Dog Breeds: classifications, the most beautiful and most interesting ones

Our review of the most beautiful and interesting dog breeds in the world with all the information to learn to know and recognize them, discover their peculiarities, origins and practical advice to take care of them.

Each of them has its own physical and character characteristics , natural inclinations to certain activities and lifestyles that determine the right breeding , education and the type of family, environmental and working context in which to live happily, together with beings. humans.

The friendship that binds man and dog is in fact the oldest and most lasting form of coexistence. The dog has been man’s best friend since time immemorial, but in order for the relationship to work even today, it is necessary to know in depth the type of animal and its  peculiarities,  elements that distinguish the various breeds of dogs.

Among the various most beautiful and appreciated dog breeds in the world, some have played an active role in the social, economic and working life of men since ancient times , others have been specially selected to cover specific tasks, such as hunting, defense and the guard.

In general, all  dog breeds are classified according to the FCI and are grouped into these broad categories:

  • Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs
  • Pinscher and Shnauzer type dogs, Swiss Molosser and Cattle Dogs
  • Terrier
  • Dachshunds
  • Spitz and primitive type dogs
  • Hunting dogs (follow, stop, retrieve)
  • Pet dogs
  • Greyhounds

Let’s briefly see all the breeds, but for the most interesting ones we refer you to a detailed sheet.

Shepherd dogs

Among the most intelligent dog breeds are sheepdogs, which have an innate behavior and ability to  lead livestock (the ‘handler’ type dog) and  protect them (the ‘guardian’ dog)  from thieves and predators. .

In this group there are mostly medium-sized dogs , generally with medium-short hair, and among the cattle dogs the Swiss mountain dog is excluded, which is part of another group.

  • Australian Shepherd
  • Australian Cattle Dog
  • Bearded Collie
  • Bobtail
  • Border collie
  • Australian Shepherd Dog
  • Belgian Shepherd Dog
  • Bergamasco shepherd dog
  • Maremma Sheepdog
  • Catalan Sheepdog, Croatian Sheepdog
  • Pyrenean Sheepdog
  • South Russian Sheepdog and Tatra Sheepdog
  • Beauce shepherd dog
  • Brie Sheepdog, Picardy Sheepdog and Vallée Polish Sheepdog
  • Mallorquin Sheepdog
  • Dutch Shepherd Dog
  • Long-haired, short-haired Scottish sheepdog and Shetland sheepdog
  • Czechoslovakian wolfdog
  • Wolfdog of Saarloos
  • Cao of Sierra de Ares
  • Komondor
  • Puli
  • Pumi
  • Romanian Carpathian and Mioritic shepher dog
  • Kuvasz
  • Lancaster Heeler
  • Swiss Shepherd
  • German Shepherd
  • Sharpendoes
  • Schipperkee
  • Slovensky kuvac
  • Welsh Corgi Cardigan and Pembroke Corgi
  • Australian Stumpy Tail
  • Mountain Dog of the Ardennes and Mountain Dog of Flanders

Dogs like Pinscher and Shnauzer, Swiss Molosser and Cattle Dogs

This is more of a group than a specific breed of dog. They are crossed to enhance strength and endurance characteristics.

Big and robust, they have a decisive, alert character with a strong attachment to the owner . Given the size (the Molosser) and the power (Pinscher, bovari), they are often used as defense and guardian dogs.

A turn can be divided into several major types: Swiss Cattle, mountain dogs, molossoidi ,  Pinscher, Shnauzer, dogo and mastiffs.

Pinscher and Shnauzer

  • Affenpinscher
  • Dansk-Svensk
  • Gardshound Dobermann
  • Pinscher,  Dwarf Pinscher  and Austrian Shorthaired Pinscher
  • Giant and medium schanuzer
  • Riesenschnauzer
  • Dutch Smoushound
  • Russozwergpinscher black terrier or Russian black terrier
  • Zwergschnautzer


  • Great Dane
  • Boxer
  • Broholmer
  • English Bulldog
  • Bullmastiff
  • Cane corso
  • Pyrenean mountain dog
  • Caucasian shepherd dog
  • Anatolian Sheepdog , Central Asian Sheepdog and Atlas Dog, Ciarplanina Sheepdog and Kasi Sheepdog
  • Sierra de Estrela dog and Cane de Castro Laboreiro
  • Saint Bernard dog
  • Cao Fila de Sao Miguel and Cimarron Uruguayo
  • Ciobanesc Romanesc de Bucovina
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Dogo Canario , Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Fila Brasileiro
  • Hovawart
  • Landseer
  • Leonberger
  • Mastiff
  • Mastiff of the Pyrenees
  • Neapolitan Mastiff
  • Spanish Mastiff
  • Tibetan Mastiff
  • Perro Dogo Mallorquinrafeiro of Alentejo
  • Rottweiler
  • Shar Pei
  • Newfoundland
  • Tornjak
  • Tosa

Not officially recognized, but with an interesting history to know, it is the Sardinian dogo .

Swiss mountain dogs

  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Appenzell Mountain Dog and Entlebuch Mountain Dog
  • Great Swiss Mountain Dog


They are medium-sized hunting dogs with medium or short legs , divided into short-legged, long-legged, bull-type, and companion Terriers .

Although today they are pets, in the past they were used as working dogs . Originally from Great Britain, they were used to eliminate mice, foxes and badgers, all annoying to humans. They were therefore the companions of the people and carried out tasks useful for the survival of the masters, because they were quick to learn and without particular training.

Medium to large sized terrier

  • Airedale Terrier , Bedlington Terrier
  • Border Terrier
  • Deutscher Jagdterrier
  • Fox Terrier  with smooth coat and coarse coat
  • Irish Glen of Imaal Terrier and Soft-coated Wheaten Terrier, Irish Terrier
  • Kelly Blue Terrier and Lakeland Terrier
  • Manchester Terrier, Welsh Terrier
  • Parson Russel Terrier
  • Terrier Brasileiro

Small-sized terrier with short legs

  • Australian Terrier, Cairn Terrier
  • Dandie Dinmont Terrier
  • Jack Russell Terrier
  • Norfolk Terrier, Norwich Terrier, Scottish Terrier, Sealyham Terrier and Skye Terrier
  • Bohemian Terrier
  • Japanese terrier
  • West Highland White Terrier

Bull Terrier

  • American Staffordshire Terrier or Amstaff
  • Normal and miniature English bull terrier
  • Staffordshire bull terrier

Pet terrier

  • Australian Silky Terrier
  • English Toy Terrier Black and Tan
  • Yorkshire Terrier


It is one of the independent dog breeds of German origin selected for hunting . Their elongated shape and short legs allow them to follow wild animals in the intricate undergrowth and underground burrows.

  • Dachshund  German

Spitz type dogs

This is the purest and most ancient group of races (traces date back to 5000 years ago). Widespread in the East and in the Great North of Europe and in Russia, they were originally used for towing sleds and hunting, as well as watching flocks and keeping company .

Brave character, intelligence and strength, they have some common facial features such as triangular ears and snout, and curled tail.

Nordic sled dogs

  • Alaskan Malamute
  • Greenlandic
  • Samoyed
  • Siberian Husky

Nordic hunting dogs

  • Karelian bear dog
  • Jamhund
  • Laika of Western, Eastern and Russian-European Siberia
  • Norbottenspets, Norbottenspets gray and Norbottenspets black
  • Norsk Lundehund
  • Finnish Spitz

Nordic guard and shepherd dogs

  • Icelandic Sheepdog
  • Lapinkoira
  • Lapiporokoira or Finnish Shepherd from Lapland
  • Norsk Buhund
  • Svensk Lapphund
  • Vastgotsaaspets

European Spitz

  • German Spitz or  Pomeranian
  • Volpino italiano

Asian Spitz

  • Akita and American Akita
  • Chow Chow
  • Eurasier
  • Hokkaido, Kai and Kishu
  • Korea Jindo dog
  • Shiba Inu
  • Shikoku Inu
  • Japanese Spitz
  • Thai Bangkaew dog

Primitive type, hunting and with a crest on the back

  • Basenji
  • Canaan Dog
  • Perro sin pelo of Peru
  • Pharaon Hound
  • Xoloitzcuintle
  • Cirneco dell’Etna
  • Podengo Canario, Podengo Ibicenco, Podengo Portugues
  • Taiwan Dog
  • Thai Ridgeback

Hunting dogs

This is the largest group of all dog breeds, which shows that this use has always been by far the most important. The hounds were selected to help man in hunting, honing the basic characteristics of certain types of dog, according to different types of hunting.

Breeds of hunting dogs are organized into six large groups.

  • Follow-up dogs , used to chase and track down prey and push them towards hunters. All hounds are part of this type of dog.
  • Continental and British pointing dogs, once the prey has been identified, these dogs have the task of blocking it and indicating its presence to the hunter, for this reason they are divided into pointe dogs (pointers) and real pointing dogs such as bracchi and various setter.
  • Retrievers , specializing in retrieving prey shot down by hunters, such as the Golden Retriever .
  • Hunting and burrowing dogs , they have been selected with physical characteristics – low and strong – that allow them to easily enter the burrows of prey, such as badgers and foxes, to flush them out and have them killed by hunters, such as the Fox Terrier and the dachshund. which at the breed level is independent.
  • Water dogs , excellent swimmers, used to bring back aquatic prey such as ducks and geese.
  • Bloodhound or trace dogs , they have a particularly developed sense of smell to identify wounded prey, following the tracks of blood, such as the  Bloodhound , and hounds.

Follow-up dogs

  • Anglo-français de petite venerie and Grand Anglo-français blanc et noir, Grand Anglo-français blanc et orange
  • Ariegeois
  • Basset bleu de Gascoigne and Petit bleu de Gascoigne
  • Bassethound
  • Bassett Artesian Normand, Bassett Fauve de Bretagne, Griffon Fauve de Bretagne and Grand Bassett Fauve de Bretagne
  • Beagle  and dwarf beagle
  • Beagle Harrier and Harrier
  • Billy
  • Black and Tan Coonhound
  • Bloodhound or Chien de Saint Hubert
  • Briquet Griffon Vendeen
  • Chien d’Artois
  • Drever and Dunker
  • Foxhound and American foxhound
  • Français noir et blanc, Français noir et orange, Français Tricouleur
  • Gascon Saintongeois
  • Gonczy Polski and Polski
  • Grand Anglo-Français noir et orange, Grand Anglo-Français noir et blanc et Grand Anglo-Français Tricouleur
  • Grand Bassett Griffon Vendeen, Petit Bassett Griffon Vendeen and Grand Griffon Vendeen
  • Grand bleu de Gascoigne and Griffon bleue de Gascoigne
  • Griffon Nivernais
  • Haldenstovare, Hamilton Stovare and Schiller Stovare
  • Hyghenhund
  • Otterhund
  • Poitevin
  • Porcelaine
  • Sabueso Espagnol
  • Apennine Hound and Maremma Hound
  • Swiss Hound and Small Swiss Hound, Austrian Black and Tan Hound
  • Bosnian Wirehaired Hound, Styrian Wirehaired Hound and Westphalian Hound, Transylvanian Hound
  • Istrian wire-haired and short-haired hound, Hellenic hound

British pointing dogs

  • English pointer
  • Gordon Setter
  • English setter
  • Irish Red Setter and Irish Red-White Setter

Continental pointing dogs

  • Bracco d’Ariege, bracco d’Auvergne, bracco del Bourbonnais, bracco di Burgos
  • Hound of Gascogne, Hound of Saint Germain and Hound of the Pyrenees
  • Italian Bracco
  • Portuguese Bracco, Slovak wire-haired Bracco
  • Hungarian short-haired, wire-haired hound
  • Bohemian rough-haired pointing dog,
  • German Bracco also known as pointing dog with coarse hair, wirehaired, longhaired, shorthaired
  • Brittany Spaniel
  • Epagneul de Pont-Audemer, Epagneul français, Epagneul Picard, Epagneul bleue de Picardie
  • Rent Dutch Spaniel
  • Gammel Dans Honsenhud
  • Big and Small Muensterlander
  • Wirehaired Griffon (Korthals)
  • Pudel Pointer
  • Italian spinone
  • Stabyhound
  • Weimararner


  • Chesapeake Bay Retriever
  • Curly-Coated Retriever
  • Flat Coated Retriever
  • Golden Retriever
  • Labrador Retriever
  • Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever

Search dogs

  • Clumber Spaniel
  • American cocker
  • English Cocker Spaniel
  • Field Spaniel
  • Kooikerhondje
  • German spaniel
  • English Springer Spaniel , Welsh Springer Spaniel and Sussex Spaniel

Water Dogs

  • American Water Spaniel
  • Barbet
  • Cao de agua
  • Irish Water Spaniel
  • Lagotto romagnolo
  • Perro de agua espagnol
  • Dutch Spaniel

Bloodhounds and track dogs

  • Alpenlaendische Dachsbracke
  • Bayerischer Gebirgsscheisshund
  • Hannoverischer Schweisshund
  • Dalmatian
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback

Pet dogs

Even they were originally selected to hunt small animals annoying to humans (mice, rats), they were used to living with their owners on a daily basis, towards whom they showed great attachment.

Over time, the characteristics of vivacity, sociability and docility have been emphasized , combined with a smaller size than other dogs and less strength, due to the fact of being often at home.

Companion dogs are divided into Bichons, tramps, small Belgian dogs, naked dogs, Tibetan dogs, Chihuahuas, Continental and Asian pet spaniels, Kromforhlanders and small molossers.

Bichon and related

  • Bichon à poil frisé
  • Bichon Havanais
  • Bolognese
  • Coton de Tulear
  • Maltese
  • Lion dog


  • Poodle

Small Belgian dogs

  • Belgian griffon
  • Griffon de Bruxelles
  • Little Brabant

Naked dogs

  • Chinese Crested Dog

Dogs of Tibet

  • Lhasa Apso
  • Shih Tzu
  • Tibetan Spaniel and Tibetan Terrier


  • Chihuahua and Chuahua Toy

English pet spaniels

  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel  and King Charles Spaniel

Japanese and Pekingese spaniel

  • Chin
  • Pekingese

Dwarf Spaniels

  • Dwarf spaniel
  • Russian Toy


  • Kromforhlander

Small Molosser

  • Boston Terrier
  • Bulldog or  French bulldog
  • Pug

The Greyhounds

Greyhounds are one of the dog breeds with physical characteristics of their own. Although they are often associated with racing or as elegant companion animals, they have been selected in both Asia and Europe for use as hunting dogs.

Long-haired greyhounds

  • Russian greyhound also called Borzoi and Steppe greyhound also called Hortaya Borzaya or Chortaj
  • Afghan hound  also known as Tazi
  • Persian greyhound also called Saluki

Wirehaired Greyhounds

  • Scottish Greyhound also called Deerhound
  • Irish Greyhound also called Irish Wolfhound

Short-haired greyhounds

  • Malian greyhound also called Azawakh
  • Spanish greyhound also called Galgo español
  • Polish greyhound also called Chart Polski
  • Hungarian greyhound also called Magyar Agar
  • Italian greyhound also called Piccolo Italian greyhound
  • Arabian greyhound also called Sloughi
  • English Greyhound of Whippet and Greyhound type

Dog breeds not classified

There are more recent breeds that still do not have a place in the ranking of the International Dog Federation, such as the  Boerboel , originally from South Africa and selected by the Boer settlers since 1652 starting from the guard and defense dogs of English and Dutch origin. for the protection from wild animals and the defense of colonial houses.

Or the American Bully , a dog of the Molosser group that is recognized by the American Kennel Club but not yet by the FCI and therefore also by the ENCI.

The journey to discover the most beloved dog breeds by man does not end here …

Dog BehaviorDog Food and Nutrition
Dog TrainingDog Grooming
Dog HealthTips for Dog Owners
PuppiesDog Breeds
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