We all know about dogs like the German Shepherd, the Labrador Retriever, the Poodle and so on, but what are the very exotic dog breeds out there?
In the interest of avoiding the easy breeds like the hundreds of mixed breeds out there, we will try to keep this only to the exotic purebred breeds.
So without further adieu, let’s talk about these exotic dogs!
10 Must-See Exotic Dog Breeds
The size of the Caucasian Ovcharka is astounding! They can weigh in between 110 – 220 pounds and unsurprisingly have a long past being used as guard dogs.
It is believed that this breed has been around for about 2,000 years and in that time they have guarded all kinds of things.
Originally they were guard dogs for humans, more specifically shepherds, and would protect the flock and shepherd from predators.
Then, in the 1900s they were used as prisoner guard dogs for the USSR and as patrol dogs during the time the Berlin Wall was around.
Another important thing to know is being from the Caucasus Mountains they also had to work in very cold conditions. So, of course, they developed a heavy double coat to keep them nice and warm.
Not only does this make them better for colder climates, but it also makes this breed HEAVY shedders. Their fluffy coat that covers their giant body is bound to shed all over your house, so don’t get one of these dogs if you have sensitivities to dog hair!
To quickly summarize their personality, these dogs will adore their owners and remain very loyal to them, but they are very wary of strangers and will not trust them. This is true for both animals and humans.
So, being a more difficult dog they are better for veteran dog owners that know how to train an intelligent dog that has some aggressive and stubborn tendencies.
Yes, the corded Puli does indeed look like it is covered in an old fashioned mop. It is also safe for you to assume that this coat requires MUCH more time in maintenance.
This is if you have the corded version of their coat which you will have to groom using your hands as opposed to a brush.
However, the uncorded variation of this coat can be groomed with a brush and will take much less time in grooming efforts.
These dogs are also predicted to be AT LEAST 2,000 years old, however, some say that they could be as old as 6,000 years old.
They are a part of the herding group, meaning in the past their primary purpose was to herd sheep and assist their shepherd.
Fun Fact: This breed was once nearly extinct! If it wasn’t for the program created by Dr. Emil Raitsits, a professor and Adolf Lendl the director of the Budapest Zoo, this breed wouldn’t exist today!
Getting on to their personality, this breed is known for their intelligence and are loving family dogs. However, they are also known to bark quite a bit and can be a bit stubborn.
For this reason, it will take a more experienced owner to train this breed, but your efforts will pay off as you will get a fantastic dog for life!
These dogs also have a reputation to keep that youthful personality for most of their life. Personally, I don’t mind this as it can be a good energy to be around.
They will often want to play with you and will need an abundance of toys to stay entertained.
This dog has a very unique look, mainly because of their very large wrinkly and droopy face! A couple of nicknames for this breed is Neo and Mastino.
However, don’t let that face deceive you as they can have a muscular body and have a history being both guard dogs and battle dogs many, many years ago.
This is definitely a guard dog breed and has a very intimidating look that would turn any stranger to the dog in the other direction.
Don’t think that they aren’t loving though as they will have plenty of adoration for their family and want to feel like they are a part of it!
For a dog this size regardless of their love for their family you want to make sure you train them well so they don’t cause any accidental harm or develop bad behaviors.
Catahoula Leopard Dog
That’s a pretty cool name right? Of course, these dogs don’t have any leopard in them, however, they do have plenty of energy that will make them run around plenty.
These dogs hail from the swamps of Lousiana and often spent time helping hunters round up wild hogs in that environment.
In fact, these dogs are actually the state dog for Louisiana.
These dogs also love their family and can make great watchdogs!
Unfortunately, this breed is wary of strangers and can even turn to aggression when it comes to interacting with other dogs.
This can be especially true if both your dog and the other dog are male.
Being smart dogs, they are capable of learning, however, they will need a more experienced owner to train them the best.
These dogs are definitely not apartment dogs and if they are living in a home it must have a fenced-in yard.
These dogs won’t tolerate any other dogs or people it doesn’t know coming into its property hence the need for a fence.
The first thing you should know about this dog breed is that it is now extinct! Because it went extinct some time ago there isn’t much to be said about this breed.
The cool thing about the Molosussus is they are the ancestor of many popular large Mastiff breeds we know today like the Great Dane and Rottweiler!
This breed was very large and often used as guard dogs and also dogs in battle. This breed was even written about by Aristotle the famous Greek philosopher!
Finally, a small companion dog makes an appearance on our exotic dog breeds list.
These dogs are great apartment dogs because of their size and they don’t need a whole bunch of exercise.
On average, a minimum of 20 minutes is required which is much less than the other breeds on our list that have a minimum of 3x that!
The only drawback of this breed in an apartment is that they LOVE barking and will do it often.
This is good if you want a watchdog, but isn’t great in apartments as your neighbors will also have to put up with it as well.
This breed is so rare that it almost actually went extinct twice! Once in the late 19th century and again after both World Wars.
The actual origin of this breed is also very uncertain, but there are a few theories around the web that try to piece together its journey to the current day.
Getting back to their personality, they are quite joyful dogs and tend to be easy to train.
They have a high level of intelligence that makes them quick learners, but like many small dogs can struggle with potty training!
One of the stand out traits for this breed is their soft, wavy coat that doesn’t shed often!
It does require a good amount of grooming and you may even want to enlist the help of a professional groomer.
This breed has a build very similar to that of a Greyhound, very slim, and great for hotter weather.
In colder temperatures, you should invest in a doggy sweater to keep them warm as they don’t have the natural traits to warm themselves.
With that information, it won’t be a surprise when I tell you this breed is from the Sahara Desert! It’s quite amazing how the originating place of a breed can impact their physical traits.
Their slim muscular build makes them a great jogging companion, but that also means when the run they will take off!
Since Azawakh are sighthounds when they see someone or something moving quickly they will chase it. So make sure you keep them on a leash in public areas or you will have quite the chase on your hands.
Getting away from their physical traits, these dogs are loving and with the right amount of exercise can relax just fine when indoors.
They are wary of strangers so take your time introducing people you know to your dog so they can get more comfortable.
These dogs have a beautiful, unique flocked coat that almost doesn’t look real when you see it.
Even though it looks a bit intimidating it is actually quite easy to maintain and groom as it doesn’t need much!
Although this breed got their name from being herding dogs in the cold conditions of the Italian Alps, their history goes back as far as 7,000 years ago in the Middle East!
Moving onto what this breed is like they are very gentle dogs that have built a dedicated following of people that advocate this breed.
This breed is pretty versatile when it comes to living situations as they can live in both homes and apartments.
If you live in an apartment though make sure you get them outside for their daily exercise as it is very important for dogs. Without it, your dog will be sad and may develop bad behaviors.
These dogs are also known to be good with children as they are smart and gentle. Of course, you still need to supervise all playtime between the two.
As you can see what makes this breed so unique is that they look like a lamb! Being such an adorable Terrier it isn’t a surprise that they love getting attention from their family.
These dogs are also quite energetic and smart which makes them fun to train and be around.
For young children, they aren’t as great fit as they won’t tolerate rough play and are quite energetic themselves which may knock over smaller children.
Being terriers, exercise is a must, and if they don’t get it they can cause quite a bit of trouble.
Oftentimes when a dog is bored they will turn to destructive behaviors that will tear up your house.
The Bedlington Terrier is also known to be highly intelligent, but will still chase other dogs and males may even go to the extent of fighting others if they are challenged.
This means three things: you should have a fenced-in yard if you are in a house to avoid these situations, you should always keep your dog on a leash in public, and early socialization is important to avoid behavior problems as they grow older.
This unique Russian dog breed has the body of a greyhound, but instead of very short hair, they have a beautiful long coat to cover their skin and keep them warm.
Unfortunately, this coat may be a problem for those allergy-sensitive owners as it sheds a whole lot. So you may want to look for another breed if you have this issue, perhaps one of these hypoallergenic dogs.
Surprisingly these dogs are actually quite low energy and are perfectly content chilling out indoors for the day with a short walk somewhere in there.
As you can see these dogs are also quite large, measuring up to 32 inches in height! This height combined with their slim build makes them quick runners.
Generally, these dogs aren’t the best for people who plan to leave them home a lot as they need to feel loved and get your attention.
These dogs have a prey drive that is quite high, so they are very likely to chase after other animals. This means leashes in public places and a fenced in yard are both must-haves for this dog.
Being exotic dog breeds if you wanted to get any of these it will most likely take a while to find a good breeder.
Make sure you don’t buy from a puppy mill and don’t buy your dog online!
You should see the puppies in person and meet the parents of the puppies. It’s also important to get health information on the parents to make sure you are buying healthy puppies with parents that don’t have genetic diseases.
This is also a good opportunity to see how the breeders care for the puppies and how all the puppies act. Seeing how they act in their litter can give you an early look at their personality.
If you want a dog name that will fit your new exotic dog, then here is a list of many Unique Dog Names.