Russian Black Terrier

The Russian Black Terrier was developed by the Russian army after the Second World War. The breed was created from the Giant Schnauzer, Rottweiler and Airedale Terrier. It was created to catch fugitives, often working in harsh conditions in its native home of Russia.

Russian Black Terrier breed group


Size of the Russian Black Terrier


Colour Varieties of the Russian Black Terrier

The breed comes in just 2 colours including:

  • Black
  • Black With Grey Hairs  

Country of Origin


Russian Black Terrier breed introduction and overview

The Russian Black Terrier is a striking and formidable looking dog. It was developed from various other large dog breeds including the Giant Schnauzer, Rottweiler and Airedale Terrier. Indeed, the RBT looks very similar in appearance to the Giant Schnauzer, but bigger. Although the Russian Black Terrier is called a Terrier, it actually belongs to the working group, due to its ancestry and working role throughout hiustory. It’s quite a rare sight here in the UK with just 55 dogs being registered during the entire year of 2014.

Size and weight of the Russian Black Terrier

Height bitch 66-72 cms

Height dog 68-77 cms

Weight (kilos) bitch 45-50kgs

Weight (kilos) dog 50-60kgs

Exercise requirements of the Russian Black Terrier

The Russian Black Terrier is a very athletic dog breed that requires around 2 hours of exercise every day.

Russian Black Terrier temperament, socialisation with children, other dogs and other pets

The Russian Black Terrier is a loyal, affectionate and courageous dog. It enjoys the company of humans, and tends to form a very strong and protective bond with its master. This is a dog that requires a handler with confidence and experience to prevent this feisty breed attempting to adopt the position of pack leader. However, it’s a dog, with the correct training and socialisation, an excellent family dog. It is not a recommended choice of dog for families with smaller children, due to the sheer size of the breed. The Russian Black Terrier may be problematic with other dogs, especially adult males. Contact with cats and other smaller pets is not suggested. The Russian Black Terrier makes a good guard dog around the home.

Is the Russian Black Terrier a good dog for a first time dog owner?

No, this is a dog for experienced handlers only. The RBT is also an impractical size for many family homes and prospective owners should also be aware of the higher cost of feeding, pet insurance, veterinary fees etc. due to the sheer size of the breed.

Russian Black Terrier coat length

Medium. The waterproof coat is double coated with a soft downy undercoat and a harsh, coarser outer coat. The muzzle is covered in fur.

Grooming requirements of the Russian Black Terrier

The Russian Black Terrier requires daily brushing with a soft slicker brush to remove debris and to keep the coat matt and tangle free. Special attention should be paid to the muzzle area, to prevent food deposits building up. The coat should not be clipped or shaved. Ears should be checked and cleaned regularly.


Yes. The Russian Black Terrier is a low shedder, so may be a suitable choice of dog breed for allergy sufferers.

Health Issues in the Russian Black Terrier

The Russian Black Terrier is generally healthy, but owners should consult their breeder about the following known health issues that have been found in the breed:

  • Hip dysplasia
  • Elboww dysplasia
  • Bloat

As with all pedigree dogs, it is very important to obtain a puppy from a reputable source where you can be guaranteed that it has been bred with a view to avoiding the inherent physical and psychological diseases of the breed.

Average lifespan of the Russian Black Terrier

A healthy Russian Black Terrier should expect to enjoy a life expectancy of between 10-14 years.

Russian Black Terrier pedigree puppy price

Expect to pay between £1,300-£1,500 for a pedigree puppy, and litters are sometimes available. Register your interest with an assured breeder, so they can notify you of expected litters. Litter sizes tend to produce around 6-10 puppies.

Estimating how much a Russian Black Terrier would need to be fed each day

A bitch or dog weighing 50kgs will require around 509gms of complete dry food daily. A bitch or dog weighing 50kgs will cost around £12.50 per week to feed. Our figures are based on feeding an ‘above average quality’ and popular complete dry food bought from a leading supermarket.

Other financial costs to consider when owning any dog breed

Remember to budget for essential pet treatments and procedures that are not covered by pet insurance policies including:
Worming and fleas preparations

  • Annual Vaccination boosters
  • Neutering or spaying
  • Microchipping
  • Dental treatment