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Non-Sporting Breeds

When dog shows were in their infancy, there were two groups – sporting and non-sporting dogs. These dogs could have easily been classified into one of the other groups that evolved later on, but old habits die hard. This means that the dogs in the group are quite varied; gun dogs, retrievers, mastiffs, spaniels, Nordic dogs, and more besides. They come in all sizes, personalities, and profiles. Other than the two kinds of poodles, each breed is distinct.

American Eskimo Dog
Size: Tiny to medium, Toy 9-12”, Miniature 12-15”, Standard 15”+
Color: White, white with biscuit cream
Protection level: Will bark, loud and lots
Energy level: High, especially smaller sizes, calms down with age
Life expectancy: 13-15 years
Good with children: Yes, if kids are respectful
Performance abilities: Agility, obedience, tracking, therapy
Shedding: Heavy
Grooming: Regular brushing
Potential health concerns: PRA, patellar luxation, epilepsy, diabetes, HD
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Active and active people, fenced yards, calm, structured environment
Not for: Fussy owners, isolation, young or unruly kids, gardeners

Bichon Frise
Size: Small, Toy 9.5-11.5”, 14-16 lbs.
Color: White
Protection level: Will bark
Energy level: Moderate
Life expectancy: 14 years
Good with children: Yes
Performance abilities: Agility, obedience
Shedding: Minimal with proper grooming
Grooming: Brush every day, trim occasionally
Potential health concerns: PRA, patellar luxation, epilepsy, cataracts, HD, bleeding disorders
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Indoor life, frequent grooming
Not for: Outdoorsy, macho owners, isolation

Boston Terrier
Size: Small, 15-25 lbs.
Color: Black, seal, brindle, all with white markings
Protection level: Will bark warning
Energy level: Moderate to high, calms down with age
Life expectancy: 10-14 years
Good with children: Excellent
Performance abilities: Agility, obedience
Shedding: Minimal
Grooming: Minimal
Potential health concerns: Deafness, patellar luxation, epilepsy, cataracts, heart anomalies
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, BAER
Best with: Positive reinforcement, lots of attention and lap time, fenced yards
Not for: Temperature extremes, rough children, outdoor kenneling

Bulldog
Size: Medium to large, 40-60 lbs.
Color: White, red, fawn, brindle, piebald, red brindle
Protection level: Low, but looks intimidating
Energy level: Low
Life expectancy: 8-9 years
Good with children: Excellent
Performance abilities: Obedience (all the way to the food bowl!)
Shedding: Yes
Grooming: Brush regularly; frequently clean skin folds above nose and around screw tail
Potential health concerns: Cataracts, heart defects, HD, ectropion, dry eye, entropion, elongated palate, cherry eye, stenotic nares, small trachea, inverted or recessed tails, hypothyroidism
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, heart exam
Best with: Protection against heat and humidity, relaxed households
Not for: Active owners, neat freaks, isolation

Chinese Shar-pei
Size: Medium, 18-20”, 40-65 lbs.
Color: Various solid colors
Protection level: High
Energy level: Low to moderate
Life expectancy: 7-12 years
Good with children: Varies, socialize early
Performance abilities: Obedience, agility, therapy, tracking
Shedding: Yes
Grooming: Brush regularly; clean ears frequently
Potential health concerns: Demodectic mange, HD, bloat, amyloidosis, entropion, bloat, autoimmune diseases, malabsorption, hypothyroidism
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, amloidosis history
Best with: Confident, physically strong owners
Not for: Submissive people

Dalmation
Size: Medium to large, 19-24”, 45-70 lbs.
Color: White with liver or black spots
Protection level: Moderate
Energy level: High
Life expectancy: 11-13 years
Good with children: Yes, if raised with them
Performance abilities: Obedience, agility, road trials, tracking, flushing and retrieving,
Shedding: Year-round, hair clings to everything, less shedding with regular brushing
Grooming: Brush often with a rubber curry
Potential health concerns: Deafness, HD, diabetes, pannus, PRA, glaucoma, uvate bladder stones
Recommended health clearances: OFA, BAER, uric acid test
Best with: Active owners, training, fenced yard, sense of humor
Not for: Impatient or inactive people, neat freaks, allergy sufferers

Finnish Spitz
Size: Medium, females 15.5-18”, 23 lbs, males 17.5-20”, 29 lbs
Color: Shades of golden red
Protection level: Good
Energy level: Adjustable
Life expectancy: 13-14 years
Good with children: Excellent
Performance abilities: Hunting
Shedding: Seasonal
Grooming: Brushing
Potential health concerns: Cataracts, HD
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Interaction, reward training, hunters
Not for: Instant response, kennels, quiet, military-style training

French Bulldog
Size: Small, 11-14”, 20-28 lbs
Color: A variety – common colors include cream, brindle, pied, black-masked fawn
Protection level: Low
Energy level: Moderate
Life expectancy: 10 years
Good with children: Yes
Performance abilities: Therapy, obedience
Shedding: Minimal, seasonal
Grooming: Brush once a week, clean around wrinkles and ears
Potential health concerns: Stenotic nares, allergies, patellar luxation, elongated soft palate, distichiasis, jubenile cataracts, elbow dysplasia, HD, spinal abnormalities
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, vWD
Best with: Indoor life, air condition, another French bulldog companion
Not for: Isolation, runners and hikers, extreme temperatures

Keeshond
Size: Medium, females 17”, 35 lbs, males 18”, 40-45 lbs.
Color: Gray tipped with black
Protection level: Will bark, but is friendly
Energy level: Medium
Life expectancy: 12-15 years
Good with children: Excellent
Performance abilities: Therapy, obedience, agility, tracking, scent hurdles, flyball
Shedding: Seasonal
Grooming: Brush and comb once a week; once a day during shed
Potential health concerns: PRA, MVD, HD, patellar luxation, renal cortical hypoplasia, cataracts, diabetes, hypothyroidism, autoimmune disorders
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Regular grooming, affectionate owners, sense of humor
Not for: Outdoor life, intimdation

Lhasa Apso
Size: Small, females 10-11”, 11-18 lbs.
Color: All
Protection level: Moderate
Energy level: Low to medium
Life expectancy: 14 years
Good with children: Depends on the dog
Performance abilities: Supervisor
Shedding: Minimal
Grooming: Extensive, brush once a day and bathe weekly
Potential health concerns: PRA, HD, patellar luxation, cataracts, entropion, intervertebral disc disease, vWD, distichiasis
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, vWD
Best with: Regular grooming, training, early socialization
Not for: Outdoor life, instant acceptance of everyone

Lowchen
Size: Small, females 12-14”, 12-18 lbs.
Color: Any color
Protection level: Will bark
Energy level: Medium
Life expectancy: 14-16 years
Good with children: Yes, will well-behaved kids
Performance abilities: Obedience
Shedding: Sheds into coat
Grooming: Brush regularly, clip for shows
Potential health concerns: PRA, patellar luxation, cataracts
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Lots of attention
Not for: Outdoor life, isolation

Miniature Poodle
Size: Small, females 10-15”, 12-20 lbs.
Color: Silver, brown, black, gray, blue, white, café au lait, apricot or cream
Protection level: Low but will bark
Energy level: High
Life expectancy: 14-16 years
Good with children: Excellent with older children
Performance abilities: Obedience, freestyle, agility
Shedding: Hardly any
Grooming: Lots; clipping and scissoring, often done professionally, ear hair plucked
Potential health concerns: PRA, patellar luxation, cataracts
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Lots of attention
Not for: Outdoor life, isolation

Standard Poodle
Size: Large, females 22-25”, 40-65 lbs, males 24-27”, 50-80 lbs.
Color: Silver, brown, black, gray, blue, white, café au lait, apricot or cream
Protection level: Moderate
Energy level: High, but calm as housepets
Life expectancy: 10-13 years
Good with children: Excellent, though can be a bit energetic for young kids
Performance abilities: Performers, agility, service-field dogs, freestyle, tracking, obedience, water and upland fowl retrievers
Shedding: Hardly any with regular grooming; great for allergy sufferers.
Grooming: Lots; groom once a day with metal comb, slicker and pin brushes, clip and scissor every 4-6 weeks
Potential health concerns: PRA, patellar luxation, cataracts, bloat, SA, epilepsy, renal cortical hypoplasia, Addison’s Disease, entropion
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF, vWD, skin punch for SA
Best with: Regular grooming, fenced yards, people who can afford professional grooming, interaction
Not for: Isolation

Schipperke
Size: Small, females 10-12”, males 11-13”, less than 18 lbs.
Color: Black
Protection level: Alert with a sharp bark
Energy level: High
Life expectancy: 12-15 years
Good with children: Yes, with early socialization
Performance abilities: Obedience, hunting small game, agility
Shedding: Seasonal- lots
Grooming: Minimal, some brushing, more during shed
Potential health concerns: PRA, cataracts, epilepsy, entropion, Legg-Perthes, hypothyroidism
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Fenced yards, protection against heat, training, active owners
Not for: Isolation, quiet life, off-leash walks, laps

Shiba Inu
Size: Small to medium, females 13.5-14.5”, males 14.5-16.5”, 18-25 lbs.
Color: Red sesame, black/ tan, brindle, black sesame; may have white markings
Protection level: High
Energy level: Moderate, adjustable
Life expectancy: 12-15 years
Good with children: Yes, with early socialization
Performance abilities: Tracking, small game hunting
Shedding: Seasonal
Grooming: Minimal, some brushing, more during shed
Potential health concerns: Patellar luxation, HD, hypothyroidism
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Lots of human interaction, fenced yards, early and continuous training and socialization
Not for: Off-leash walks, instant or top-scoring obedience, submissive owners

Tibetan Spaniel
Size: Small, 10”, 9-15 lbs.
Color: All colors
Protection level: Will bark
Energy level: Medium to high
Life expectancy: 15-18+ years
Good with children: Yes, with gentle ones
Performance abilities: Obedience (if you’re determined), agility
Shedding: Seasonal
Grooming: Mist with water and use a pin brush
Potential health concerns: Patellar luxation, HD, PRA, liver shunt, Legg-Perthes, microphthalmia
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Active, social people
Not for: Outdoor life, harsh handling

Tibetan Terrier
Size: Small to medium, females 14-17”, 18-30 lbs.
Color: Any color
Protection level: Moderate
Energy level: Medium as puppies, low to medium as adults
Life expectancy: 15-18+ years
Good with children: Yes, with well-behaved ones
Performance abilities: Obedience, agility
Shedding: Sheds within coat, minimal clean up
Grooming: Lots during adolescence, easier with puppies and adults
Potential health concerns: Patellar luxation, HD, PRA, cataracts, lens luxation, vWD, hypothyroidism
Recommended health clearances: OFA, CERF
Best with: Lots of human interaction, regular grooming
Not for: Outdoor life, young children

 

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