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Just how many breeds are there?

339 I had no idea there were that many different types of dogs and I bet I could only list about 20 or so...never really thought about that tid bit.

The World Canine Organization is best known by its French title Fédération Cynologique Internationale which is abbreviated FCI. It is the largest registry of dog breeds that is internationally accepted. At the time of this writing the FCI recognizes 339 breeds of dogs which are divided into 10 groups based upon the dog’s purpose or function or upon its appearance or size. The 10 groups are:

  1. Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs other than Swiss Cattle Dogs (this group includes most of the dogs found classified as "herding dogs" by other kennel clubs).

  2. Pinscher and Schnauzer - Molossoid Breeds - Swiss Mountain and Cattle Dogs and Other Breeds (the Molossian breeds include the dogs known as the mastiffs by most other kennel clubs)

  3. Terriers

  4. Dachshunds

  5. Spitz and Primitive Types

  6. Scenthounds and Related Breeds

  7. Pointers and Setters

  8. Retrievers - Flushing Dogs - Water Dogs

  9. Companion and Toy Dogs

  10. Sighthounds

So the next time you are wondering just how many different types of dogs there are you have a number. And the next time they ask on Jeopardy (I had a dear friend who watched the show every night.)

This is a lot of stuff to know and I was always curious. Now we all know.

Article was written May 23, 2013 by Stanley Coren PhD., DSc, FRSC

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