From north to south, here are some rare North American dog breeds that you may not see on your average daily walk to the park, depending that is, on what country your local park is in.
The name Chinook means “warm winter winds” in Inuit, and its double coat keeps it comfortable in the cold. Developed in the early 1900s, the Chinook is a newly minted purebred. The Chinook originated in New Hampshire as a drafting and sled-dog racing breed, combining the power of a freighting dog and the speed of lighter racing sled dogs.
In 1965 the Guinness Book of World Records cited the Chinook as the world’s rarest breed with a population of only 125. It earned this title two more times before Neil and Marra Wollpert stepped in to save it in 1981. By then, only 11 breedable Chinooks remained. This uniquely American breed returned from near extinction to become AKC’s 176th recognized breed on January 1, 2013. Today, only about 800 Chinooks are registered worldwide, and around 100 puppies are born each year.
Canadian Eskimo Dog
The Canadian Eskimo dog is a sled or rescue dog indigenous to Canada. They’ve been part of the Inuit (Eskimo) culture for more than 2,000 years. Unfortunately, they were deemed “officially” extinct in 1963, when only one registered Canadian Eskimo dog remained in Canada. Despite diligent efforts on the part of breeders, there are less than 500 Canadian Eskimo dogs left in North America, which means a puppy of this breed will cost $7,000.
Catahoula Leopard Dog
The often multi-colored or spotted Catahoula Leopard Dog is believed to be the first dog bred in the United States. It was named after Catahoula Parish in Louisiana and was traditionally used to hunt wild boar.
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Carolina Dogs, also known as the American Dingo, are thought to be the oldest canine species in North America, appearing on rock paintings by Native Americans. The Carolina Dogs share DNA with the Australian Dingoes and New Guinea Singing Dogs and even though the breed has been domesticated, there are still wild pups still roaming around.
Pronounced Sho-lo-eets-quint-lee, the Xoloitzcuintli is usually referred to as the Mexican Hairless Dog or just Xolo. This breed is so old that it was actually worshiped by the Aztecs. Because many Americans are not familiar with Xolo pups, it has been mistaken for the mythological Chupacabra along the US border states. The Xoloitzcuintli has not been inbred over the years like many other purebreed dogs and it is a very healthy and hardy dog that only requires a bit of moisturizer, sunscreen, and regular bathing.
Peruvian Inca Orchid
This is an ancient breed. The Peruvian Inca Orchid has been around even before AD 750, and today it remains an uncommon but treasured pet. The “agile, smart and swift” breed is good at hunting and lure coursing as well. But its most notable quality is that it is sometimes hairless, with skin that appears in a variety of colors.
Peruvian Hairless dogs are affectionate with family but wary of strangers. They are typically lively, alert and friendly with other dogs but can be protective as well. They are agile and fast. These dogs do not like to be alone, but when trained, can do well. These dogs are intolerant of extreme temperatures. They generally require an owner that understands dog language and are not recommended for beginners. The Peruvian Inca Orchid is recognized by the AKC. The club UKC also recognized the breed in recent years.
Have a favourite rare dog breed we should know about? Let us know in the comments below!