This hardy breed is always eager to please and is very obedient and loyal when trained well. It excels in agility and is known for its stamina.
The Cão da Serra de Aires breed was established around a hundred years ago as a guard dog in the southern plains of Portugal. It is believed to be descended from the Briards that were introduced to the country by Count de Castro Guimaraes and then breed with Portuguese mountain dogs. Up until the 1970s the main function of the Cão da Serra de Aires was as a companion to Portuguese shepherds. However, by 1975 it was almost extinct and was preserved by dedicated breeders who valued the Cão da Serra de Aires for its impressive coat and stamina. These days the Cão da Serra de Aires is highly valued as both a show dog and a working dog, while it also has a prominent place in many families due to its loyal and loving nature.
The Cão da Serra de Aires features a long coat that is either completely smooth or has a slight wave. There is no undercoat and the coat colours are typically yellow-red chestnut, fawn, black or gray. White patches may be present on the chest, although not on the rest of the coat. The breed has long forelimbs and round, dark eyes that give it a gentle expression. The ears of the Cão da Serra de Aires are moderate in size and hang all the way down to the sides of the cheeks. The legs are particularly long, while the chest is deep. The head is wide and sturdy complete with a prominent nose an d strong teeth and jaws. The Cão da Serra de Aires also features a pointed tail that reaches to its hocks.
Associated Health Problems
This breed is extremely hardy and does not suffer from the health problems that plague many similar breeds.
Despite being very devoted and intelligent, the Cão da Serra de Aires tends to be high spirited and needs a firm hand to keep it from running wild. However, it is eager to please and hard working. The Cão da Serra de Aires forms strong bonds with its owner and once trained is very obedient. Training this breed can be a bit of a challenge and must be done thoroughly to avoid problems in the future. The Cão da Serra de Aires mixes well with other dogs and children, although its territorial nature means that other dogs and strangers should be introduced carefully.
This breed is fairly calm indoors as long as it gets plenty of exercise and care. However, it prefers to live outside and should be given plenty of space to run around during the day. Although the breed can live inside for short periods of time, it is not suitable for apartment life and tends to become listless if kept inside for too long.
Exercise and Care
The feet of the Cão da Serra de Aires are adaptable to rough terrain and the breed loves long walks in the countryside. The Cão da Serra de Aires has a lot of stamina and takes to agility training well. The coat of this breed should be checked regularly for tangles and excess hair growing between the pads on the feet should be trimmed regularly. Do not brush or shampoo the hair too often, or it will lose its appealing rough look and lustre.
Life expectancy: 12-13 years
Recognition: CKC, NKC, APRI, FCI, ACR, DRA, ACA, AKC/FSS