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12 Authentic American Dog Breeds (Made in America)


Dr. Mark is a veterinarian. He has been working with dogs for more than 40 years.

The American Dog Breeds

From the arrival of the first Europeans, America has been a melting pot. In the beginning, only a few countries intermixed with the Native Americans, but later residents came from almost everywhere, and many of them brought their dogs.

Some of the dog breeds introduced to America have not changed much since they first arrived. However, those created in America have been a product of this melting pot, and the best were always chosen.

True American Dog Breeds

  1. American Pit Bull Terrier
  2. Blue Tick Coonhound
  3. Catahoula Cur
  4. Redbone Coonhound
  5. Carolina Dog
  6. American Foxhound
  7. Alaskan Malamute
  8. Chesapeake Bay Retriever
  9. American Water Spaniel
  10. Boston Terrier
  11. American Eskimo
  12. Rat Terrier

American Pit Bull Terrier

1. American Pit Bull Terrier

Like a lot of people in the United States, this dog's ancestors came from England and Ireland. And, like a lot of people in the “new world," there are some dark areas in his history before he left his home. In this case, no one will let him forget it.

Back in Europe, the dog was used to bait bulls, then for ratting, and finally for dogfighting. When brought to the US, the Pit Bull became a farmers dog and was used to catch cattle and hogs, to herd cattle, to hunt, and finally as a guard.

The American Pit Bull Terrier (APBT) is just a medium-sized dog. They can weigh as little as 15 kilos (about 33 pounds) and as much as 27 kilos (about 60 pounds).

They are usually healthy but are prone to hip dysplasia, luxating patella, and heart problems. Some lines are prone to demodectic mange, too.

APBT have an average lifespan of 12 to 14. Although this dog is eager to work, he is one of the most commonly banned dog breeds in Europe and South America; Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Singapore have also banned this breed. Some cities and counties in the US have also implemented a ban.

Bluetick Coonhound looking thoughtful.

2. Bluetick Coonhound

The Bluetick Coonhound is an all-American scenthound. He comes out of Louisiana where the breed founders put him together using the Bleu de Gascogne from France, the English Foxhound, and both the American and the Black and Tan Foxhound.

They might have thrown in a little chicory, too, but who knows about things in Louisiana.

Yes, they will howl and bark a lot. Yes, they will run off if given the chance. And yes, they are kind of rough around the edges, but they are still American and willing to work. Blueticks are muscular, medium-sized (about 20 to 35 kilos, or 45 to 80 pounds), and although they may be prone to hip dysplasia, they are a pretty healthy breed of dog.

The Bluetick Coonhound has an average lifespan of about 11 or 12 years. These dogs like to get out and use their noses so need the wide-open spaces of the west; this Coonhound should not be asked to adapt to life in the city.

Dolly Parton, David Allen Coe, Charlie Daniels, and now Blake Shelton have all immortalized this dog in song. That is good enough for me. They do tend to slobber. Oh well.

Catahoula Curs can become good house dogs.

3. Catahoula Cur

This is probably the oldest breed developed in the U.S., put together from Spanish Greyhounds, mastiffs, Beaucerons from France, and a few of the Native American dogs that may have been around at the time.

The result was a pretty spectacular working dog. They may be called “Catahoula leopard dogs” from some Choctaw words, or maybe from some French mispronunciation. Whatever you call them, they are still a dog bred for performance, and not looks. A few years ago they were declared the Louisiana state dog.

Catahoulas are good at hunting feral pigs and all sorts of American wildlife, great at herding, make great watchdogs, and fanciers claim that they have a special bond with the children they are supposed to take care of.

Deafness is a serious health issue since some of the dogs have been selected to be mostly white and have blue eyes. Some of the dogs are also prone to hip dysplasia.

These dogs have a 12- or 13-year life expectancy. Governor Long was a fan, and if he were around today he probably still would be.

Redbone Coonhound puppy in a hurry.

4. Redbone Coonhound

All Coonhounds are American, but not all of them are blue, black and tan, or even yellow. This great American legend is red.

The Redbone Coonhound is different in a lot of ways. His ears are floppy. (Well, I guess that isn't different.) His coat is short and coarse to protect him in the undergrowth. (Okay, that isn't much different either.) The dog’s paws are thick and the face is sad. (All right, all right!) The Redbone Coonhound is red.

The dogs were originally bred from red foxhounds from Scotland, Irish foxhounds, and then there were the red Bloodhounds from France. “Redbone” comes from the name of the breeder, however, not the color.

He is just a hunting dog, bred to take down bear, cougars, and of course raccoons, and agile both in the forest and when out. They are medium-sized, about 20 to 30 kilos (about 45 to 70 pounds), bark a lot, and are a healthy mixture but prone to hip dysplasia.

They live about 11 or 12 years. Redbone Coonhounds do better in the house than Blueticks but they still go through the puppy crazies and need to be obedience trained.

Just make sure you can put up with the barking before you decide to search for one of these dogs.

5. Carolina Dog

Several new breeds have been put together the last few years (American Alsatian, Silken Windhound, Mi-Ki), but in the meantime, we found out that not everything out there is a product of the melting pot. Even America has a pariah dog.

The Dixie Dingoes were only discovered in the 1970s in the isolated cypress swamps of the southeast U.S., and have been kept in captivity since the ´80s. They are wild or feral dogs, and DNA testing has proven that they are more closely related to the East Asian dogs than to the European.

Carolina Dogs are medium-sized (about 10 to 20 kilos, or 20 to 45 pounds), have sort of a dingo-colored coat, and look about like wild dogs everywhere.

They are still a hard-to-find dog breed and the only significant information has been collected by ecologists at the University of Georgia's Savannah River Ecology Lab. You might find them at a UKC dog show, but they can also be registered with the American Rare Breed Association.

6. American Foxhound

This dog is now so uncommon that he could be put on the rare dog's breed list, but it was not always that way. The breed used to be common back when there were a lot more foxes to hunt. George Washington is considered an early breeder of the American Foxhound.

They are scenthounds, and like the Beagle, are bred to live in a pack. That makes them a lot harder to train than some of the working dogs.

7. Alaskan Malamute

I enjoy working with this dog breed but most of the people that adopt one should not. They are huge freight dogs, bred to work, and when asked to sit around all day in an apartment or a back yard they do not do so well.

They dig, they chew, they howl, and they do shed a lot. Not the best choice for everyone.

8. Chesapeake Bay Retriever

Another working dog, the Chessie is powerful and big, so not the best choice for a family with small kids. They are smart dogs, and if you live around a lake, expect your dog to jump in at all hours they are a great choice.

9. American Water Spaniel

Another one of those rare American breeds, the Water Spaniel, is a great dog for those people who want an eager hunting dog who can jump in the water and not get wet. This is the Wisconsin state dog.

10. Boston Terrier

This little American is tough, even if he is on the small side. Most of the dogs are known to be polite with people but good watchdogs when they hear a stranger.

Since they are one of the flat-faced breeds, they do tend to snort. Something to live with.

11. American Eskimo

Okay, maybe this dog should not be on this list, since most sources claim he is really German. Of course, we all know that French Bulldogs are English, Japanese Chin are Chinese, and Italian Greyhounds are Greek. This dog is an American.

They are good watchdogs and definitely vocal. Maybe a little too much.

12. Rat Terrier

This little ratter has been around since the late 1800s, but he is still known as a digger, barker, and general all-around farm type dog. In most places, they are still uncommon.

Where to Find These Breeds

Aren't these all American dogs great? Have you found exactly what you have been looking for?

  • Animal shelters: If you have decided to adopt one of the American dog breeds, your first stop needs to be your local animal shelter. You may find exactly the dog you are looking for. Maybe someone has had to give the dog up when moving; maybe the dog is a stray. Get over there and check.
  • Petfinder.com: This site lists dogs available almost everywhere and you may find the breed you are looking for in a city or state close by.
  • Rescue organizations: You can find these through the website dogbreedinfo.
  • Dog shows: Some breeders can be found at dog shows, and you can ask them prices and when puppies or adult dogs will be available. Catahoula Leopard Dogs, Blueticks, and Redbones are part of the AKC. American dogs like APBTs, Blue Ticks, Redbones, Catahoulas, and sometimes even Carolina Dogs can all be found at UKC dog shows.

Where Not to Go

Do not buy from a pet shop or an internet site that deals in shipping puppies; these places only support puppy mills. You might be dealing with some behavioral and housebreaking problems down the road, and you probably will not end up with a great American dog.

Information on Rare Dog Breeds

  • Five Rare American Dog Breeds
    Most breeds of rare dogs in America are new. Here are five great rare breeds: the Mi-ki, the Klee-kai, the Chinook, American Alsatian, and the Plott Hound.

B A Tobin from Connnecticut on April 28, 2013:

Very interesting reading, once again! It is wonderful to be able to hear how many dogs sound. I loved the puppies in the tub... Ahhh how many were there?, 12 ! :)

Thelma Raker Coffone from Blue Ridge Mountains, USA on April 27, 2013:

Voted up and interesting. Great advice about petfinders.com and adopting from local animal shelter. Our current dog is a Feist that came from our local shelter. She is the sweetest and smartest dog I have ever had. Always enjoy your hubs!

Dr Mark (author) from The Atlantic Rain Forest, Brazil on April 27, 2013:

Georgie, no southern girl should grow up without seeing these dogs! Thanks for the info on the Carolina dogs video; I am going to fix it as soon as my ISP starts letting me get into the videos!!!

wetnosedogs, you have probably seen all of these dogs down your way. Imagine poor Bob, never even having heard of a Catahoula Cur.

Mary, I like the Carolina dogs myself. The "Dixie Dingo" seems to be everywhere, and they have that wonderful little muzzle "bred" to fit inside a tin can!

Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent from Mississauga, ON on April 27, 2013:

Very informative hub! And thanks for shedding light on some less known American dog breeds.

I would like to give honorable mention to Alaskan Malamute (the state dog of Alaska), Chesapeake Bay Retriever (the state dog of Maryland), and the recently approved by AKC, the Chinook (the state dog of New Hampshire). All three are working dog breeds.

Mary Craig from New York on April 27, 2013:

This one's just as great as the rest. You're giving us such great information on such a wide variety of dog breeds. It is always important to know how the breed will behave in your home, large or small.

I have to say I find the Catahoula and the Carolina breeds nice looking. I love the video of the Catahoula , it looks like a fun though active breed.

Voted up, useful, and interesting.

Bob Bamberg on April 27, 2013:

Interesting hub as usual. The only one of the lot that you'll find in my neck of the woods is the APBT. I've never heard of the Catahoula Cur, and neither has my spellchecker. The other Americans, I would guess, are found mostly south of the Mason-Dixon line? Voted up and interesting.

wetnosedogs from Alabama on April 27, 2013:

How can anyone not love a slobbering, barking hound? Great one on american dogs.

GH Price from North Florida on April 27, 2013:

Another great Hub! I love the first photo of the pit bull, these dogs are so beautiful and usually very friendly (and funny!). I hate that such bad things have happened with and to them.

Is it sad that I've lived in the South for a good chunk of my life and never knew what a blue tick coonhound looked like? I remember a song by Emmylou Harris where she sand about a blue tick hound dog named Gideon (Red Dirt Girl).

Thanks for the info!


13 States Have Official State Dogs, Is Yours One of Them?

Boston Terriers, Great Danes and simply "adoptable dogs" are among the official state dogs

There are official state birds, trees and flowers. Some states love sweets so much they even have an official state dessert. But perhaps the cutest state designation belongs to the dozen dog breeds that are official state dogs.

Thirteen pooch-loving states in America have named an official state dog in the 240-plus years the United States has existed, and now another breed might be appointed to these esteemed ranks.

According to CNN, Ohio is considering making the Labrador retriever its official state dog. If the state’s proposed House Bill 539 passes, the Labrador will be number 14 to join the state dog pack.

See if your state already has an official man’s best friend by checking out the complete list of official state dogs below.

Alaska: Alaskan Malamute

According to the Washington Post, the Alaskan Malamute became the 11th official state dog in 2010 after a group of Alaskan kindergartners decided they wanted a state dog and their school worked with them to successfully present the idea to the state legislature.

Georgia: Adoptable Dog

The most recent state to “adopt” an official state dog is Georgia. In 2016, the state legislature passed a bill to name adoptable dogs, not a specific breed, their official state canine, reports AJC.com. The choice was made in hopes of raising awareness about shelter pets in need and the animal rescues who care for them.

Louisiana: Catahoula Leopard Dog

This stunning, spotted breed, also known as the Catahoula Cur, was made Louisiana’s official state dog in 1979. According to 225 Magazine, while not proven for sure, popular belief is that this dog breed originated in Louisiana’s Catahoula Lake area.

Maryland: Chesapeake Bay Retriever

The Chesapeake Bay retriever is the first official state dog. The Maryland state government made the call in 1964, choosing the dog breed that is named after the state’s well-known bay region.

Massachusetts: Boston Terrier

Going by the name, it’s not surprising the Boston terrier was chosen as the Massachusetts state dog. Boston.com reports that the pup has been the school mascot of Boston University since 1922 and was made state official in 1979.

New Hampshire: Chinook

According to NH.gov, the Chinook, which became New Hampshire’s state dog in 2009, got its title thanks to a group of seventh graders.

New York: Working Dogs

According to the New York State Senate, working dogs are the official dogs of New York. This decision was made in 2015 and includes guide dogs, police work dogs, war dogs, hearing dogs, service dogs, working search dogs, therapy dogs, detection dogs and dogs trained to protect or herd other animals.

North Carolina: Plott Hound

The North Carolina General Assembly named the Plott Hound, a dog breed that originated in the Tar Heel State, North Carolina’s official state dog in 1989, according to the North Carolina History Project.

Pennsylvania: Great Dane

Following closely behind Maryland, Pennsylvania named the Great Dane its official state dog in 1965, reports Barkpost.

South Carolina: Boykin Spaniel

According to Dogster, the Boykin Spaniel is also known as the “swamp poodle” and was named South Carolina’s official state dog in 1985.

Texas: Blue Lacy

While this breed was developed in the 1800s, according to Rover, the Blue Lacy did not become Texas’ official state dog until 2005.

Virginia: American Foxhound

The American foxhound was brought to Virginia from England in 1650, according to Lansdowne Animal Hospital, and became the state’s official dog in 1966.

Wisconsin: American Water Spaniel

The American Kennel Club recognized this breed in 1940 and Wisconsin followed suit, naming the pooch its official state canine in 1985.


America might be late to the table when it comes to dog breeding, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some unique breeds from right here in the old US of A!

1. Boston Terrier – This seems like a no brainer, huh? Well, we often say the names of dogs, but don’t always know the origin or pay really close attention. The Boston Terrier is one of the American breeds of dogs, originating in Boston, Massachusetts. They are nicknamed the “American Gentleman.” How stinkin’ cute is that?

2. American Pit Bull Terrier – Dun, dun, dun…Yeah, we know. These canines are famous not always for the best reasons, but let us shine some light on one of the top American breeds of dogs. They get a bad rep, because of some bad owners. Pit Bulls are loyal, loving, clown dogs and they are good with kids. They are more than their stereotypes!

3. Toy Fox Terrier – Terrier is the theme here! These toy pups are closely related to Chihuahuas and Smooth Fox Terriers. They were bred and raised to protect barns and properties from rats and other small vermin.

4. American Bulldog – These strong and sturdy dogs can’t be mistaken for the English or French Bulldogs. Of the American breeds of the dogs, American Bulldog are social, active, family friendly dogs. They resemble the American Pit Bull and have similar sweet dispositions and make wonderful family pets!

5. American Eskimo Dog – The white, fluffy coat of this dog is standout. They are lively and entertaining dogs. American Eskimos are in the medium sized category of the American breeds. They were originally names the American Spitz, but was changed in 1917. Their striking eyes will captivate you and loving spirit will ensure that you won’t be able to get enough of this precious ball of floof!


America might be late to the table when it comes to dog breeding, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t some unique breeds from right here in the old US of A!

1. Boston Terrier – This seems like a no brainer, huh? Well, we often say the names of dogs, but don’t always know the origin or pay really close attention. The Boston Terrier is one of the American breeds of dogs, originating in Boston, Massachusetts. They are nicknamed the “American Gentleman.” How stinkin’ cute is that?

2. American Pit Bull Terrier – Dun, dun, dun…Yeah, we know. These canines are famous not always for the best reasons, but let us shine some light on one of the top American breeds of dogs. They get a bad rep, because of some bad owners. Pit Bulls are loyal, loving, clown dogs and they are good with kids. They are more than their stereotypes!

3. Toy Fox Terrier – Terrier is the theme here! These toy pups are closely related to Chihuahuas and Smooth Fox Terriers. They were bred and raised to protect barns and properties from rats and other small vermin.

4. American Bulldog – These strong and sturdy dogs can’t be mistaken for the English or French Bulldogs. Of the American breeds of the dogs, American Bulldog are social, active, family friendly dogs. They resemble the American Pit Bull and have similar sweet dispositions and make wonderful family pets!

5. American Eskimo Dog – The white, fluffy coat of this dog is standout. They are lively and entertaining dogs. American Eskimos are in the medium sized category of the American breeds. They were originally names the American Spitz, but was changed in 1917. Their striking eyes will captivate you and loving spirit will ensure that you won’t be able to get enough of this precious ball of floof!

The post Made in America: 5 American Breeds of Dogs appeared first on Petland Blog.

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