Taigan Dog Breed


 In the dog57 breed registry, we will show you a unique breed of Taigan Dog (Kyrgyz grayhound) and talk about their origins, personality, and physical characteristics as well as their training and the most common diseases they usually come from. You'll find all about the Taigan (Kyrgyz grayhound) breed below. Read on.

In Kyrgyzstan, a unique breed of hunting dogs has been preserved - Taigan or Kyrgyz dogs. So far, only a few hundred have survived. A rare breed of hunting dog that originated in ancient times in the remote area of central Tian Shan, has become rare due to the change in the traditional way of life of the nomads in the twentieth century.

Meanwhile, the Taigan is an amazing animal, a real relic of history - in its nature and behavior, it has brought to our days the primitive atmosphere of the life of mountain nomads, who called their four-legged companion for its intended purpose.

In the Kyrgyz language, the word taigan literally means "catch up, kill". The well-being and survival of people in the harsh conditions of the highlands of Central Asia will one day depend on how effective the dog is in carrying out this command.

origins of Taigan dog

Enthusiasts for the development of the national hunting species of Kyrgyzstan recently established several nurseries on the southern shore of Lake Issyk-Kul, in the region of the Teskey-Alatoo mountain range, for the breeding of purebred taigans, endowed with such natural qualities as large game hunters and feral wolf exterminators.

"It has been scientifically proven that the ancient breed and originality that is externally similar to Afghan hounds, hounds and other common hunting dogs of Central Asia, has been scientifically proven." - During the excavations of the mounds in the Issyk-Ata Gorge in the upper reaches of the Chu River, dating back about 2000 years, skeletons of dogs were found near the burial places of people, similar in structure to the taigans.

In the heroic epic of the Kyrgyz people "Manas," this breed is mentioned more than once. For example, in the episode where the legendary hero goes to Andijan to choose a bride for himself, he finds a true friend and companion - a grayhound named Komayk, whose name has become a traditional name for the black tigan, symbolizing hunting skills and courage .

Black tigan dogs - a symbol of hunting skill and courage

The popular legend about this name is as follows. Once upon a time, a group of wolves did not give life to pets and people in a distant mountain village. Predators slaughtered livestock and even attacked children. During the next daring raid, the local hunter killed the leader, but the veteran wolf with cubs hid in the mountains and began to take revenge on the perpetrators with even greater cruelty.

Moreover, the dogs could not protect their owners, because the cunning beast, creeping up at night, kills puppies, and adult dogs were afraid even to smell their tracks. The hunter tamed the golden eagle, hoping to track down the beast and kill it with his help. However, in a fight with a wolf, the golden eagle also died.

Then the hunter climbed to the tops of the icebergs to take from the nest a chick from the Kumai bird - this is what the Kyrgyz called a very large snow eagle from ancient times. But the carrion eagle is cowardly by nature, despite its size and frightening appearance. In order to breed a bold bird from a chick, the hunter used his breeding methods, which were used to breed the most courageous and fierce dogs, wolf dogs.

He built a large lair without windows, where he did not allow anyone to look, not even the sun, and he himself rarely went to feed the hungry eagle with raw meat.

And after some time, from the darkness of this lair, instead of the shriek of a bird of prey, a ferocious howling of a dog was heard, which had grown so strong, smart, and impregnable that he did not even need to fight the enemy. Having once crept into the hunter's dwelling to kill the pup, the wolf, as soon as she met his eyes, felt mortal danger and left these places forever, taking the whole herd with her.

The happy owner gave the dog the name Kumayik, in honor of its origin from the Kumai snow eagle. And the dog fully lived up to his title, later earned a lot of different toys, killing hundreds of wolves. At the same time, only one puppy was born in his offspring. Since then, the Kyrgyz is called a lone puppy in a litter of Taigan Kumayik, and the dog especially skilled in hunting is called Kara-Kush - Black Bird.

An intelligent breed, the Taigan generally responds well to training - especially positive reinforcement training. This breed is naturally strong-willed and independent but can also become obedient when treated with respect. This is not the type of dog that will tolerate Alpha Dog training. The Taigan can be used as a guard or guard dog and can also be trained to hunt.

The Taigan is large, standing at 23 to 27 inches tall and weighing anywhere from 55 to 73 pounds at maturity. Males of the breed tend to be larger than females.

The Taigan is a gentle and mild-mannered breed that will not intentionally harm anyone, but they do not tolerate rough or disrespectful handling. This breed is intelligent and independent, although it can form strong bonds with the family. This dog generally gets along with other dogs but may hunt cats and small household pets. Taigan prefers older children, although some do well with children of all ages. Early socialization may help Taigans get along with cats and other pets.

Common health problems

Taigan is fairly healthy by nature, although it is prone to some health problems. Some of the health problems most likely to affect this breed include hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, cancer, skin allergies, and food allergies. As a deep-chested breed, the Taigan may also be prone to bloating, and as a hunting dog, it may also be prone to muscle injuries.

life expectancy

The average age of Taegan is between 11 and 13 years.

exercise requirements

The Taigan has excellent stamina which is part of what makes it such a great hunting breed. These dogs need a great deal of daily exercise and will develop destructive tendencies if their exercise needs are not met. In addition to a long daily walk, Taigan will appreciate having time and space to run in a fenced yard or an open outdoor area.

An intelligent breed, the Taigan generally responds well to training.

Recognized clubs

The Taigan is not currently recognized by the AKC, nor by any other major breed clubs.


Similar in appearance to other hunting crowns, it has a slender build and a narrow head. This breed has a long, smooth, and thick coat that develops a smooth undercoat during the winter. Taigan comes in a wide range of colors including black, white, gray, yellow, and brown, often with mixed white markings.


The average litter size of a Taigan is likely to be similar to other hounds, around 6 to 8 puppies. Since the Taigan has a slightly independent nature, early socialization and training for dogs are highly recommended. Taigans tend to grow quickly but you should make an effort to control their growth so that they do not develop musculoskeletal problems later in life. It is recommended that you feed your Taigan puppy a large breed puppy formula until he is approximately his adult length, then switch to a large adult breed or working breed puppy formula.

Exceptional abilities of the Taijan Dynasty

In the old days, a good dog was highly regarded among the Kyrgyz. Sometimes a whole herd of cattle was given to one puppy relatives, even in addition to slaves, it was also given as a precious gift to the closest relatives and dear friends. This is not surprising. The dog was an indispensable friend and helper in the difficult conditions of nomadic life, which, by virtue of its origin, is the best to adapt to.

Firstly, Taigan is not afraid of cold, it even tolerates very severe frosts, which last up to six months in the heights of central Tian Shan. Secondly, he himself is able to get his own food, and sometimes he flees from the yurt into the mountains during the day to hunt badgers or meadow rabbits - tolai. At night, Taigan vigilantly guards the human dwelling or the belongings of the sleeping traveler - his horse, cart, and luggage.

At the same time, Taigan, although it will make noise, will wake up the owner, will never bite a stranger. He will grow frighteningly and bark in a deafening voice, but do not rush strangers, who may just be a guest - sacred according to the laws of the Bedouins.

This, however, does not mean at all that you can not be afraid of Taegan. He is accustomed from childhood to the fact that only one person dares to feed and touch him, he will severely punish anyone who crosses the forbidden line and reaches out to him. This property, which must be educated, also protects the precious dog itself from theft.

But the main thing is hunting. A popular Kyrgyz proverb says: “Taigan is running, and blood is flowing from the ears”: this is what they say when someone is in a hurry. Indeed, in the quick pursuit of the game, the grayhound sometimes tears its long ears in blood, touching them with its hind legs. In the high-speed Taigan race over the rugged mountain terrain, an impressive ability to turn almost at a sharp angle in flight without loss of speed is demonstrated, as well as exceptional endurance for long hours of chasing prey.

Even on the way to hunting grounds, the taigans operate independently while in favorable positions for viewing the territory, from time to time rising to natural heights for better visibility, or jumping high running, like an antelope. In the flat areas of the Sirte - high mountain plateaus - he periodically jumps on the horse's saddle in front or behind the hunter, looking for prey. Once he sees the beast, he makes his own decision and sets off on the hunt, which won't stop until it chases the prey or the hunter kills it.

Unlike their counterparts - European and Asian gray hounds - the Taigan can begin to chase the game, not only seeing it with his own eyes but also barely catching the scent with his subtle instincts. Sensing the trail, he first walked along with it in a quick trot, and, having lifted the beast out of the bed and seeing it, rushed into the erotica.

The Taigan is especially skilled when hunting mountain goats, which live in steep rocks on the border of eternal snows and alpine meadows, at an altitude of more than three thousand meters above sea level. In the warm season, lactating females with goats go down to the edge of mountain meadows to pick greens from the bush. In this place, taigans can outsmart ungulates with a lightning-fast throw, grabbing them by the thigh or tightening their throat. But if the goats can escape from a sudden attack or high-speed chase by climbing enormous heights, the dog will try to keep them in place, quickly maneuvering around and cutting off escape routes. At the same time, it will bark and distract the prey with constant movements, which will allow a person to calmly approach the prey at a distance of a shotgun or even much closer.

In the high mountains of the Taigan, you can hunt not only on horseback, but also on foot, because the speed, skill, and ingenuity of the four-legged partner allow the hunter to allow him to carry out independent searches with a long margin . In Alatoo, it is not uncommon for a shepherd, having heard the charming bark of his crowns from a distance, to take a revolver and, running to the sound, slay a goat driven to a dead-end by a bullet.

In traditional hunting with birds of prey, the taigan can work in tandem with the golden eagle, although predators, dogs, and eagles compete with each other, and in nature, they can even engage in mortal combat with each other. But they were brought up by skilled broccoli and began to work hand in hand with death. With meandering and desperate jumps, the elusive fox often manages to escape the blows of the claws of the golden eagle. But, feeling the pursuit of the tigan, she already forgot to look for it and became easy prey.

The old natural enemy of Taigan

Taigan's oldest purpose is to be a wolf-dog. At first glance at this small and very gracefully built dog, it is rather difficult to believe that he could withstand a fight with such a dangerous opponent. In the Alatoo Mountains, adult wolves sometimes weigh up to seventy kilograms and are almost a meter in length at the withers.

But nevertheless, the amazing Kyrgyz grayhound, of course, is not all, but the best of them, able to cope with gray predators. The most courageous and strong Kara Kush owners can hunt a wolf on their own, although a well-coordinated pair of dogs is used for wolf hunting.

Taigan's technique when fighting a wolf consists in exceptional speed and resourcefulness, which allows attacking the most vulnerable areas of the wolf - with instant bites from sharp fangs to tear the tendons on his hind legs, after which the predator remains formidable, but has lost the ability to retaliate, holding until the arrival of the hunter.

True, these skills, on which the well-being of the nomadic herds of Central Tian Shan depended, today require the serious efforts of enthusiasts to revive them. During the years of Soviet power, wolves, as pests of socialist animal husbandry, were almost completely exterminated in the Central Asian republics, from which the taigans lost their former value in the everyday life of Kyrgyzstan, turning into an unnecessary decoration.

When predators were wiped out everywhere with the help of poisoned baits, traps, and crowded raids, it became fundamentally unimportant to the shepherds what kind of dogs lived next to their tents.

The long-term absence of purposeful selection put the breed on the brink of extinction. Crown animals that survived in remote and isolated corners of the Alatoo began to deteriorate from random or closely related crossing, and some of the purebred breeds kept by amateurs in urban conditions became decorative.

In the new conditions that have developed over the past decade, the revival of the initial qualities and purpose of the Taigan has gained convincing and active supporters.

 in many regions of Kyrgyzstan, shepherds generally ceased to believe in the power of crowns, and that he could indeed run a wolf. Therefore, in order to develop the national hunting species, I had to puzzle myself not only with the Kyrgyz gray hound breed but, above all, by restoring their legendary performance characteristics.

- At the last hound festival, we tested the coyote in wolf hunting. Many city dogs, who previously received more than one award for their outward appearance, were afraid even to approach a gray predator. Of the seventy dogs, only seven-eight of them were real hunters - said the psychologist. Meanwhile, the old enemy of the shepherds in Alatau was gaining strength.

Due to the high cost of cartridges and the absence of an official order to shoot, the activity of predators has increased sharply over the past decade, which began to bring problems not only to the economy but also to wildlife. Jackals and foxes reared without measure, destroying the nests of rare birds.

Insolent wolves with almost impunity attack ponies in herds that graze in remote prisons, and in nature reserves cause harm to sheep and mountain sheep populations, exterminating their young. According to many experts, regulating the number of wolves, which has almost doubled since the beginning of the 1990s, can only be regulated by the development of traditional hunting species.

As a child, sitting by the fireplace in my parents' house, I spent hours listening to adults' stories about the romantic story of hunting and the legendary bravery of the tigans. My dream is to return to Alatoo, the traditional national hunting of nomads, our ancestors - without firearms, but with birds of prey and dogs, perhaps even with bows and spears.

Recently, a demonstration of vaccination of a wolf with tigans was carried out, which clearly proves to quarrelsome farmers that the ancient breed has not lost its original properties. Fortunately, organizations like Greenpeace do not interfere with the implementation of my plans in Kyrgyzstan. Bedouins and wolves are natural enemies, and no one will stop us from hunting wolves in order to protect the herds that are the basis of the well-being of our families.


Since 1994, the Kyrgyz government has banned the export of Taigan outside the country by a special decree. It is also prohibited to abuse purebred Kyrgyz gray hounds and cross them with other dog breeds.

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