Do You Know This Breed?

The Tarentaise cow grazes at a higher elevation in France than any other breed of cattle, and one dog breed alone became historically synonymous for tending these rich reddish brown creatures – the Savoy Shepherd. This rare breed. also known as the Dog of the Duchy of Savoy, has very ancient roots, but more recently […]

Mongolia’s Bankhar

Until the Soviet Union occupied Mongolia, the Mongolian Bankhar had been used for centuries as an LGD (Livestock Guardian Dog). Historically, the Bankhar (said by some to be an ancient landrace, not a breed) was such an inseparable part of the nomadic herder’s life that the traditional greeting when approaching a Mongolian ger was to say “Hold your Dog!” After […]

A Question For NPDD Readers

Occasionally, we come to our readers to verify information we’ve found because many of you own the breeds in question, and we reason that you know best. More than once, we’ve come across statements stating that Newfoundlands have the longest toes of any breed, followed by Labrador Retrievers. This always has to do with both […]

I Love You, Couch

“I love you, couch. You give us comfort, and we give you bare feet, back sweat, and Gordo’s everything. I love you, but sometimes you stink.” Thus begins the commercial selling Febreze Fabric Refresher with OdorClear technology.  The ad, part of the “Odor Odes” campaign, shows a man who professes his love for something that can […]

Darwin’s Dogs

Charles Darwin was a dog lover who believed in the power of dogs to help shape human evolution. He believed, as did several 18th- and 19th-century naturalists, that animals differed from humans mostly in degree, not kind.  In the opening chapters of The Descent of Man, and using dogs as examples, he argued that animals feel […]

What’s in a Name? Depends Upon the Ears!

Though most of us think of the Papillon as the breed with the “butterfly ears,” it was the drop-eared Phalène (or “night moth”) that was the original variety of the breed –  the Papillon came considerably later, around the 16th century. By then, the Phalène had been portrayed in many paintings by Old Masters and their students. Toward the end of […]

Chess, Doggie Style

Chess isn’t just for adults, bookworms, or nerds. Children who learn to play chess grasp the ability to look ahead, see the bigger picture, strategize, count their losses, and not to take a momentary gain too seriously. We know of soccer players who credit chess for their capacity to see the entire field. Make chess […]

THIS is a German Shepherd*

The man in this photograph is a shepherd. As it happens, *he’s a Romanian Shepherd tending his flock in the Făgăraş Mountains, of Romania, but if he was in Germany, the chap would be a German Shepherd. You see where we’re going with this, right? While it’s not true that German Shepherd Dogs are the only breed […]

Spotted Dick Dog

Unlike the dreaded fruit cake at Christmas (which is actually quite delicious if you’re given a good one), a traditional English pudding is rarely refused. Suet, molasses, some dry ingredients and nutmeg make a pastry dough to which raisins, currants, citrus zest, or dry fruit is added giving the dessert one of its names: Spotted […]

The Dogs That Saved Macquarie Island

Macquarie Island situated halfway between New Zealand and Antarctica was inscribed on the World Heritage List for its incredible natural reserves back in 1997.  Seals, penguins, petrels, albatross and prolific plant life are teaming on the island, one of the few breeding locations for certain fauna in the Southern Ocean sector of the Pacific. It’s also […]

The Doberman Drill Team

Yes, Virginia, there is such a thing as a Doberman Drill Team. The first of many started by Tess Henseler performed at Westminster Kennel Club dog show in 1959 at Madison Square Garden.  Later, Rosalie Alvarez formed her own team that performed at celebrations and sporting events (including a half-time show at a San Francisco 49’ers […]