Below are details and specs for the Aidi dog breed.
Aidis are medium- to large-sized dogs, and when they are mature, expect them to be approximately 20-25 inches high and 50-60 pounds.
Although Aidis make great family pets, they possess a loyalty that leads them to be aggressively protective of the home, and they do not mix well with strangers or other pets. They are great watchdogs and guard well too, are very intelligent and even a bit stubborn but relatively easy to train.
Adopting an Aidi will mean lots of maintenance when it comes to grooming and exercise, and as they are not good apartment dogs due to the free space they require, a large home and outdoor property is practically mandatory too.
The Aidi is a purebred dog that is known by a number of other names — Atlas Mountain Dog, Atlas Sheepdog, Berber Dog are but a few — and has a history that is long, somewhat mysterious and occasionally confusing even in modern times. (A breed standard that was allegedly published in 1963 labeled the them as "Atlas Sheepdog," and it is also said that this was corrected in 1969 — but the entity that set the standard is apparently unknown.)
Aidis are believed to have come from North Africa and may have originated specifically in the Sahara; one theory has them being initially domesticated by the Phoenicians when the Mediterranean seafarers colonized the area during the first millennium B.C. The misnomer by which the breed remains frequently known (due to the inexplicable standard mentioned above) was attributed to the breed's workplace: the Atlas Mountains that cross a number of North African countries. The mountain-dwelling Berber tribes that eventually employed the dog trained them to protect their flocks, tents and property throughout the mountain range's wild environmental variations and from the richly diverse species of predators which included human thieves and murderers.
The Aidi did not work in the typical manner that most dogs guarding flocks performed; instead, their extraordinary sense of smell was used to alert shepherds and other people long before a predator approached. Over time, the Berbers paired the relatively slow-moving Aidi with a Sloughi, a much faster and more agile breed; the Aidi would sense and direct the Sloughi which would in turn hunt down and attack. The work combination remains in use.
In modern times, the Aidi has been used as a police dog as well as for search and rescue (primarily in Morocco) but has also become somewhat of a house dog. The Aidi is not recognized by the American Kennel Club, but in 2006 it was recognized by the United Kennel Club — which also calls it the Atlas Mountain Dog.
The Aidi is a proud dog that walks with a calm confidence. They have a very thick coat of medium-length, coarse hair that protects them from the elements as well as from most predators. The breed's long, large head is well-proportioned to the body, and they are perpetually alert.
The images below represent the coat colors and patterns associated with Aidis.
Expect your Aidi to be fiercely loyal, remarkably energetic and ever alert; if they don't have a job to do, they will almost certainly develop very bad habits to burn off their seemingly endless energy. They are relatively easy to train as they have a few millennia of experience, but they are also headstrong and sensitive; punishment-based training will not work well at all. They make excellent watch- and guard-dogs as they will bark at most any unusual noise, and they are very strong protectors.
Adopting an Aidi is no small move, and they are certainly not apartment dogs. It is best to have a big house with large, highly secure outdoor areas for them to roam and run. The ideal home — outside of a mountain range! — is a farm.
Aidis have no known hereditary ailments, but like any dog, they can develop joint and eye concerns. Be sure to keep their ears clean and dry, and always be on the lookout for any skin problems.
Below are potential health concerns associated with Aidis.