With his fluffy white coat, the American Eskimo Dog does look like he came straight out of an igloo. But he actually has a very different origin. Here are seven interesting facts about the American Eskimo Dog:
1. They Originated in Germany
The American Eskimo Dog, or Eskie, is actually not from America. They originated in Germany and descended from the German Spitz. The dogs that would become the American Eskimo Dog came to the United States with their German immigrant owners.
2. They Used to Be Herders and Guard Dogs
The German Spitz was originally used as a herder, livestock guard, and hunting dog. When they were brought to the United States, they became popular as family pets. Despite what their name might suggest, Eskies were never bred to be sled dogs. They do, however, excel at agility competitions.
3. They Became Circus Dogs
In the late 19th century, the American Eskimo Dog became popular with traveling circuses. They were easily trainable and capable of performing entertaining agility stunts. Their bright white coats also looked great in the spotlight. It was the circus that made the American Eskimo Dog extremely popular as a family pet.
4. An Eskie Was the First Dog Known to Walk a Tightrope
If there was one dog breed capable of becoming an acrobat, it would be the American Eskimo Dog. An Eskie was the first dog known to ever walk a tightrope. Today, Eskies are still known for the wide variety of tricks they can perform.
5. They Come in Three Sizes
Like the Poodle, the American Eskimo Dog comes in three sizes: standard, miniature, and toy. The standard, though, usually weighs no more than 35 pounds.
6. They Come in "Biscuit" Color
Just when you think these dogs can't get any cuter, you find out that they come in "biscuit" color. All Eskies are either completely white, or white with "biscuit cream," according to the official breed standard. That means an Eskie should have a mostly white coat with "biscuit" colored fur around the edges.
Check out an amazing American Eskimo dog in this video!