Have you ever thought about sharing your life with a rare breed of dog? There are 200 different breeds of dogs recognized by the American Kennel Club and each breed is unique. To determine how popular or rare a dog breed is, look at the American Kennel Club records for the number of a certain dog breed registered in the country. The fewer dogs who are registered, the rarer that breed is considered to be. The list is updated every year.
The top 10 rare dog breeds
- English Foxhound: A large hound developed to hunt in packs. These dogs retain strong hunting instincts. This is No. 199 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Norwegian Lundehund: A small Spitz breed from Norway, who was developed to hunt puffin. This unique breed has six toes and a neck that can bend backwards. This is No. 198 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Sloughi: This primitive sighthound is from North African Deserts. The breed is bred to run and requires a lot of exercise. These dogs tend to be wary of strangers. This is No. 197 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- American Foxhound: A tall and gentle social hound that needs lots of exercise and outlets for their drive to hunt. This is No. 196 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Belgian Laekenois (Lack–in–wah): With a rough coat, these dogs are active herding dogs who are very protective of their families. This is No. 195 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Azawakh: This tall, lean dog breed is a West African sighthound that has higher than average energy levels, playfulness and mental stimulation needs. This is No. 194 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Harrier: A friendly medium sized hound. These dogs date back to medieval England where they were used to hunt hare. These active hounds maintain a strong prey drive. This is No. 193 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Sussex Spaniel: Affectionate, loyal and cheerful, the Sussex Spaniel is long and low to the ground with a deep chest. This is No. 198 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Cesky Terrier (chess-kee): From the Czech Republic, these terriers have silky wavy fur, and in addition to a strong hunting drive make great family pets. This is No. 191 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
- Pyrenean Shepherd: These playful and energetic herding dogs have a scruffy medium- length coat. These interactive dogs love to play and excel at sports. This is No. 190 on the AKC’s most popular dog list.
Where can I find rare dog breeders?
The American Kennel Club maintains a directory of breed clubs around the country. These breed clubs have volunteers who will answer questions you might have about these dogs and where you can find reputable breeders. The AKC directory of upcoming events is a great resource to locate dog shows in your area and meet handlers and breeders, and meet the rare breed in person.
Why should I get a rare dog breed?
When looking to add a dog to your family, research different breeds of dogs, their size, temperament and what they were originally bred to do. Don’t limit your research to breeds you have met before, or that you see in your neighborhood. Just because a dog is common, it doesn’t mean he will necessarily be a good match for your home and lifestyle.
One of the benefits of having a rare breed can be the chance to find a dog who will be the ideal fit for your family.
You are also playing a part in preserving the history and legacy of that breed. Rare breeds are at risk of disappearing if people don’t continue preserving them. Another benefit of sharing your life with a rare breed is that people involved with rare breeds tend to be extremely passionate about their breeds and are excited to connect and meet-up with other people involved in their breed. This can give you a built-in community of friends and support when you bring a rare dog home.