Hovawart Dog breed – Characteristics & Temperament

These dogs, of Germanic origin, stand out for their corpulence and protective and participative temperament. As good farm guardians, they need to feel part of the team and carry out the mission entrusted to them. In fact, in the old days they were called Hofwart, meaning ‘guardian of the farmyard’, a task they tackled with great efficiency.

Despite their large size, Hovawts are very sweet pets, especially with children, affectionate and loyal to their family. Because they have historically been used as guard and defense dogs, their character is somewhat dominant. Nothing that proper socialization at an early age can reverse.

Hovawart Characteristics

Hovawts cannot deny their past as working dogs. Their build is stocky, with a deep chest and muscular, sturdy legs. Their back is straight and firm while their high set tail is long and generously bushy. The head of these dogs is broad and rounded.

The ears are triangular and usually hang on both sides of the head, the nose is black and the eyes are almond-shaped and brown. Their gaze denotes intelligence. Not in vain, they usually become the leaders of the group if they live together with other pets. The coat is double-coated, long and slightly wavy.

  • Height between 63 and 70 cm in males and between 58 and 65 cm in females.
  • Weight between 40 and 50 kg in males and between 30 and 40 kg in females.
  • Long and slightly wavy coat. The undercoat is fine while the outer coat is dense. On the chest, belly, tail and on the back of the legs it tends to thicken. The usual colors are golden, black or black with golden spots.
  • Intelligent, calm, affectionate and protective character.
  • Good health but with a tendency to suffer from thyroid problems.
  • Estimated life expectancy between 15 and 18 years.

Temperament of the Hovawart

As we say, these dogs are calm and very affectionate. They do not tolerate spending time alone or feeling displaced. They claim their place in the group and defend it as they do best: protecting. They enjoy the company of children and playing with other pets.

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They are excellent swimmers and trackers. Their training should be approached from the age of 4-8 months using patience and positive reinforcement. They are rarely aggressive with strangers, but should be accustomed to social interaction from puppyhood.

They are very active and love to take care of their own. Otherwise, they can develop depressive or aggressive behavior. They are not very barky.

Hovawart Dog breed - Characteristics & Temperament

What care does the Hovawart require?

Their main care requirements revolve around companionship and outdoor exercise. Therefore, they demand daily attention and enough space to run around. Their ideal home is a house in the country or with a garden. A minimum of 2 hours of physical activity per day is well tolerated by the Hovawart.

In fact, they are considered the ideal dogs for sportsmen. If you are, he will love to go for a run with you. Not feeling displaced is the other need you will have to satisfy to keep him happy and balanced. As for hygiene, his coat should be brushed every 2 days with special emphasis on the most populated areas (neck and belly).

Baths should be regular, every 3 or 4 weeks. Ears should be cleaned weekly in order to prevent possible infections. Something that favors the fact that they are fallen. Their diet should be of quality and rationed, since they tend to put on weight easily.

Hovawart Dog breed - Characteristics & Temperament

History of the breed

Hovawts have been known and valued in Germany since the Middle Ages. They originate from the Black Forest and were employed there as guardians of the farmyards and protectors of the farmers. Already in the Der Schwabenspiegel of 1275, which compiles countless civil laws on estates and fiefdoms, reference is made to the courage and endurance of this breed.

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Moreover, it is mentioned that whoever attempts against the life of a Hovawart must face a heavy fine. From the 20th century onwards, with the rise of other breeds such as the German Shepherd, they fell into oblivion and the two world wars brought them to extinction. Breed enthusiasts, such as Otto Schramm and K.F. König, revived the breed.

In 1964 it obtained the official recognition of the FCI or what is the same, the Fédération Cynologique Internationale.

Hovawart Dog breed - Characteristics & Temperament

Curiosities of the Hovawart

These dogs are little known outside Germany, France and Holland where they are highly appreciated as personal defense dogs and / or pets. When we know them we understand why they are so well accepted in the center of the old continent. Their character makes them endearing companions who make themselves loved.

Hovawart Dog breed – Characteristics & Temperament
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