Working Group Dog Breeds

Akita

LARGE DOG BREED

Akita

Honored in its native land as a national treasure, the Akita is the largest of the three Japanese breeds belonging to the spitz family of dogs. At one time its ownership was restricted to the nobility, who used the breed to hunt large game such as wild boar and deer.

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Alaskan Malamute

LARGE DOG BREED

Alaskan Malamute

Named for an Inuit tribe, the Mahlemut, this breed is a powerful member of the spitz family of dogs. The Alaskan Malamute has been used to track large game and as a pack and sled dog able to transport heavy loads over rough terrain.

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Anatolian Shepherd Dog

LARGE DOG BREED

Anatolian Shepherd Dog

A breed of ancient lineage, this fiercely loyal guard dog is used to protect sheep in its country of origin, Turkey. The reliable Anatolian is possessive toward family, property and livestock but is quick to learn and gentle with close friends and children.

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Bernese Mountain Dog

LARGE DOG BREED

Bernese Mountain Dog

Regarded by many as the most beautiful of the four breeds of Swiss Mountain Dogs, the Bernese is the only one with a long coat.

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Black Russian Terrier

LARGE DOG BREED

Black Russian Terrier

This is a young breed that was created in the 1960s by Soviet dog lovers who melded Giant Schnauzers, Airedales, Rottweilers and other breeds into a big, tough dog with a weather-resistant coat and agile movement.

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Boxer

MEDIUM DOG BREED

Boxer

The Boxer was developed in Germany as a medium-sized security dog. The breed combines the blood of a mastiff-type breed that was used for hunting, herding and protection with that of the Bulldog. The result is a smooth-coated, agile dog measuring up to 25 inches at the shoulder.

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Bullmastiff

LARGE DOG BREED

Bullmastiff

Developed in England as the gamekeeper's night dog, the Bullmastiff represents a cross between the Mastiff and the Bulldog. The breed's job was to warn the gamekeeper of poachers and, if necessary, throw and hold the intruder but not harm it.

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Cane Corso

LARGE DOG BREED

Cane Corso

The noble Cane Corso's predecessors were big game hunters that showed power, courage and agility, and later proved their skills as drovers and guardians of livestock, property and family on Italian farms.

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Doberman Pinscher

LARGE DOG BREED

Doberman Pinscher

The Doberman Pinscher was developed in Germany to facilitate tax collection! Louis Doberman, a tax collector, wanted a strong and loyal breed to keep him safe on his rounds.

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Dogue de Bordeaux

LARGE DOG BREED

Dogue de Bordeaux

Although it has a forbidding look, the Dogue's desire for affection is intense. It's somewhat leery of strangers and may be aggressive toward strange dogs, but it gets along well with children and makes a loving family pet with a calm, tranquil disposition.

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German Pinscher

MEDIUM DOG BREED

German Pinscher

Often mistaken for a young Doberman because of the close physical resemblance, the German Pinscher is rare in the United States and Canada.

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Giant Schnauzer

LARGE DOG BREED

Giant Schnauzer

Tallest of the three Schnauzers, the Giant is a good-looking bearded dog that is thought to have originated in Bavaria near Munich, where it was called the Munchener. The breed's history traces to the late 1800s when it developed from what is now the Standard Schnauzer.

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Great Dane

LARGE DOG BREED

Great Dane

The Great Dane is great in size, heart and nobility. Ignore the latter part of the name, though. This giant breed is not of Danish origin but was developed in Germany, where it was used to hunt big game, patrol estates and as a war dog.

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Great Pyrenees

LARGE DOG BREED

Great Pyrenees

The Great Pyrenees is an elegant, longhaired, gentle giant. Owners credit the Pyr with the ability to sense danger, thus determining the trustworthiness of individuals it encounters. A calm dog with dignity, the Pyr has guarded families and flocks in the Pyrenean mountains for centuries.

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Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

LARGE DOG BREED

Greater Swiss Mountain Dog

The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, or Swissy to its friends, is one of the four breeds known as the Swiss Sennenhunde (others being Bernese Mountain Dog, Appenzeller and Entlebucher). The versatile Swissy drove cattle, protected their people and even fought in battle.

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Komondor

LARGE DOG BREED

Komondor

Although the Komondor may look like a large dust mop on legs, this is a big, muscular dog with a commanding, dignified attitude. A native of Hungary, the breed's standout feature is its long white corded coat, which protects the dog against the elements and from injury by predators.

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Kuvasz

LARGE DOG BREED

Kuvasz

The Kuvasz is another Hungarian breed with a long history. The beautiful white dogs were used for hunting, herding and flock guarding, a job the breed still does with much success. This is a large working dog, with males measuring 28 to 29.5 inches at the shoulder, females 2 inches less.

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Leonberger

LARGE DOG BREED

Leonberger

Perhaps the first dog to result from a marketing campaign, the Leonberger was created in the mid-19th century to resemble the lion on the town crest of Leonberg, Germany.

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Mastiff

LARGE DOG BREED

Mastiff

Sometimes known as the Old English Mastiff, the Mastiff is an ancient breed, associated with Babylonians, Marco Polo, Hannibal, King Henry VIII, and Elizabeth I. Mastiffs are the likely ancestors of the mountain dog breeds, such as the Saint Bernard.

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Neapolitan Mastiff

LARGE DOG BREED

Neapolitan Mastiff

The massive, solid Neapolitan Mastiff is an imposing hulk of a dog, and it's meant to be. A writer during the days of the Roman Empire described the ideal guard dog for the house as visible during daylight hours and able to fade into the shadows at night to attack without being seen.

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