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Breed Registries:

Note: The all-breed registries indicated above are the most recognized all-breed registries. The breed may be recognized by other registries not indicated here. For further details about dog registries, please see the document: Dog Breed Registries in North America.


  1. — The FCI is the World Canine Organization, which includes 84 members and contract partners (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 339 breeds, with each being the "property" of a specific country. The "owner" countries of the breeds write the standards of these breeds in co-operation with the Standards and Scientific Commissions of the FCI, and the translation and updating are carried out by the FCI. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.




Males: 25 ½ to 28 ½ inches - Females: 24 ½ to 27 inches


Males: Average weight is between 88 and 110 lbs.
Females: Weight ranges between 66 and 88 lbs.

Breed Profile:

The Estrela Mountain Dog, Cão da Serra da Estrela, is believed to be one of the oldest breeds of dogs from the Iberian Peninsula. During the summer, the dogs were used to protect the sheep in the high mountain pastures in mid-Portugal. During the winter months, when the flocks were moved to the foot of the mountains, the Estrelas were used to guard the shepherds' homes. The first breed standard was produced in Portugal in 1933 and the breed was introduced to the U.S. in 1974. The United Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1996.

The Estrela Mountain Dog is a large, powerful and athletic dog. There are two coat varieties, the long and short coats, and colours include shades of fawn, wolf gray, yellow, they may or may not have brindling, white markings, or shades of black throughout the coat. They may also wear a dark facial mask.

The Estrela is known to be intelligent, loyal, affectionate to his family but independent. He is an excellent guardian, very quick to react yet he has a calm disposition. In Portugal, the breed is used to work with Marine and Portuguese Police.

Health Issues

If you are considering the adoption of a Estrela Mountain Dog puppy, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy's parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the main Breed Listing and Breeders page.)

Recommended Health Screening:

For the Estrela Mountain Dog, the CHIC* database includes health screenings for:

  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Elbow Dysplasia
  • Also listed as "optional" are: Patellar Luxation and Congenital Cardiac Database
* CHIC - The Canine Health Information Center - "is a database of consolidated health screening results from multiple sources. Co-sponsored by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA) and the American Kennel Club (AKC) Canine Health Foundation, CHIC works with parent clubs to identify health screening protocols appropriate for individual breeds. Dogs tested in accordance with the parent club established requirements, that have their results registered and made available in the public domain are issued CHIC numbers." To learn more, visit:

Additional Health Resources:

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Breed Standards

Grooming Information

  • Grooming — This section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.

Training Resources

  • Starting the LGD Pup by Catherine de la Cruz
  • Training — For training information, see this growing section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.

Training Tools & Equipment
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Additional Information

Select from the following links to view Breeder listings; Breed Clubs; Rescue Organizations; as well as Books and other Merchandise specific to the breed:

Breeders  /  Breed Clubs  /  Rescues  /  Books & More