(aka: Korean Jindo, Chindo, Jindo Gae, Jin Dog, Jindo Gu)
The Jindo is a medium-sized spitz-type dog that originated from the Jindo Island in Korea. Similar in appearance to the smaller Shiba Inu and the larger Akita, they were originally bred for hunting game as small as rodents to as large as deer.
The Jindo is a medium-sized, double-coated spitz-type dog. Gender differences in this breed are very apparent. Identifying the Jindo from mixes and other breeds is often done by close examination of head features. The appearance of the Jindo gives the impression of intelligence, strength, and agility.
Almost all Jindos possess strong wills (even the ones that seem deceptively compliant) and have independent minds. They love to roam and are quite the free spirits. They tend to be the dominant type, trying to get things their own way, and and can be very protective of their loved ones and territory. Because of these traits, Jindos are not recommended for inexperienced owners. Like most independent breeds, they need (and thrive under) firm but loving handling and consistency. Owners need to set the rules and stick with them. An owner who has earned the respect of his/her Jindo will be rewarded with unsurpassed loyalty and obedience. As with all breeds, the Jindo temperament varies with the quality of breeding and environment. The typical Jindo is very affectionate with its loved ones and reserved with strangers. A typical Jindo will not show affection towards people it has just met. At their most expressive, they are friendly in a gentle way. They are excellent watchdogs and will guard the home and family to the death if necessary. Early socialization to friendly strangers, other dogs, cats, and especially children is strongly recommended because Jindos are instinctively protective and have high prey drives. Because of their prey drives, they are usually not reliable around smaller animals such as hamsters and rabbits. In Korea, there are no leash laws and Jindos are allowed to roam freely. Their only aggression seems to be directed at other dogs and only as a means of establishing dominance or territories.
The Jindo has a double coat that sheds heavily twice a year. During the shedding season, extra care must be given to the coat. Warm baths can help the process along. Daily brushing is necessary to remove the undercoat. Otherwise, be prepared for rolling tumbleweeds of undercoat.
The Jindo was originally bred on the Island of Jindo in Southwest Korea several centuries ago. They were bred to hunt wild boars, rabbits, badgers, and deer, working in groups or on their own. It is characteristic for the Jindo to bring down its prey, then to return to its owner to lead him/her to its catch. Jindos first started to appear in the United States in the 1980s. The Jindo is protected by Korean Law as a national monument. Their legendary loyalty and affection for their masters, fastidious nature, high intelligence, and unfailing courage have made the Jindo the most popular breed of dog in Korea.
Very easy to house train due to their natural fastidiousness. They are very pack oriented and dominant, so it is important that they know who is the boss.
For some the Jindo may even be too intelligent, for it will commonly think for itself. The same intelligence that allows the dog to learn commands and tricks very quickly can be a bit too much for some people to handle, because it can lead the dog to great mischief when it is bored.
The Jindo is a relatively healthy dog, but hypothyroidism can be a problem.