10 of the most unusual breeds of dog

June 23rd, 2014
Posted by | Posted in Breeds, Personal Stories 3,854 views

Dogs are without a doubt one of the most popular pets on the planet, and as they’re man’s best friend you’ll definitely find a lifelong pal in your dog. Whether you’re thinking about getting your first puppy in the near future or you already count yourself as a dog lover, there’s always something new to learn about these animals.

Most people will be aware of the common breeds of dog, such as German Shepherd, Pug, Greyhound, Border Collie or Terrier, but what about the more uncommon ones? While you may find that actually finding a breeder for these more unusual dogs is a little tough, it definitely pays off if you’d like to be the owner of one of the world’s little-known breeds!

So, here are 10 of the most unusual breeds of dog:

AppenzellerAppenzeller Sennenhunde

The very first breed on our list is the Appenzeller Sennenhunde, which finds its home in the Swiss Alps. These dogs are medium-sized and are often tri-colour, meaning they have white, brown and black coats. This breed was first used to herd cattle and are very intelligent, being able to learn tricks and commands very quickly.

The Appenzeller Sennenhunde is part of the Sennenhunde breed, which includes three other breeds. These are the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, Bernese Mountain Dog and the Entlebucher Mountain Dog.



This breed of dog is from Africa and was first bred as a guard dog, as well as originally being used to hunt animals such as gazelle and hares. They can reach incredibly fast speeds of up to 40mph and are available in a variety of colours.

Due to their type of breed, Azawakhs need a lot of activity and exercise in order to let off steam. This stops them from exhibiting unwanted behaviours, and also keeps them happy! They’re also very sociable, making them ideal family pets.


Bergamasco Shepherd

This funny looking pooch is from the Italian Alps and was bred as a herding dog, mainly being used to herd sheep and cattle. It’s actually an ancient breed, and is medium-sized with either black or silver-grey coats. One of the most distinctive features of this dog breed is its felted coat.

The Bergamasco Shepherd can become incredibly attached to its owner, due to its loyal nature, and so makes for a dedicated addition to the family.

Bracco Italiano

BraccoThe Bracco Italiano is a regal-looking dog breed that was bred as a gun dog in Italy. The name ‘Bracco’ actually means Italian Pointer, and it certainly bears a resemblance to a German Shorthaired Pointer, as well as a Bloodhound. These dogs have a glossy coat that’s either white and orange, or chestnut and white. Bracco Italianos love people though, and make amazing companions.


catalThe Catalburun is unique in the dog world for being only one of three breeds to feature a slit nose. These dogs are from Turkey and it’s actually incredibly rare to find them anywhere else in the world. They’re a type of Pointer and were bred for hunting, and do in fact have one of the strongest sense of smells of all other dogs within this group.


caucasianOCaucasian Ovcharka

This breed originates from the CauCasus Mountains in Eurasia, but is now a popular breed in countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. They’re a type of shepherd dog, and they’re known for being quite intelligent. However, not all Caucasian Ovcharka like to listen though, as they’re thought of as a little stubborn at times! With this in mind, these dogs need a lot of training, whether this is done by a professional dog trainer or the owner.

VlcakCzechoslovakian Vlcak

The Czechoslovakian Vlcak (also known as the Czechoslovakian Wolfdog) is actually quite a modern breed, having been first bred as recently as 1955. The breed was achieved by mating German Shepherds with Eurasian Wolves, and were used as attack dogs for the Czechoslovakian military. They have excellent tracking, herding and hunting abilities, and are known for their wolf-like appearance.

EstrelaEstrela Mountain Dog

As this breed’s name would make you think, the Estrela Mountain Dog is a type of guard and herding dog that was used throughout its home country of Portugal. The breed has adapted a lot since it was first bred though, as these dogs were considered fairly unpopular as pets in the 1900s. It was only in 1922 that they were bred properly, and now it’s still used as a working dog, but is also a firm favourite for those in search of a dedicated family pet.

Both the long and short-haired versions of the Estrela Mountain Dog have thick coats, and they’re available in fawn, grey, yellow and black colourings. They’re very athletic and calm, as well as being fiercely loyal.

grandGrand Basset Griffon Vendéen

This French dog breed is a short-legged type of hunting dog, which are in fact still used for hunting to this day. However, for the most part, the Grand Basset Griffon Vendéen breed has now become a popular – if still seen as unusual – family pet.

They’re known for being a pack animal, and require a lot of interaction either with humans or other animals. This makes them the ideal addition to a large family, or a household with cats or other dogs.


The Hovawart is a dog breed from Germany and was used as a guard dog for estates when it was first bred. There have been documented mentions of this breed way back in Medieval times, making it a truly ancient breed! These dogs are medium in size, and are known for being completely devoted to their owners. However, due to their guarding background, they can be a little reserved and untrusting of unfamiliar people. They need a good amount of activity, and they take well to training.

There are countless breeds of dog in the world, and we’re certain these aren’t the only unusual ones out there! Do you know of any other dog breeds that you think or a little weird and wonderful? Let us know!


This guest post was written by Jennifer Smith on behalf of http://hungrypets.com/, the complete pet supplies company.

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