Anatolian Shepherd Mix Traits & Care Guide

Hello fellow dog enthusiasts! I’m thrilled to share my insights into the world of the Anatolian Shepherd mix, a remarkable breed that encompasses the robustness and grandeur of its majestic lineage. Originating from the lush countryside of Turkey, the Anatolian Shepherd mix breed is notable for its noble and vigilant spirit, which I’ve personally found to be both awe-inspiring and heartwarming. These strong and athletic canines are a sight to behold, often inheriting the trademark protective personality of the purebred Anatolian Shepherd—making them natural guardians to their human families and animal friends alike.

Anatolian Shepherd mix puppies bring a richness to any home with their alert and loyal nature, although they do come with an expected independent streak. It’s fascinating to me how these dogs balance their self-reliance with unwavering dedication to those they consider part of their flock. Their temperament requires them to have room to roam and thrive, making them less suited to the constraints of apartment living. With a life expectancy of up to 13 years and showcasing a variety of coat colors and patterns, the Anatolian Shepherd mix is as diverse as it is stunning. I’m eager to dive deep into what it takes to properly care for these intelligent, independent dogs who have a short, smooth coat ideal for people who prefer a dog that is magnificent yet manageable.

Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Anatolian Shepherd mixes are celebrated for inheriting robust, athletic features and protective instincts.
  • Bred in Turkey as livestock guardians, these dogs naturally exhibit a protective demeanor towards their families.
  • Early socialization is key in shaping the Anatolian Shepherd mix temperament to be both loyal and manageable.
  • While apartment living is not ideal due to their size and energy levels, they will prosper in a spacious environment.
  • Understanding and attending to these mixes’ physical exercise, grooming needs, and independent nature is crucial for their wellbeing.

The Rich Heritage of the Anatolian Shepherd Mix

When I consider the Anatolian Shepherd mix breed, I’m invariably reminded of their impressive heritage. These noble canines trace their lineage back to the rugged landscapes of Turkey, a testament to their abilities as steadfast guardians of livestock. The breed’s formidable size and keen alertness were selectively bred over centuries to deter formidable predators and withstand the harsh, variable climates of their homeland.

It was not by chance that the Anatolian Shepherd mix made its way onto American soil. The breed’s remarkable characteristics caught the attention of the U.S. Department of Agriculture before World War II under “Project Sheepdog,” with the aim of finding an ideal livestock guardian. Although the project was not completed due to the war’s outbreak, the legacy continued. The breed eventually gained such admiration that it was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in the breath-taking year of 1996.

Their deeply rooted watchful and protective instincts, undoubtedly essential for their original roles, also make early and deliberate socialization a critical component of their care. The Anatolian Shepherd mix’s independent nature is a characteristic well embedded in their DNA, requiring an owner who understands and respects their lineage while molding them into balanced family members.

For prospective owners, comprehensive support is given by the Anatolian Shepherd Dog Club of America and the National Anatolian Shepherd Rescue Network, organizations that understand the breed’s characteristics through and through. They provide invaluable resources for individuals looking to welcome these majestic guardians into their homes.

Reflecting further on the Anatolian Shepherd mix history, I’m always struck by their resilience and adaptability. Despite their initial roles in pastoral settings, these mixes have shown they can transition into loving companions, albeit with an enduring spirit that harks back to their ancestors’ rugged way of life. This is a breed whose storied past enriches every interaction, every moment spent under their stalwart watch—a truly living piece of history.

Understanding Your Anatolian Shepherd Mix’s Behavior

As I delve into the world of Anatolian Shepherd mixes, I’ve discovered a fascinating blend of traits and behaviors that potential owners should understand. These dogs carry a unique temperament that combines the Anatolian Shepherd’s heritage with the distinctive qualities of their mixed lineage. They showcase a remarkable sense of independence yet bond with exceptional loyalty to their families, reflecting the heart of their ancestral roots as vigilant guardians.

Anatolian Shepherd mix temperament and loyalty

Indeed, it is this independent streak, coupled with a protective nature, that often defines their interactions with the world. The Anatolian Shepherd mix temperament exhibits watchfulness that serves well in a guardian role, an attribute deeply ingrained in their DNA. These traits necessitate prospective owners to engage with their Anatolian Shepherd mix in consistent, thorough socialization and training activities that reinforce positive behavior without suppressing their protective instincts.

Independent Nature and Protective Instincts

The independence of the Anatolian Shepherd mix is a testament to their self-sufficiency. It’s a characteristic that I admire, reflecting their heritage of being diligent sentinels over flocks without close human supervision. With their discerning and vigilant watch, they show a natural inclination to shield their family from potential threats, translating into a protective instinct that is both admirable and imposing.

Socialization and Training Needs

Mastery in guiding this breed’s behavior comes from recognizing the Anatolian Shepherd mix’s socialization and training needs. Positive reinforcement techniques are central to this process, shaping their responses and ensuring that they understand their role within the family dynamic. A commitment of time, about 10 hours a week, is crucial during their formative months. A well-socialized Anatolian Shepherd mix becomes a well-rounded companion, warm to familiar faces yet discerning when it comes to strangers and new experiences.

Loyalty and Possessiveness in the Breed

The depth of the Anatolian Shepherd mix loyalty is profound, and it is one of their most endearing qualities. From my experience, their loyalty can manifest in a form of deep-seated possessiveness—a sincere commitment to the well-being of their ‘pack.’ It’s a powerful bond that garners indelible trust over time. While their immense devotion is one of their standout attributes, it requires careful management to ensure their protective nature remains a strength and not an impediment, especially in the presence of guests or other pets.

CharacteristicsImpact on BehaviorTraining and Socialization Goals
IndependenceCan appear aloof or self-directedTo encourage collaboration and receptiveness to commands
Protective InstinctsMay show guardedness or wariness around strangersTo channel protective traits positively, avoiding aggression
LoyaltyHigh bonding leading to possessivenessTo balance affection with social flexibility

In engaging with Anatolian Shepherd mixes, the joy and challenges coalesce into a rich experience of companionship. Their temperament shapes their narratives, and with careful nurturing, their loyalty becomes an unwavering beacon in the lives of those they watch over.

Anatolian Shepherd Mix Physical Characteristics

As someone deeply enchanted by the Anatolian Shepherd mix puppies, their distinguishing physical traits never cease to amaze me. These pups often inherit the strong, muscular build of their Anatolian ancestry, with a commanding presence that demands attention. With a coat that’s short, smooth, and brimming with color variety—including stunning shades like blue fawn, brindle, and the rich earthy tones of liver—their appearance is as versatile as it is striking.

The physical stature of these breeds is nothing short of remarkable. Males can stand tall at a formidable height of 29 inches, weighing in at a robust 110 to 150 pounds. The females typically reflect a slightly more modest frame, standing up to 27 inches with a weight range of 80 to 120 pounds. Beyond their sheer size, these dogs carry themselves with a regal air, their profiles accented by a variety of markings that often include a distinctive mask, adding an air of mystery to their noble features.

Coat TextureShort, smooth
Coat ColorVaries widely; common hues include blue fawn, brindle, and liver
Male HeightUp to 29 inches
Male Weight110 to 150 pounds
Female HeightUp to 27 inches
Female Weight80 to 120 pounds
Notable MarkingsOften features a mask

In my personal encounters with these majestic dogs, it’s clear that they carry the legacy of their origin—combining the unyielding structure necessary to guard against predators, with a poise that is unmissable in any environment. Whether it’s their towering stature or their expressive coats, Anatolian Shepherd mix puppies communicate strength and beauty in one package—a living testament to their rich heritage.

The Exercise Regimen for an Anatolian Shepherd Mix

Tending to the exercise needs of an Anatolian Shepherd mix is a vital aspect of their care, given their ancestry as working dogs. Staying in tune with their exercise regimen not only enhances their physical prowess but also sharpens their intelligent minds.

Sufficient Outdoor Space Requirements

An integral part of an Anatolian Shepherd mix’s well-being is ample space to stretch their legs and move freely. Owners should ideally provide a large, securely fenced yard for the breed to express its instinctive behavior and maintain muscle tone. The freedom to roam and explore their surroundings fulfills an innate requirement for these dogs that are accustomed to expansive terrains. The absence of such space could lead to pent-up energy and the subsequent development of undesirable behaviors.

Activity Levels and Exercise Ideas

The Anatolian Shepherd mix does not necessarily demand intense workouts; however, they do need regular, consistent activities. Structuring their day with a mix of physical exercise needs and mental activities harmonizes their overall vitality and temperament. Here are some engaging Anatolian Shepherd mix activities:

  • Daily walks or jogs that provide not only exercise but also mental stimulation through new surroundings and smells.
  • Interactive games like fetch or tug-of-war that channel their energy constructively and strengthen the bond between you and your dog.
  • Agility exercises tailored to suit their size and ability, sharpening their coordination and problem-solving skills.
  • Puzzle toys that challenge their intelligence, making idleness productive and enjoyable.

Consistently fulfilling their Anatolian Shepherd mix exercise needs, ideally with at least an hour of dedicated activities daily, ensures these noble dogs maintain their mental acuity and physical health.

Anatolian Shepherd Mix Exercise

As I reflect on the joy these activities bring to both the Anatolian Shepherd mix and their human companions, it’s clear that meeting their exercise requirements is less a duty and more a journey of shared experiences that bolsters the well-being and bond between dog and owner.

Grooming and Maintenance of an Anatolian Shepherd Mix Coat

When it comes to maintaining the regal appearance of an Anatolian Shepherd mix, I find the task surprisingly straightforward. The breed’s coat, while dense, does not command the high maintenance that some may expect. A regular grooming routine helps manage the Anatolian Shepherd mix shedding and keeps their coat in top condition. Let me walk you through my routine that ensures my Anatolian Shepherd mix looks and feels great.

Weekly brushing is my cornerstone for keeping their thick coat free from loose fur, dirt, and anything they might bring in from the outdoors. This routine becomes particularly important during their heavier Anatolian Shepherd mix shedding seasons, which typically occur in the spring and fall. During these times, I often find myself brushing more frequently to help them shed their undercoat and reduce the amount of fur around the house.

Aside from brushing, there are a few other grooming tasks that I diligently perform. Regular baths are on my calendar, typically once every month or so, unless my companion has had an especially muddy adventure. I always check their nails once a month to see if they need a trim. Overgrown nails can cause discomfort or even injury, so it’s something I never overlook.

Daily teeth brushing is another non-negotiable part of our routine. Dental health is paramount, and getting into the habit early has made the process smoother. And of course, those big floppy ears require regular attention too. I check them weekly to prevent any wax buildup or potential infections.

All these steps ensure my Anatolian Shepherd mix’s coat and overall wellbeing are cared for, which is a small price to pay for the companionship and protection these magnificent dogs provide.

BrushingWeekly (daily during shedding seasons)To manage shedding and maintain coat health
BathingMonthlyTo keep the coat clean and reduce odors
Nail checks/trimmingMonthlyTo prevent overgrowth that may cause discomfort
Teeth brushingDailyTo prevent dental disease and promote oral health
Ear checksWeeklyTo identify and manage wax buildup or infection

In summary, Anatolian Shepherd mix grooming doesn’t have to be a rigorous affair. With a consistent and efficient routine, managing Anatolian Shepherd mix shedding and maintaining their majestic looks is entirely achievable. Maintaining the health and cleanliness of their coat solidifies the bond between us and ensures they’re always ready for their next adventure or a relaxing day at our side.

Proper Training Approaches for an Anatolian Shepherd Mix

As I traverse the rewarding path of training Anatolian Shepherd mixes, let me share a core tenet of my approach: patience and adaptability are paramount. Imbuing these canines with the behavioral finesse they need to thrive alongside their human companions demands finesse—a firm yet gentle hand that respects their intelligence and independent nature. The journey to fostering their trainability is always an enlightening experience, one that reaps benefits for both the pup and trainer.

Positive Reinforcement Techniques

One essential method in my training toolkit is positive reinforcement, which proves to be especially effective with Anatolian Shepherd mix trainability. This method involves rewarding behaviors we wish to encourage—a warm “good dog,” a tasty treat, or a joyful play session following a successfully followed command are all examples. Such rewards make learning a joyous event for the dog, amplifying their eagerness to comply and participate in future training sessions. This breed may carry a majestic demeanor, but they do have an appetite for approval and positive experiences.

The art of positive reinforcement extends beyond simple treat-giving. It’s about timing, ensuring the treat follows the desired behavior promptly, and about consistency, reinforcing the same commands with the same rewards. Rewarding remotely desirable behavior can sometimes set back training, so precision is key.

Consistency and Patience in Training

In my experience, consistent repetition is the scaffolding upon which the training of an Anatolian Shepherd mix is built. Each session builds upon the last, strengthening the companionship between handler and canine as much as it cements the commands being taught. Patience is a virtue here; the breed’s tendency to process cues more deliberately necessitates a steady and understanding hand.

Another critical Anatolian Shepherd mix training tip is to avoid protection or guard dog training. Their inherent protective instincts are sufficiently potent, and additional training targeted at enhancing these aspects can inadvertently foster aggression. Instead, focus on general obedience and socialization to produce a well-adjusted, sociable dog that can distinguish between everyday occurrences and genuine threats.

Anatolian Shepherd Mix Training Methods

Training TechniqueApplicationTraining Outcome
Positive ReinforcementDirectly after the desired actionIncreases likelihood of behavior repetition
Consistent CommandsRegular training intervalsCements understanding and obedience
Patient ProgressionThroughout training, regardless of speed of learningBuilds trust and a positive learning environment

The skill of training an Anatolian Shepherd mix ultimately means embracing their unique personality and strengths. It’s about establishing mutual respect, mastering the balance between guidance and allowing natural behaviors to flourish. With dedication and the right approach, these majestic mixes will not only learn but will eagerly look forward to the joy of each training session.

Common Health Considerations of an Anatolian Shepherd Mix

Throughout my time with the Anatolian Shepherd mix, I have learned that while these majestic dogs typically boast a strong constitution, certain health considerations are intrinsic to their breed. Awareness of the Anatolian Shepherd mix health issues is imperative for any responsible owner, and routine veterinary checkups cannot be overstated in maintaining their well-being. Let’s examine some of the health issues that may influence the Anatolian Shepherd mix lifespan.

Anatolian Shepherd Mix Health

Akin to their purebred counterparts, Anatolian Shepherd mixes are generally hardy. However, like all breeds, they do have a susceptibility to specific health conditions. Notably, they have fewer cases of hip dysplasia and bloat compared to similar large breeds, which is a testament to their robust lineage. Nevertheless, vigilance on the part of the owner can go a long way in early identification and management of potential health risks.

Anesthesia sensitivity, for one, requires careful consideration and communication with your veterinarian should your pet require surgery. Entropion, an eye condition wherein the eyelid rolls inward causing irritation, is another ailment to watch for. Regular monitoring for these conditions is essential for the health and comfort of your canine companion.

Moreover, obesity can creep up unnoticed, and active steps should be taken to maintain a healthy weight through diet and exercise. Infections, no matter how minor they seem, should be promptly addressed to prevent complications. Similarly, dental health often goes overlooked, yet it bears significant importance in preserving your dog’s overall health.

Health IssuePotential ImpactPreventive Measures
Anesthesia SensitivityComplications during surgical proceduresDiscuss with a veterinarian before any surgery
EntropionEye irritation or damageRegular eye checks, surgical correction if necessary
ObesityIncrease in joint, heart, and metabolic disordersModerate diet, regular exercise
InfectionsCan lead to more serious health issues if untreatedUp-to-date vaccinations, prompt veterinary care
Dental DiseaseCan lead to systemic health problemsDaily dental hygiene practices, regular checkups

These represent just a snapshot of what to keep in mind for the health of an Anatolian Shepherd mix. As always, a proactive stance on vaccinations and parasite control is recommended to fortify your pet’s defenses against common ailments. By staying alert to the Anatolian Shepherd mix health issues, you can champion a long and fulfilling Anatolian Shepherd mix lifespan for your cherished guardian.

Nutritional Needs for a Balanced Anatolian Shepherd Mix Diet

As a proud guardian of an Anatolian Shepherd mix, I’m always mindful of their dietary needs. What stands out is that my companion doesn’t require a unique diet nor do they show tendencies to overeat. Nonetheless, providing a Anatolian Shepherd mix diet that’s well-balanced and attuned to their different life stages is quintessential for their overall health and vitality. Ensuring that my Anatolian has access to nutritionally rich meals fortifies their ability to play, protects, and be that lovable member of the family. Let’s delve into the dietary preferences of this sizable and sincere companion.

Understanding the Breed’s Dietary Preferences

Navigating through the complexities of what to feed my Anatolian Shepherd mix, I’ve learned that simplicity often reigns supreme. A traditional lamb and rice meal has been a fitting choice, delivering a taste they love with the nutrition they need. This isn’t surprising given the breed’s origin from regions where lamb is a staple. However, I always embrace variety and ensure each Anatolian Shepherd mix feeding session introduces a multitude of vitamins and minerals that cater to growth, maintenance, and the immune system—all pivotal for their well-being.

Managing Weight and Overfeeding

Maintaining a healthy weight is a constant endeavor in caring for my Anatolian Shepherd mix. It’s all too easy to slip an extra treat as a sign of affection, but it’s the measured meals and controlled treat indulgences that sustain their ideal weight. I usually split their daily dietary intake into two fulfilling portions to keep them satisfied and energized throughout the day. Lastly, frequent check-ins with the veterinarian guide me to fine-tune their diet for optimal health.

Meal ComponentBenefitsRecommended Portion
Proteins (Lamb)Builds muscles and repairs tissuesDependent on size and activity level
Whole Grains (Rice)Provides energy and supports digestionPart of balanced meals
Vitamins & MineralsSupports immune system and overall healthIncluded in high-quality commercial dog food
Measured MealsMaintains ideal body weightConsult with veterinarian
TreatsUsed for positive reinforcement trainingLimited to avoid excess weight gain

Is the Anatolian Shepherd Mix the Right Breed for You?

Exploring the suitability of an Anatolian Shepherd mix as a family pet involves a holistic understanding of the breed’s characteristics and their fit within your lifestyle. These noble canines possess a suite of traits that, while impressive, require commitment to fully appreciate and accommodate.

An Anatolian Shepherd mix’s suitability as a family pet comes down to several key factors. Their inclination for independence means they thrive under the guidance of an understanding owner, one attuned to the nuances of their personality. Delving into conversations with experienced veterinarians, breed owners, and reputable breeders has armed me with a wealth of knowledge about what it truly means to welcome this breed into my home.

Despite their large size, which may seem daunting, they often exhibit a calm demeanor, making them engaging companions. However, potential owners must consider the time and patience required for their extensive socialization and training needs. This breed’s protective nature is a double-edged sword; it underpins their loyalty to family yet calls for considered management to ensure their guarding instincts remain appropriate and controlled.

The need for space cannot be overstated when discussing the Anatolian Shepherd mix’s suitability. Their lineage hails from open terrains, a trait echoed in their desire for the freedom to roam and patrol. Small living spaces do a disservice to their nature and can lead to frustration and behavioral issues. The idyllic setting for an Anatolian Shepherd mix to flourish is one providing a spacious environment where they can express their instincts freely.

When making the decision to adopt an Anatolian Shepherd mix as a family pet, I urge prospective owners to evaluate not just the desire for such a companion, but also the practicality of facilitating the physical and psychological nourishment these dogs require. They are not merely pets; they become an integral part of the family tapestry, requiring a thoughtful blend of love, structure, and understanding.

It’s clear that Anatolian Shepherd mixes bring a wealth of joy, loyalty, and security to a home. However, the decision to adopt one should be preceded by a meticulous evaluation of your living space, lifestyle, and willingness to invest in their growth and care. The investment of time is not trivial, but for those who proceed, the returns are immeasurable.

  • Consider the breed’s need for socialization and space.
  • Recognize their protective nature and establish if it aligns with your expectations of a family pet.
  • Evaluate your environment—is it conducive to the well-being of an Anatolian Shepherd mix?
  • Reflect on your ability to provide the necessary training and lifelong care.

In my assessment, welcoming an Anatolian Shepherd mix into your family is a decision that should be made with both heart and mind. They beckon to those who appreciate the breed’s dual capacity for guardianship and companionship, and in the right environment, they impeccably fulfill the role of a devoted family pet.


As we reach the culmination of our journey into the Anatolian Shepherd mix’s life and needs, I find reflection to be an essential step. Considering an Anatolian Shepherd mix’s care is not a decision to be taken lightly, given their requirement for dedicated training, sufficient socialization, and ample living space. This breed is not merely a pet but a long-term commitment that becomes a part of your everyday life and family fabric.

Assessing Your Ability to Meet the Breed’s Needs

When pondering Anatolian Shepherd mix compatibility with your lifestyle, ask yourself if you are ready to adapt and provide for a large and active breed. These mixes demand an owner who is not only affectionate but also diligent in meeting their exercise needs, grooming routines, and, most crucially, their mental stimulation needs. Responsible ownership means being proactive and responsive to their unique personalities and the responsibilities they entail.

Final Words on Sharing Your Life with an Anatolian Shepherd Mix

My final thoughts sway towards the immense joy and fulfillment that come from sharing your life with an Anatolian Shepherd mix. The partnership is built on mutual understanding and respect, with the results painting a picture of loyalty and companionship that is unmatched. For those who choose to embrace the challenges and weave the needs of this noble breed into the tapestry of their daily routines, the reward is a bond that transcends the ordinary—a bold, beautiful shared existence.


What are some defining characteristics of an Anatolian Shepherd mix?

Anatolian Shepherd mixes are known for their large, strong, and athletic build. They display natural protective instincts as they originate from a lineage of livestock guardians. These dogs possess a short, smooth coat that comes in a variety of colors and are recognized for being loyal and alert, but may also be wary towards strangers.

What is the history behind the Anatolian Shepherd mix?

The Anatolian Shepherd mix comes from a strong heritage that dates back to ancient Turkey, where they served as indispensable guardians of livestock. They were bred for both their physical prowess to deter predators and their adaptability to harsh climates. The breed made its U.S. debut before World War II and was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1996.

How do I manage the independent and protective nature of my Anatolian Shepherd mix?

Managing their independent and protective instincts involves early socialization, consistent training using positive reinforcement, and adequate exercise. Patience and time investment in their training routine are also crucial to help them become well-adjusted, and comfortable around strangers and other pets. Their loyalty can result in possessive behaviors, which can be moderated with appropriate training.

Can you describe the physical traits of Anatolian Shepherd mix puppies?

Anatolian Shepherd mix puppies will grow up to be large and muscular with a significant difference in size between males and females. They exhibit a short, smooth coat with possible color variations like blue fawn, brindle, and liver. Their impressive physical stature will often include distinctive facial markings, including a mask.

What type of exercise regimen is suitable for an Anatolian Shepherd mix?

Anatolian Shepherd mixes require a moderate amount of exercise to keep them healthy and mentally stimulated. They thrive with space to roam, so a large, fenced yard is ideal. One hour of daily activity like walking, jogging, or interactive play, along with mental challenges provided by puzzle toys, can meet their physical and mental exercise needs.

How should I groom my Anatolian Shepherd mix?

Grooming an Anatolian Shepherd mix is relatively low-maintenance. Weekly brushing is typically enough to manage their shedding fur, with more frequent grooming necessary during seasonal changes. They will also benefit from regular baths, monthly nail check-ups, daily teeth brushing, and weekly ear inspections.

What are the key points in training an Anatolian Shepherd mix?

Important training approaches for an Anatolian Shepherd mix include consistent use of positive reinforcement techniques and dedication to regular, patient training sessions. This breed can be strong-willed and benefits from consistency in command reinforcement, along with early socialization to prevent the development of aggressive behaviors.

What are some common health issues in Anatolian Shepherd mixes?

While generally healthy, Anatolian Shepherd mixes can be prone to certain conditions such as hip dysplasia, bloat, anesthesia sensitivity, entropion, obesity, and various infections including dental diseases. It’s essential to keep up with regular veterinary check-ups and preventive care to maintain their health.

What is the ideal diet for an Anatolian Shepherd mix?

The optimal diet for an Anatolian Shepherd mix should be balanced and suitable for their life stage, consisting of high-quality dog food. They don’t typically overeat, but monitoring treats and meal sizes is necessary to prevent obesity. Consultation with a vet can help establish the right diet plan, sometimes including traditional choices like lamb and rice.

How can I determine if an Anatolian Shepherd mix is a good fit for my home?

Deciding if an Anatolian Shepherd mix is right for your family involves considering their need for socialization, space, and their protective temperament. These dogs are calm and loyal family members but may not be ideal for households with small children due to their large size. Prospective owners should thoroughly research and consult with knowledgeable sources such as veterinarians and breeders before making a decision.

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