Saying a dog breed is “rare” is a relative description. Many breeds considered rare in one country are quite popular in their countries of origin. The following dog breeds are considered rare because they have not yet been recognized by the American Kennel Club.

Mi-Ki Dog Breed

FEATURED BREED

Mi-Ki

A fairly new breed developed in the 1980s, the Mi-Ki incorporates aspects of the Papillon, Maltese and Japanese Chin. A lap-loving companion, this tiny toy breed usually doesn't grow much taller than 11 inches at the shoulders.

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Rare Dog Breeds


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Russian Toy

Russian Toy

Also known as the Russkiy Toy, the Russian Toy is a small, elegant, lively companion breed developed in Russia in the 20th century. The Russian Toy was developed via an effort to revive the English Toy Terrier in Russia.

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Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka

Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka

The Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka (literally "colored lap dog" or "colored Bichon") is a unique Russian toy breed descended from the French Bolonka and a variety of other small breeds combined and refined in Russia.

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Sarplaninac (Sharplaninatz)

LARGE DOG BREED

Sarplaninac (Sharplaninatz)

The Sarplaninac (Sharplaninatz) Yugoslav Sheepdog is probably the oldest breed in the Balkans, where it was used to guard the livestock and homes of people who lived on the slopes on Mount Shara, where the breed got its name.

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Schapendoes

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Schapendoes

Agile and light-footed, the Schapendoes is a mobile and speedy shepherd dog that gallops, rather than trots, and uses its long tail as a rudder when jumping. In fact, this intelligent, easily trained breed would be a marvel in agility events, or any other canine competition you prefer.

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Seidenspitz

Seidenspitz

The Seidenspitz was developed in Germany using Maltese and white Pomeranians. The breed was known perhaps as far back as the late 1700s. Affectionate and intelligent, the Seidenspitz resembles a Pomeranian with a long, silky coat that may be solid white or solid black.

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Shikoku

Shikoku

Imagine a dog tough, tireless and agile enough to hunt boar in the mountains of Japan. This is the Shikoku, an ancient, enthusiastic hunting dog that is so admired in Japan, the country designated it as a Natural Monument in 1937.

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Shiloh Shepherd (Plush)

LARGE DOG BREED

Shiloh Shepherd (Plush)

The first impression you should get from a good specimen of the Shiloh Shepherd is that of a large, strong, muscled shepherd. The dog should appear alert and noble. The Shiloh Shepherd displays courage and self-confidence, always willing to serve as a companion and protector.

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Shiloh Shepherd (Smooth)

LARGE DOG BREED

Shiloh Shepherd (Smooth)

The first impression you should get from a good specimen of the Shiloh Shepherd is that of a large, strong, muscled shepherd. The dog should appear alert and noble. The Shiloh Shepherd displays courage and self-confidence, always willing to serve as a companion and protector.

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Silken Windhound

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Silken Windhound

The Silken Windhound is an intelligent sighthound with a strong prey drive. They were developed by Borzoi breeder, Francie Stull to be a medium sized, sporty sighthound and family-oriented companion.

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Sloughi

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Sloughi

The Sloughi is a noble and proud member of the sighthound family. This dog's skill at hunting is as noted as its wonderful temperament. The nomadic tribes of the Ethiopian, Nubian and Egyptian deserts are the Sloughi's first known companions.

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Small Munsterlander

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Small Munsterlander

Popular throughout England and Germany, the Small Munsterlander is an all-purpose pointing and retrieving gun dog that performs well in field trials and obedience, thanks to its soft nature and eager-to-please attitude.

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Spanish Water Dog

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Spanish Water Dog

The hard-working Spanish Water Dog is an old and rare member of the Spanish Barbet, or water dog family. Despite its name, in past centuries this breed served mostly as a herder for Spanish shepherds.

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Stabyhoun

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Stabyhoun

Long ago, the people of the province of Friesland in the Netherlands used a versatile, intelligent sporting dog at home and in the field. The Stabyhoun, also called the Frisian Pointer, is thought to have descended from spaniels brought in by the Spanish during the mid 1500s.

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Teddy Roosevelt Terrier

Teddy Roosevelt Terrier

A rare breed developed in the United States, the Teddy Roosevelt Terrier is descended from English terriers and terrier mixes brought to America by immigrants.

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Thai Ridgeback

LARGE DOG BREED

Thai Ridgeback

With the clearly defined ridge running down its back and a long, tapering tail that's held vertically or curved like a sickle, the Thai Ridgeback stands out from the crowd. The breed has been around for hundreds of years in its native Thailand, where it was used for hunting and guard duty.

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Tosa Inu-Tosa Ken

LARGE DOG BREED

Tosa Inu-Tosa Ken

This large dog ranges from 100 to 200 pounds and is at least 24½ to 25½ inches tall at the shoulder. This breed is also known as the Tosa Ken and the Tosa Token, and was developed as a fighting dog in Japan.

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Toy Australian Shepherd

Toy Australian Shepherd

The Toy Australian Shepherd should look similar to the standard-sized Australian Shepherd. Toy Aussies range between 10 and 14 inches tall at the shoulder, with 12 inches ideal. Although small, Toy Aussies are sturdy and should look neither spindly nor coarse.

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Volpino Italiano

SMALL DOG BREED

Volpino Italiano

Many Italians appreciate the finer things in life: wine, opera, fashion ... the Volpino Italiano. A watchdog and companion, the Volpino is active, intelligent and intensely loyal, devoted to its family and home.

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White Shepherd

LARGE DOG BREED

White Shepherd

A direct descendant of the German Shepherd Dog, the White Shepherd was once a color variation in the breed.

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Wirehaired Vizsla

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Wirehaired Vizsla

The Wirehaired Vizsla is a fairly new breed which was developed by hunters looking to create a dog with the smooth-coated Vizsla's color, but with a heavier build and a dense wiry coat to make it more apt to working in rough field conditions.

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