Korean Jindo Dog
Information, History, Temperament and More

The Jindo dog is a unique breed originating from the Korean Island of Jindo. Known well for their loyalty, Jindos are magnificent creatures boasting a beautiful coat and an affectionate, loving demeanor towards their family.

However, Jindos can have a stubborn and independent streak which makes them not very suitable for first-time and inexperienced dog owners.

If you have set your heart on this breed, it is a wise decision to dedicate some time to learning more about it.

Whether you are thinking about buying a puppy or adopting an adult dog and want to know if this is the right breed for you or just want to learn more about this breed, I hope this article will help you find the answers to your questions.

Jindo Information and History

Also known as Chindo, Jindo Gae, Jin dog, Jindo Gu and Korean Jindo, the origin of the Jindo dog is a bit shrouded in mystery. Many experts believe that this breed has populated the Jindo Island for many centuries and was possibly crossbred with some of the dogs of the Mongol forces back when Korea was invaded in the 13th century.

Jindo dogs were originally bred to hunt deer, rabbits, badgers and boars but today they are mostly kept as companions and guardians. Some farms still use this breed to protect their property and livestock from predators.

In 1962, the Jindo dog was proclaimed a national monument by the government of South Korea and became protected by law. Because of the breed's prestigious status, it became increasingly difficult to export it outside of Korea.

However, as the breed grew in popularity and became a national icon, some dogs were imported to the United States by immigrants and servicemen in the 1980's. While this breed is being recorded in the AKC Foundation Stock Service®, it's not eligible for AKC registration.

The Jindo dog breed was officially recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1998 and by the Federation of Cynologique Internationale in 2005.

Physical Characteristics of the Jindo Dog

These medium-sized dogs boast a sturdy body and an overall appearance that suggests strength, beauty, intelligence and agility.

The body of the Jindo is squarely built. The muscular neck is carried proudly when the dog is aroused. The moderately deep chest is well developed with sprung ribs. The back is straight. The thick, feathered tail is loosely curled or curved like a sickle.

The strong shoulders lead to straight forelegs with slightly sloping pasterns. The hind legs are muscular with short pasterns. Dewclaws on the rear legs are typically removed. The feet are roundish in shape and boast thick, strong pads.

The head appears like a blunt triangle when observed from the above. The nose is typically black, but can be pink in the case of a white dog. The almond-shaped eyes are dark reddish-brown to dark brown. The ears are erect, triangular in shape and are rounded at the tips. The teeth close and intersect into a scissor bite.

The Jindo coat is double with a harsh straight outer coat and a soft, dense undercoat. Accepted colors are white, red fawn, black, grey, brindle and black and tan.

    Height Weight
  Male 19 to 21 inches 39 to 50 pounds
  Female 17 to 19 inches 33 to 42 pounds

Jindo Temperament

The Korean Jindo dog is known best for its great loyalty and intelligence. There is no denial over this dog's strong thinking skills. While this may be a big advantage should you be planning to train your Jindo dog to perform some tricks, this same intelligence can backfire and become too much to handle, especially for inexperienced dog owners.

Jindos are also known for their independent minds. Many will listen to you and may even pretend to obey you but, in the end, will do as they please.

Novice owners may not realize the amount of exercise and mental stimulation this breed requires. This is a highly active and stubborn breed that, when left alone for too long, will quickly find its own form of entertainment -- and it will not be a pretty sight when you return home!

While loyal and affectionate with its family, Jindos tend to be reserved with strangers and those it doesn't know too well. Naturally inclined to distinguish friend from foe, Jindos make excellent watchdogs.

This is a very protective, territorial and dominant dog with a high prey drive. You'll need to keep a watchful eye when your Jindo is around other pets, including dogs. However, by socializing Jindo puppies while they were still young to other dogs and cats, many owners have had success in raising them with other pets.

While this breed does best with older children, as long as it's exposed to children from an early age and the child knows how to treat this dog with respect, a Jindo will be good with any child.

While highly intelligent, Jindo dogs can be quite sensitive. Training a Jindo requires gentle training methods.

Jindos have a very strong innate sense of direction and are capable of returning home from great distances. They can also remember and recognize tens of thousands of different scents.

When it comes to house training, Jindo puppies are quite easy to housebreak because most are fastidiously clean, almost cat-like.

Best Owner and Living Conditions

The best Jindo owner is somebody capable of providing plenty of mental stimulation and exercise for this active dog. Also, because this is a breed that will outsmart you if you are not consistent with your training methods, the best owner is experienced and knows what to expect from this breed.

A Jindo does best in a home with a large yard with a fence that is tall enough to prevent him from escaping. Some Jindos have been capable of jumping over fences that were 8 feet tall, and some escape artists are capable of opening gates! Consider installing an electronic fence if you don't have a physical one.

If you live in an apartment, you will need to ensure your Jindo gets at least two brisk walks a day and loads of mental stimulation.

Activity and Exercise

This is a breed with a history of hunting and walking for miles. To make your Jindo happy, you should be capable of walking him at least twice a day for at least 30 minutes.

This breed needs to stay on leash due to its strong prey drive. Training a good recall command is a must with this breed, but consider that once he spots prey, he will likely be incapable of hearing you.

An enticing game of fetch may provide this dog with a good outlet for pent up energy.

While this breed thrives on exercise, it also desires to spend time with his owner. So, leaving a Jindo in a yard all day is a big mistake.


Equipped with a double coat, Jindos tend to shed quite a lot. They blow their coats twice a year, so expect to find those stray hairs just about anywhere. Grooming entails frequent brushing, especially when this breed blows its coat.

Bathing this dog can pose some challenges as the Jindo dog does not like getting wet. However, similar to cats, they do lick themselves and do a pretty good job of keeping themselves clean.

Health Concerns

This is a relatively healthy dog. This may be attributed to the fact that Jindos were developed under natural rather than human selection. Some specimens may be prone to developing hypothyroidism.

Visit dog health problems to learn more about dog diseases and health care.

If you are looking for a good Jindo puppy, make sure you find reputable Jindo breeders who are diligently working in protecting the purity of the Jindo gene pool.

Even healthy dogs get sick. While many health problems will require an immediate attention from your Vet, there are many others that you may handle on your own. Learn how to save time and money (and how to prevent small problems from becoming big problems) by diagnosing and treating dog health problems that don't require your Vet's attention.

Life Expectancy

The average life expectancy for the Jindo dog is between 12 and 15 years.

Final Thoughts...

Interested in the Korean Jindo dog? Jindos are quite fascinating creatures. If you think you have what it takes to be a great Jindo owner, your time and effort will be paid off once you recognize the extraordinary loyalty of this breed.

Keep in mind though that the Korean Jindo Preservation Ordinance no longer allows the Jindo to be exported outside of South Korea. So, if you are looking for a good Jindo dog, you will need to find a reputable breeder abroad.

Did you ever consider adopting your next pet?

If this is the breed you are interested in, and adoption appeals to you, consider contacting your local Jindo rescue. There are thousands of pets waiting for a loving home and, yes, it's possible to adopt a purebred dog.

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