Flocked, Not Corded

Don’t make the mistake of calling the Bergamasco‘s coat “corded,” because those “strands” are called “flocks,” and they grow over the course of the dog’s life reaching the ground at approximately 5 – 6 years of age. The flocks provide a highly efficient system of protecting against the cold and
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Breeds for Type A Personalities

Poor Dr. Stanely Coren. People either hang on his every word, or they dismiss him. In his book, Why We Love the Dogs We Do, Coren says that choosing a breed is like choosing a spouse, and that we’d better understand our own personality before making a long term decision.
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Swamp Poodles

The first Boykin Spaniel is believed to be a small, stray spaniel-type dog that befriended a banker walking to church in Spartanburg, South Carolina around 1905-1910. The banker, Alexander White, liked the little dog, took it home, and named him “Dumpy.” When “Dumpy” showed a talent for retrieving, White sent
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More Specific (and Way Cooler Sounding) than Ear Leather

Speaking of ears, here’s a term to add to your otitic vocabulary (it sounds cooler and is more specific than “ear leather.”) If you’ll recall from an earlier post, the “antihelix” is the knobby cartilage found towards the base of a dog’s ear, so it makes sense in a Greek sort
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Humphrey Bogart’s Newfoundland

The American Film Institute named him the greatest male star in the history of American cinema. In 30 years, Humphrey Bogart appeared in 75 movies – a long career for the kid of a cardiopulmonary surgeon dad, and commercial illustrator mom, but not long enough. Bogart was only 57 when
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Toto, I’ve a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas Any More

Who can forget the words, “I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore, Toto” (though technically, the actual line was, “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas any more).  It was one of the most iconic lines in the original, “Wizard of Oz”  with Judy Garland, and we love the
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The Most Common Cause of Ruined Feet

This post is from our archives and helps us prove a point.  Use the search window on our website!  It will take us a while to completely transfer all the posts we’ve ever put on Facebook (over 9,000 posts, by our estimate), but we’re working on it all the time, and
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Can You Name This Breed?

We lured you here to show the difference hair makes.Our thumbnail image is of the same dog you see at the bottom right, a Puli. Our thanks to Tamzin Hart Higgins for this vivid illustration!
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Dachshund Coats

The success of the smooth coat Dachshund was followed by a desire for a long haired Dachshie that would stand up to cold weather and cold water during hunting seasons. This was accomplished by breeding smooth coated dachshunds to small, long haired spaniels. The Wire haired Dachshund was the last
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The Pearl Gene

Elsewhere on this site, we shared a rather vivid description about the origin of the term used to describe the dog color: “Isabella.” This same color, a dilute, is commonly referred to as “pearl” in Rat Terriers. And here’s where we call on our genetic buffs to bail us out
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If You Own A Dog….

Last year, Scientific American published an issue devoted to “The Science of Cats and Dogs,” and the graphic below appeared inside the magazie. Any surprises to you?
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Kel tal-Fenek

Kel tal-Fenek (Rabbit Hound) was the original name for this breed, the name Pharaoh Hound bestowed later by British fanciers, presumably because of a resemblance to hounds depicted on ancient Egyptian artifacts; the name was made official when the breed was recognized by Great Britain’s Kennel Club in 1974. Image
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The Scented Hound

Afghan Hounds are sometimes referred to as “the scented hound” for the scent glands in their cheeks that emit a pleasant, musky odor. It’s described as muskier than jasmine, perhaps more like sandalwood, with hints of cinnamon.  Most Afghan Hound owners describe this as a pretty rare quality to find in
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Triangle Shaped Eyes

It’s the only registered breed whose standard calls for triangle shaped eyes. Can you name it? From the Bull Terrier #AKC breed standard: Eyes: Should be well sunken and as dark as possible, with a piercing glint and they should be small, triangular and obliquely placed; set near together and
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Butcher’s Dog of Rottweil

Did you know, by the way, that the Rottweiler is considered one of the oldest herding breeds? One of the most impressive demonstrations we ever saw of a novice dog encountering his first flock of sheep was by a Rottie. Herding instinct was alive and well in this youngster, and
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Breeds with Lost Records

Uber-keen observers of our dog breeds may have already noted a similarity between the Puli and Tibetan Terriers insofar as structure goes, and that’s because both are believed to share a common “root” dog that traveled with the Cuman, a turkic speaking people who originated in Western China near Tibet
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Friday Sillies

Ever notice how Fridays bring out the silly in us? Photo of “Mia” an English Setter (feeling pretty good about it being Friday) by Jennifer Stastny
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The Master (and Lady) of Otterhounds

In the 14th century, Edward II became the first Master of Otterhounds in England, and Elizabeth I was the first Lady Master of Otterhounds, but other royals also kept Otterhounds: King John, (1199-1216), Henry VI, Edward IV, Richard II and III, Henry II, VI, VII and VIII and Charles II,
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Schipperke Specialties. In the 1600s.

Think dog shows are new? In the 17th century, Schipperke Speciality Shows were held by the Guild of Brussels by aristocrats and the upperclass. These shows attracted visitors from miles around, and the Schipperkes were often shown wearing decorative collars of brass. Status conscious noblemen showed off their station in
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Brindle: Not a Color, a Pattern

Black and white Boston Terriers may be the most “classic” of the breed’s colors, but a true black and white may be the hardest coloring to find because most all Bostons have some level of brindle on them, whether it’s just a few stripes, or brindle all over their glorious
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The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Did you wake up this morning to an inexplicable enormous weight? We think we might know why…. If you have a dog that like to “share’ his or her heft with you, share a picture? Image found on Pinterest and happily credited upon receipt.  
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The First Registered Deerhound’s Name Was…..

Scottish Deerhounds are one of the few breeds that have changed very little in the last few hundred years, and they are precious, unique, and well worth preserving – so, a little quiz for you:  The first registered Deerhound’s name was: 1) Maida; 2) Cher; 3) Bonnie Robin; 4) Lass;
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Dalmatian Tattoo

Let’s say you owned a Dalmatian. Let’s say you got the notion to get a tattoo. Wouldn’t you want it to look like this one? Tattoo design by John Finnemore
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In the Atchafalaya Basin

When we featured the Brittany as our Purebred of Interest, Robert Wagnon wrote: “This is Val, our 2 year old Liver & White Brittany. Val hunts upland game and has hunted Pheasant in North Dakota and Quail and Woodcock in her home state of Louisiana. Val range varies depending on the terrain,
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The Breed with the Most Dual Championships

At the time this was first published (April, 2015), Brittanys have more AKC Dual Champions (field and show) than all other Sporting breeds combined, the 600th Brittany having earned its Dual Champion in April 2012. In fact, the second Brittany to ever win a Sporting group was also a DC.
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Lego Dogs

Think legos are just for kids? These life-size (purebred!) dogs constructed with Lego bricks. They’re situated in a Legoland, and as you can see, they’re quite accurate. What we love is the description we found about these dogs that could have been written expressly about purebred dogs. See what you think:
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Sherlock, the Basset Hound with Elvis

Basset Hounds were, for a time, widely associated with Elvis Presley, probably because of his appearance on The Steve Allen Show in July, 1956 where he sang, “Hound Dog,” to a Basset Hound named, “Sherlock.” While Presley owned many dogs in his life, most with memorable names like, “Baba” “Edmund,” “Sweat Pea,” “Muffin,” “Stuff” and
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The Harrier Registry – Not Who You Think

In the Harrier’s country of origin, the UK,  the registering body of the breed is not The Kennel Club, but the AMHB, or Association of Masters of Harriers & Beagles. The AMHB does not register puppies or litters, and hounds are entered into the stud books only after they have
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The Pearl in the Snow

One of the most standardized early breeds, the Sarplaninec (pronounced shar-pla-nee-natz) has bred true to type for centuries. This dog of Macedonia, a protector of sheep in the Illyrian mountain pastures, has been described by one author as “the pearl in the snow” for the devotion it shows to its flock in the
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Balance in Dogs, Balance in Breeds

We start with a quote. “Is the Pug a toy dog? This is a question which is promptly answered by most everyone, “Yes, of course it is!”  Why, then, do we see the huge dogs that are benched today winning at the show?” This was written in 1905 in “The Stockkeeper.” As we see
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Strongheart

  “Etzel von Oeringen,” better known as “Strongheart,” was one of the earliest canine film stars, and the first German Shepherd Dog to appear in motion picture movies, but given that he died in 1929, few people are left who remember him; perhaps even fewer realize that the dog food, “Strongheart,” was named for the dog so beloved
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Singin’ In The Rain

As a rule, we’re not big on matching garments, but in this case….. Photo from Sausage Dog Central, for all things Dachshund
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Blessing of the Hounds

The “Blessing of the Hounds” is a long-standing tradition in many hunt clubs, particularly at Thanksgiving. It dates back to the eighth century when St. Hubert (the son of the Duke of Aquitaine) was hunting on Good Friday and saw a stag with a luminous crucifix between it’s antlers. He
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The Holcombe Harrier Hunting Pack

Enjoy this image of the Holcombe Harrier Hunting pack at Bradshaw Hall, a hunt club that historically hunted the vicinity of Bury and Bolton in Lancashire. The photo was found on Pinterest, and we’ll happily credit it upon receipt of information.
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The Pub Named After a Breed

Any pub named after a breed is just fine by us! The Cotley Inn Pub is named after a well-known local hunt, the Cotley Harriers, which have been in existence since the late 18th century. This pack of predominately white or lemon colored West Country Stud Book Harriers have been owned
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University of Maryland’s Mascot

Maryland’s state pride in the Chesapeake Bay Retriever extends to the University of Maryland Baltimore County’s mascot, a Chessie named, “True Grit” who was established within weeks of the school’s founding in 1966. The athletic teams are called the “Retrievers,” and a statue of True Grit sits on campus in
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James Michener’s “Chesapeake”

“The big Chesapeake showed what a marvelous breed he was by leaping into the freezing water, swimming swiftly to the edge of the ice, then breaking a way for himself, right to the goose. Clutching the big bird proudly in his jaws, he plunged into the icy water, pushed aside
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From Skye Terrier to Telephone

Years before the first human voice was transmitted over Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the telephone, Alexander or “Aleck” as he was known, had a particular interest in speech, no doubt effected by his mother’s deafness. Rather than use her ear trumpet to talk to her like everyone else did,
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TGIF for a Redbone Coonhound Pup

Getting to a Friday takes an eternity when you’re a wee Redbone Coonhound puppy. We are always in need of photos of your purebred dogs being sleepy, silly, grumpy, goofy and/or excited. Please send them to us at the “contact us” address, and indicate in the subject line,”sleepy,” “silly,” “grumpy,” “goofy”
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Working Dog of Hungary

The Komondor has been a working dog in Hungary for at least ten centuries, its ancestors brought to the Carpathian Basin by nomadic Magyars (and please! Magyar is not pronounced “mag-yar,” but mah-dyar, emphasis on the first syllable). The breed is thought by some to be a close descendent of
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Watchful Unto Death

The Scottish landscape artist, Horatio McCulloch (1805-1867) had several Skye Terriers, and after his death in 1856 he was laid to rest in Warriston Cemetery in Edinburgh, a Celtic Cross erected in his memory. At the base is a bas-relief of a palette, brushes and laurel wreath, and on the
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The Schipperke’s Tail, or Lack Thereof

One day, two shoemakers “got into it.” One was sick and tired of the other’s dog trespassing over his property and nibbling on the customers’ shoes. Having had enough, the shoemaker caught the “little black devil” one night and cut off his entire tail. As the story goes, when the
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A Snippet of Chessie History

“Sailor” and “Canton” were two dogs who survived the shipwreck of a British brig off the coast of Maryland in 1807. A male and female, respectively, they were described as Newfoundland pups by George Law who rescued the pups off the ship and paid a guinea a piece to the
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The Breed Saving the Bush Dog

Chessies are Masters and Commanders of Water, but “Train” proves that the breed is capable of much more. “Train” is a rescued Chesapeake Bay Retriever who has been trained to sniff out the scat of various species in the wild. National Geographic grantee, Karen DeMatteo, helped train “Train” on command
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The Only White House Dog In The AKC Record Books

Lyndon Baines Johnson was sad. His Beagles, “Him” and “Her” (see in the photograph on the cover of LIFE magazine) were dead. Hoping to cheer him up, FBI head, J. Edgar Hoover gifted the president a new Beagle whose registered name was Greeson’s Chum. LBJ called him, “J. Edgar.” When
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War Dog Memorial: Wildlife Prairie Park

To our knowledge, there are 31 War Dog Memorials in the United States, and this is one of them, perhaps a lesser known monument that stands in Wildlife Prairie Park, Hanna City, Illinois. The statue made in 2003 by artist/sculptor, Erin Mallon, portrays a Vietnam War era soldier with his
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“Boo,” the Hero Newfoundland

In what gives us goosebumps every time we read this is the story of “Boo” who was award a medal for his heroism in 1996 by the Newfoundland Club of America for having rescued a deaf-mute who had fallen into the river while gold dredging. In 1995, Boo and his
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The Smelling Machine

It’s estimated that a Bloodhound’s nose has approximately 230 million olfactory cells, or “scent receptors” — 40 times the number in humans. While our olfactory center is about the size of a postage stamp, a Bloodhound’s can be as large as a handkerchief! When a Bloodhound sniffs a scent article,
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Shirley MacLaine and Her Rat Terrier

Before she butted heads with Maggie Smith’s, “Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham” on Downton Abbey, Shirley MacLaine was Irma la Douce, Fran Kubelik, Deedee Rodgers and a host of other memorable characters on Broadway and in film. Before any of those parts, however, MacLaine was many things in the
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