The Encyclopedia of the Dog
by Bruce Fogle
The book's comprehensive approach is one of
its greatest strengths, matched by the extensive use of color photography to introduce
each breed, whether familiar or novel. More than 200 pages of the book are devoted to
profiling 400 breeds, many better known in Europe and Asia than in America.
The book's organization makes understanding
breeds -- and their relationships to other breeds -- easier than following kennel club
show groupings. Fogle's categories are Primitive Dogs, Sight Hounds, Scent Hounds,
Spitz-type Dogs, Terriers, Gundogs, Livestock Dogs, Companion Dogs. The reader is quickly
reminded that a high percentage of dog breeds were created for work with people.
To convey much information in compact
fashion, Fogle offers a "Key Facts" box on each breed, uses graphics and symbols
to convey information such as size, and offers a unique fur color chart when a breed comes
in various shades. Many breeds have both head shot and standing pose photos.
Rounding out the book are sections on the
dog's body and movement, behavior, care, and origins and relationships with people.
Noteworthy is the section on the dog's close relatives, with pictures of the various
wolves thought to have been the genetic source of the domestic dog.
Still curious about those five breeds
mentioned at the beginning? Here they are:
- The Chinook
is rare U.S. breed created in the early 1900s by musher Arthur Walden who crossed Eskimo
dogs with St. Bernards and Belgian shepherds to get a strong sled dog.
- The Eurasier was created in
Germany in the 1950s by combining Samoyed, German wolfspitz and Chow Chow lineages; the
aim was to recreate the Russian laika sled dog.
- The Grand Anglo-Francais Blanc et
Noir was created in France in the late 1800s by crossing the English Foxhound
with French hounds; the "white and black" is considered a separate breed from
the tricolor and the rare white and orange breeds.
- The Prazsky Krysavik,
created in the 1980s in the Czech and Slovak Republics, weighs two to six pounds, making
it the world's smallest dog.
- The Shikoku is a Japanese
spitz-type dog said to have been developed in antiquity as a hunting dog; it looks
striking like a Siberian Husky.
AUTHOR: Born in
Ontario, Canada, Bruce Fogle DVM is considered an expert on animal behavior. The author of
four other books on dogs and cats, he trained at the London Zoo and practices veterinary
medicine in London. PUBLISHER: Dorling Kindersley, London, 1995.