Sheep or dog? 5 dog breeds that look very much like other animals

Hangai Lilla

2023. June 23 - Photos: Getty Images Hungary

The American Kennel Club recognises 199 dog breeds, the International Kinological Association 356. On our planet, dogs come in a wide variety of sizes, colours and shapes. So it's no wonder that they sometimes look like other animals.


These few dogs could be other animals, they look so similar.

1.) Tibetan mastiff – lion

This huge breed of dog is native to Tibet, where it is known as “Do Khyi”. But it is also widely kept in northern Nepal, India and Bhutan. Its strong, broad head and massive bone structure make it fearless. Which it needs to do, whether it’s guarding the flocks alongside the herders or looking after the health of the monastery’s residents.

His size and his noble, long coat, which is even longer on the head, give him a lion-like appearance. His character is brave and loyal, devoted to his family. However, he is prone to stubborn behaviour, so this beast is only recommended for experienced owners.

2.) Bedlington Terrier – lamb

Don’t let the sweet exterior fool you for a moment! The Bedlington Terrier is a wolf in sheep’s clothing – in the best way! This curly-haired little dog doesn’t deny for a moment that he’s a terrier. He’s highly entertaining, alert, intelligent, brave, self-aware. Its coat is incredibly soft and silky, and it is particularly thick on the head.

He is docile but strong, so early socialisation and positive reinforcement are important. He is very affectionate with his owner and does not tolerate being left alone very well. However, be prepared to have all eyes on him wherever you take him. And he won’t regret it for a second!

3. Czechoslovakian Vlcak (or Wolfdog) – Grey Wolf

As its name suggests, it was bred in the former Czechoslovakia by kinologists by crossing German shepherds with wolves. Originally intended to help border guards, it didn’t really work, although there were high hopes for a combination of healthy grey wolves and German Shepherds bred for work. But as is usual with hybrids, the end result only came close to expectations. The stamina and appearance of the Czechoslovakian Vlack is impressive, but it does not do well with monotonous work.

The wolf has inherited a less stable nervous system from its ancestors, which can make it challenging to keep. It requires a great deal of patience and even more time, and is particularly sensitive to the needs of pack animals, which is why it is recommended to keep it with other dogs. If there are two animals that are really similar, it is the wolf and this dog.

4.) Affenpinscher – Goeldi’s marmoset

This fiery, goofy little dog is remarkably similar to the Goeldi’s marmoset, which lives in the western Amazon basin.

The Affenpinscher is one of Europe’s oldest mastiffs, whose talents have transformed it from ratter to cuddler of elegant ladies. Tiny but very serious dog. Intelligent, docile and affectionate, early socialisation is also very important for him, so that he accepts his fellow dogs without problems.

5.) Japanese Akitainu – Dhole

The Dhole is now found only in India and in smaller numbers in some other countries in Asia. It is an endangered species that has unfortunately lost its habitat. Its hunting style is similar to that of the hyena; it pursues its prey doggedly and silently.

Japanese Akitainu is similar to this wild animal not only in appearance but also in determination. Always alert and very devoted to its owner. It is also known as a one-owner dog. It requires a lot of patience and time to train, and is not suitable for first-time dog or inexperienced owners. He is an ingenious, intelligent dog who invents himself in every situation. Early socialization and positive, consistent reinforcement are the cornerstones of training.

Do you know any wild animals that resemble certain dog breeds?

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