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spitz

Ever heard the word “spitz” to describe a dog? Physically, most spitz breeds are characterized by a wolf-like appearance that includes pointy, pricked ears; almond-shaped eyes; a heavy, double coat; and a feathery tail carried over the back.

Many of the spitz breeds were bred for life in arctic climates, and they originated in Scandinavia, Russia, and North America. The wedge shape of their head — the word “spitz” in German means pointed — helps warm frigid air as it’s inhaled through the nasal passage. They also have a double coat to help keep warmth in and the harsh elements out.

There is no hard-and-fast definition of a spitz, because some breeds aren’t easily categorized, or their fanciers feel another classification is more appropriate. It’s estimated that between 50 and 70 distinct spitz breeds exist. Here are some of them:

Akita

Alaskan Malamute

American Eskimo Dog

Chow Chow

Finnish Lapphund

Finnish Spitz

Icelandic Sheepdog

Keeshond

Norwegian Buhund

Norwegian Elkhound

Norwegian Lundehund

Samoyed

Shiba Inu

Siberian Husky

Swedish Vallhund

As far as their temperament, spitz breeds were bred to work and are highly intelligent and active. Their tasks have ranged from helping hunters find game, to hauling sleds with heavy loads, to herding animals like reindeer.

Owners of spitz breeds understand that having a lint roller on hand is a must and enjoy getting exercise with their dog on a daily basis. They love these breeds for their expressiveness and their smarts — not to mention, most of them look like teddy bears when they’re puppies. To celebrate this fascinating canine consortium, here is a roundup of videos showcasing why so many people have made a spitz a member of their family.

Akita

the__o__brothers on Feb 2, 2018


Did they just become best friends?

Alaskan Malamute

lohgan.malamute on Jun 2, 2017


Watch this ball of fluff take on the stairs!

American Eskimo Dog

mayo_the.spitz on May 10, 2018

This little white bear cub is sure to make you smile.

Chow Chow

taken-by=faychowchow on Nov 21, 2014


“No, it’s okay. You go to work. I’ll stay here and do this.”

Finnish Lapphund

taken-by=happylappielou on May 6, 2018


Little pup goes for a ride.

Keeshond

taken-by=keeshondpuppers on Aug 20, 2016


“Got room for one more?”

Norwegian Buhund

taken-by=bocopadogs on Dec 28, 2016


Listen with the sound on. We promise it’s worth it.

Norwegian Elkhound

kari_the_elkie on Feb 6, 2017


“That’s my towel, thanks!”

Samoyed

jackson_blu on June 18, 2018


One of the purest videos to ever grace Instagram.

Shiba Inu

shiba_roma on May 19, 2017


We’d like to board this train, please.

Siberian Husky

lunathesouthernhusky on Feb 19, 2017


Husky > Alarm clock. (Note: Huskies have no snooze button).

Have a spitz in your life that you want to shower with love? (As if you don’t already!) Check out our breed-specific products in the AKC Shop.

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