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New Dogs On The Block: Where Do New Dog Breeds Come From?

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In January, the American Kennel Club (AKC) has added two breeds of dogs to the registry: the Nederlandse Kooikerhondje and the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen.

It was the first time that the organization has recognized new breeds of dogs since 2016.

The Nederlandse Kooikerhondje (pronounced Netherlands-e Coy-ker-hond-tsje) is a spaniel-type dog characterized as energetic, friendly, and alert. Meanwhile, the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen (pronounced Grahnd Bah-SAY Grif-FON Vahn-DAY-ahn) are said to be more laid-back but intelligent and can easily get along with other dogs, revealed the AKC.

The new additions bring the total number of breeds recognized in the United States to 192.

How New Breeds Of Dogs Appear

Dogs have been playing the role of loyal companions to humans for 40,000 years. However, in the early days, dogs pretty much looked like wolves.

The types of dogs known and loved today did not emerge until around a couple of hundreds of years ago, when the advancement of science allowed humans to breed dogs based on specific needs such as herding, hunting, or guarding. The ancestors of the aforementioned newly recognized dog breeds, for example, were originally duck (Nederlandse Kooikerhondje) and hare hunters (Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen) from hundreds of years ago.

Scientists, over the years, have tinkered with dog genes, selecting temperament and physical traits — sometimes with unintended and cruel consequences. In the case of pugs, dogs of the breed often suffer from a myriad of health problems, including breathing difficulties, skin disorders, eye conditions, and overheating.

Through genetic engineering, humans have created hundreds of breeds of dogs, each one with distinctly different features. There are around 400 dog breeds recognized around the world.

AKC-Approved Dog Breeds

AKC was founded back in 1884, and since then, it has been maintaining the registry of purebred dogs in the United States. To be fully registered to the AKC, the organization demands proof that all dogs used to create the new breed were certified purebred. Breeders sometimes also have to get the DNA and genotype of the new breed tested to be considered, explained Woof Dog.

The organization then sorts dog breeds into six categories: Sporting Group, Working Group, Herding Group, Hound Group, Terrier Group, and Toy Group. The Nederlandse Kooikerhondje, descended from spaniels, are classified into the Sporting Group because of their history of locating and retrieving quarry. The Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen was added to the Hound Group because their ancestors were trained to hunt.

Breeds registered to the AKC are eligible to take part in some of its 22,000 events around the countries.

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