Semperviva is a Bulgarian organization which started to breed livestock uarding dogs again. Every year, one or two litters of puppies are raised. When the puppies are old enough they are taken (for free) to pre-selected shepherds, who sign an agreement confirming their understanding of how to take care of the dogs. The dogs need to work in pairs and very often a younger pup is trained by an adult dog. With its follow-up programme Semperviva checks on the dogs twice a year until they are confident that the dogs behaviour is appropriate. Bears in Mind funded the breeding project between 2002-2011.
In the old days, the Karakachan dog breed was used specially to protect flocks of sheep. The Semperviva programme makes it possible for shepherds to obtain a puppy and receive training in how to care for the dogs and use them to protect their livestock. Every year, a dozen puppies were placed in the eastern part of the Rhodopy mountains in Bulgaria. Furthermore, the number of attacks by bears and wolves before and after the introduction of the dogs are compared. Over the years, it has been proven that flocks accompanied by these dogs have suffered substantially less losses to large carnivores.