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Top 10 Rare Dogs

Updated on January 26, 2014


Dogs are the most loyal and friendly animals and are commonly regarded among the first animals to be domesticated. Dogs are great companions, snuggle and make good pets. There are different types of dog breeds that are available for adoption but there are those breeds that have drastically reduced in numbers over the years. Different dog breeds vary in their physical appearance and temperament. These different dog breeds have been achieved as a result of interbreeding of dogs from variety of breeds to form a unique dog breed with varying temperaments and physical appearance. Dog breeders breed different dogs to produce new breeds that are resilient to certain environments and also resistant to certain diseases or with cute and cuddly in physical appearance.

This results into some dog breeds becoming popular while other dog breeds tend to be extinct. The Labrador, German shepherd, bulldogs are some of the well known dog breeds since there are many dog owners and dog breeders who own these dog breeds. There is however other unique dog breeds that are rare to find. Some of these dog breeds are even feared to become extinct just like the Salish wool dog. Here is a list of some of the top 10 rare dogs.


1) Carolina Dog or American Dingo

This dog is one of the oldest canine species in North America. This is evident on rock paintings by Native Americans. The Carolina dog shares a close appearance with the Australian Dingoes and New Guinea Singing Dogs. Carolina Dog has a medium length straight back, well-developed chest and well tucked-up belly. It also has a long neck, wedge-shaped head with powerful jaws, almond-shaped dark eyes with and large, erect high-set ears which are very flexible. The distinctive feature of this breed is the “fish-hook” tail that moves in different positions according to the mood of the dog.

The dog has a thick double coat with a dense undercoat with longer guard hairs on the neck, withers and back that may be erect when the dog is aroused. The coat color of the Carolina Dog is distinctive, usually a deep red ginger with pale buff markings on the shoulders and side of the muzzle. Carolina dog is about 17-24 inches high and weighs about 30-44 pounds.


Carolina dogs are shy around people especially strangers. They are loyal companion dogs and enjoy being part of a pack and thus integrate well into the family structure. They are gentle and bonds well with children, enjoying play and activities with kids. This dog breed is also said to be intelligent and responsive and therefore learns and adapts easily. Despite its well developed hunting instincts, it is not aggressive by nature.


2) Xoloitzcuintli

It is also called the Mexican Hairless Dog. The Xolo is in three sizes and two varieties. The sizes include; toy, miniature and standard while the varieties are the coated and the hairless. The hairless variety of the Xolo is rare to find. It is characterized by soft and smooth skin that is hairless. The Xolo is available in a variety of colors ranging from black to slate, gray, bronze, brindle, red, fawn, solid or spotted. The coated variety of Xolo has a full coat of hair that is short, sleek and clean. It has a broad skull and a black nose with almond-shaped eyes that are mostly dark. The unique feature in this dog breed is its large, upright bat-like ears making it very keen and alert.

The toy Xolo is about 9-14 inches tall and weighs about 5-15 pounds. The miniature Xolo dog is about 15-20 inches tall and weighs about 15-30 pounds. The standard variety is about 20-30 inches tall and weighs about 25-40 pounds.


The Xolo dog breed is said to be very intelligent, loyal, alert, athletic and very loving to its family. It is naturally protective and aloof with strangers. It can be very good with company and children with proper training. The Xolo breed is easy to housetrain and learns very quickly.


3) Azawakh

The Azawakh is another rare dog breed whose origin is the Sahel region of Africa. The Azawakh have been bred by the numerous nomadic tribes of the Southern Sahara as hunting and guard dogs as well as companions. This dog breed has a musculature bone structure that is visible beneath the skin. It has fine and tight skin over the whole of the body and is covered with short and fine hair on all the body except on the belly. The Azawakh has a height of 23 - 29 inches and weighs about 37 - 55 pounds.


Azawakh are hunters, protectors and great companion. They are attentive, distant, proud and alert. This dog breed remains intuitively reserved with strangers and gentle with those he loves. It has a natural tendency to guard, it is independent and exceptionally fast with up to 60 km/h speed.


4) Catahoula Leopard Dog

This dog breed is known for its incredible hunting abilities. The Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog is said to have originated from the state of Louisiana is in the area of Catahoula thus acquiring the name Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog. It has a broad and flat skull with solid and strong boned legs. It has a deep chest that provides it with a good heart and lung capacity. The Catahoula has a single coat that is commonly colored in a merle or black/tan pattern. The color of its coat is the most notable feature in this dog breed. Its eye color and coat color work in a very harmonizing and expressive way. The Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog weighs about 55-80 pound and the males have a height of 22-26 inches while the females have a height of 20-24 inches.


It is an independent, protective and territorial dog that loves its family and all people it knows well but is reserved with strangers. While keeping this dog breed, you need to be prepared to take the pack leader role so as to train the dog and clearly defined the rules.


5) Mudi

The Mudi's full name is Canis Ovilis Fenyesi. It originated from Hungary where it was mainly used as a herding dog. It has a wedge-shaped head with a pointed nose and muscular jaws with a scissors bite. Its skull is convex with a well-marked stop. The Mudi’s eyes are oval and dark brown while its ears are erect in the shape of an upside-down "V". It has short hair on its muzzle with the hair becoming bristly toward the ears. Its coat consists of dense, wavy or curly coat is of about 2 inches with glossy hair that forms tufts. The coat’s colors include black, white, red, brown, gray, bread-pale and fallow. The Mudi dog breed is about 14-20 inches in height and weighs about 18-29 pounds.


The Mudi is said to be highly intelligent, it can learn quickly. It is powerful and courageous; it is not afraid of anything and can thus make a good guard dog. It is very loving and gentle to its family and is thus a great companion dog. The Mudi can at times be defensive to both property and a person it loves. They are reserved to strangers and are not aggressive when they meet someone they do not know; they just need to get accustomed to them. This dog breed is friendly with other dogs and other pets if they are raised with them from puppyhood or properly introduced as a new pet in the home. The mudi is also said to be an obedient and playful companion that at times can be noisy.


6) Neapolitan Mastiff

The Neapolitan dog is a great dog with a massive rectangular body. It has plenty of hanging wrinkles and folds on the head and a very large dewlap. Its head is wide, flat and large in comparison to the rest of the body. Its muzzle is 1/3 the length of the head and has a large nose that has well-open nostrils and a color that coordinates with the coat. The Neapolitan’s teeth meet in a scissors, pincer or slight undershot bite. Their eyes are deep and are almost covered by the dropping upper lids and are amber or brown in color depending on the coat color. The Neapolitan Mastiff male dog is about 26 - 30 inches in height and the female is about 24 - 28 inches. It weighs about 65-200 pounds.


The huge physique of this dog makes it look intimidating; this dog is nonetheless calm, peaceful and affectionate. It is intelligent, very protective, courageous, serious and docile. The Neapolitan Mastiff dogs are also keen to their owners’ commands and are thus easy to train. This dog breed gets along with children and other pets if they are properly socialized or if they are raised with them from puppyhood.


7) Lundehund

The Lundehund is a member of the Spitz family that originated in Vaerog and Rost in northern Norway where it was used to hunt puffins from nests on steep cliffs. This dog has two distinctive features that other dogs do not have. These features include; six toes and two dewclaws on each foot and joints in the nape of the neck. It has a small wedge shaped head and moderately muscled hindquarters. It has very flexible shoulder joints and medium-sized erect ears with a deep set of eyes that are brown. The Ludehund has a height of about 12 - 15.5 inches and a weight of 13 - 20 pounds.


The Lundehund is primitive dog that can be difficult to house-train. It is nonetheless possible to train and tame this dog. It is great with children and can make a great family pet if it is taken through proper training. It is also friendly with other dogs and other pets if raised with them. This dog breed requires so much discipline so as to tame it and make it an ideal family pet; however, harsh discipline will not work in taming this dog.


8) Tibetan Mastiff

The Tibetan Mastiff dog is a descended from the famous Tibetan dogs that were used to guard property. It is a giant dog with muscular bone structure with a slightly longer than tall body. It has wrinkled, broad, heavy and strong head that has a broad muzzle. The Tibetan Mastiff has a large black nose and its teeth meet in a scissors or level bite. The upper lip usually covers the lower lip. The eyes of the Tibetan Mastiff are almond shaped and come comes in shades of brown. The ears are V-shaped, hanging forward close to the head. The dog’s neck is muscular and arched with a moderate dewlap. It has a height of 25 - 28 inches and
weighs 140 - 170 pounds.


This dog is courageous, fearless, even-tempered, calm and thoughtful. It is also very loyal to its own family. It is easy to housebreak, but matures later in life than the average breed. The Tibetan Mastiff needs a firm, confident and unswerving pack leader to prevent it from becoming stubborn, overprotective and territorial. The Tibetan Mastiff dogs have a strong desire to please their owners. They are friendly with children, but can be suspicious and be reserved with strangers if not properly socialized.


9) Thai Ridgeback

The Thai Ridgeback dog originated from eastern Thailand and was used as guard dog. This dog is also referred to as "the cart-following dog." This dog has a loose-skinned, muscular body with a strong, firm back that is covered with dense hair. Its coat colors include: chestnut, black, blue and silver. It has a wedge-shaped muzzle and the tongue is blue or bluish gray. It has large, high set, triangular, pricked and inclined forward ears. Its eyes are dark-brown and are almond-shaped with an alert expression. The nose is black and the tail is thicker at the base narrowing to the tip. The Thai Ridgeback male dog has a height of 22-24 inches while the female has 20-22 inches. The dog weighs 51 - 75 pounds.


This dog is a great watch, guard and hunting dog and also makes a nice companion. It is also a very active and alert dog but can be a bit aloof toward strangers if not properly socialized. The Thai Ridgeback dog can be challenging to train since it requires a dominant owner who is firm, confident and consistent with the rules placed upon the dog so as to curb any unwanted behaviors.


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10) Pachón Navarro

The Pachón Navarro dog originated from Spanish and is a hunting dog. Pachon Navarros are large, chubby dogs with rectangular shaped bodies and short but strong limbs. They weigh about 44- 66 pounds depending on the sex. These dogs have short fur of a hard texture and have coats of black and white, brown and white, a darker shade of brown and white, or orange and white. This dog has a large head with a wide skull. There eyebrows are expressive and well defined. Their ears are long ears that are set low on their heads but are in a line above their eyes. Their eyes are large, round and wide, their eyes are chestnut brown and retain a forward facing gaze. This dog has a unique feature of a double nose, which is split down in the middle, with a demarcating line of fur that expands to the upper lip. They have straight, thick tails that are set at a medium height on their bodies.


The Pachon Navarro is an intelligent, friendly, loyal, and brave dog. They are a large, athletic breed and need daily exercise. They pose a strong hunting instinct but can make also excellent human companions. This dog breed is generally friendly towards humans and can get along with other dogs.

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    • vespawoolf profile image


      3 years ago from Peru, South America

      Very interesting. My husband has always wanted to own a Neopolitan mastiff. Many of these dogs I've never heard of. I think the Mexican hairless is so ugly that it's cute. Here we have Peruvian hairless.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      4 years ago from Wales

      I love reading anything on Dogs and this was no exception!!

      Great post and voted up.



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