The dog family just got a little bigger — and cuter. The American Kennel Club announced three new breeds to the organization’s growing litter list of 173 recognized pooches. The American English coonhound joins the hound group, the Finnish Lapphund is in the herding group, and the Cesky joins its fellow terriers.
“The AKC is excited to add these wonderful breeds to our registry and give families even more dogs to choose from,” said AKC spokeswoman Lisa Peterson in a statement. “From hunters to herders, each breed has a unique history, and makes loving, devoted family pets.”
The American English Coonhound, originally bred for its hunting skills, is known as an affectionate dog that makes an excellent “companion for active owners,” according to the AKC. Speedy and loud, they possess a “houndy” expression and require minimal upkeep.
The Finnish Lapphund was originally bred to work outside herding reindeer north of the Arctic Circle, but today, this sweet-looking pooch is adored for its teddy-bear appearance. Friendly and agile, it boasts a double coat — in black, blond, brown and tan — that sheds seasonally.
The Cesky Terrier is “intelligent and full of energy,” according to the AKC, and perfect for hunting vermin, fox and badgers. For the modern pet owner, however, they’re an ideal active dog — they love to play, exercise and meet new people. Friendly and loyal, they are anxious to please and easy to train.
How long it takes for a breed to obtain AKC certification depends on a number of factors. “There’s not a set number of years. You never really know how long it’s going to take,” AKC spokeswoman Christina Duffney told TODAY.com in 2010.
It’s required that there be an official organization for the breed, and recognized standards such as size, coat and temperament.
AKC recognition benefits families who are choosing a pet. “You can get a dog that has specific qualities that are going to work with your family,” Duffney said. “That’s the great thing about a purebred dog — there’s one for everyone.”