Country/Date of Origin: Hungary/1200s
The Kuvasz and the Komondor, the two large white sheep dogs of Hungary, were first used by the nomadic Magyars to protect their herds from thieves and wild animals. While the Komondor is unique, breeds related to the Kuvasz can be found all over the world. In all these breeds the color of the dogs is either yellowish white or cream. This enabled the shepherd to tell his guard dogs from the wolves, which were darker in color. It is difficult, even for experienced dog people to tell the Hungarian Kuvasz from the Italian Maremma and the Polish Owczarek Podhalanski at a glance.
The white herd guardian is both strong and agile, as befits a dog designed to kill wolves. The various strains of the working dogs, which were passed from father to son and rarely left the villages where they were born, were registered beginning in 1905. At first the breed underwent a surge in popularity but it barely managed to survive the storm of World War II. Dedicated dog lovers searched the country for the few surviving Kuvasz and started breeding efforts again in the late 1940s. In 1960 a standard was finally drawn up and it was accepted by the FCI in 1963.