Meet the Diverse Dogs of the Non-Sporting Group

Non-Sporting dogs are a diverse and varied group, to say the least. In fact, the breeds in this group couldn't be more different from one another if they tried.

From the stocky and wrinkled Bulldog to the small and curly coated Bichon Frise, these dogs differ in size, temperament, appearance and much more. But at least one thing about this group is certain: Each Non-Sporting breed is unique and special.

Do You Know the Non-Sporting Dog Breeds?

American Eskimo Dog

Barbara O'Brien, Animal Photography

American Eskimo

The soft, white, fluffy American Eskimo comes in three sizes: standard (20 to 40 pounds), miniature (11 to 20 pounds) and toy (7 to 10 pounds). Sometimes referred to as “The Dog Beautiful,” the active breed can be just as clever as he is mischievous. Just don't fall for his hypnotizing black eyes and smiling face, or you'll find yourself sneaking him a bite of your dinner.

Bichon Frise on a couch

Leesia Teh, Animal Photography

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise is typically a charming and affectionate lap dog wrapped in a cloud of curly white hair. Which is fitting, because the breed’s name means “curly coated” in French. Once adored by royalty and circus crowds alike, she has a knack for entertaining and typically loves to be the center of attention.

Boston Terrier

Karin Newstrom, Animal Photography

Boston Terrier

The Boston Terrier is one of the few breeds to originate in the United States. Though he is dapper in his black and white tuxedo, he also comes in brindle or seal with white markings. The typical Boston is friendly, portable and sturdy, especially considering that his weight range is only 10 to 25 pounds. He tends to get along well with kids, other pets and pretty much everyone he meets. All in all, this all-American canine can be a fantastic companion.

Young Bulldog Puppy

Leesia Teh, Animal Photography

Bulldog

As a breed who’s admired for his loyalty and determination, it’s no surprise that the Bulldog serves as a mascot for a number of colleges as well as the United States Marines Corps. He’s a short, sturdy dog, generally weighing between 40 and 50 pounds. The breed was originally intended for bull fighting, but today he’s a gentle companion whose generally good-natured temperament makes him well-suited for almost any home.

Brown Shar-Pei Outdoors

Tara Gregg, Animal Photography

Chinese Shar-Pei

The quiet and confident Chinese Shar-Pei originated in southern China as far back as the Han Dynasty (200 BC). The breed's most distinguishable feature might be his wrinkled face and body, but he's also known for his short, rough coat. Shar-Pei actually means "sand-skin" or “sand-paper-like coat."

Chow Chow dog breed

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Chow Chow

The Chow Chow has several unique characteristics: the coat of a teddy bear, the scowl of a lion, a blue-black tongue and a distinctive stilted gait. He hails from the chilly northern region of China and was developed as an all-purpose dog. Usually weighing 40 to 70 pounds, the Chow Chow can be capable of hunting, herding, pulling a cart and guarding the home.

Dalmatian

Eva Maria Kramer, Animal Photography

Dalmatian

Though spots are the Dalmatian’s trademark, his running ability is what made him famous. Bred to be a coaching dog, he once ran alongside carriages or horseback riders. Later, firemen adapted the breed’s talents to clear paths through town for their horse-drawn fire engines. These days, he tends to be happiest with people who spend their time doing high-energy activities like running and hiking.

Eurasier dog breed standing on a path

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Eurasier

The Eurasier is essentially a newcomer to the dog world. A breeder in Germany created the breed 50 years ago by crossing Chows Chows with Wolfspitzes. Often weighing between 40 and 70 pounds, he can be a devoted and intelligent watchdog who may be less active than other breeds. One or two brief, daily walks will usually keep him satisfied.

Finnish Spitz dog

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Finnish Spitz

The Finnish Spitz has a thick, protective double coat that is golden-red in color, prick ears, a foxlike expression and a tail that curls over his back. Commonly weighing 23 to 28 pounds, the Finkie is an active dog who needs daily exercise to challenge him both physically and mentally. Make sure you teach this breed the “quiet” command — he was bred to bark.

French Bulldog

Robin Burkett, Animal Photography

French Bulldog

Known for her charming personality and distinctive bat ears, the French Bulldog tends to get along with everyone she meets. Her small size (under 28 pounds) and minimal exercise needs make her ideal for people with limited outdoor space, such as apartment or condo dwellers. It's usually best for the Frenchie to live indoors, since she is brachycephalic and can be more at risk for overheating when the weather is hot.

Keeshond

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Keeshond

The Keeshond is a medium-size breed, regularly weighing between 35 and 45 pounds. He's a member of the Spitz family and has a lionlike mane and foxy expression. The distinctive markings around his eyes resemble eyeglasses, which is quite fitting, considering he often has an intelligent mind and aptitude for learning tricks.

Lhasa Apso Dog Breed

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Lhasa Apso

Lhasa Apso means “bark lion sentinel dog,” a reference to her origins as an alarm dog to Buddhist monks in Tibet as well as to her lionlike appearance. Standing at just under a foot tall and weighing 12 to 18 pounds, she certainly seems dignified, with her long, flowing coat. The typical Lhasa pegs her activity level to that of her human companions, but she still requires mental challenges to avoid boredom.

Lowchen Dog Breed

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Lowchen

In German, the Lowchen’s name means “little lion” — and he is just that. The little dog thinks he’s as big as a lion, and he usually loves to be the center of attention. Though the breed's distinctive lion trim probably originated as a sanitary cut, legend has it that the ladies of the court warmed their feet on the dog’s warm, exposed skin.

Norwegian Lundehund

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Norwegian Lundehund

To say the Norwegian Lundehund is different is an understatement. The Lundehund has six toes on each foot; his forelegs turn outward at a 90-degree angle and can extend flat to the sides; his head bends back so far he can almost touch his back with it; and his prick ears can close and fold forward or backward. Why the oddities? The Lundehund’s original purpose was to climb cliffs on Norwegian islands and retrieve live puffins, which is why his name literally means “puffin dog.”

Black Standard Poodle in Grass

Leesia Teh, Animal Photography

Poodle

The curly coated Poodle comes in three sizes: standard (40 to 55 pounds), miniature (12 to 15 pounds) and toy (5 to 10 pounds). Considered one of the more popular breeds in the world, the Poodle can be an intelligent and family-friendly dog with a great sense of humor. So why the froufrou haircut? The poofed and shaved hairdo seen on show Poodles comes from the breed’s hunting roots. Her thick coat was cut in a way that allowed her to swim but also kept her chest and joints warm.

Schipperke dog breed

Lee Feldstein, Animal Photography

Schipperke

Nicknamed the "little black devil," the Schipperke is typically an energetic and intelligent breed who's only 10 to 16 pounds and tends to have a mind of his own. Legend has it that the Schipperke’s taillessness arose in the 17th century, when a shoemaker became angry that his neighbor’s dog kept stealing from him and cut off his tail.

Shiba Inu

Tara Gregg, Animal Photography

Shiba Inu

Revered as a national treasure in his native Japan, the Shiba Inu is a small breed with a bold and spirited personality. And with his bright eyes, erect triangular ears and wedge-shaped head, he can be mistaken for a fox.

Tibetan Spaniel

Alice van Kempen, Animal Photography

Tibetan Spaniel

Affectionately referred to as the Tibbie, the Tibetan Spaniel isn’t really a spaniel at all. But he is from Tibet, where he was once an alarm dog for Tibetan Buddhist monasteries. This small dog normally weighs only 9 to 15 pounds and typically has a bold and independent spirit.

Tibetan Terrier

Alice van Kempen, Animal Photography

Tibetan Terrier

The Tibetan Terrier, who is not really a terrier, is called the "Luck Bringer" in his homeland of Tibet. He once traveled the high, cold plateaus with nomadic herdsmen and guarded their tents. These moderately sized (usually 20 to 24 pounds), mild-mannered dogs were originally raised by Tibetan Buddhist monks and bore the nickname "Holy Dog." The breed's hair often covers his dark, expressive eyes, but he can see through it just fine, thanks to his long eyelashes.

Xoloitzcuintli

Sally Anne Thompson, Animal Photography

Xoloitzcuintli

Xoloitzcuintli is quite a name, but then he is quite a dog. Pronounced “show-low-eetz-kweent-lee,” the name is a combination of Xolotl, an Aztec god, and itzcuintli, an Aztec word for dog. The Xolo is said to have served as a prophet and guide to the underworld, but today he is generally known for being a calm and attentive companion. Though not every Xolo is hairless — some have short, smooth coats — it is important to remember that most are sensitive to the sun and extreme temperatures. The Xolo comes in three sizes: standard (20 to 31 pounds), miniature (13 to 22 pounds) and toy (9 to 18 pounds).

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