The American Kennel Club (AKC) announced yesterday it is recognizing three additional dog breeds: the Cane Corso, Icelandic Sheepdog and Leonberger.
“These three diverse breeds all share rich and unique histories and a dedicated group of fanciers in the United States,” AKC Spokeswoman Lisa Peterson said in a statement. “We are delighted to grant them full AKC recognition and watch as each breed continues to thrive and grow.”
The Icelandic Sheepdog will join the Herding Group, while both the Cane Corso and Leonberger join the Working Group. The new breeds became eligible for AKC registration on June 1 and can compete in their respective groups at conformation shows held on and after June 30.
The following breed descriptions are from AKC:
Cane Corso – A muscular and large-boned breed distinguished by its noble, majestic and powerful presence. One of two native Italian “Mastiff-type” dogs, the Cane Corso is a property watchdog and hunter of difficult game such as wild boar. The breed is intelligent, easily trained and affectionate to his owner while loving with children and family.
Icelandic Sheepdog – This breed is playful, friendly, inquisitive, hardy and agile. Slightly under medium size, the breed has two coat types: long and short. It is the only breed native to Iceland, where it arrived in AD 874-930. The breed adapted its working style to the country’s terrain and farming techniques, making it indispensable to the Icelandic people. The Icelandic Sheepdog is increasing in popularity, and while still small in number, the breed is no longer close to extinction.
Leonberger – Despite its leonine looks and large size, this breed is light on its feet and graceful in motion. Calm and non-aggressive, the Leonberger was originally bred as a family, farm and draft dog. Today the breed excels as a multi–purpose working dog, but its most important task is being a reliable family companion. In fact, Leonbergers are often called the “nanny” dog because of their affinity for children.
Interested in adding one of these breeds to your family? Search the internet for a breeder in your area, or if you’d prefer to adopt a homeless purebred, contact one of the following rescues: