Featured Breed : American Eskimo
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American Eskimo

Life Span: 12 to 15 years

Litter Size: 3 to 5

Country of Origin: United States/Germany

Size: American Eskimo Dogs come in three sizes: toy, miniature and standard. The toy breed ranges in height from 9 to 12 inches at the shoulder and usually weighs in at about 10 pounds at maturity. Miniature Eskimos stand between 12 and 15 inches at the shoulder and weigh around 20 pounds. Standard sized Eskimos are from 15 to 19 inches at the shoulder and weigh in at about 30 pounds at maturity.

Coat: The white, fluffy American Eskimo Dog has a double coat with a dense undercoat and a longer top coat. The hair is straight with no curl or wave. They have a pronounced ruff around the neck. Their front and rear legs are well feathered, and the fur on their tail is profuse. Coat color is most often pure white, or white and cream.

Character: Commonly referred to as the Eskie, this breed is compact and strong. A Spitz-type dog, they are exceedingly agile and alert. They are considered to be one of the most intelligent of all dog breeds. The American Eskimo Dog is well balanced, hardy, and known for their longevity. This versatile breed possesses outstanding working skills, and makes a lovely companion.

Appearance: The American Eskimo Dog is available in three sizes: toy (small), miniature (small) and standard (small-medium). A member of the Spitz-type family, the Eskie has a wedge-shaped head, a perfectly proportioned muzzle and skull, and erect triangular ears that compliment their alert expression. The shape of their eyes and mouth can give the impression they are smiling. Their thick, harsh topcoat grows up and through a soft undercoat, which creates a ruffed appearance that is more prominent around the neck. The coloring tends to be white or cream, or white with cream markings.

History: Descended from a host of white European spitzes—including the Keeshond, the Pomeranian, the German Spitz and the Italian Spitz—the American Spitz (as it was once called) probably came to the U.S. in the early 1900s with German immigrants. Popular as a circus dogs for their sparkly coats, trainability and nimbleness, the American Spitz grew in popularity. In 1917, their name was changed to American Eskimo, but it was not until 1985 that the American Eskimo Dog Club of America was formed. The AKC registered the breed in 1995.

Health Issues: American Eskimos are a generally healthy breed. Problems that have been seen are allergies affecting the skin and pyruvate kinase deficiency, which can lead to chronic anemia.

Temperament: Just like its Spitz ancestors, the Eskie is determined and independent. They are actually one of the best-behaved, fun, and obedient Spitz breeds. Eskies, however, can be mistrustful of strangers and may not be a preferable choice for homes with pets, other dogs, or small children, though supervision and training may help discipline the Eskie.

Care: American Eskimos need to be brushed twice weekly and even more when shedding. They also need to be bathed at least once a month. They may need special attention to their teeth and nails. The Standard American Eskimos variety needs daily exercises such as jogging or walking. Miniature and Toy Eskies need only a short walk or lively romp.

Training: The American Eskimo Dog enjoys and excels at training, where he is a top contender in the obedience, rally and agility rings. His showbiz background is evident to all who try teaching him tricks, and he is quick to learn household rules.

Activity: They enjoy securely leashed walks or playing in an enclosed yard. The American Eskimo Dog is active indoors and has a busy nature. They benefit immensely from family play sessions. They will do okay in an apartment provided they have sufficient exercise and attention.

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