a consistent schedule, he's easy to housetrain. Canaans love to dig and can make quite large excavations in a short period if left to their own devices. Provide them with a digging area they can call their own or redirect the digging tendency with other activities. The Canaan doesn't require extensive exercise. He's usually satisfied with a couple of short walks a day or a walk plus some vigorous playtime in the backyard.
Purebred pups can be sourced through the Canaan Dog Club and Kennel club. There are not a lot of Canaan breeders in the US. Expect for the price not to be so nice when you pay for your pup. The prices of a Canaan vary according to gender, location and breeder reputability.
I am in Canaan Dogs, so you'll be happy to know that "energy conservationist " is an apt description for the breed. They are equally happy to get up and go or chill on the sofa. They have their own issues -- poor temperament is widespread in the breed. Pick your breeder very carefully. They are also incorrigible barkers. If a stray air molecule wafts by, you'll know about it. They shed like the dickens. Also, as a breed on the brink of extinction, the gene pool is about as deep as a sidewalk puddle. They get marketed as a healthy breed, but it's not true. Thyroid and epilepsy are prevalent in several lines. If your breeder can't (or doesn't) disclose to you health issues he or she has experienced with her own dogs, keep looking. Demand CHIC numbers. All that said, they are unique dogs and I wouldn't replace mine for the world. :)
I know this was posted two months ago but I thought I'd respond. I have a canaan who is 4 years old. He's never had any health issues. He DOES need a fair amount of exercise so in the winter he gets a bit bored and chases the cats. Usually I just solve that by taking him on my errands with me. But in the summer it's never an issue since we go out a lot. He DOES bark a lot. Great for home defense, bad for being super annoying. You want to choose a breeder carefully and make sure that as a pup the dog had LOTS of interaction and socialization. Otherwise he will likely develop neophobia and you'll battle that for years.
All that said, I LOVE my Canaan. He's friendly, sweet and affectionate. And SUPER smart. You could never regret a Canaan dog.
I seriously considered getting a Canaan when I was looking at breeds. They are an AKC breed and as such probably won't go extinct although they are on the very bottom of registration stats. Their described temperament was a bit of a deterrent. I hope that the gene pool is renewed!
Canaan dogs are territorial and can be aggressive with other dogs. You need to socialize them early and very thoroughly. The're wonderful watchdogs and very protective of their people. Being a cuddle buddy is pretty much up to the individual dog. Good luck!
The Canaan Dog should do well on a high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared with your veterinarian’s supervision and approval. Any diet should be appropriate to the dog’s age (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treats can be an important aid in training, but giving too many can cause obesity. Learn about which human foods are safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.
Canaan Dogs are distinguished by their intense expressions and intelligence. It's no accident that this driven and focused dog was the first to locate landmines by scent. Some Canaan Dogs also do therapy dog and search-and-rescue work.