Without a shadow of doubt white dog breeds have a striking appeal of their own. Their splendid coat color attracts many people who fall in love with them and inevitably end up having them as companions. The best news is that dogs who wear white coats come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. As much as these pooches look adorable, it’s important for perspective dog owners to also learn about the breed’s personality and energy levels.
Just as with white clothing, the white coat of dogs can be delicate and prone to staining. Special attention is often needed to maintain the coat clean and immaculate. In some white breeds, tears may cause visible stains near the eyes. The mouth area may also stain easily after eating messy foods. Of course, rolling in dirt will be an activity that cannot be ignored in a dog with this coat color!
In some dog breeds, white coats are associated with some health conditions. For instance, deafness is linked to white and merle coats in both dogs and cats. Also, a condition known as “white shaker syndrome” has been observed in certain small dog breeds equipped with all-white coats. However, dogs with any colored coat color can also be susceptible.
Popular White Dog Breeds
What common feature do these pooches share? A white coat, of course! The length and texture will obviously vary from one another, but the color is unmistakable.
The most striking feature of this Northern beauty is obviously the bright, fluffy white coat. According to the American Kennel Club it should “glisten with a silver sheen.” The double coat is made of a wooly, insulating undercoat and a straight weather-resistant top coat so this fellow can happily romp in the snow. A well-groomed Samoyed is candy for the eye, but it comes at a price. Daily brushing is a must, especially when this breed blows its coat once to twice a year.
This small pooch is literally covered by a silky mantle of immaculate, white fur. Unlike the Samoyed, this breed has a single coat that lacks an undercoat. The long hair on the head is often tied-up in a tidy topknot. In the show ring, when asked to trot, a well-groomed Maltese often gives the impression of floating over the ground. This pampered dog, with a history as a lap dog for the aristocrats, doesn’t shed much, which makes him a favorite hypoallergenic dog breed among allergy sufferers.
As the name implies, this spunky breed has a bright, white coat. Any other color is strictly considered a fault by the American Kennel Club. The coat consists of a soft undercoat and a hard, straight top coat meant to protect this breed from the foxes’ teeth and the elements. In ancient times, westies were utilized in Scotland for hunting foxes, badgers and rodents. This breed’s coat doesn’t shed much, but requires regular brushing and trimming.
Perspective dog owners looking for a large, white dog on the larger side will be happy to learn about the Great Pyrenees. This beautiful, glamorous dog has been used by shepherds for centuries as live stock guardians. Today, these gentle giants make strong, affectionate family guardians. Their double coat is thick and made of silk-like hair. Accepted coat colors are pure white or white with markings on the head, tail and other few body parts.
Another large breed, the Dogo Argentino is a strong breed selectively bred to pursue large animals such as puma and boar. Because of this breed’s strength and temperament, it does best in a home with experienced owners. A Dogo’s coat is white, but unlike the previous breeds, it’s short, smooth and quite easy to maintain. The standard calls for a dog that is completely white. The only exception is a dark colored patch around the eye.
Not only is this breed white, it also has a distinctive corded coat that seriously resembles a mop. This Hungarian flock-guarding dog has quite a distinctive personality hiding under all that hair. While the puppies’’ coats have cream or buff shadings, as they mature they whiten more and more. The cords begin forming at around one year of age up until the age of two. Grooming involves keeping the cords from matting and trimming the hair around the mouth.
These cute fellows have a history of being lap warmers for the 16th century French royalty, and later, they were fun circus dogs with ample of tricks up their sleeves. Their white fluffy coats and baby-doll faces made them popular among many Spanish royal families. Even Spanish painter Goya was enamored with these dogs; indeed, he included them in his paintings. Always white in color, this breed’s powdered-puff appearance gives them their signature look.
Another Nordic-looking breed, the American Eskimo is popular for its bright white coat, triangular ears and richly plumed tail. Despite the name, these smart pooches aren’t from Alaska, but are actually of German origin. According to the American Kennel Club, the preferred coat color is pure white, but white with biscuit cream is allowed.
This bold and courageous working dog with long white fur gets its name from the Turkish word for “armed guard of the nobility.” Indeed, these devoted dogs were much appreciated by the Hungarian and European rulers for their guardian instincts. Later on, they were employed by shepherds for their ability to work with sheep and cattle. The white coat turned out helpful for shepherds as it helped them distinguish them from wolves. Breed standard calls for white specimens with no markings.
This dog is a direct descendent of the German shepherd. Max Von Stephanitz, the creator of the German shepherd breed, didn’t give much importance to coat color as he mostly cared about working ability. Later though the white coat color fell into disfavor, but fortunately some breeders continued to breed a few white specimens. The breed was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1999. The coat must be pure white, or at the very least, light cream or light biscuit.
The Bottom Line
White dog breeds are strikingly beautiful which makes them a favorite among dog lovers. While it’s tempting to choose a dog based solely on appearance, this isn’t the best way to select a companion. The best approach would be for perspective dog owners to find the dog breed that best lines up with their personality and lifestyle. This alone should considerably reduce the number of unwanted pets surrendered each year to shelters worldwide.