Dog Breeds

All throughout history specific dog breeds all served a certain purpose and function. They worked on farms, as gun dogs, water dogs and so on. The Kennel Club, the oldest recognised kennel club in the world, categorises breeds of dogs into 7 distinct groups, known as The Kennel Club Groups. As of 2011, The Kennel Club recognises 211 different breeds of dog. Whilst the breeds listed in each group may appear to be varied with very little in common, they are characterised together because they were all bred for the same specific purpose. Read more

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The important characteristics

My dog should be

Afghan Hound

For thousands of years, these fascinating dogs have been considered a treasure in Afghanistan, their country of origin. Nowadays too, these long-haired runners are something special for many dog lovers across the entire world.

American Akita

The American Akita emerged after the end of the Second World War when US soldiers took Japanese Akitas back to the States with them, where an independent stand-alone breed was established. In comparison to its Japanese relatives, the American Akita is much bigger and stronger, though it has maintained to this day the hunting instinct of its Japanese ancestors.

American Cocker Spaniel

The American Cocker Spaniel is one of the most popular dogs in the US, but in Europe it (still) remains an insider's tip for anyone looking for a friendly four-legged companion with the special charm of a (former) hunter.

American Foxhound

Gentle nature, floppy ears, smooth fur and a medium size – on many levels, the American Foxhound is the ideal companion for every dog lover, from pensioners to families with children. However, originally bred as a hunting dog, the American Foxhound has its own mind as well as a long list of high demands, all of which should be taken into consideration before making a commitment to the breed. The following article will provide you with some important insights of a breed that little is known about in Europe.

Australian Kelpie

Sporty, intelligent and sensitive – with this description of its character traits, the Australian Kelpie has excellent chances of finding its perfect match. However, the Australian herding dog mainly devotes itself to helping with the sheep.

Basset Hound

The gloomy-looking Basset Hound proves that looks can be deceiving – most are in fact cheerful little souls, always in a good mood! A Basset hurtling along with its floppy ears flying is bound to bring a smile to every animal lover’s face in no time. Read on to find out everything you need to know about this short-legged hunting breed, which nowadays makes a loyal companion to a great number of families.

Beagle

Find information about Beagle's appearance, character, history, health & nutrition.

Bearded Collie

Fans of the Bearded Collie agree that those who aren't familiar with this dog breed simply have to get acquainted with it. And those who have experienced how a Bearded Collie bolts across meadows with its flowing fur, how it rolls around full of energy and joy and how it attentively and observantly takes into account its owners wishes become simply addicted to this original dog breed and its unique charm.

Belgian Shepherd (Malinois)

The elegant and sophisticated Belgian Shepherd comes in four different varieties, which are very different from each other in terms of appearance. What they do have in common is their huge urge for exercise and activity, which demands a great deal of time and experience from their owner.

Bernese Mountain Dog

Dürrbäch Dog (Dürrbächler), Yellow Cheeks (Gelbbäckler), Four Eyes (Vieräugler)? The former farm dog from the Bernese Oberland goes by many names and nowadays enjoys worldwide popularity as a family dog. Bernese Mountain Dogs treat their families with great warmness, although they would rather be in the great outdoors amongst the cold and snow.

Bichon Frisé

The Franco-Belgian Bichon Frisé is an easy-going charmer that enchants many dog lovers in the blink of an eye with its friendly nature. Find out more here about this popular breed.

Black and Tan Coonhound

Originating in America, the Black and Tan Coonhound finds its vocation in hunting raccoons, since it detects and pursues their trace like nobody else. The Black and Tan Coonhound strongly resembles the Bloodhound, is even-tempered and gets on well with humans and fellow dogs.

Border Collie

The intelligent and demanding Border Collie with its rough or smooth coat is a herding dog through and through, making it a suitable family dog only to a limited extent.

Border Terrier

Though not particularly eye-catching in terms of looks, the Border Terrier is an ideal dog for all those who value a robust, adventurous companion.

Bull Terrier

Harmonious, playful and people-loving? This description from the breed standard doesn't quite seem to match the image held by many people of the Bull Terrier as a dangerous fighting machine. It's time to do away with some of the prejudices surrounding this breed.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

A particularly prominent characteristic differentiates the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel from the King Charles Spaniel: the length of its nose. Both breeds are named after the kings Charles I and Charles II, who were big spaniel fans. To this very day, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel has lost none of its original charm.

Chow-Chow

Golden-brown fur and a mighty mane, with a compact build – the Chow-Chow makes a distinct impression with its majestic appearance. But the original dog breed, which is one of the oldest in the world, is not only gorgeous, it also has a very special character: some say that chow-chows have the essence of a cat rather than that of a dog because of their individuality. Anyone who has made friends with a chow-chow knows that the dogs have not only the looks but also the heart of a lion.

Dachshund

The proverbial puppy dog eyes have melted the hearts of many animal lovers. Here you can learn all about the compact Dachshund, also known as the Teckel or Dackel.

Dalmatian

Medium to large in size with an unmissable black-and-white coat, the Dalmatian is a very active dog that happily seeks out mental and physical challenges.

English Bulldog

This dog breed has a fierce look, is lazy and snores a lot – not quite the “dream companion” you'd imagine. However, with its distinctive charm, sense of humour and lovable, slightly clumsy nature, the English Bulldog wins hearts in the twinkling of an eye.

English Cocker Spaniel

It's hardly surprising that the charming, adventurous English Cocker Spaniel with its roguish self-will is one of the most popular dog breeds. Find out the essentials about these long-eared Brits in the following article.

French Bulldog

Introducing a little charmer with bat ears! The cheerful French Bulldog is a kind breed that will quickly have its owners wrapped around its paws. These small powerhouses are muscular and compact, with a short, squat physique. The French Bulldog is around 30cm in withers height, weighing between 8-14kg. It has large, striking bat ears that stand tall above its square head, with its characteristic short snout and tail. The shiny coat has no undercoat and comes in a range of different colours, from common shades such as black or white all the way to fawn, cream or dark brindle.

German Boxer

Sturdy and nimble, stubborn and balanced, peaceful and defensive - the German boxer is full of contradictions, but this versatility makes the boxer such a great all-rounder.

German Shepherd

German Shepherd Dogs are the most widespread working breed in the world, but thanks to their eagerness to learn and human-loving nature, these versatile dogs also make for a great family pet.

Golden Retriever

The medium-sized Golden Retriever loves children and makes the ideal family pet! This dog is very human-oriented and easy-going, requiring a little grooming and plenty of exercise.

Hovawart

The name of this German utility dog breed reveals that the Hovawart originally served as a court guard. In Middle High German, “hova” means court and “wart” guard. The Hovawart has to the present day not lost its qualities associated with the role, but is now also popular as a family dog.

Jack Russell Terrier

Small, smart and lively, this still young breed boasts a handsome number of fans amongst dog lovers. The autonomous breed of British origin is known as the Jack Russell Terrier and has been recognised by the FCI since 2000. The Jack Russell Terrier's short legs differ from his close relative, the Parson Russell Terrier.

Labrador Retriever

Obedient, fond of people and resilient, the medium-sized Labrador Retriever is an extremely popular family dog, though it likes to be mentally and physically stimulated too as an original working dog.

Leonberger

Empress Elisabeth of Austria is said to have owned this lion amongst dogs.

After all, the huge Leonberger doesn't just make an impression with its proud lion's mane and harmonious proportions, but also with its self-assured composure and children-loving nature.

Medium Size Poodle

At a maximum of 45cm in height and up to 10kg in weight, clever Medium Poodles are just the right size for many dog lovers, since they can always be involved as loyal everyday companions.

Miniature Poodle

A ball of poodle power weighing in at around 13lbs, the Miniature Poodle packs all the benefits of the noble breed and enjoys great popularity. It's hardly surprising, since these smart dogs aren't just intelligent, but real all-rounders that love accompanying their family everywhere.

Miniature Schnauzer

With its coarse wiry fur and bushy beard and eyebrows, the Miniature Schnauzer is a smaller version of the Standard Schnauzer. However, it isn't inferior to its big brother whatsoever in terms of its endurance, vigilance and courage.

Newfoundland

If you would like to own a dog that is strong as a bear and swims like it was born in water, then look no further than the Newfoundland. Originally bred as working dogs to help fisherman in the far north of Canada, these dogs used to help their owners to pull their boats out of the sea. The breed still possesses immense strength and stamina today, as well as a passion for water, even though its working days are largely a thing of the past.

Pug

“Multum in parvo“ – this well-known Latin phrase aptly describes the Pug, as in its small body there really is “a lot of dog”! With its incomparable humour can charm, coupled with intelligence and depth, the Pug always provides its owner with plenty of entertainment.

Puli

These clever dogs share both the unusual Rasta look and their Hungarian sheepdog roots with the significantly bigger Komondor. Both breeds have now gained numerous fans outside of Hungary too. If you're interested in having a Puli as a pet, however, you should consider that these robust nature lovers need lots of activity and exercise whatever the weather.

Rottweiler

Hard shell, soft centre! The Rottweiler is a strong, fearless and confident dog, the ideal guard dog or police dog, and not afraid to show its teeth in warning when the situation calls for it! But this former butcher’s dog also has a soft side that makes it the perfect family dog – it is affectionate, loyal and loves a cuddle!

Rough Collie

Attractive, intelligent, sporty and empathetic: the long-haired Collie – made famous through the TV dog “Lassie” – is one of the world's most well-known dog breeds. With its elegant appearance and many positive characteristics, these former Scottish herding dogs make ideal family dogs.

Saarloos Wolfhound

The Saarloos Wolfhound is wolverine in more than just its appearance. Its reserve, natural flight reflex and hunting instinct are strong wolverine traits and require an experienced owner with lots of expertise, time and empathy.

Shar Pei

With its characteristic wrinkles and small, shell-shaped ears, the Chinese Shar Pei is a calm but strong-willed dog that needs consistent leadership and a close family connection.

Shih Tzu

Despite its small size, the Shih Tzu is an extraordinary dog that attracts a lot of attention. The long mane of this former temple guard hides a playful dog that knows its own mind and acts as a loyal companion to many dog lovers.

Shikoku

Although less stubborn than the rest of the Spitz breeds, the Shikoku is still a typical strong character and is little known outside of its country of origin. We will introduce you to these dogs from the Land of the Rising Sun.

Smooth Collie

The well-toned physique, narrow head and hard, thick fur are reminiscent of a greyhound upon first glance. However, the Smooth Collie possesses all the positive Collie characteristics and is also considered lower-maintenance and more robust than Rough Collies.

West Highland White Terrier

This shaggy-haired white dog is mainly known lovingly by its fans as a “Westie” for short. The “it” dog of the 1990s still enjoys great popularity to this day. Hardly surprising, since the Westie is an adaptable, playful dog with typically headstrong terrier charm.

Whippet

If you're looking for a low-maintenance, adventurous and very sporty dog that also appreciates cosy cuddles on the sofa, a Whippet should prove the dog of your dreams. Hence, it's hardly surprising that these likeable greyhounds are winning over more and more animal lovers.

Gundog Group

The gundog is a type of hunting dog used mainly to hunt birds in a variety of locations and were bred to help hunters find and retrieve game. Gundogs can be separated into three categories, depending on the dog’s hunting style. Pointing breeds were used to direct a hunter to their prey. The dogs would either ‘point’ with their noses or ‘set’ – freeze in place, to indicate to their owners that hunted game was nearby. And so, the names ‘Pointer’ and ‘Setter’ were used! Flushing dogs were trained to flush out birds and other animals from their hiding spots, making it easier for their owners to shoot or capture them. Many spaniels, like the Cocker Spaniel and Springer Spaniel are very popular flushing dogs. It’s easy to guess what Retrieving dogs do! Retrievers were trained to collect prey and return it without damage to their owners. Types of retrievers are famous for having ‘soft mouths’ because of this!

Hound Group

Hounds are very similar to gundogs but were actually the first hunting dogs. Hounds have a powerful sense of smell, which help them sniff out and track down whatever they are hunting. Some breeds of hound are also characterised by their speed. There are three distinct types of hound, with several different breeds within each subgroup. Sighthounds or gazehounds are dogs that use their fast speed for hunting and keep their prey in sight, whilst chasing them down.  Some of the most popular breeds of sighthound are Greyhounds, Salukis and Irish Wolfhounds. Sighthounds are predominantly used in hunting foxes, deer and hares.

Scenthounds, as their name suggests, have some of the most sensitive noses amongst dog breeds. Unlike sighthounds, they are not known for their speed but they make up for it in stamina. Scenthounds, such as the Beagle, Foxhound and Basset Hound, are well-known for using their amazing noses to sniff out prey or even lost people. Many scenthounds even have jobs as sniffer dogs!

The last group of hounds are difficult to classify because they use both their sense of sight and smell when tracking.

Pastoral Group

Pastoral dogs were originally kept for working with cattle, sheep and other livestock, and were used to help herd and manage them. Because these dogs were hard-working and reliable they were ideally suited for a life of intensive work. Unsurprisingly, a lot of dogs in this breed group are called Shepherds or Sheepdogs, for example German Shepherds and Old English Sheepdogs! However not every dog in the pastoral breed group are large breeds, with more compact breeds like the Corgi, Lancashire Heeler and Shelties also being traditional dogs for herding!

Terrier Group

This group of breeds is easy to identify! The terrier is typically a small breed that is a bit of a live spark! Terriers were originally kept to hunt small animals, such as mice, rats, rabbits and even weasels. Some were even bred to be small enough to fit down holes in order to catch their prey or scare them out. Just like pastoral breeds, some terriers are still kept as working dogs today and are used to keep their homes free from any vermin.

Toy Group

These dogs are not similar breeds, but instead they serve as companions tot their owners. Toy breeds are usually the very smallest dogs and some were originally ancient lap dog breeds or smaller versions of hunting dogs or terriers. These minute breeds are full of character and range from the fluffy Bichon Frise, to the elegant Cavalier King Charles Spaniel or the most classic of the toy breeds, the adorable Chihuahua!

Working Group

There are as many types of work for dogs as there are types of dogs. Lap dogs may work as therapy dogs, herding dogs may work livestock, and guard dogs may work at defence of people or property. Most dogs today are kept as pets rather than for any particular work. This group is for dog’s that are still used as working dogs, but in areas other than hunting or herding. Siberian Huskies and Alaskan Malamutes work as sled dogs, which is why they are bursting with energy and love nothing more than a good run! Other muscular or large dogs, like the Dobermann, Mastiff or Rottweiler still work as popular guard dogs today. And, of course, the iconic St. Bernard is famous for alpine rescues!

Utility Group

Dogs in the utility group tend to not fit into other group’s definitions. For example, the Shih Tzu would be perfectly suited in the Toy Group, but it is considered too large! Other dogs are placed in this group because they are no longer used for what they were originally bred for. Dalmatians, with their long legs and speed, were meant to run alongside horse-drawn coaches! Bulldog’s, as their name suggests, were originally bred for bull baiting and Shar Pei’s were used as fighting dogs. Thankfully these dogs are no longer used for what they were initially bred for, so they all happily sit together in the Utility Group!