BREED INFORMATION

American Eskimo Dog

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Eskie
  • American Spitz
Country/Date of origin:
  • United...

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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Eskie
  • American Spitz
Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • 1900′s

Height:
  • Toy:  9 to 12 inches

  • Miniature:  12 to 15 inches

  • Standard:  15 to 19 inches

Weight:
  • Toy:  Under 10 pounds

  • Miniature:  10 to 18 pounds

  • Standard:  20 to 35 pounds

Personality:
  • Playful, intelligent, and eager to please.

  • One-family dog.

  • Wary of strangers.

  • Slightly conservative.

  • Will bark to warn of intruders.

History:

The descendent of larger Spitz dogs imported from Germany in the 1800′s, the American Eskimo was created by selectively breeding for a small size and a pure white coat.  It was not descended from sled dogs, as is popularly thought.  The strong hunting instincts of the ancestors of the American Eskimo dog have been replaced with an inbred guarding skill.  Primarily a companion animal, the little white American version of the Spitz has been recognized by the United Kennel Club (UKC) since 1913.  In 1995 the American Kennel Club (AKC) granted the Eskie full status.  There are three variations of the Eskie, identical in every way except size.

Body Type:
  • A small, typically-built dog of the Northern dog group.

  • Looks like a miniature Samoyed.

  • Three sizes:  Toy, Miniature and Standard.

  • The long tail is carried high over the back and is not altered.

  • The ears are erect and never altered.

Coat:
  • Thick, plush undercoat with a harsher outercoat that should never wave or curl.

  • Contains natural oil that repels soil so frequent bathing is not required.

  • Permissible colors are white or off white.

  • Sheds heavily in spring and summer, otherwise grooming is moderate.

Health and Wellness:
  • Exceptionally healthy.

  • Thrombopathia.

  • Generalized tremor.

What you should know:
  • Puppies of this breed are irresistible.

  • They look like little polar bears.

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Australian Terrier

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Aussie

  • Broken-coated Terrier

Country/Date of origin:
  • ...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Aussie

  • Broken-coated Terrier

Country/Date of origin:
  • Australia

  • 19th century

Height:
  • 10 inches 

Weight:
  • 12 to 14 pounds

Personality:
  • Very eager to please.

  • Active and alert.

  • Makes an excellent watchdog.

  • Courageous in the way of terriers but not hyperactive.

  • Trains easily.

  • Aussies are not snappy or yappy.  If they bark, there is a reason.

History:

A rough-and-ready terrier that was developed for the rigorous demands of the Australian outback.  It was created by blending Cairn, Dandie Dinmont, Irish, Scottish, and probably Yorkshire Terriers.  Adept at hunting vermin, the Aussie will even tackle snakes.  Recognized by the British Kennel Club in 1933 it was not admitted to registry by the American Kennel Club (AKC) until 1960.

Body Type:
  • A robust, little, working terrier that is rather long in body.

  • Small erect ears are left natural

  • Tail is altered.

Coat:
  • Harsh, double coat with topknot on head and ruff around throat

  • Outer coat is stiff, straight and dense.  Undercoat is soft.

  • Colors are blue-black or silver-black with tan markings, or a solid red or sandy color.

  • Coat is easy to maintain without professional attention.

Health and Wellness:
  • Generally robust and healthy breed.

  • Hot spots and skin eczema

What you should know:
  • Puppies are usually born black.

  • History of longevity.

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American Foxhound

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Virginia Hound

Country/Date of Origin:
  • United States

  • 18th...

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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Virginia Hound

Country/Date of Origin:
  • United States

  • 18th century

Height:
  • Females:  21 to 24 inches

  • Males:  22 to 25 inches

Weight:
  • 65 to 75 pounds

Personality:
  • A sweet nature but not particularly people oriented.  This is especially true of dogs raised in a pack.  They tend to bond with others of their own kind instead.

  • Not homebodies.  American Foxhounds will roam if given the chance.

  • Extremely active.

  • Do not adapt well to confined quarters.

History:

The ancestry of American Foxhounds can be traced back to the hounds owned by Robert Brooke in the 1650′s.  He brought English Foxhounds with him and bred them to be more suitable for hunting in the rolling hills of Maryland and Virginia.  Later, fanciers blended in strains of other English, French, and Irish hounds.  The result was a lighter-boned hound with a keener sense of smell than its English counterpart.  The American Foxhound is considered a dog of the Southeastern states, where fox hunting was considered a gentleman’s sport.

Body Type:
  • A substantial hound with lines that reveal its great athletic ability.

  • Hanging ears are not altered.

  • Tail is carried erect with a slight curve and is not altered.

Coat:
  • Short and harsh to the touch.

  • Any of the hound colors are acceptable.

  • The most commonly seen are black, tan, and white tricolors or piebald marking of tan or lemon on a white background.

Health and Wellness:
  • Hip dysplasia.

  • A blood disease found only in this breed is sometimes fatal.

  • Some genetic deafness.

What you should know:
  • The sweet music of the American Foxhound has been incorporated into popular songs.

  • American foxhounds exhibit two unique traits in the field. They do not give tongue on the fox’s trail unless they are taking the lead or challenging the leading hound, and they have an uncanny homing sense.

  • The Guinness Book of Records list an American Foxhound as having the largest recorded litter—Lena produced 23 healthy pups.

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Azawakh

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Tuareg Sloughi

Country/Date of origin:
  • Mali

  • 1000 AD

...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Tuareg Sloughi

Country/Date of origin:
  • Mali

  • 1000 AD

Height:
  • 23 to 29 inches

Weight:
  • 37 to 55 pounds

Personality:
  • Aloof and haughty.

  • Not friendly to strangers.

  • Clean in its personal habits, almost to the point of being cat-like.

History:

The nomadic Tuareg tribes of the southern Sahara have a unique sighthound breed, the Azawakh.  In the traditional role of the sighthound, the Azawakh chases down gazelles and other fleet game animals and slows them down so that mounted hunters can dispatch the quarry.  The Azawakh, which is related to the Sloughi and the smooth Saluki, can be distinguished from by its distinctive red coloration and white socks, and the fact that it has a shorter body.  In its native Mali, the dog is used as a guard as well.  In 1970, some examples of the breed were taken to France and have attracted a small but dedicated following for the breed.

Body Type:
  • A short-coupled dog of the greyhound family.

  • Pendant ears hug the cheeks and neck.

  • Long tail is not altered.

  • The backskull is wider than that of the other running dogs.

  • Swellings on the side of the face are a breed hallmark.

Coat:
  • Short, thin coat is very glossy.

  • Color is red, ranging from light to dark or brindle.

  • Dogs should have white on legs, or at least white socks.

  • Minimal grooming.

Health and Wellness:
  • Skin allergies.

  • Sensitivities to anesthesia and several insecticides common in flea and tick preparations.

What you should know:
  • Pronounce ahza-wok.

  • One of the fastest running dogs, it has been clocked at 40 miles per hour.

  • The Azawakh’s instincts are to chase and knock down anything that moves fast.

  • Finding a puppy in this breed will take some looking.

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American Pitbull Terrier

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Pit Bull Terrier

  • American Pit Bull

  • Yankee Terrier

  • APBT

...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Pit Bull Terrier

  • American Pit Bull

  • Yankee Terrier

  • APBT

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • 18 to 22 inches

     
Weight:
  • 50 to 80 pounds

Personality:
  • Tenacious and fearless.

  • Has a strong assertive personality.

  • Can be aggressive toward other dogs.

  • Although this dog’s name brings fear to the minds of many, mainly because of mis-informed media hype, when bred and raised by responsible breeders and owners, American Pit Bull Terriers (APBT) can be excellent family pets.

History:

The ancestors of this breed were brought to the United States by Irish immigrants in the mid-1800′s.  It was descended from the English Bull and Terrier, which was already a cross of the original English Bulldog and various English terriers, including the English White Terrier (now extinct), and the Black and Tan Terrier.  Staffordshire Bull Terriers have basically the same origin as the APBT.  They were bred specifically for dog-fighting, which was outlawed in most states in the early 1900′s.  Although the APBT is often associated today with aggressiveness, many people will also remember Petie (the dog of the Little Rascals) was an APBT.  Careful breeding, accurate training, and loving care are important elements to maintaining a sweet nature in this breed.  It is not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) or the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI).  The primary registry body for this very popular breed is the United Kennel Club (UKC).  It was the first breed recognized by them 1898.

Body Type:
  • A powerful dog, with a broad, slablike head and immensely strong jaws.

  • The medium-length tail is carried low and is not altered.

  • The ears are cropped short.

Coat:
  • Short, close, and stiff.

  • Any color or combination of colors is allowed.

  • Minimal grooming is required.

Health and Wellness:
  • Generally very healthy.

  • Possible hip dysplasia.

What you should know:
  • This is probably the most feared and legislated against dog in the world.

  • Ownership of this breed is not to be undertaken lightly.

  • Some insurance companies will not provide liability insurance if you own an American Pit Bull Terrier.

  • Check with your insurance company before purchasing a puppy.

  • Banned in England under the Dangerous Dogs Act of 1991.

  • Be sure to research your choice of breeder and act responsibly in training and raising this dog to be assured of owning a gentle, loyal, and loving companion.

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Balinese

Personality:
  • Gregarious, people-loving cats.

  • Demonstrative and affectionate.

  • Loves...

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Personality:
  • Gregarious, people-loving cats.

  • Demonstrative and affectionate.

  • Loves to be on shoulders and laps.

  • Easily trained to walk on a leash and to fetch.

  • Softer voice than their Siamese counterparts.

History:

Originated as a spontaneous genetic mutation in litters of Siamese cats that resulted in some kittens being born with long hair.  Although longhaired Siamese have always appeared in Siamese litters, it wasn’t until the 1940′s that a serious effort to promote the longhaired version as a separate breed was initiated.  Accepted for championship in the Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) in 1970.  In CFA, any colors other than seal point, blue point, chocolate point and lilac point are considered to be a separate breed known as Javanese.  There is no such color distinction in The International Cat Assocation (TICA).

Body Type:
  • Medium-sized with long, svelte lines, fine bones and firm muscles.

  • Plume like tail.

  • Head is a long, tapering wedge with large, pointed ears.

  • Blue eyes are almond shaped.

Coat:
  • Coat is medium long, fine and silky, and without an undercoat.

  • Mask, ears, legs, feet, and tail are pointed.

  • Long coat does not mat and sheds less than many shorthaired breeds.

  • Body is a contrasting pale color that darkens slightly as the cat matures.

  • Kittens are born white, developing colorpoints when they are seven to 10 days old.

Health and Wellness:
  • Gingivitis has occurred in some lines.  Preventive dental care and early treatment can keep this condition under control.

  • These cats are meant to be lean and muscular.  Watch the weight of neutered cats.

What you should know:
  • Although like Siamese, some Balinese may have crossed eyes or a kinked tail.  These are only show faults and do not effect the well-being of the cat.

  • Balinese enjoy company and do best when they have a companion cat.

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American Shorthair

Personality:
  • Intelligent and grounded.

  • Easygoing, sweet, and loving.

  • Considered to...

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Personality:
  • Intelligent and grounded.

  • Easygoing, sweet, and loving.

  • Considered to be a true breed of working cat.

  • Healthy and hardy.

History:

Descendants of the Colonial farm cat who were prized for their ability to control rodent populations.  Selective breeding began in the early 1900′s when foreign breeds threatened to alter their natural barn cat beauty, hardiness, and mild temperament.  Known as the Domestic Shorthair until 1966, when the name was changed to American Shorthair.  Accepted for championship status in all breed organizations since the 1960′s.

Body Type:
  • A cat that is medium to large in size, well-balanced, strongly built, and symmetrical.  No part of the body should be exaggerated.

  • Head is broad and rounded with a full-cheeked face and medium-sized, round-tipped ears.

  • Eyes are medium large, wide set, and complement coat color.

Coat:
  • Coat is short, thick, even, and hard in texture.

  • All colors and patterns accepted.

  • Brown and silver tabbies are the most common.

Health and Wellness:
  • Amyloidosis.

What you should know:
  • One of the top ten most popular breeds in the United States and the number one breed in Japan.

  • Although American Shorthairs are built to have the strength and ability to forge on their own, please keep yours indoors where it will be safe from disease and other dangers.

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Basenji

Other names:
  • Zaire Terrier

  • Barkless Dog

  • Congo Terrier

Country/Date of origin:
  • ...
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Other names:
  • Zaire Terrier

  • Barkless Dog

  • Congo Terrier

Country/Date of origin:
  • Central Africa

  • 4,000 BC

Height:
  • 16 to 17 inches at shoulder

Weight:
  • 22 to 24 pounds

Personality:
  • Proud, alert, and intelligent.

  • Loves to play and will entice you to join by rubbing a paw over its ear and down its face like a cat.

  • Tends to be a one-family dog.

History:

Thought to have originated in the rain forest of Central Africa in what is now Zaire and the Sudan, but the Basenji was first depicted on the tombs of ancient Egypt.  The dogs were most likely tribute offerings to the Pharaohs.  The first pair brought to England in 1895 caused a sensation.  Early attempts to breed Basenjis in Europe and the United States were thwarted by distemper outbreaks.  In 1943 the barkless dogs were registered by the American Kennel Club (AKC).

Body Type:
  • A medium-sized, lightly-built, compact dog with pricked ears and a curly tail carried to one side of the back.

  • A wrinkled forehead is one of the most distinctive features of the breed.

  • Erect ears are not altered.

  • Tightly curled tail is not altered.

Coat:
  • Silky coat has an unusual luster, like burnished copper.

  • Allowed colors are chestnut red, black, or black-and-tan, all with white feet, chest, and tail tip.

  • White legs, white blazes, and white collars are optional.

  • Brindle coloring has been recently allowed.

  • Short coat is low maintenance.

  • Requires only minimal brushing and bathing.

Health and Wellness:
  • Pyruvate kinase (Pk) deficiency.

  • Persistent pupillary membranes.

  • Immunoproliferative enteropathy (lymphocyte-plasmacytic enteritis).

  • Fanconi syndromer.

What you should know:
  • This is a dog that cannot bark.  It is not silent, but makes yodeling and chortling noises.

  • Native hunters tie a wooden bell around the dog’s neck to keep track of its whereabouts.

  • Basenji means bush thing.

  • Extremely clean animals.  They wash themselves like cats and have almost no odor.

  • Basenjis are very active.

  • They are considered one of the sight-hunting hounds and the breed is eligible for AKC coursing events.

  • Bitches may come into season only once a year instead of every six months as most breeds do.

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American Staffordshire Terrier

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Am Staff

  • Pit Bull

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • ...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Am Staff

  • Pit Bull

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • 20th century

Height:
  • Females:  17 to 18 inches

  • Males:  18 to 19 inches

Weight:
  • 40 to 50 pounds 

Personality:
  • Legendary courage and tenacity.

  • Not trustworthy with other dogs or cats.

  • Intelligent but independent personality does not make for easy trainability.

  • Natural protective instincts.

History:

Originated in 19th century England by crossing Bulldogs and various terriers, the Am Staff was refined to its present looks in the United States.  Impossible to divorce the breed from its pit-fighting past.  Registered by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1935 under the name Staffordshire Terrier.  In 1972 the AKC name was changed to American Staffordshire Terrier to differentiate it from the smaller Staffordshire Bull Terrier from England, which was not recognized until 1975.

Body Type:
  • Stocky, powerful, and muscular body.

  • Head is broad with pronounced cheek muscles.

  • Unaltered ears preferred but can be cropped to stand upright.

  • Tail appears short in relation to body and is not altered.

  • Movement is fluid and springy.

Coat:
  • Short and stiff to the touch.

  • Glossy sheen to hair.

  • Any color, solid, parti, or patched allowed.

  • All or more than 80% white, black and tan, and liver not desirable.

Health and Wellness:
  • Hip dysplasia.

  • Elbow dysplasia.

  • Congenital deafness.

  • Mast cell tumor.

  • Atopy.

  • Progressive retinal atrophy.

  • Squamous cell carcinomas (SCC, actinic).

  • Actinic keratosis.

  • Cushing’s syndrome (PDH and AT).

  • Hemangiomas (actinic).

  • Hemangiosarcomas.

What you should know:
  • Legislation prohibits ownership of this breed in many areas.

  • Not to be confused with similar appearing American Pit Bull, which is a much more aggressive dog.

  • Uncanny ability to distinguish friend from foe.

  • Adult dogs adjust to new owners in unusually short time.

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Basset Hound

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Other names:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
    ...
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Other names:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • France

  • 1500′s

Height: 
  • 13 to 15 inches

Weight:
  • 40 to 60 pounds

Personality:
  • Good natured and easy going.

  • Has a great sense of humor.

  • Stubborn.

  • Not too intelligent.

  • It seems that about 90% of the brain is directly wired to the nose.

  • Very difficult to train.

History:

Although the Basset family of dogs originated in France, the one Americans know as the Basset was refined in England in the last part of the 19th century.  The scent trailing breed was developed by French nobility to hunt rabbit, hare, deer, and other game that could be taken on foot.  The shortness of leg and bulky body make the Basset especially useful in dense cover.  The amusingly shaped body is really quite efficient at punching into thickets.  Recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1885, the breed had an amazing spurt of popularity in the 1950′s when it was the darling of the advertising world.

Body Type:
  • A long, low dog.

  • The Basset looks as if it has a Bloodhound’s head set on a Dachshund’s body.

  • The long, hanging ears are not altered.  They help to gather the scent into the nose while tracking.

  • Tails are carried above the line of the back and are not altered.

  • The Basset’s leg bones are the heaviest of any breed.

Coat:
  • Short, glossy coat lies close to the loose, wrinkled skin.

  • Sheds more than most short-haired dogs.

  • Colors are all hound colors, but the most commonly seen are combinations of black, tan, and white or red and white.

  • Minimal grooming.

Health and Wellness:
  • Gastric dilatation and volvulus syndrome (GDV, also commonly called bloat).

  • Basset Hound thrombopathy.

  • von Willebrand’s disease.

  • Glaucoma.

  • Intervertebral disc disease.

  • Otitis externa.

  • Atopy.

  • Seborrhea.

  • Patella luxation.

  • Urolithiasis (cystine).

  • Lymphoma.

  • Trichoepitheliomas.

  • Pilomatrixomas. 

What you should know:
  • Bas is the French word for low.  One look at the Basset and you can see why it carries its name.

  • Bassets are said to have the most musical voice in the dog world.  The world is treated to their vocal expressions quite often, too.

  • Bassets used for hunting are higher on the leg and not as stocky as the show and pet Basset.

  • Hunters traditionally follow these hare hunters on foot.

  • George Washington hunted with a pair of Bassets given to him by Lafayette.

 

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American Water Spaniel

Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • Late 1800′s

...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • Late 1800′s

Height:
  • 15 to 18 inches

Weight:
  • Females: 25 to 40 pounds

  • Males:  30 to 45 pounds 

Personality:
  • Intelligent and trainable.

  • A natural retriever.

  • Affectionate towards people.

  • Gets along well with other dogs.

  • Noisy.

  • A watchdog that will bark an alarm.

History:

One of the few breeds native to the United States, the American Water Spaniel was obviously created by mixing Irish Water Spaniels and Curly-Coated Retrievers.  Not particularly handsome, it is a tireless worker and adept at flushing upland game or retrieving waterfowl.  Recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) since 1940.

Body Type:
  • A long-legged, medium-sized, spaniel.

  • The long tail is covered with hair.  It is not altered.

  • Long, wide ears are set high on the head.  Ears are heavily feathered and are not altered.

Coat:
  • A dense coat of moderately-long, close curls.  Water-resistant.

  • Always chocolate or liver in color.

  • Does not have a topknot.

  • Hair on the forehead is smooth, but the ears are covered with close curls of a longer length than the body hair.

Health and Wellness:
  • Skin allergies.

What you should know:
  • A very rare breed.

  • Puppies will be extremely difficult to find.

  • Most of the American Water Spaniels are in the Midwest.

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Beagle

Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • Great Britain

  • 14th century

...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • Great Britain

  • 14th century

Height (two categories):
  •  Under 13 inches
  • 13 to 15 inches

Weight:
  • 15 to 18 pounds for under 13 inch group

  • 20 to 22 pounds for 15 inch height group 

Personality:
  • Beagles love everybody.

  • Cheerful and upbeat personality.

  • Because it traditionally worked in a pack, Beagles get along well with other dogs.

  • Quite vocal.  Those who appreciate this quality think the Beagle has a beautiful voice.  Those who don’t like barkers will want to avoid this breed.

History:

Beagles have been the rabbit hunter’s breed of choice since the days of Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I of England.  Bred for sportsmen to follow on foot, the versatile Beagle can be used singly, as a couple (two dogs), or in a pack.  Packs of the merry little hound have been in the United States since the Revolutionary War.  They were one of the foundation breeds of the American Kennel Club (AKC).  The most popular of the hound breeds in the United States, the Beagle is actively hunted and there are more competitive field events for Beagles than any other hunting dogs.  The Beagles are separated into two varieties by height and shown separately.  Beagles up to 13 inches at the shoulder are called 13-inch Beagles.  Those from 13 to 15 inches at the shoulder are called 15-inch Beagles.  Other than size, the two varieties are identical.

Body Type:
  • Looks like a miniature version of the Foxhound, which it is.

  • Long, hanging ears are not altered.

  • Tail is carried above the level of the back and is not altered.

Coat:
  • Short, shiny coat is easy to care for.

  • Can be any of the hound colors but a combination of black, tan, and white is the most popular.

  • Minimal grooming.

Health and Wellness:
  • Hip dysplasia.

  • Factor VII deficiency.

  • Hemophilia.

  • Pyruvate kinase (PK) deficiency.

  • Pulmonic stenosis.

  • Autoimmune thyroid disease.

  • Congenital deafness.

  • Immunoglobulin A (IgA) deficiency.

  • Mast cell tumor.

  • Dilated cardiomyopathy.

  • Autoimmune thyroid disease.

  • Diabetes mellitus.

  • Demodicosis.

  • Atopy.

  • Idiopathic epilepsy.

  • Intervertebral disc disease.

  • Glaucoma.

  • Chronic hepatitis.

  • Cushing’s disease (PDH).

  • Mitral insufficiency.

  • Bladder tumors.

What you should know:
  • A miniature form, called a Pocket Beagle, was popular until World War I.

  • Snoopy, of Daisy Hill Puppy Farm, is perhaps the world’s most famous Beagle.

  • Beagles are known to suffer from wanderlust and wander off wherever their nose leads them.

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Anatolian Shepherd

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Karabash

Country/Date of origin:
  • Turkey

  • 1000 BC

Height:
...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Karabash

Country/Date of origin:
  • Turkey

  • 1000 BC

Height:
  • Females:  from 27 inches

  • Males:  from 29 inches 

Weight:
  • Females:  80 to 120 pounds

  • Males:  110 to 150 pounds

     
Personality:
  • Has a possessive attitude toward family, property, and livestock.  Most definitely a guard dog.

  • Quick to learn, it exhibits great versatility and has been known to perform well as a search and rescue dog.

  • Needs mental stimulation to prevent boredom.

  • This is a lot of very dominant dog to cope with.

  • Not for the first time dog owner.

History:

This guard dog was developed by shepherds to protect their flocks of sheep from wolves.  An ancient breed, depicted in ancient Babylonian sculptures, it has come down through the centuries relatively unchanged.  Strict selection for working qualities, type, and strength has ensured that the breed is immensely tough and has great stamina.  Large numbers of Anatolian Shepherds are still used to guard the flocks in Turkey today.  In 1970, a club was set up in the United States to promote the interests of the breed.  This coincided with an upsurge in the coyote population in the American West and a movement to use guardian dogs for predator control instead of poison and other methods that had not been effective.  The dogs have proven to be cost effective and a more humane way to control predators than indiscriminate poisoning.

Body Type:
  • Typical of the large, sheep-guardian breeds.

  • The long tail is carried low with the end curled over.  It is not altered.

  • The drop ears are not altered.

Coat:
  • The coat is short and dense with a thick undercoat.

  • The allowed colors are cream to fawn, or striped brindle with black mask and ears.

  • Minimal grooming required, except during annual shedding.

Health and Wellness:
  • Can be subject to hip dysplasia.

What you should know:
  • This dog does better in an outdoor situation and is not recommended as a house pet.

  • Obedience training is highly recommended.

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Bearded Collie

Other names:
  • Beardie

Country/Date of origin:
  • Great Britain

  • 1600′s

Height:
  • ...
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Other names:
  • Beardie

Country/Date of origin:
  • Great Britain

  • 1600′s

Height:
  • Females:  20 to 21 inches

  • Males:  21 to 22 inches

Weight:
  • 40 to 60 pounds

Personality:
  • Unequaled as a family dog.

  • Lovable and loving without discrimination.  This, however, makes them poor guard dogs.

  • Intelligent and wants to please.

History:

It is thought that Bearded Collies are descended from Polish or Hungarian sheepdogs.  These continental dogs were interbred with Scottish stock and worked the fields unheralded outside the mountain fastness for centuries.  In the 1700′s, the Beardies had become popular with both shepherds and Scottish aristocracy and by 1800, the breed was a favored pet of all classes.  When dog shows were introduced in the late 19th century, the Beardies path was all uphill.  In the years of World War I, the Beardie hung on by a thread, kept alive by a few shepherds who recognized its working prowess.  In 1944, a brown puppy was sent to Mrs. G. O. Willison, an Englishwoman, who had asked for a Shetland Sheepdog.  She knew it wasn’t a Sheltie, but by the time she was able to identify what it was, she was captivated and worked tirelessly to promote the breed.  From this mystery puppy came almost all the Beardies of today.  In 1967, the first American litter was whelped and the American Kennel Club (AKC) granted the breed full recognition in 1977.

Body Type:
  • Resembles a smaller, thinner, Old English Sheepdog.

  • Arched eyebrows give it a quizzical expression.

  • The tail is medium length, low set, and never altered.

  • Medium-sized, hanging ears are not altered.

Coat:
  • Shaggy, double coat with long, rough outer coat and soft undercoat.

  • Permissible colors are black, brown, reddish-fawn, blue, sandy, or various shades of gray, silver or slate with touches of white.

  • Requires regular brushing to avoid matting and excessive accumulation of dirt.

  • In shows, the coat should appear natural with no traces of trimming.

Health and Wellness:
  • von Willebrand’s disease.

  • Subaortic stenosis.

  • Idiopathic epilepsy.

  • Pemphigus foliaceus.

  • Skin tumors.

What you should know:
  • Homebody—this herding dog does not like to roam.  It needs to make sure that its flock is safe and sound at all times.

  • A clown dog.  Beardies like to entertain those around them.

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Australian Cattle Dog

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Queensland Heeler

  • Queensland Blue Heeler

Country/Date of...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Queensland Heeler

  • Queensland Blue Heeler

Country/Date of Origin:
  • Australia

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • Females:  17 to 19 inches

  • Males:  18 to 20 inches 

Weight:
  • 35 to 45 pounds

Personality:
  • One-person dog.

  • Not friendly to strangers.

  • A natural and determined guard.

  • Totally unbribable.

  • A serious-minded, working dog.  Not given to frivolities.

  • The stocky body is deceptive.  This is an athlete.

History:

The first records of the Australian Cattle Dog date back to about mid-19th century Australia.  In the tropical north, a robust, short-coated dog was needed to herd large, half-wild cattle in the outback.  Beginning with British foundation stock, primarily the Smithfield Heeler, the Aussie stock-men added Dingo blood and a dash of Kelpie for tractability and intelligence.  The result is a no frills, working dog.  Not the most handsome canine, the Aussie Cattle Dog survives for one reason—it is good at its job.  No other breed could drive such rambunctious cattle such long distances in such heat.  The Australian Cattle Dog is as tough as the land that formed it.  Quick to be recognized in its homeland, the breed was entered in the stud book in 1903.  It was not until 1979 that it was given status with the American Kennel Club (AKC).

Body Type:
  • A sturdy, compact, medium-sized dog with a muscular build.

  • The tail hangs in a slight curve and is not altered.

  • The ears are erect and are not altered.

Coat:
  • Rough, moderately-short, double coat.

  • Permissible colors are mottled blue, with or without markings in black, blue, or tan; or speckled red with or without darker red markings.

  • Moderate grooming.

Health and Wellness:
  • Hip dysplasia.

  • Congenital deafness.

  • Portosystemic shunts.

  • Progressive retinal atrophy.

  • Pyoderma.

What you should know:
  • Long-lived.  The Guinness Book of Records lists an Australian Cattle Dog as living longer than any other dog.  Bluey worked cattle and sheep for 20 years before dying at the age of 29 years and five months.

  • In Australia, these dogs ride with the jackaroos (cowboys) on motorcycles and jump from the moving bikes to work the cows.

  • Heelers work cattle by nipping at the heels and dropping to the ground or leaping nimbly out of the way before the animals can kick.

  • Australian Cattle Dogs are prized for their snake killing abilities.  They seem to have a particular hatred for the reptiles.

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Beauceron

Other names:
  • Berger de Beauce, Bas Rouge
Country/Date of origin:
  • France
  • 1500′s
...
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Other names:
  • Berger de Beauce, Bas Rouge
Country/Date of origin:
  • France
  • 1500′s
Height:
  • Females:  24 to 26-1/2 inches
  • Males:  25-1/2 to 27-1/2 inches
Weight:
  • 66 to 85 pounds
Personality:
  • Super intelligent and very trainable.

  • Wary of strangers.

  • Natural guarding instincts.

  • Tends to be a one-person dog.

  • Very independent nature.

  • Wants to take charge of all situations.

  • Not recommended for the first time dog owner.

History:

The Beauceron is one of the best-known sheepdogs in France.  Like some of its compatriot breeds, the Beauceron has double dewclaws that enable it to get a good grip in the sheep’s wool when it climbs across their backs to get across a flock.  Although it has been used as a herding dog for centuries, it is thought the original use was as a hunting dog.  The Beauceron is also used successfully as a police dog.

Body Type:
  • A large dog that looks like a cross between a Doberman and a Rottweiler, although it is related to neither.

  • Ears are cropped to a point and are held erect in the United States.

  • Long tail is carried low and is not altered.

Coat:
  • The coat is short but not smooth.

  • Two color patterns are allowed:  black with tan markings above the eye, on the side of the face, under the neck, and forming stockings.

  • The other color is black with grayish merle speckling, which is described as harlequin.  The harlequin is quite uncommon.

  • Minimal grooming required.

Health and Wellness:
  • Hip dysplasia.

  • Skin allergies.

What you should know:
  • The breed is nicknamed bas rouge which is red stockings in translation.  This refers to the rusty markings on the lower legs.

  • Popular in France, Belgium, and Holland but relatively uncommon elsewhere.

  • Finding a puppy will be very difficult and probably costly.

  • Candidate for the title of most intelligent dog.  The Beauceron is reported to surpass the German Shepherd Dog and the Border Collie.

  • Its independent nature may not make it as trainable a breed as a Golden Retriever.

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Australian Kelpie

Other names/Nicknames:
  • Barb

Country/Date of Origin:
  • Australia

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • ...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • Barb

Country/Date of Origin:
  • Australia

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • 17 to 20 inches

Weight:
  • 25 to 45 pounds

Personality:
  • A sheepdog’s intelligence.

  • The Kelpie is more difficult to control than the other English sheepdog breeds.

  • A strong, eye herder, the Kelpie almost hypnotizes the sheep into doing what it wants.

  • Does not make a good house dog.  This animal has too much energy to be cooped up.

  • It is a country dog.

History:

The Kelpie is named for the foundation bitch of the breed, an animal of English bloodlines that was sent to Australia.  There is no doubt an infusion of other working stock dog blood and perhaps a bit of Dingo created a dog that was perfectly suited to the harsh, dry conditions of Australia and mountainous, wet climate of New Zealand.  The breed was first exhibited in 1908.  It has been shown sparingly in the United States, although it has not achieved full recognition by the American Kennel Club (AKC).  It can be shown in the Miscellaneous class, but not for championship points.

Body Type:
  • A lean, compact, herding dog of medium size with a fox-like face.

  • The medium-length tail is set low.  It is not altered.

  • The ears are naturally erect.

Coat:
  • Tough, weather-resistant outercoat and a short, dense undercoat that lies close to the body.

  • Permissible colors are red, red-and-tan, black, black-and-tan, chocolate, fawn, and smoke blue.

  • Moderate grooming required.

Health and Wellness:
  • Generally robust, as are most working stock dogs that have not been bred for show purposes.

What you should know:
  • A rare breed in the United States.

  • Puppies will be very difficult, if not impossible, to find.

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Bedlington Terrier

Other names:
  • Rothbury Terrier

  • Gypsy Dog

Country/Date of origin:
  • England

  • 19th...

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Other names:
  • Rothbury Terrier

  • Gypsy Dog

Country/Date of origin:
  • England

  • 19th century

Height:
  • 15 to 17 inches

Weight:
  • 17 to 23 pounds

Personality:
  • Softer and more gentle than other terriers.

  • Intelligent but can be stubborn.

History:

The origin of the breed is a mystery, but it came to popularity in the mining town of Northumberland, England.  Miners brought it underground to clear the tunnels of rats.  Used as a poacher’s dog by gypsies who admired its speed and gameness.  Probably the result of crosses between Whippets and Dandie Dinmont Terriers.  Refined in the 1870′s to its present form.

Body Type:
  • Bedlingtons are a dog of curves and arches.

  • General appearance is of a racy whippet-like body with a terrier’s coat.

  • Head and body are unusually narrow.

  • Dewclaws are removed.

  • Hanging ears are clipped smooth, except for small silky tassels at the tip.  They are never altered.

  • Tail, which is held low, forms a scimitar curve and is not altered.

Coat:
  • An unusual mixture of hard and soft hairs.  The feel is described as linty and is crisp but not wiry.

  • The coat tends to curl, and show-dog coats are trimmed to one-inch in length with longer topknot and ear tassels.

  • Profuse topknot is lighter than the color of the body coat.

  • Lamblike appearance requires expert grooming.

  • Allowed colors are blue, sandy, or liver often combined with tan.

Health and Wellness:
  • Copper hepatopathy.

  • Tear duct abnormalities.

  • Eye problems.

What you should know:
  • A black puppy will turn into a blue adult, and a chocolate-brown puppy will become sandy or liver.  Transformation takes a full year.

  • Nonshedding and nonallergenic.

  • An excellent watch dog, but a hopeless guard dog.

  • Likes to run.

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Australian Shepherd

O
ther names:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • ...
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O
ther names:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • United States

  • 1800′s

Height:
  • Females:  18 to 21 inches

  • Males:  20 to 23 inches 

Weight:
  • 35 to 70 pounds

Personality:
  • Smart.  Uncannily smart.

  • Loyal and devoted to owner but wary of strangers.

  • Strong herding instincts.

  • Independent in nature.

History:

In spite of its name, the Australian Shepherd did not originate in Australia.  It originated in the United States from stock that immigrating Basque sheepherders brought with them.  First and foremost, this is a working animal.  The majority of Australian Shepherds are worked with stock today.  The breed became stabilized in the early 20th century and was recognized first by the Canadian and Mexican Kennel Clubs and finally by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1993.

Body Type:
  • A medium-sized herding dog of the collie type.

  • Has a bobtail, either naturally or by docking.

  • The ears hang close to the head and are not altered.

  • Eyes may be brown, blue, or one of each.

Coat:
  • Medium texture, weather-resistant coat is of moderate length.

  • Four colors are permissible:  blue merle; black; red merle; and, all red.

  • All can be with or without white markings and/or tan points.

  • White markings are not permitted on the body between the withers and the tail, on the sides between the elbows, or the back of the hindquarters.

  • A white collar is permitted.

  • Moderate grooming.

  • Seasonal shedding.

Health and Wellness:
  • Microphthalmia.

  • Collie-eye anomaly.

  • Congenital deafness.

  • Spina bifida.

  • Ivermectin toxicosis.

  • Discoid lupus erythematosis.

  • Cushing’s syndrome (PDH and AT).

What you should know:
  • A top choice for obedience competition.

  • Agility makes it a great Frisbee dog.

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Belgian Malinois

Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • Belgium

  • 1200′s

Height:
  • ...
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Other names/Nicknames:
  • None

Country/Date of origin:
  • Belgium

  • 1200′s

Height:
  • Females:  22 to 24 inches

  • Males:  24 to 26 inches 

Weight:
  • 60 to 70 pounds

Personality:
  • Very intelligent.

  • Trustworthy around people and property.

  • A no-nonsense dog with an innate sense of duty.

  • Cautious of strangers.

  • Makes a fine watchdog.

  • Loyal and affectionate to its family.

History:

There are three herding dogs known collectively as the Belgian Shepherds.  They share the same standard and are identical except for coat and color.  The most popular is the long-haired Tervuren, which is a rich mahogany overlaid with sooty black.  There is another equally popular long haired variety called the Gronendael, which is solid black.  The short haired variety is the Malinois, which is a brown or tan color with black mask and ears.  They are shown as varieties of a single breed in some countries and as three separate breeds in others, including their Belgian homeland.  The American Kennel Club (AKC) has considered them as three separate breeds since 1959.

Body Type:
  • Has a square, muscular body

  • Medium-length, bushy tail is carried low and is never altered

  • The ears are erect and are not altered.

Coat:
  • Short, straight coat with thicker hair on the neck.

  • Minimal grooming required except when shedding in the spring and fall.

  • Color ranges from rich fawn to mahogany, with black shading on the ears and muzzle.

Health and Wellness:
  • Generally healthy.

  • Elbow dysplasia.

  • Idiopathic epilepsy.

What you should know:
  • This breed can be too aggressive.  It was bred to protect flocks from attack by wolves and wild dogs.  It still has that strong territorial protectiveness and it is sometimes misplaced.

  • One of the rarest of the AKC breeds, a Malinois puppy will be difficult to find.

  • This breed was used as a war dog in World War I and II.

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16367 South FM 4,

Santo, TX 76472

Phone. 940-769-2222

Fax. 866-632-3365

Email. texaswestvet@gmail.com