Top 10 Exotic Dog Breeds From Around The World

by Stuart | Last Updated:   December 3, 2020
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You have perhaps come across many different breeds running around in parks. All dogs are amazing creatures but some are more striking than the rest.

In this article, we have gathered the 10 most exotic dog breeds to ever exist in this world.

Set of colorful exotic vector portraits of small size dog breeds (jack Russel terrier, papillon, small pomeranian, brussels griffon; Pekingese) isolated on white background

1. Puli

Dog breed group: Herding group 

Temperament: Energetic, Obedient, Intelligent, Agile, Loyal, Faithful

Life expectancy: 12 – 16 years

Height: Female: 36–42 cm, Male: 39–45 cm

Weight: Female: 10–13 kg, Male: 13–15 kg

Puli is an energetic and lively breed hailing from Hungary. This rare breed is known for its unique hair, which resembles dreadlocks made from long corded hair.

These dogs are affectionate and love being the center of attention in your home. The Puli is a strong-willed, smart, hardworking, and athletic dog.

Grooming the corded coat of Puli is difficult. At maturity, when Puli is about four years of age, the coat reaches the ground. Some owners tie up these cords to keep them out of the dog’s face.


2. Afghan Hound

Dog Breed Group: Hound dogs

Temperament: Dignified, Profoundly Loyal, Aristocratic, Independent 

Life expectancy: 10 to 12 years

Height: Male: 68–74 cm, Female: 60–69 cm

Weight: Female: 26–34 kg, Male: 26–34 kg

The Afghan Hound is an ancient breed. This breed is known for its elegant beauty and ability to run fast and over great distances. 

Afghan Hound’s single coat is very silky, thick, and fine in texture. Afghans require regular grooming because their coat is fine and has a tendency to tangle easily. Their hair grows long and does not shed much.

The Afghan Hound can be difficult to train due to its independent nature. This is a sensitive breed and does not respond well to rough handling. He is known for his loyalty and love for those he calls his own.


3. Shiba Inu 

Dog breed group: Non-sporting group 

Temperament: Charming, Keen, Fearless, Alert, Confident, Faithful

Life expectancy: 12 – 15 years

Height: Male: 35–43 cm, Female: 33–41 cm

Weight: Male: 8–11 kg, Female: 6.8–9 kg

Shiba Inu is one of the most popular companion dog breeds in Japan. This dog is the most ancient and smallest of the six spitz dogs. Shiba Inu has a spiritual significance in Japanese culture. The medium-sized dog looks like a fox and has prick ears, squinty eyes, and a curly tail. 

This breed has a dense double coat. The topcoat is stiff and straight while the undercoat feels soft and dense. Like all double-coated dogs, Shiba Inus have a high tendency for shedding and sheds heavily twice a year.

Shiba Inus are small, graceful, and athletic dogs. They thrive on human companionship but are difficult to train. Shiba Inus are independent and free-thinkers and can tolerate being left alone for extended periods.


4. Samoyed

samoyed dog - Juvenile Champion of Russia

Dog breed group: Working group 

Temperament: Lively, Stubborn, Sociable, Alert, Playful, Friendly

Life expectancy: 12 – 14 years

Height: Female: 48–53 cm, Male: 53–60 cm

Weight: Female: 16–20 kg, Male: 20–30 kg

The beautiful white Sammies were bred to hunt, haul sleds, and herd reindeer. The medium-sized dog originated from the coldest areas of Siberia and had a close association with the Samoyede people. 

Samoyeds are pack dogs and are very friendly and good-natured. They thrive on human companionship and love being part of household activity. Samoyeds are intelligent and quick learners that make them moderately easy to train.

Sammies have a profuse double coat and are heavy shedders. They are not brush-and-go dogs and need a lot of grooming. They have a high prey drive and need lots of physical activities to stay healthy and happy. 


5. Neapolitan Mastiff

Dog breed group: Working group 

Temperament: Stubborn, Obedient, Fearless, Protective, Dominant, Trainable

Life expectancy: 8 – 10 years

Height: Male: 63–77 cm, Female: 58–70 cm

Weight: Male: 60–70 kg, Female: 50–60 kg

This large, ancient dog breed is known as a gentle giant. Neapolitan Mastiff has been bred to guard and defend family and property. They have protective instincts and fearsome appearance.

They’re always alert and aware, even if it looks like they’re relaxing.

This is a big, heavily built breed with abundant loose skin and dewlap. Although it is loving toward children, its sheer size can make accidents possible.

They enjoy the outdoors but do not tolerate warm weather well.


6. Chinese Shar Pei

Dog breed group: Non-sporting group 

Temperament: Suspicious, Affectionate, Devoted, Reserved, Independent, Loving

Life expectancy: 9 – 11 years

Height: Female: 46–51 cm, Male: 46–51 cm

Weight: Female: 18–25 kg, Male: 25–30 kg

The Shar Pei is a fascinating but challenging breed of ancient pedigree. The compact, medium-sized dogs are famous for their intelligence and loyalty.  

The Shar Pei has existed in China since ancient times. During that period, it was used as a fighting dog, and gradually became a favorite pet of Chinese emperors.

He’s also an independent-thinking, sometimes an aloof dog. Early training is essential for the strong-willed Shar-Pei. Due to its short nose, the Shar-Pei is prone to overheating.


7. Bedlington Terrier

Dog breed group: Terrier group 

Temperament: Affectionate, Intelligent, Spirited, Good-tempered

Life expectancy: 12 – 14 years

Height: Female: 38–42 cm, Male: 41–44 cm

Weight: Female: 7.7–10 kg, Male: 7.7–10 kg

Bedlington Terrier dogs are fun-loving, sociable, and affectionate dogs. They stand out by their distinctive lamb-like coat. They are easy-going and adapt well to lifestyle changes and different living environments.

Burlington Terriers are irresistible cuddly companion but have the heart of a lion. They are tenacious when chasing down prey and are an excellent watchdog. 

Bedlington Terriers are high energy dogs and are often known as a little powerhouse. They are great swimmers and are not bothered for being in the water.


8. Xoloitzcuintli

Dog breed group: Terrier group 

Temperament: Aloof, Cheerful, Intelligent, Alert, Companionable, Protective, Calm

Life expectancy: 12 – 15 years

Height: Toy: 10 – 14 inches, Miniature: 14 – 18 inches, Standard: 18 – 23 inches 

Weight: Toy: 2.3 – 6.8 kg, Miniature: 6.8 – 14 kg, Standard: 11 – 18 kg

The Xoloitzcuintle is an ancient breed and is commonly known as Xolo or Mexican Hairless Dog. The breed dates back over 3500 years and is thought to date to pre-Columbian civilizations.

Xolo is found in Standard, Miniature, and Toy sizes and two varieties: hairless and coated. Their graceful, elegant body is surprisingly strong and rugged.

They have a calm personality and moderate exercise needs. In addition to being a great companion, the Xolo is also a protective watchdog.


9. Leonberger

The portrait of Leonberger dog in the spring garden

Dog breed group: Working group 

Temperament: Obedient, Fearless, Loyal, Companionable, Adaptable, Loving

Life expectancy: 8 – 9 years

Height: Female: 65–75 cm, Male: 72–80 cm

Weight: Female: 41–59 kg, Male: 48–75 kg

The Leonberger, also known as the Gentle Lion and the Gentle Giant, is a large and magnificent dog. It is one of the largest dog breeds in the world. This breed originates from the town of Leonberg in Germany. 

This is a family dog that needs a good deal of exercise, attention, and space. Leonbergers are very loyal, extremely gentle and tolerant with children and generally well-composed.

This remarkable breed is intelligent, playful, robust and kind. Leo has a gentle nature and loves being with his people. They are active dogs outside and require more exercise than just a walk.


10. Portuguese Water Dog

Dog breed group: Working dogs

Temperament: Quarrelsome, Docile, Impetuous, Obedient, Intelligent, Brave

Life expectancy: 12 – 15 years

Height: Female: 43–52 cm, Male: 50–57 cm

Weight: Female: 16–23 kg, Male: 19–27 kg

Portuguese Water Dogs, also known as Porties, are robust, medium-sized dogs. They are fun-loving, friendly companions and are very eager to please. 

Portuguese Water Dogs have a single coat with two coat types including curly and wavy. Portuguese water dogs are natural-born swimmers and athletes. They are highly intelligent and love learning new things.

Final Thoughts

Although these breeds may be uncommon, these canines are terrific for families. It’s all up to you to find the dog breed that best suits you and your lifestyle! 

Which dog breed is your favorite one? Feel free to share your thoughts. We would be happy to hear from you!

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Stuart loves blogging about his hobbies and passions. Sir Doggie is a place for him to share what he learns while being a pet parent. Click here to read more.