Non Sporting Dog Breeds
Among the several breed groups categorized by the American Kennel Club, the non-sporting group stands out for offering quite a varied collection of dogs coming in different shapes, sizes, coats, temperaments and overall appearance. From the American Eskimo dog to the almost unpronounceable Xoloitzcuintli, you will never get bored watching these dogs compete in the show ring because of their diversity.
A Look Back into the History of the Non-Sporting Group
What do dogs in the non-sporting group have in common? According to Gina Spadafori, the only thing they have in common is the fact that they don’t have much in common with the other groups set by the AKC. Therefore, in simple words, this group is composed by leftover breeds that simply didn’t fit in any other group categories.
So you’ll have the bichon frise’; a lap dog that was bred for precious pampering, but is too big to be categorized in the toy group, the poodle; a versatile breed that was utilized as a retriever, truffle hunter and then circus performer, and then you have two types of bulldogs; breeds who were once used for bull baiting, but since this practice has been outlawed, they technically can’t be categorized under the working dog category.
Who Should Own a Dog in the Non-sporting Category?
This is a good question, but since this group is so varied, it’s difficult to give a straight answer. Perhaps the best owners for these dogs are those who are willing to put in some research to discover the pros and cons of each individual breed, while keeping into consideration the fact that each dog can be blessed with its own unique personality. As a general guideline though, those who may want to own a dog in the non-sporting category may consist of:
- Those looking for a top-notch companion. Within this group, prospective dog owners may find a treasured friend. Indeed, several breeds in this group have what it takes to make an excellent companion. Consider poodles for instance, these dogs with a past history as entertaining circus performers, are highly intelligent, easy to train and very loving creatures or Boston terriers, very smart dogs with an excellent disposition.
- Those suffering from allergies. Within this group, there are dogs who may profusely shed, but also some breeds that are much cherished by those with allergies. Indeed, many allergy sufferers report that they can live comfortably with the hairless Xoloitzcuintli. Another choice is the poodle, which is blessed with a coat that sheds very little, and therefore, produces little dander. According to the American Kennel Club, it’s the dander that causes allergies not the hair.
- Those looking for variety. Within this group, prospective dog owners can choose among tiny breeds weighing less than 15 pounds, small to medium-sized breeds weighing anywhere in between 15 to 50 pounds and large breeds weighing up to 80 pounds.
Sadly, other than variety, an extra thing dogs in the non-sporting group seem to have in common is a predisposition to congenital problems often triggered by unscrupulous breeding practices. You’ll therefore need to be aware that Dalmatians are prone to deafness, bulldogs are prone to brachycephalic syndrome and chows may have difficult temperaments. Choosing from a reputable breeder who health tests and cares about temperament goes a long way when selecting a cherished, healthy companion.