Although all dogs come from the same roots, the breeding of dogs throughout the years has created distinctive dog breeds, from hunting dogs to herding dogs, dogs that are bred to guard and dogs that are bred to be cuddled. Each dog breed has its own distinctive traits and talents.
Have a look at the thousands of dog breeds and crossbreeds in our extensive Dog Breeds section, with an eye not only to the looks of the dog but what it was bred to do. Then ask yourself what jobs you can offer your dog.
Are you looking for a hiking companion or a couch potato to enjoy some binge TV watching with? Just like with people, the energy level of different dog breeds varies greatly–and you and your new dog will be happier with corresponding energy levels.
And be sure to check with breed rescues and shelters alike. About 25% of dogs at shelters are purebred dogs so, if you fall in love with a breed, you may find the dog of your dreams waiting for you at a shelter.
Dog Breeds A-Z
Think you’re familiar with all the dog breeds? We challenge you to check out our A-Z section where you’ll find so many dog breeds that are new even to the most dedicated dog lover:
Hybrid Dogs, Crossbreeds and Mixed Breed Dogs
Dogs do a wonderful job of creating their own magical mixed breeds; we can attest to that thanks to our own mixed breed rescue dogs!
But along with the accidental mixes, there are also purposeful mixes, often called hybrid dogs, crossbreed dogs or simply mixed breed dogs. We’ve got a list of the hundreds of cute names for mixed breed dogs–everything from the Chug to the Bagle Hound to the Bo-Jack.
And don’t forget the much-loved Doodle. In fact, there are so many Doodle names we’ve created a complete page of over 100 Doodle breeds.
How Many Dog Breeds Are There?
The number of dog breeds around the world varies, depending on who you ask! There are over 1,000 dog breeds in all, although you’ll never see many of those at a dog show because they are not an officially recognized breed, perhaps due to low breed numbers or discussion as to whether the breed is a separate breed.
The Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI), based in Belgium, is the world’s largest dog breed organization; it recognizes 360 dog breeds in 84 countries. The US, UK, Canada and Australia aren’t included in those 84 countries but are considered partner organizations to the FCI, and each have their own organizations: American Kennel Club (AKC), Canadian Kennel Club (CKC), British Kennel Club (KC) and Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC).
David Frei’s Advice on Choosing a Dog Breed
If there’s anyone who knows the importance of selecting a dog breed to match your lifestyle, it’s David Frei. We had the opportunity to talk with the dog expert and broadcaster well-known for his role as announcer for years at Westminster Dog Show and now the National Dog Show.
Here’s his advice on looking at the wide array of dogs:
I hope the thing that we bring is when people take a look at these dogs and they see them as adults and full coat and full size and attitude and the way they move and they hear what we have to say about them about what these dogs were originally bred to do.
And I think those are the things you have to keep in mind because every dog when they’re puppies, every dog is a cute little fuzz ball, you know, they’re all kind of fun when they’re puppies but if this little fuzz ball you have is going to grow up to be a six-pound Pomeranian that’s a lot different than a dog that’s going to grow up to be a 95-pound Akita, even though they might look a lot alike as little babies.
So I hope the things that we say and that we talk about can help provide an education to people as to what they might expect from these dogs as adults and that they use that as a starting point to get out and see more people and to see some breeders and talk about more specifics.