There are countless websites and discussion groups that go into great depth about the pros and cons of the Black Russian Terriers; The ARC standard also describes the “proper” temperament. That being said, there are few guides that will help the novice buyer decide if this wonderful breed is right for them.
1. This is a BIG dog. Bitches average 26.5 to 29 inches at the shoulder and often weigh over 100 pounds. Males can be considerable bigger. Can you handle a dog this size?
2. This is a guard dog breed. Black Russians were breed by the Red Star Kennel for the military. Most of the dogs in the U.S. are imports or only 1-2 generations from imports. They can be tough. They require time, energy and training to be sure they are properly socialized. Most Black Russians are easy going and laid back, but they are there when needed. Most love children and get along well with other animals, but you, the puppy owner, must teach your puppy how to use his judgement. Are you willing to put in the time?
3. This breed was bred to guard it’s owner. The dog can not do his job if he is not with you. Therefore, the Black Russian will want to be with you-in the house. Wet beard, dirty paws and all, they must be with you to be happy. Black Russian Terriers are not kennel dogs. Can you deal with wet beards and sloppy kisses?
4. You can not make excuses for bad behavior in a dog this size and with this background. Can you stand your ground and be a firm but fair pack leader?
If you answered yes to all of these questions then this could be the breed for you. For me, there is no other breed that can compare.