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The Perfect Match: The Origin Of Dog Breeds

The differentiation of dogs from wolves dates to more than 100 million years ago. However, basic breeding began when humans realized canids’ possessed a wide range of abilities and started an intentional selection of advantageous traits. Since then, desirable talents were reinforced in successive generations, giving origin to today’s breeds.     

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As dogs continued to fulfill needed functions in human activities such as hunting, herding, tracking or protecting, men continued breeding the best exponent of each functional group as well as arranging crossbreeds to obtain new desirable traits. As a result, today there are more than 200 registered dog breeds worldwide, all of them with a common ancestor: the wolf.

While humans traveled the world they took their dogs with them. Together, they settled and conquered every corner of the globe. Throughout time, dogs adapted to different environments, even to extreme climate conditions that seemed to be impossible to endure. Sometimes their presence was essential to the survival of certain cultures. For example, the Inuit Sled Dog allowed the ancestors of today’s Inuit culture to survive the hostile conditions of the Arctic.
 
Such a variety of breeds created the need for their organization and classification, resulting in the establishment of the first kennel clubs and associations by the end of the nineteenth century. Today, these organizations are responsible for maintaining standards for purebred dogs, keeping records of pedigrees, arranging dog shows and certifying judges as well as source of information and advice on dog health, training and breeding.

 

Dog Associations and Kennel Clubs

 

– In 1873, The Kennel Club, which still operates in the United Kingdom was founded. Today it recognizes 210 breeds divided into seven groups.
 
– In 1882, two other european organizations were created: the Société Centrale Canine   in France and the Ente Nazionale della Cinifilia Italiana in Italy.
 
– In 1883, the America Kennel Club was founded. This club recognizes seven groups of 173 breeds, with partial recognition for 15 breeds in the Miscellaneous class and another 60 rare breeds registered in its Foundation Stock Service.
 
– In 1888, was formed the Canadian Kennel Club  that recognizes 175 breeds divided into seven groups.


– In 1911, a group of European countries founded the Fédération Cynologique Internationale, which today is a world canine organization located in Belgium. 

It has the kennel clubs of 86 countries as members, among which are Australia and South Africa. FCI recognizes 343 breeds, each of them owned by a specific country who set the standard of the ideal type of the breed in agreement with the FCI who classified the breeds into 10 groups.

FCI
AKC
TKC
CKC
1 Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs)
Hound
Hound
Hound
2 Pinscher and Schnauzer – Molossoid Breeds – Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs
Terrier
Terrier
Terrier
3 Terriers
Working
Working
Working
4 Dachshunds
Herding
Pastor
Herding
5 Spitz and Primitive types
Gundog
Gundog
Sporting
6 Scenthounds and Related Breeds
Non-Sporting
Utility
Non-Sporting
7 Pointing Dogs
Toy
Toy
Toy
8 Retrievers – Flushing Dogs – Water Dogs
Miscellaneous Class
9 Companion and Toy Dogs
Foundation Stock Service
10 Sighthounds


There are 27 kennel clubs independent of the FCI among which we can find clubs of United State, Canada, and United Kingdom. 

Go to LinkingPaws for the links to all Kennel Clubs worldwide.

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