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AKC Group: Working

The Mastiff descended from the now extinct Pugnaces Britanniae. “Mastiff” comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “masty” meaning “powerful.” It is recognized as the oldest breed of English dog. It is believed to have been brought to Britain in the 6th century BC. They were used for the blood sports of bull, bear and lion baiting as well as dog fighting. There is evidence to say that the Mastiff was brought to the New World via the Mayflower, though actual documentation begins in the late 1800s. In 1835, the UK passed the Cruelty to Animals Act that prohibited the baiting of animals and the popularity of the Mastiff began to wane.

Size: 27.5 to 30 inches tall; 175 to 200 pounds

Color: Fawn, apricot or brindle

Life span: 10 to 12 years

Health problems: Luxating patella, strokes, epilepsy, spinal problems, eye problems, thyroid disorders, osteochrondritis dissecans, hypertrophic osteodystrophy, hip or elbow dysplasia, heart defects, bloat, kidney problems, and sensitivity to drugs and chemicals. During the sticky summer months, Mastiffs can suffer from heatstroke.

The Mastiff is a giant dog, with a muscular and powerful build. An alert and keen looking dog, they look menacing without even having to move. The coat of the Mastiff is close fitting, short, and sleek. They may have black markings around and/or between the eyes. Small ears fold down toward the sides of his head. An occasional brushing and wipe down with a damp cloth is all the grooming requirements your Mastiff needs. A Mastiff sheds constantly but lightly.

A dignified, courageous, and loyal dog, a Mastiff has a pleasant nature and a high level of intelligence. Due to his size, he makes an effective deterrent/watchdog. Despite their look, the Mastiff has a even temper and docile nature (unless they’ve been raised not to). Early socialization and confident, assertive training are required. A Mastiff is not a difficult dog to train. If you spend frequent time away from home, a Mastiff is not the dog for you; they thrive on companionship and affection. A Mastiff is not an overly active dog; he does best with a moderate amount of exercise. They don’t bark that much. Unfortunately, they are too large for apartment dwelling. They need a safe, secure yard in which to play and exercise. They should do great with children and animals (though they may try to dominate) that they’ve been raised with. If you’re doing a great job with him, your Mastiff should be friendly and welcoming to guests. If he isn’t, you’ve done something wrong.


Lancashire Heeler

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AKC Group: Foundation Stock Service
When dogs weren’t so in demand to herd cattle, the Lancashire Heeler’s numbers declined so much they almost became extinct. To recreate today’s Lancashire, the remaining Lancashires were bred with the Welsh Corgi and Manchester Terriers. They are nearly identical to the original Lancashire. They have retained their original herding instinct, though they are rarely used for such purposes anymore.
Size: 10 to 12 inches tall; 6 to 13 pounds
Color: Black and tan or liver and tan.
Life span: 12 to 15 years
The Lancashire Heeler is alert and friendly. He’s strong and has strong instincts. He makes an overall pleasant companion, especially for older considerate children. Wary of strangers, he may nip at the heels until you train him not to. Obedience training can be difficult, but they are trainable. Be firm, confident and consistent with him.
The Lancashire Terrier has very short legs. They have wide set, largish ears that should stand erect. Bright eyes are set wide apart. Paws turn out slightly. The hindquarters are well muscled. The coat is seasonally long or short.  In the winter, your Lancashire has a plush coat with a visible mane. In the summer, he looks sleek and glossy. Brush and comb with a firm bristle brush and bathe only when necessary.

Lakeland Terrier

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AKC Group: Terrier
The Lakeland Terrier hails from the Lake region of England and were used as a ratter and fox hunter. The Lakeland Terrier has been selectively crossed bred using the Old English Wirehaired Terrier, the Bedlington Terrier, the Border Collie and Dandie Dinmont Terrier. The Lakeland Terrier has been known as the Fell Terrier, Eltewater Terrier or Patterdale Terrier. The Lakeland Terrier came into fruition in 1921.
Size: Less than 14.5 inches high; 15 to 17 pounds
Color: Solid colors of blue, black, liver, red or wheaten. Wheaten or golden tan with a blue, black, liver or grizzle saddle.
Life span: 12 to 16 years
Health problems: Legg Perthes, elbow dysplasia, lens luxation, cataracts, thyroid problems and von Willebrand’s Disease.
The Lakeland Terrier is an entertaining little dog that is playful and full of energy. This dog has a real love of life. Confident and courageous, he’s curious and inquisitive. They love to dig (sorry
gardeners). They need a lot of physical activity and attention. They tend to bark a lot. Eager to please, the Lakeland Terrier is intelligent and learns quickly. Training isn’t easy as they have an independent and stubborn streak. Try to socialize him early and properly to stem off his love of chasing cats. You may never to be able to trust that a small rodent pet won’t end up becoming your Lakeland’s lunch. With strangers, a Lakeland is polite but wary. With children, he is good when they’re gentle and considerate. To train effectively, be consistent and positive and use socialization as a reward. To avoid his stubborn streak, try to vary training methods and exercises. If house training is difficult, try crate training. Use lots of praise and attention instead of punishments. Leash and lead training should be a priority in his training story since they are natural chasers. Also devote some attention to his possessiveness of food and toys.
The Lakeland has a beard and a wiry, hard coat. He is square looking with small, wide-set eyes and a long muzzle. The Lakeland’s beard needs to be brushed and cleaned daily. Trim bottom hair. Brush weekly and have his coat clipped every few months. When properly groomed, the Lakeland is a low shedder.

Jack Russell Terrier

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AKC Group: Terrier
Jack Russell Terriers seem to have originated from the Oxford area of England. White fox-working terriers were first bred by Reverend John Russell. It is unlikely that today’s Jack Russell Terriers are direct descendants of those terriers, but they were used to hunt small game and to dig out dens.
Size: 10 to 15 inches; 14 to 18 pounds
Color: Black; tan; brown/tan; black/brown; tan/red or white/tan.
Life span: 15+ years
Health problems: Dislocation of the kneecaps, inherited eye problems, deafness, Legg Perthes.
Jack Russell Terriers are vocal, alert, bold little dogs. They are extremely affectionate and playful. They ADORE attention. They require plenty of exercise and are happiest with a job or task. They can be scrappy with other canines, but can be socialized to downplay this. Courageous, they refuse to back down from a fight. Jack Russells are intelligent yet stubborn. From you, they need consistency and firm guidance. This is also a breed that is easily distracted. They need to know that you’re the one in charge. Obedience training is highly recommended as is early socialization.
Typically, a Jack Russell Terrier has a white body with a head that narrows to their eyes and is slightly flat between their ears. They have a scissor bite with a black nose. Their eyes are almond shaped and dark colored. Small V-shaped ears sit forward on their head. Comb and brush him regularly with a firm bristle brush. Bathe only when necessary.

Golden Retriever

AKC Group: Sporting
Back in the late 1800s, Lord Tweedmouth developed the breed to be a skillful hunter and tracker as well as retriever of waterfowl. He also wanted a beautiful hunting partner. It is believed that he took a yellow dog and crossed it with a water spaniel (which are now extinct).
Size: 21.5 to 24 inches tall; 55 to 75 pounds
Color: Various shades of gold
Life span: 10 to 13 years
Health problems: Cataracts, entropion, allergies, thyroid issues, cancer, epilepsy, osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), hip dysplasia and von Willebrand’s Disease.
Currently sitting as the third most popular American breed (it has been the favorite breed numerous times), Golden Retrievers are stable, loving, gentle, eager to please dogs. They love to give and receive attention, making them wonderful family pets. A huge people dog, unless you have the time to devote to them, you should consider a more independent breed. They love to swim and play. Extremely sociable, the Golden Retriever has a huge love of life. They love all ages and stages of children, strangers and all other pet companions. If a Golden Retriever doesn’t like you, there’s obviously something wrong with YOU! He loves to eat, so you’ll need to be vigilant about his diet. They like to chew. You’ll need to provide him with an outlet to avoid him chewing something inappropriate. Highly intelligent and quick to learn, he makes training easy. Positive obedience, plenty of praise and the occasional treat will be all you need. A trusting nature, a natural obedience and his sweet nature combines to create a perfect family companion. (This is why Golden Retrievers are consistently found high on the list of the most popular breeds.)
Golden Retrievers are large, powerful dogs with a sweet face. His coat is soft to the touch. It can be flat or wavy and feathered. The Golden Retriever undercoat is weatherproof. He always wears a keen and eager expression. His coat needs to be brushed twice a week — more when he’s shedding seasonally. Trim any straggly hairs as needed. His bottom hair will need to be trimmed as needed for hygienic reasons. To reduce the chance of infections, check his ears. Golden Retrievers tend to be heavy shedders year round.
As a large dog, your Golden Retriever would benefit from obedience training. No matter what you decide to train him to do, it’s super easy to train him. Golden Retrievers have been used in police work to sniff out drugs, as service dogs for the blind and excel at agility tasks. This is a dog who can and will learn every trick you can teach him. Don’t forget to train him on the basics (sit, come, stay and heel) It will help you to manage him as he grows (like a weed) and make all future training even easier.

Flat-Coated Retriever

AKC Group: Sporting

The Flat-Coated Retriever’s story began in England in the mid-19th century. They are thought to have descended from Labradors. They quickly became a favorite for those who needed a gun dog. Flat-Coated Retrievers are excellent as watchdogs, retrievers and as hunters and trackers. Today the breed is used mostly for show as it requires attentive breeding to bring out its natural talents.

Size: 22 to 23 inches high; 60 to 70 pounds

Color: Solid black, brown or liver. Can have white or black spots.

Life span: 10 years

Health problems: Luxating patella, cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy, hip dysplasia, cancer, thyroid issues, entropion.

The Flat-Coated Retriever is a large dog with a powerful build. He’s always ready to spring into action — no wonder he looks so eager. Their energy levels rests at high, so he’ll need plenty of game and exercise time. Their coat is dense, flat (obviously) and medium in length.

Flat-Coated Retrievers are on outgoing, keen, eager to please breed that thrives on your company and attention. These dogs are cheerful and sweet and make an excellent companion. (If you have the opportunity to get a Flat-Coated Retriever for a pet, you won’t regret it.) Highly intelligent and naturally obedient, they throw themselves into every endeavor and give 100%. Flat-Coated Retrievers require a high level of commitment: they need a lot of physical and mental stimulation and plenty of affection to avoid boredom and the inevitable destructiveness. They love kids, but may too exuberant for small youngsters. He adores other animals, but may be too overwhelming for smaller companions. A sociable dog, strangers don’t faze him. Flat-Coated Retrievers love to jump and to chew. These are two more reasons why he needs plenty of exercise — or outlets to indulge. Give him plenty of appropriate toys to chew on so he won’t choose valuables.

Flat-Coated Retrievers shed heavily during certain times during the year. He should be brushed twice a week to avoid matting and keep his coat beautiful. During seasonal shedding, he’ll need more help. Check his ears often — they need to be clean and dry to avoid infections. A Flat-Coated Retriever is easily bored, so plan on a varied training method and activities. They develop strong bonds and need consistency and direction when they’re young. Using toys or objects in training helps them to grasp skills easier. Excellent motivators for them are food, new toys and a trip to the park. Positive reinforcement will be your best friend and your most used tool. Harsh tones or mannerisms and heavy handed tactics will cause him to retreat, become anxious and uncomfortable. Socialization and obedience training are a must for them. A happy and loving dog, you may have to set some ground rules through constructive training. However you can encourage your Flat-Coated Retriever to use his natural skills (hunting and scenting), do it. Set up some “hunts” for him.

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.