No matter the amount of variation within the breed known as the Central Asian Ovtcharka (more correctly known as the Central Asian Shepherd, or CAS), these dogs developed with one general purpose: guarding their owners and the livestock that belonged to their owners. Only the strongest, most courageous and intelligent of these dogs would survive the harsh conditions under which they and their humans lived and so a breed of dog was born that was the archetypical guardian dog, able to think on its own and willing to sacrifice his own life to save that of his family. Even today, the CAS is used for guardian purposes and makes an excellent watch dog, in both his native country and in locations around the world.
The balanced temperament and high level of intelligence of this dog has allowed it to become an essential member of whatever family owns it; the term own is used loosely with the CAS as this breed of dog developed to work alongside humans, rather than under them. They can be used in a variety of situations and environments, thanks to their amazing adaptability and endurance. Ancient drawings and carvings show that this dog was employed to defend the camps of their nomadic humans thousands of years ago; they were also used for protection on the hunt, often helping in the attack on large game. Because nomads were often subject to invading tribes who wished to steal belongings and livestock, the CAS guarded all possessions that belonged to his human family; when its tribe would settle down, the dog would transfer those guardian qualities to defending the land on which his family settled.
These guardian qualities have been put to use even in modern times and today the CAS can be seen around the world as a very efficient watch dog who must, however, be trained properly. Its guardian instincts especially extend to the young of its family, including human children and puppies; indeed, it demonstrates endless patience when being climbed on or tormented by the little ones. They are wary of strange people and strange animals and will sound the alarm to alert their owners of new arrivals. They feel threatened by any new person or animal until their owner demonstrates their acceptance; the dogs will then be polite and accepting as well. When feeling threatened, the dog does not rashly over-react and lash out, as this kind of impulsive behavior could have gotten them injured and killed in the harsh environment in which they developed. The CAS always maintains an air of calmness and contemplation and strategically plans out his reactions once he has sized up a situation.
The CAS is afraid of nothing, as it was common for the breed to come up against bears, wolves, leopards and even tigers. Its fearlessness and guardian qualities are innate, and it does not need any special training to do what it does best. Though the dog won't execute commands, as it is too intelligent and independent, it has an extreme sense of loyalty and love for its family, as the breed ancestors were willing to follow their humans on their long, hard travels across harsh geographical areas and give their lives for them.