Cão de Castro Laboreiro

Guardian of the mountains of Portugal

The Cão de Castro Laboreiro is a rare and fascinating dog breed with a long history dating back to the isolated region of Castro Laboreiro in northern Portugal. This robust and independent breed is known for its guarding skills, especially when it comes to livestock.


The breed originates from the mountainous region of Castro Laboreiro in northern Portugal and has been a central part of local agricultural life for centuries, where it has been used primarily as a livestock guard.

What type of dog is the Cão de Castro Laboreiro?

This is a working and guard dog breed that is adapted to harsh conditions and has a strong instinct to protect.

Traits and temperament

They are known to be reserved, brave and extremely loyal to their owner and family.


Adult individuals can weigh between 25 and 40 kg, with a height of between 55 and 60 cm at the withers.

Appearance and coat

This breed has a dense and coarse coat that protects them in cold and wet climates. The appearance is rugged with a powerful build.

How much fur does a Cão de Castro Laboreiro shed?

The breed sheds a moderate amount of fur, but may require extra brushing during the shedding season.

Is Cão de Castro Laboreiro hypoallergenic?

No, it is not a hypoallergenic breed.

Feed and diet

A protein-rich diet with a good fat content is preferred for this active breed.

Training and exercise

This breed needs a lot of exercise and mental stimulation to thrive.


Generally a healthy breed, but may be prone to some genetic problems such as hip dysplasia.

Special care needs

They require a lot of mental and physical stimulation and do best in a home where they have access to large outdoor areas.

Care and grooming

Regular brushing and once a month baths are usually sufficient.

Common behavioral problems and solutions

This breed can be reserved around strangers and can be territorial. Early socialization is important.

Is Cão de Castro Laboreiro fair?

They aren't very talkative but will raise an alarm if they feel it is necessary to protect their territory or family.

Is Cão de Castro Laboreiro family friendly?

Yes, when they are properly socialized. They are very loyal and can be excellent family dogs.

What is the lifespan of a Cão de Castro Laboreiro?

They have a life expectancy of 12-14 years.

Procurement of Cão de Castro Laboreiro

Because it is a rare breed, it is important to do thorough research and find a responsible breeder.


The Cão de Castro Laboreiro is a robust and independent dog breed that requires an equally robust and independent owner. With proper training and socialization, they can be a great addition to an active family.