Let's talk Romanian Mioritic Shepherds

You’d be forgiven for doing a double take and confusing the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd breed with the equally shaggy, but adorable Old English Sheepdog. In fact, both herding dogs share strikingly similar characteristics. Despite their stocky, heavy-footed looks, they are “gentle giants” at heart that make exceptional family dogs, especially with their strong affinity towards children (once trained, as with any breed). Despite sometimes being a tad overly protective of their surroundings, Romanian Mioritic Shepherds’ gregarious and highly-affectionate attitude ensures they’re an easygoing companion.

Official name: Romanian Mioritic Shepherd

Other names: Ciobănesc Românesc Mioritic

Origins: Romania

Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog lying down in black and white

Drooling tendencies Medium Warm weather? Very low
Shedding level Low Suited to apartment living? Medium
*Energy level (high, low, moderate)*: Moderate Family pet?* High
Compatibility with other pets High *Can stay alone? Very low

*We advise against leaving pets alone for long stretches.
Companionship can prevent emotional distress and destructive behaviour. Speak to your veterinarian for recommendations.
Every pet is different, even within a breed; this snapshot of this breed’s specifics should be taken as an indication.
For a happy, healthy and well-behaved pet, we recommend educating and socialising your pet as well as covering their basic welfare, social and behavioural needs.
Pets should never be left unsupervised with a child.
Contact your breeder or veterinarian for further advice.

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Illustration of Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog
71 - 76 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
50 - 60 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight
66 - 71 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
50 - 60 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight


 Baby age:  Birth to 2 months
 Puppy age:  2 - 15 months
 Adult age:  15 months - 5 years
 Mature age:  5 - 8 years
 Senior age:  From 8 years

White Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog lying on grassy mountain


Get to know the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd

All you need to know about the breed

On first glance, the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd’s large size might give you the impression that they have an imposing presence. Yet, in common with other larger dogs, the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd has a complex, multi-faceted character. The breed is known for being calm yet fearless, doting yet wary of strangers, and affable yet fiercely protective of their surroundings. However, none of these qualities overpowers the others: Romanian Mioritic Shepherds are simply well-balanced canines.

While the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd’s size can adapt well to compact living spaces, they require more than a quick jaunt in the backyard to meet their exercise needs. Your Romanian Mioritic Shepherd will be incredibly content accompanying you for long walks, but once physical batteries are sufficiently exhausted, they will gladly revert back to lounging next to you on the couch (if allowed, of course).

The only possible downside to the breed? The need to maintain their magnificent body of fur, which requires regular brushing to prevent matting. However, if you are at ease with their grooming needs, then you’ll be rewarded with a dog who showers you with an endless amount of affection over their lifetime.

Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog standing on grassy mound


2 facts about Romanian Mioritic Shepherds

1. Odd sleeping arrangements

One thing you can count on your Romanian Mioritic Shepherd not to be picky about is where they choose to sleep. In fact, they much prefer not having a designated dog bed to sleep on. The Romanian Mioritic Shepherd usually sleeps on cold, hard surfaces (it’d be right to assume that their shaggy coat might provide some level of cushioning).

2. Not the biggest joker

Although Romanian Mioritic Shepherds are celebrated for enjoying the company of children of all ages (once trained), they are not actually known for having a particularly playful streak. While these large dogs are both agile and vibrant, and require a decent amount of daily exercise, Romanian Mioritic Shepherds would not be too enthused if offered the opportunity to play fetch for long stretches of time. Instead, they much prefer going for exploratory walks, on the leash, or cuddling by the couch after an active adventure outside.


History of the breed

As with a number of ancient shepherd breeds, there is little evidence pointing to when exactly the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd was first developed, although their ancestors are thought to have arrived in Romania around the 13th century with the Turkic Tatar settlers. The lack of concrete documentation of the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd’s origin can also be explained by the fact that they were largely owned by poor farmers that couldn’t read or write from the Carpathian Mountain region in North-East Romania.

One thing is certain though: Their name (“mioara” meaning sheep in Romanian) very clearly spells out what their original purpose entailed, which was herding young sheep and also protecting farms from wolves. They triumphed at these two tasks, since the breed very easily mixed with the flock with their bushy mane and were mistaken for sheep by wolves, allowing them to swiftly catch them off guard.

The first written references to the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd dog surfaced in 1930, when Professor Gheorghe Moldoveanu, made a first distinction between the four main Romanian sheepdogs. It wasn’t until 2006 when the United Kennel Club granted full recognition of the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd in 2006 and in 2018, the American Kennel club finally followed suit.

Close-up of Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog in black and white


From head to tail

Physical characteristics of Romanian Mioritic Shepherds

1. Body

Sturdy, rectangular and compact body.

2. Coat

A shaggy double coat, with a waterproof undercoat, that is solid white, solid grey or piebald.

3. Ears

Smaller, high-set triangular ears that hang on each side of their head.

Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog sitting on gravel path


Things to look out for

From specific breed traits to a general health overview, here are some interesting facts about your Romanian Mioritic Shepherd
Romanian Mioritic Shepherd Dog running across grass


Caring for your Romanian Mioritic Shepherd

Grooming, training and exercise tips

With their luscious locks, grooming a Romanian Mioritic Shepherd takes serious dedication. They are not excessive shedders, but because of their impressive amount of fur, whatever falls out does feel substantial. So, they need to be brushed at least every other day – with a firm bristle brush – to keep their coat clean. Their folded ears need to also be regularly checked for dirt, debris or foreign bodies like grass seeds or thorns to avoid ear infections. Nails should be trimmed regularly and teeth should be brushed daily. When it comes to exercise, Romanian Mioritic Shepherds require several long walks every day to keep them at an optimal weight but be sensible when the weather is hot, as your Romanian Mioritic Shepherd can overheat quickly due to their double coat. Regarding training, the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd is an intelligent breed that is naturally obedient, but it is important to keep things fun and persistent. Early socialisation is key in order to expose your dog to a variety of different people and environments and help counteract their distrust of strangers.


All about Romanian Mioritic Shepherds

Absolutely, yes. Romanian Mioritic Shepherds tend to develop deep bonds with their “family pack” including every adult, child, and fellow pet they live with. Although smaller pets are not usually an issue, early socialisation will certainly help the likelihood of them bonding.

No. In fact, the Romanian Mioritic Shepherd breed is naturally very gentle and doting. Even though they can be quite protective of their human family and surroundings, they would never outwardly show aggressive behaviour beyond barking, unless rightfully provoked.


1 - Veterinary Centers of America https://vcahospitals.com/ 

2 - Royal Canin Dog Encyclopaedia. Ed 2010 and 2020

3 - Banfield Pet Hospital https://www.banfield.com/

4 - Royal Canin BHN Product Book

5 - American Kennel Club https://www.akc.org/