Komondor vs Puli

Komondor vs Puli: Key Differences Explained

A coat similar to a mop will surely make a dog unique, but that isn’t the case here. The Komondor and the Puli are two dog breeds that share striking similarities, especially when dealing with their coats.

It can get somewhat confusing when trying to get one of these cute dogs for your home, especially when you’re new to dogs.

Luckily, a few identifiers can make it much easier to differentiate these hair breeds.

Physical Differences

Physical differences are obvious and can make it easy to differentiate between a Komondor and a Puli, but they aren’t always conclusive. There are several physical differences, and considering them all, it becomes possible to differentiate between breeds conclusively.

Some of their key physical differences include:


The most obvious distinguishing factor for dogs is coat color, as most breeds seem only to follow certain patterns. The Puli and Komondor are easily distinguished from their coats in most cases.

While the Komondor only occurs in white, the Puli comes in several colors, including white. If you see a dog like this that isn’t white, then it’s a Puli.

The only problem you can encounter here is when the dog in question is white. Seeing as both breeds can appear white, it can be either, making it difficult to tell which it is. Thankfully, there are several other ways to further differentiate between both dogs.


Size is another way to tell both breeds apart, but this only comes in handy when they reach adulthood. As puppies, both breeds are small, but as they grow older, their differences begin to become apparent. The Puli is a small dog and doesn’t grow beyond certain limits: Height 36cm-45cm, weight 10kg-15kg.

On the other hand, the Komondor is a large dog that reaches significantly higher limits: 64cm-76cm, weight 40kg-60kg. Both dogs may be similar, but the Komondor can grow to more than twice the size of a Puli, making it much easier to identify.

While the final measurements are for adults, they may already show signs as puppies, making it easy to differentiate them.

Hair Growth

The fur on both dogs grows in similar patterns, making both of them easy to identify, but it also has one key difference. The hair growth pattern of the Puli is the main identifier here, as it covers their eyes. On the other hand, the hair on the Komondor doesn’t cover their eyes.

How a puli sees is one of the biggest mysteries, but they can see and have excellent vision. The over their eyes may not impair their vision, but it sometimes causes them to have inflamed eyes.

In addition to the hair over their eyes, Pulik also have a unique hair pattern on their paw. The hair there forms a cord-like pattern and is only found atop the paw.

Other Differences

Since physical differences aren’t always conclusive, especially young ones, you can try other differences. There are numerous other differences between Pulik and Komondors, and some of them include the following:


The Komondor is a serious dog with an authoritative presence and tends to be aggressive. Luckily, their aggression isn’t geared toward humans but is reserved for other animals. Unfortunately, they are considered lazy and tend to sleep often during the day. They are fiercely loyal to their owners, making them good protectors. 

Pulik, however, is a more playful dog but loyal nonetheless. They are energetic and prefer to have fun than guard duties. Regardless, their loyalty also makes them effective guard dogs, albeit easily distracted. Their playful nature also means that the Puli will need more grooming, as they will pick up many unwanted pathogens.


While both breeds are guard dogs and serve well in that capacity, they vary in functions, usually due to their personalities. Being the larger breed, Komondors are better suited to guard duties, especially since they love to stay up at night.

However, they will be asleep during the day, usually recovering from the night shift.

On the other hand, Pulik is better suited to the day shift and has effective guard dog tendencies but is small and easily overpowered. They are still brave and would throw themselves in front of their owners to prevent an attack.

Most people use the Puli in conjunction with other dogs as an early warning system. Since they are friendly, they get on well with other dogs and form an effective guard partnership.


Pricing is one of the most reliable ways to differentiate between breeds, as the Puli is the more expensive.

Despite their smaller physique, the Puli is the more desired breed making it more expensive. Ironically, since they are more readily available, you can sometimes find them for cheaper. The average cost of a puli ranges between $800-$1,600, while the average cost of a Komondor is $1,000.

Komondors are rarer and nearly went extinct once. If you find one in a shelter or rescue, they will most likely be mixed breeds. If you want a pure one, you are better served by contacting a breeder directly. Despite all this, they are still cheaper than Pulik.

Grooming Requirements

As both dogs are notably hairy, they need to be groomed frequently, but each has specific requirements. The Puli especially needs the fur around its eyes to be trimmed, as they usually cover it and sometimes cause inflammation. On the other hand, Komondors don’t need the hair around their eyes and tails trimmed.

Likewise, the hair on the pulik paw needs to be trimmed, or it impairs their walking. As they are smaller, the fur on their feet can get too long and should be trimmed regularly, so they don’t trip. The only thing both breeds have in common regarding grooming is that the fur needs to be air-dried to prevent mats.


Both dogs are calm-natured and friendly but have one key difference, their interaction with other dogs. All dogs need socialization, especially if they’re going to be around people.

Pulik has no problems here and comfortably relates with other dogs, even coexisting. On the other hand, Komondors take longer to adapt to other dogs and are usually hostile in the beginning. Luckily with the right Training and conditioning, you can get one to be friendly to other dogs.

Similarities Between Komondor And Puli

Komondors and Pulik share some similarities that only serve to increase the confusion in differentiating them. Contrary to what most people would expect, both breeds don’t have too many similarities.

Corded Coats

The corded coat is the biggest similarity between both breeds, which is why they are mistaken for each other. Most people consider the Puli a small Komondor, only to be surprised when it doesn’t grow much more. Both dogs also have double coat layers, formed in similar patterns, but it only comes in when they reach adulthood.

The similarity in their appearance doesn’t stop at the corded coat but extends to its function. The coat is evolved to protect the dogs from weather, predators, and vegetation. You can trim it if it gets too long, but never shave it off fully or risk exposing them to adverse conditions.

Health Problems

Both dogs are notably susceptible to hip dysplasia, even though the Puli is significantly smaller. Hip dysplasia is common in large dogs, a classification that the Komondor falls into, but not the Puli.

Regardless, you can take precautions to prevent the condition or face the possibility that your dog may not have a high-quality life.

In addition to hip dysplasia, both dogs are susceptible to eye problems. In the case of Pulik, the problem comes from the fur covering their eyes. With Komondors, Progressive Retinal Atrophy is the possible case and is seemingly genetic.

Viruses and pathogens can also bring about other conditions but can be prevented with a healthy environment.

Historic Use

Another reason why both dogs have been mistaken for each other is the similarity of their uses and their historical uses. Both dogs have a long history in Hungary and have served as shepherding dogs for generations.

They also seem to be used interchangeably, with similar results. While the Komondor is mostly associated with this task today, either breed can still serve as a shepherd dog.

Most shepherds in the past employed both dogs in rotating shifts, a practice that still serves today. Where the Puli can’t stand up to a larger wild animal, the Komondor stands up for them, and they get the job done.

Which is best For You: Komondor or Puli?

The best dog for you depends on their intended use or personal preferences. If you’re looking for a lone shepherding dog, then the Komondor is the ideal dog and loves the task. On the other hand, you have a better chance of pairing Pulik with other dogs than Komondors, making them better for such scenarios.

If you need a guard dog, the Komondors can also perform the task, but Pulik are better suited as companion dogs. Whatever purpose you intend, if either dog will be spending time indoors, be prepared to clean up after them.

Conclusion: Komondor vs Puli: Key Differences Explained

The Puli and Komondor are two hairiest dogs and have distinct corded fur. Identifying them is easy, but only if you know what you’re looking for. It’s best to know which you have to deploy appropriately.

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