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American Eskimo Dog

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With its endearing look, amazing intelligence and lively personality, the American Eskimo dog has many fans. These clever little dogs are amazing performers and are excellent companions, but they are easily bored and tend to bark.

Which breed group is the American Eskimo dog in?

Breed group: none – not recognised by the Kennel Club

American Eskimo dog breed history

European settlers in the Eastern United Sates brought with them Spitz dogs of German origin. Originally bred as guard dogs, the vocal and characterful canines became popular in America where white coats were favoured. The dogs starred on cruises and in travelling circuses as they were adept at performing tricks. Just prior to World War I, owners began to refer to their dogs as American Spitz dogs and the breed name was then changed to American Eskimo dog. The reason for the change is not known.

There are three sizes of the American Eskimo breed, the toy, the miniature and the standard. They are of similar appearance and temperament. The dogs excel at obedience and performing. They are popular pets and great guard dogs.

American Eskimo breed characteristics

Notable for their gorgeous fluffy white coats, Eskies boast a pronounced collar around their necks. Those lovely coats are double and straight. American Eskimo dogs shed and are very vocal. They possess impressive intelligence and relish human company. With their gorgeous looks, feathered triangular ears and alert expressions, they have become known as The Dogs Beautiful. Eskies are very active and easily bored.

  • Lifespan: 12-15 years
  • Height: up to 30cm (Toy) 40cm (Miniature) 50cm (Standard)
  • Weight: up to 4.5kg (Toy) 9kg (miniature) 18kg (Standard)
  • Fluffy white coat
  • Pronounced ruff
  • Feathered triangular ears
  • Intelligent
  • Friendly
  • Easily bored
  • Active
  • Adept at tricks

Health issues with American Eskimo dogs

  • Eskies are generally healthy and robust little dogs but are prone to the following conditions:
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
  • Juvenile Cataracts
  • Obesity

What is the American Eskimo dog bred for?

Originally kept as guard dogs, Eskies later found success as circus performers. They remain popular choices for performing tricks and participating in agility tests.

What sort of owners does the American Eskimo dog suit?

Lively, loveable and affectionate, the Eskie is a charismatic pooch that will captivate all who see it. These little charmers are excellent companions and enjoy family life. They are good with children and cats and they excel at tricks, problem solving and agility. However, they are free thinkers with very active minds who need to be kept occupied. Boredom sets in quickly and can lead to destructive behaviour. Eskies are excellent guard dogs but that basically means that they like barking! Eskies can become problem barkers if not properly trained and are not the best choice for owners with near neighbours.

American Eskimo dogs also tend to chew pretty much anything, especially if not kept occupied. They should not be left home alone and are best suited to owners who can devote a great deal of time to keeping them entertained. They need plenty of exercise and cannot be trusted with small pets including birds and rodents.


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