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So Many Different Breeds Of Dog!

There are literally hundreds of recognized dog breeds, and the numbers are increasing all the time. Find out what makes the dog species so diverse and enjoy some gorgeous photos right here.

There are up to 400 different breeds of dog in existence today, and still more are being created, and they're all amazing!

The AKC (American Kennel Club) has 173 'Recognized Breeds', another 14 in the 'Miscellaneous' category, and 47 considered to be 'Rare Breeds' in their Foundation Stock Service Group. These figures are always growing.

Dogs come in a much greater variety of sizes, shapes, colors and characteristics than any other animal in existence... and this has been achieved by the selective breeding practices we've developed over the last couple of centuries.

Originally dogs were bred for characteristics that made them better at the roles/jobs that we had given them, for example herding or guarding.

Over time this practice extended to include breeding dogs who were purely companions, and eventually certain combinations of features and characteristics were chosen just for the 'look' or because they were different, rather than with a particular function in mind.

This is the basis for the incredible variety of different breeds of dog we're lucky enough to share our planet with!

Stunning Dog Breed Photos

Although there are literally hundreds of different 'styles' of dog to choose from, each one is stunning and intriguing in it's own right.

National Geographic Magazine's February 20112 Edition has a fascinating article devoted to the subject of canine diversity which takes a look at how the of canine genetics is contributing to our understanding of human genetic diseases and conditions.

In addition to the article's fascinating scientific theories and discoveries, there are some gorgeous photos that clearly show the mind-boggling variations that exist between breeds.

National Geographic Magazine, and the photographer Robert Clark have kindly given me permission to share these photos with you, so I hope you enjoy them.

These dogs were all participants in the 2011 Westminster Dog Show and are stunning representatives of their breeds... under each photo you'll also find that specific breeds place in the AKC's 2010 Popularity Ranking.

You can see the following photos and many more on the National Geographic website by clicking on this link.

afghan hound

Afghan Hound AKC Rank #86

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic
great pyrenees

Great Pyrenees AKC Rank #71

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic


Puli AKC Rank #145

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic

Belgian Malinois AKC Rank #76

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic


Papillon AKC Rank #35

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic

rhodesian ridgeback

Rhodesian Ridgeback AKC Rank #46

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic

english setter

English Setter AKC Rank #101

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic
chinese crested

Chinese Crested AKC Rank #59

Photo Credit ©Robert Clark/National Geographic

I hope you've enjoyed these beautiful dog breed photos as much as I did, and that it's given you a quick glimpse into the diversity which exists between the different breeds of dog that are such a big part of our lives.

Other pages you might enjoy....

› Different Breeds Of Dog

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