From the sightly Saluki to the peculiar Puli, check out seven unique breeds that will undoubtedly have viewers doing double takes — including two breeds making their Westminster debuts this year.
The two-night telecast airs on CNBC on Monday, Feb. 15, from 8 to 11 p.m. EST, and on USA on Tuesday, Feb. 16, from 8 to 11 p.m. EST. Tell us in the comments below if you’re rooting for any of these unusual canines!
The Bergamasco will be appearing at Westminster for the first time this year, and we have no doubt this newly recognized breed will turn plenty of heads! This herding dog's matted coat helps protect him from bad weather and any predators that may try to attack his flock.
How could you not admire the Saluki's graceful, elegant frame? These gorgeous sighthounds are known for their narrow heads, hanging ears, bright eyes, long legs and silky hair.
We'd recognize the football-shaped head of the Bull Terrier from 100 yards away! At Westminster, this breed is technically sorted into separate entries: one for colored Bull Terriers and another for white ones. And don't count out the Miniature Bull Terrier — 10 of them are competing this year.
Can't get enough of those cool corded coats? Keep an eye out for the Puli, a Hungarian herding breed with a soft, woolly undercoat and dense, corded outercoat. As you might expect, bathing and drying a Puli can take hours.
From a breed with plenty of hair to one with a noticeable lack of it, meet the Chinese Crested! The dog pictured here is of the hairless kind, but the breed also comes in a variety called Powderpuff, in which the dogs are completely covered with silky fur. Fun fact: Both types of Chinese Crested dogs can be born in the same litter!
Here's another breed that's eligible to compete at Westminster for the first time this year: the Cirneco dell’Etna. These stunning sighthounds hail from Sicily, Italy, and are revered for their general athleticism, jumping ability and stealthy, silent mode of hunting.
Yes, we're positive these are actual dogs and not lambs! The Bedlington Terrier may resemble a young sheep, but don't let that fool you — she's a true Terrier who tends to take her watchdog duties seriously. And this may surprise you: Bedlingtons are born black or brown, and their coats lighten as they mature.