Black Russian Terrier

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    History & Overview

    The Russian Black Terrier, better known as Russkiy Tchiorny Terrier, is a large dog breed originating in Russia. It was created by breeders of the Red Star state kennel shortly after WWII. It was intended to incorporate the best characteristics of several working dog breeds, such as the Giant Schnauzer, Rottweiler, Airedale Terrier, Newfoundland, Caucasian Ovcharka, Great Dane and Eastern European Shepherd.


    The breed’s character is very similar to that of the Giant Schnauzer. Brave and self-confident, he is never aggressive. In fact, in Russia, no Russian Black Terrier assault on man was ever registered.

    Excellent working qualities, natural guarding instincts, balanced temperament and friendliness to children have contributed to the ever-increasing popularity of this breed. The Russian Black Terrier must be socialized to people and animals from puppyhood. This breed needs a lot of space and exercise. He does not do well in a kennel.


    Tails are customarily docked. The coat is weatherproof with a dense undercoat. The ears, skull, cheeks, underside of tail, buttocks and rear of stifle are closely trimmed.

    At A Glance

    Other Names:

    Black Terrier (Tchiorny Terrier – official FCI name), Russkiy Tchiorny Terrier

    Country of Origin:



    Working/ Military Dogs


    FCI Classification: Pinscher and Schnauzer – Molossoid breeds – Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs and other breeds; without working trial
    AKC Classification: Working Group


    Large (26 – 30 inches at shoulders AKC standard, 25.0 – 28.1 inches at shoulders FCI standard)


    Black or black with grey hairs. Brown or grey shadings, small white spot on chest are considered faults.

    Litter Size:


    Life Span:

    12 – 15 years

    Grooming Requirements:

    As this dog molts slightly, it is essential that it receives regular grooming. At the minimum, the BRT requires brushing three times a week with a slicker brush to keep the coat mat-free. Comb thoroughly with wide-toothed comb. Regular trimming is obligatory. Ears need to be checked regularly. Eyes need to be cleaned on a daily basis to prevent infections. The underside of the paws should be free from knots.




    Very energetic, hardy, well-balanced, affectionate, loyal, with natural guarding instincts.

    Social skills:

    Gets on well with other animals.

    Suitability for Children:

    Friendly to children.

    Exercise Needs:

    High. He does need exercise, so a fenced yard or a long daily walk on a leash must be provided.

    Train Ability:

    Russian Black Terrier is very easily trained and is excellent in obedience training.

    Health & Behavioral Issues:

    The Russian Black Terrier is a very hardy breed which adapts easily to different climates. Responsible breeders will screen their dogs for these and some other inherited diseases. The breed has a tendency for:

    Video Credits: Animal Planet, Discovery Channel
    Image Credits: Degtyaryov Andrey/ Shutterstock


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