One of the rarest breed of dog native to Korea, the Pungsan is a mountain dog. Sometimes spelled as “Phungsan" or “Poongsan", this breed is equally popular hunter as Korean Jindo or Sapsaree. The breed has an ancient reputation of being very loyal, intelligent, fierce, clever and daring hunter. One of the historic folk tale describes the fight of Pungsan dog with Siberian tiger which was resulted in victory of this dog. Being energetic, hardy and ferocious hunter, this breed is able to hunt larger game including panthers, tigers, wolves and wild boar in mountainous region with perfect grip and grasp. Snow born, this breed is perfect protector and enthusiastic companion in all situations. The Pungsan breed is highly sociable, adaptable in house with other pets, more harmonious if all of them are raised together from early age. They may have slight issues with other dogs and have low tolerance to non-canine. Very affectionate and gentle, this dog is excellent with kids.
The Pungsan dog is a large size, spitz-type dog breed that weighs 50 to 60 pounds in average. Being 24 inches tall, they make bigger dog than Korean jindo, however resemble to a great degree with them. Their build is strong, sturdy, well muscled and balanced with boney and fleshy substance. This agile athlete possesses power, speed and stamina in an adequate quantity that is needed for this type of breeds. Slight rectangular, they are longer in length than in height with deep chest, strong hindquarters and belly tucked up. Their undercoat is fine and thick while outer coat is tough and rough. This combination makes a natural protection against severe weather conditions. This dog comes in whitish or cream colors. Its head makes a triangle, broad across the forehead, muzzle is averagely long, ears are pricked, set-high on head and eyes are almond shaped. Nose usually black, may be fleshy colored, lips are thin but with powerful jaws. Gait is free, easygoing yet slow but changes to sprint with good reason. Tail is carried high, curled over back. The overall expression is keen, alert and curious dog with high watchful trait.
This breed dates back to 1700s, some of the historians think of being even earlier, approximately originated in 1500s. The Pungsan was developed in the Korean Peninsula and hold strong popularity, during Japanese occupation of Korea (1910 to 1945), the Jindo and Pungsan were officially declared as national treasures. The breed was recognized in 1937, the time was critical due to World War II, they suffer extinction. After the Korean War in 1953, the country was divided into two parts and the Pungsan were confined to Northern Korea. The Government banned the movement of the dog across the border; however, some of the dogs from this breed were smuggled to South Korea in 1990s. They were not pure bred until the Korea’s Sunshine Policy, when former South Korean President Kim Dae-jung made a visit to Pyongyan, the North Korean Presidency. The late Kim Jong-il, presented two pure Pungsan dogs which were bred in Seoul, South Korea. This breed is believed to have wolf in its ancestry and had fought against panthers. They were used for military purposes too.
The Pungsan is a highly intelligent, independent, powerful and energetic breed, very loyal, devoted and family oriented, this breed is excellent with kids. They stay playful and entertaining but their large size may cause accidental knock-over to young toddlers, therefore, it is suggested to always supervise the dog when with young kids. Sociable with early familiarization, they are adaptable with other pets if grown together. Due to their high dominating nature, slight aggression is seen for other dogs while remain curious to strangers to a great degree. This combination makes its perfect guard and watchdog besides trusted companion of all situations. After acceptance by owner, they establish friendship with new peoples and feel comfortable with them. Being hunter by instinct, they hold low tolerance to non-canine pets. The Pungsan thrives with human beings, seeks true leadership and tend to obey. They stay willing to learn however, training would be demanding in terms of patience, consistency and commitment.
This breed is believed to have links with wolves and have aggression in its instinct. They possess high prey drive thus should be kept in closed boundaries. Clearly, this breed is not good in a house with other small non-canine pets sharing the same yard. They would pose a threat to neighbor’s pets too if left off leashed. Being high energy hunter, this dog requires a minimum of one hour extensive physical exercise regularly. Their long lasting stamina would not be satisfied with merely going on walks but on long and brisk walks besides, jogging, hiking and vigorous play sessions. They are not satisfied with a couch-potato lifestyle, but an active and agile. If kept under-exercised, they may get destructive with excessive digging and would find their ways to escape. Remember, an unsatisfied dog would be too rambunctious in a family environment and may cause serious problems to kids.
They are neither shy nor timid to human beings, they tend to dominate, however would be too submissive once they are aware of pack leader. They need strong, confident and skilled owner who can demonstrate true leadership. They should be kept in natural pack order in which dog is always below the human beings. They need a job to do all the time. They are adaptable in apartment life just because of the trait of being meticulous about matters of taste or style yet exercise requirement is to be met. Their life is full of joys and thrill if kept with their family, alone if left, may get bore and would indulge in destructive activities. The temperament of this breed largely depends upon its breeding environment.
Owner Should Know
The Pungsan has a double coat that sheds twice a year heavily. During the shedding season, they should be brushed daily to remove dead hairs. Warm baths can help the process along. Otherwise, be prepared for rolling tumbleweeds of undercoat all around your house.
The Pungsan breed is tough to accommodate in apartment however can be afforded if exercise requirement is fulfilled.
They have double coat that can afford severe cold weathers, they may have problems in hot summers.
They should be kept with family, if relegated to yard; they may get into mischief out of loneliness or boredom.
The Pungsans need space and time to exercise besides your company, be ready to invest money and time for them.
They do not respond to repetitive training activities. Plan training sessions short, interactive and reward based.
If kept unsatisfied, they tend to chew a lot, dig and escape. Keep them satisfied, provide chewable toys and manage their physical business.
They have wolves in their ancestry; aggression is a prominent part of their trait. They hold slight aggression to other dog breeds and low tolerance to non-canine pets.
They mature late, their training would be time taking.
Seek for reputed and trustworthy breeders or supplier to get healthy puppies, ensure puppies are clinically checked and are disease free.