Labradors and French Bulldogs are just two of the most popular dog breeds you will find in the UK, but what about the breeds you haven’t heard about? PetStay takes a look at some of the rarer dog breeds they’ve cared for.

  1. Icelandic Sheepdog

The Icelandic Sheepdog is a spitz-type dog thought to have been brought to Iceland by the Vikings. Similar to the Shetland Sheepdog and the Welsh Corgi, they were commonly used to herd sheep and protect lambs from birds of prey.

They are very friendly dogs and gentle around children and other animals but tend to have separation anxiety. The rare breed was rescued from extinction in the 1950s and is growing in numbers across the worlds.

  1. Otterhound

Currently recognised by the Kennel Club as a Vulnerable Native Breed, the Otterhound is an old British dog breed that date back to the 19th century. Being a large, strong dog with a rough coat, they were originally bred for hunting both on land and in the water.

Their noses are extremely sensitive, and their inquisitive nature means you will need to watch this dog if they catch an interesting scent!

  1. Chinese Crested

Despite the name, this dog is actually native to Central America. The Chinese Crested is most notable for being hairless. However, there are two types of dog in this breed: hairless or a powderpuff!

Most commonly used as a ratter on trading boats, the breed also found itself in a few Hollywood movies.

  1. Berger Picard

Often mistaken as a mongrel, the Berget Picard is a rare and ancient breed from the North of France. In fact, they are one of France’s oldest herding breeds, brought to France in 400 B.C!

The Berger Picard is a medium-sized dog with large curved ears that stand high on their head, and a thick, waterproof double coat. While you might not recognise the name, you may have seen this sheepdog breed in films such as Because of Winn-Dixie.

  1. Hovawart

Almost going extinct in the 13th century, the Hovawart is a big dog that looks like a golden retriever with Rottweiler colouring and has grown in numbers in recent years. Baxter, who helps his owner Pauline at PetStay Doncaster & North Lincolnshire is in fact a member of this breed!

This smart working dog was commonly used to guard estates and land and is best suited to someone who can train them.

  1. Azawakhs

With a physique not dissimilar to a greyhound, the Azawakh is known for its long legs and muscular body. Originating in West Africa, they were used to protect livestock and can be very protective of their family.


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