Field Spaniel

AKC Group: Sporting

The Field Spaniel comes from England, descending from the English Cocker Spaniel. The Field Spaniel makes a good bird dog and can make a decent watchdog.

Size: 16 to 19 inches high; 30 to 45 pounds

Color: Black, liver, golden liver, bicolored, roan or ticked patterns in white areas. Tan points are allowed as is white on the throat, chest or brisket.

Life span: 12 to 14 years

Health problems: Cataracts, thyroid issues, progressive retinal atrophy, hip dysplasia.

Field Spaniels are medium sized dogs with sturdy builds and an eager expression. Their silky coat is long, flat and glossy. His long silky ears frame his face. The Field Spaniel is a docile, graceful dog that is intelligent, responsive and affectionate. They are gentle, eager to please, enthusiastic and make a great family pet. Active and energetic, a Field Spaniel loves to play, exercise and join in on any active activity. Sociable and friendly, whatever your level of dog experience, a Field Spaniel is an ideal choice. They get along well with all children, but do not like rough handling. He can get along with other companion animals and even strangers. Some Field Spaniels have an independent streak that will require confidence and assertiveness when training. For the most part, a Field Spaniel is easy to train.

Field Spaniels are medium to heavy shedders. His coat needs to be brushed every other day. During shedding season, the coat will require more maintenance. Trim any straggly hairs and check his ears often to ensure they’re clean and dry.

If you handle your Field Spaniel too roughly he will withdraw. A Field Spaniel puppy can be especially shy or timid so establish your bond first. Field Spaniels tend to bark after even the slightest interruption, so try to find a quiet, non-threatening environment to train in. Socialization will help your puppy overcome his shyness, making dog parks are an essential building block in his training. This social time can reduce aggression in his later years. As a natural hunter, retriever and tracker, any time you can put his natural skills to use, your Field Spaniel will be grateful. A Field Spaniel can develop a close attachment to only one person, so involve all family members in his training. Field Spaniels learn new tricks and skills easily so he won’t have a problem with varied training methods. If you’re looking for a watchdog, you can easily train a Field Spaniel for this task.


LaPerms have a luxurious curly coat, whiskers and eyebrows. They may look slight, but they don’t feel like it. Pick up a LaPerm, and you’ll feel their heft.

LaPerm heads are modified wedges with rounded contours. They have medium-long necks. The ears slightly flare and are medium to large in size. They are rounded at the tips and feature lynx tipping. Their eyes are medium-large. They appear almond-shaped when the LaPerm is relaxed and are rounder when the cat is alert. The legs are medium-long to match their body and the hind legs are slightly longer than the forelegs. The tail tapers and the long-haired LaPerm tail is curly and plumed. The short-haired LaPerm’s tail resembles a bottle brush. Adult males weigh 7 to 10 pounds. Females are 5 to 8 pounds. Males mature between two and three years, females mature slightly sooner.

The LaPerm coat is soft, springy, free of matting and stands away from its body in waves or ringlet curls. (The curls are obviously preferred.) Long-haired LaPerms have an almost unkempt appearance. The short-haired LaPerm’s tail is not plumed, but may be wavy.

In the summer of 1982, on an Oregon cherry orchard, Speedy, a gray tabby barn cat gave birth to six kittens. One of these kittens was completely bald. She weighed less than her littermates and had a longer body and larger ears. Her female owner thought she was the ugliest kitten in the world and didn’t hold out much hope for her survival.

However, the kitten thrived and at 8 weeks of age, soft, curly hair sprouted and the kitten was dubbed Curly. As Curly grew, her personality began to emerge and her female owner became quite enamored with her. When Curly’s first litter was born, her five male kittens were all bald and soon grew curly hair. (The LaPerm’s coat gene is dominant meaning only one parent needs to possess the appropriate gene.) Soon, these five males began to procreate and their owner acquired the subsequent kittens and a breed was born. The owner contributed nothing to the effort, she simply let nature take its course.

In 1992, she took her LaPerms to a CFA show in Portland, Oregon. Receiving an enthusiastic response, she set up a cattery and began a breeding program.

By nature, LaPerms are gentle and affectionate. As long as a LaPerm is in a consistent, loving human relationship, a LaPerm will blossom; they love nothing more than cuddling. They will want to be involved in whatever their humans are doing. Curious, inquisitive, they even do well in apartments — as long as they receive enough love and pampering. They are not above hitching a ride on your shoulder.

LaPerms are usually quiet, but will speak up when they have something to say. Occasionally, you may be able to have a quiet chat with him, as long as you do most of the talking.

Grooming is limited to once a week for long-haired LaPerms or every other week for the short-haired.


AKC Group: Foundation Stock Service

Eurasiers come from Germany. Julius Wipfel, Charlotte Baldamus (and a small group of enthusiasts) wanted to combine the best qualities of the Chow Chow and the Wolfspitz. Initially known as the Wolf Chow, after the Samoyed was introduced into the breeding mix, the breed was renamed Eurasier to emphasize that these dogs originate from European and Asian breeds.

Size: 15 to 25 inches tall; 40 to 70 pounds

Color: Fawn; red; wolf-gray; solid black or black and tan.

Life span: 11 to 13 years

Health problems: Inbreeding was an initial problem, which is why Samoyeds were added into the breeding pool. Problems from inbreeding that are continually watched for (and trying to be obliterated) are hemolytic anemia (an abnormal breakdown of red blood cells) and progressive retinal atrophy. Hip dysplasia is seen occasionally.

Eurasiers (or Eurasians) are medium-sized, Spitz-type dogs with prick ears. They have thick undercoats over a medium-long, loosely-lying outer coat. The hair on their muzzle, face, ears and legs is short. The tail and back of the front and hind legs feathers due to the long hair. The neck hair should be longer than their body hair, but should not appear mane-like. Eurasiers can have a pink, blue-black or spotted tongue.

The Eurasier is a calm, quiet, friendly, even-tempered companion. He is affectionate and loyal to his family, yet reserved and shy with strangers (but not aggressive or timid). Socialize to other people (and dogs) early on. The Eurasier is intelligent and a quick learner. Eurasiers excel at agility activities. Playful, they’ll get along great with kids. Eurasiers usually only bark when something or someone is unfamiliar.

Eurasiers do not respond to ruthless or harsh discipline. Softly reprimand, be firm, fair and consistent. Try to vary training sessions, Eurasiers can become bored when training is repetitive. If he’s stubborn, try to be firmer, he may think that you’re too meek or passive. Eurasiers respond well to training, they do love it. Brush him regularly, but not excessively.


Estrela Mountain Dog

AKC Group: Foundation Stock Service

Also known as the Portuguese Shepherd or Cao da Serra da Estrela, the Estrela comes from the mountainous  region of the Iberian Peninsula in central Portugal. They have guarded and herded livestock there for hundreds of years. It is believed they descended from the Roman Mastiff (and have a touch of Saint Bernard in them). They are one of the oldest dog breeds in Portugal. Prior to 1972, the breed was not recorded anywhere outside of Portugal. Since then, Estrelas have been popping up around the world.

Size: 25.5 to 29 inches tall; 65 to 110 pounds

Color: Brindle; gray (wolf-colored); all shades of fawn (except pale). Black masks should appear and shading on the coat is desired.

Life span: 9 to 14 years

Health problems: Hip dysplasia and gastric problems

The Estrela is a large, sturdy, mastiff-descended dog that projects an air of strength and vitality. They are quite agile for their size (they did work in mountainous regions). They have a fluffy coat, black mask, strong heads with wide nostrils and a bushy tail. Their heavy double coat sheds seasonally.

The social Estrela enjoys their family and will always be loyal to them. To a stranger, they could care less, but that won’t stop them from alerting you with their loud bark. An Estrela is a stubborn and strong-willed canine that will get on better with an experienced dog person. They do not respond to being dominated. They are quite adaptable, and can get along with all children and companion animals.

Bathing should only be undertaken when necessary. Brush them regularly. When shedding season hits, brush more often. Training requires a firm, but patient Top Dog. Don’t be surprised if you find that your Estrela has selective hearing (like your kids; your Estrela does!) Socialization and obedience training are required. If you think you need to be harsh or punitive with this breed, think again! (Truth be told, no one ever needs to be harsh or punitive with any dog breed.) An Estrela will never respond to unfair treatment. In fact, harsh treatment will only make an Estrela more stubborn and willful, making him even more difficult to train. All you’ll need to do is be firm, consistent, fair and patient.

Need a Kitty Vacation?

Below are vacation spots where you can go to get a feline fix.

  • The Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum in Key West, Florida — About 40 to 50 polydactyl cats (Hemingway’s favorite) live and reside there
  • The island of Tashirojima, Japan — Known as cat island; a large number of cats, shrines and monuments and cat-shaped buildings are found on the island
  • The island of Aoshima, Japan — Known as Japan’s lesser known cat island; the residents continue the feed the cats hoping for good luck and prosperity
  • Largo di Torre Argentina, Rome — 250 feral cats reside among the ruins where Julius Caesar was assassinated
  • Protestant Cemetery, Rome — This is the home of Rome’s most famous semi-feral cat colony
  • Houtong Coal Mine Ecological Park, Taiwan — The train station’s footbridge, that looks like a cat, connects to Cat Village, where 80 cats live
  • Turquoise Coast, Kalkan, Turkey — A large number of cats wander by the old mosque and walk along the Kalkan beach
  • Neko Bar, Akanasu, Tokyo — The world’s first kitty pub
  • Calico, Tokyo — The largest and oldest cat café in Tokyo is home to 28 felines
  • Cat’s Store, Tokyo — Tokyo’s very first cat café is still going strong
  • Cats Theatre, Moscow — Watch the talented felines perform astounding acrobatic feats
  • Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium, London — Named after Alice in Wonderland’s cat, this was London’s first cat café and is home to 11 feline residents
  • Le Bristol, Paris — Fa-Raon and Kleopatre, the resident felines watch over this Parisian palace hotel
  • The Algonquin Hotel, New York City — Matilda, the resident feline can be found at this hotel
  • Kishi Station, Japan — Tama works four days a week and has her own office at the Wakayama Electric Railway; Tama even has an official title, she is the station master
  • Le Café des Chats, Paris — 12 cats live at this café
  • KitTea, San Francisco — KitTea is San Francisco’s first cat café where you can see 10 to 12 cats
  • The Cat Town Café, Oakland, California — The Cat Town Café was the first cat café in the U.S. and still stands as the only non-profit café. At any time, there are 8 to 24 free roaming cats available for adoption

Entlebucher Mountain Dog

AKC Group: Herding

Named after a Swiss canton of Lucerne, the Entlebucher is the smallest of the Swiss mountain dogs. They are believed to have descended from the fighting and guarding mastiffs. The Entlebucher remains a popular dog in Switzerland, but is rarely seen outside the country.

Size: 16 to 21 inches tall; 47 to 62 pounds

Color: Tricolor (black with tan and white markings)

Life span: 11 to 15 years

Health problems: A generally healthy breed, Entlebuchers can be afflicted with genetic diseases, particularly progressive retinal atrophy.

Entlebuchers are a square-looking, sturdy work dogs. Small, triangular ears hang down beside their small, lively brown eyes. They have a smooth, close fitting coat (that requires very minimal grooming requirements). White markings are seen on the toes, tail tips, chest and blaze with tan makings between the white and black coat. The tail can sometimes be docked.

A Entlebucher is a dog that is happiest by your side every hour of the day. If you don’t want a canine shadow, consider another breed. The Entlebucher is an intelligent, agile, loyal dog that does retain an independent, self-confident personality. He loves people unwaveringly and craves a place in the family. Entlebuchers are territorial and slightly suspicious of strangers. An Entlebucher has an impressive bark and will not fail to announce the arrival of a guest. An Entlebucher makes a great companion for children. Entlebuchers are quick, tough, physical dogs that need at least one hour of vigorous activity each day. They also require stimulating activities to keep their behavior in check. An Entlebucher is a dog that needs a job to do, so consider agility or obedience activities.

The head of the house needs to be the one to train your Entlebucher. As with most breeds, an Entlebucher needs early socialization to guests, strangers and other pets. With a love of roughhousing, you may need to show him to be gentle with kids. They are super smart and can be wilful, so have patience. An Entlebucher loves to play. You will have countless hours of fun with him.