'/> Amazing Animals: January 2013

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Amazing Birds 3

Part three of a very interesting article about amazing birds.

More and more people are enjoying my series of articles about amazing birds. Indeed, birds are magnificent creations of Mother Nature. These beautiful creatures truly add beauty and inspirations to our lives. These birds inspire poetry and art as well as giving us some form of hope by simply watching them fly or call. So, for us to understand more about them, here is “Amazing Birds 3” to enjoy.

A bird that can eat only when its head is upside down

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Flamingos are found in both the Western Hemisphere and in the Eastern Hemisphere. They are well-known for their ability to stand on one leg. The reason for this behavior is not fully known. Aside from being able to stand in the water, flamingos use their webbed feet by stamping it in the mud to stir up food from the bottom. Flamingos feed mostly on shrimps and blue-green algae. Gifted with oddly-shaped beaks, they use them to separate mud and silt from their meal and are uniquely used upside-down. Their typical pink coloring is caused by the beta carotene obtained from their food supply.

What do these birds do with their prey after catching it?

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Shrikes are perching songbirds of the family Laniidae. They are medium-sized birds about 50 centimeters long with black and white, brown, grey or brown plumage. Their beaks are hooked and their calls are loud.

Shrikes usually sit on an exposed perch and wait to catch their prey such as: insects, small birds, or mammals. Shrikes exhibit a weird behavior in catching its prey that involve spearing the prey while it’s still alive on thorns, twig, spines, or other sharp objects. They can eat it right away or may leave uneaten portions for later consumption. The “ Butcher birds” as they are sometimes called are the only birds that engage in this bizarre practice.

A bird that really takes care of its tail

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The Resplendent Quetzal live in the tropical forests of South America and in some parts of Mexico. It has green body, red chest and a long green tail. Males have helmet-like crest and yellow beak while females have black beak. Resplendent Quetzal average 36 cm (14 in) long and weighs about 210 g. Their diet include: fruits, lizards, insects, and other small creatures.

During mating season, male quetzals grow twin tail feathers up to three feet (one meter) long. Because of its long tail, male must launch itself backwards in taking flight from a branch in order not to rip its tail to shreds.

A bird that does not need contact lenses to change the color of its eyes and a hunting technique that makes this bird unique in the world

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The Brown Pelican is the only dark pelican and the smallest among the eight species of pelican. It measures about 106-137 cm and weighs from 2.75 to 5.5 kg. It is found living on the coasts of northern Chile, Washington and Virginia, on the Amazon River’s and in the island of Saut d’Eau in Trinidad and Tobago. It is a large, dark waterbird with webbed feet. Its tail and legs are short but has long bill with extensible pouch. Brown pelican can grow up to 100-137 cm in length and can weigh up to 2000-5000 g.

What make Brown Pelican an amazing bird is the way it catch fish; it dives head first from the sky into the water catch its food. Another amazing trait this bird has is that it does not need a contact lenses to change the color of its eyes iris. During the off-breeding season, ability to their eyes are brown but when the breeding season begins, the iris color changes to a coffee cream white.

A bird that has a unique adaptation to prevent sand and debris from getting under its wings when it scratches for feeds.

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The Brown Thrasher is a large long-tailed bird found in North America. It has a brown or rufuos upper body with two white bars on each wing. Its beak is quite big and somewhat curved. Brown Thrasher averages about 29 cm in length and weighs up to 61-89 g . It is often seen on the ground searching for foods that include: insects, earthworms, berries, nuts snails and seeds. What’s unique about this bird – its side feathers are raised to overlap the folded wing, in turn shielding the area under the wing from sand and debris as it searches for food.

The most prolific avian ant eater in the world

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The Northern Flicker is a medium-sized woodpecker that is endemic to most of North America, Cuba and some parts of Central America. They can reach to about 32 cm in length. Adults typically are brown with black bars on the back with dark tail. Its upper breast is mark with necklace-like black patch, while its lower breast including its belly are rufous with black spots. It is the only woodpecker that usually feeds on the ground. Ants are its favorite food, probing with their bill it digs and forages in the dirt to find them. It accounts for 45% of their diet, but Northern Flicker will occasionally eat seeds, grains nuts and acorn.

A bird that has sonar

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The Oilbird is a slim, long-winged bird found in South America and on the island of Trinidad in forests and woodland with caves. This nocturnal species really loves to feed on the fruit of the Oil Palm. A reddish-brown bird with white spots on wings, it has small feet but has a powerfully hooked bill. Oilbird can grow up to 41-48 cm in length. During the day these sociable birds rest on cave ledges. Although it hunts by sight, it is the only nocturnal bird that is able to navigate by echolocation in dark conditions, using a series of sharp audible clicks for this purpose.

The only bird that drinks water the way people do

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The Rock Pigeon belongs to the bird family Columbidae (doves and pigeons). They inhabit agricultural and open and semi-open environments in most part of the world. They have dark bluish-gray heads with two black bars on each wing but some domestic and feral pigeons have various color patterns.

While most birds have to scoop up water and move their head a little backward so that gravity help the water flow down, Rock doves drink water the way we do — sucking it up against gravity.

The bird that cannot walk backwards and lay emerald/forest green eggs

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The Emu is Australia’s largest bird. This flightless bird that has soft, brown plumage can reach up to 2 meters in height and can weigh between 18 and 48 kilograms. Emus can travel great distances and can sprint at 50 km/h. They have long necks and legs and small vestigial wings. They have a soft bill, suited for grazing on a variety of plants and insects such as: ants, caterpillar, grasshoppers and crickets.

A bird that destroys eggs in other bird’s nests and replaces them with her own.

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The cuckoos are typically slender medium-sized birds mostly tree-dwellers but some are terrestrial. There are about 142 species of cuckoo that range in size from 16 cm to 63 cm. Plumage coloring varies with each species ranging from yellow, gray to cream. Majority of cuckoos have a long tail and short legs except the ground cuckoo that has long legs and is a fast runner. They eat spiders, butterflies, beetles, caterpillars, moths, and insect larvae which they catch with their downward-curving beaks.

Almost 50% of cuckoo species are brood parasites meaning they destroys eggs in other bird’s nests (birds of other species) and replace them with their own. The eggs are impulsively cared for by the destroyed eggs’ mother.

Check out other Amazing Birds posts:

The World's Amazing Birds
The World's Amazing Birds 2
Amazing Birds 4: The Raptors

Monday, January 21, 2013

There’s Something About These Dogs!

A list of dog breeds that possess strange behaviors, appearances and habitats.

Dogs are such beautiful and unique animals, no wonder, they are seen in most houses as guardian dogs, hunting companions or just simply pets. But did you know that there are some dog breeds that are rare, strange or possess something unique. Here is a list of 10 dogs that have those qualities:


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A Bulldog traces its roots to England. It has a smooth, short coat and may come in different colors such as: red, white and fawn. An adult male bulldog averages about 55 lbs. Dogs have around 100 different facial expressions, much of these are made with the ears. But did you know that bulldogs can only make 10 facial expressions, the reason is due to their breeding.

Chow Chow

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Chow is one of the oldest recognizable dogs to evolve from the wolf and have originated from China. The Chow is a robustly built dog with erect ears that are rounded at the tip. They have very thick double coat that can be smooth or rough. Chow has a thick fur around the neck giving it a mane appearance. The coat’s color may vary from black, red, blue, fawn and cream.

They can reach up to 18-22 inches (46-56 cm.) in height and weighs as much as 45-70 pounds (20-32 kg.). What’s unique about this breed of dog is its tongue: every known dog has a pink tongue, but Chow has an unusual blue-black/purple tongue. Chows are also distinguished by their very straight hind legs and their curly tail. It has thick hair and lays curled on its back.


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The Podengo or Portuguese Warren Hound is an ancient breed of dog from Portugal. It looks like a long-bodied Chihuahua that usually a yellow or fawn color, but others can be brown or black. These dogs would have accompanied Portuguese explorers in the 15th and 16th centuries and has been a popular household dog. The Podengo is still considered rare outside its homeland, but is becoming more widely known.


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The Norwegian Lundehund is a small Spitz type dog, which has lived solely on two isolated Norwegian villages namely: Mostad and Lofoten. They average 12 -15 inches in height and weigh about 13-20 pounds. They have a thick and rough outer coat and a soft undercoat. Colors vary from black, gray, reddish-brown to black or white with dark markings.

The Lundehund is one of the world’s rarest breed of dog having unusual features including: 6 toes on each foot, has joints in the neck, which allows 180-degree rotation, can close its ears thus protecting them against dirt and moisture and has mobile fore shoulder-joints, so that both front legs can stretch straight out to the sides.


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The Lowchen is small, bright, and friendly dog that is native to France. It is an old breed type, found in many countries as far back as the 1500s. It’s called “little lion dog” due to its fur growth, as it resembles a lion’s mane. Other physical features of the dog breed include: a compact, balanced body with a medium-length tail; short, wide muzzle; a short head with a broad skull; a lively round eyes, black nose and has pendent, feathered ears; long and wavy hair. The coat colors include: white, black and lemon.

American Foxhound

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The American Foxhound is the oldest known American dog breed that dates back to 1650! They are direct descendants of English hounds brought to America in 1650 and centuries later were bred later to a French hound. American Foxhounds are scent hounds, bred to hunt foxes by scent. The dog’s appearance includes: legs are very long and straight-boned; a slightly domed, large skull; chest is rather narrow; wide and pendant ears; hazel or brown eyes. Its coat is short and abrasive and come in four colors: red, blue, tan, black and blue. The American Foxhound is about 21-25 inches tall and weigh between 29-34 kg.

Rhodesian Ridgebacks

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The Rhodesian Ridgeback is big, handsome, muscular hound dog breed native to Southern Africa. It has a powerful, smooth tail that typically curve backwards. The short, sleek coat colors vary from light to dark wheaten, sometimes with small white markings on the chest and feet. Also, it has round eyes and a black nose and average 25-27 inches (63-69 cm) in height and weighs between 80-90 pounds (36-41 kg). What makes Ridgeback unique is its his distinctive reverse-hair coat marking along the top of their backs. It is formed by two whorls of hair and tapers behind the shoulders and down to the hips.

Great Pyrenees

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The Great Pyrenees is a very old breed used as a livestock guardian dog. They are large and muscular dogs that can grow to between 50–55kg in weight and from 69–81cm long. The long, straight or slightly wavy outer coat and a soft and thick undercoat. Their coats are white and can have varying shades of gray, red, or tan around the face. The chest is fairly broad and with medium-sized triangular ears. What’s so weird about Great Pyrenees is they’re so sensitive to anesthesia that it can kill them. Great caution is required for any surgery for this breed.


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Dachshunds are short-legged, vigorous, elongated, muscular dog. Considered as the smallest breed of hunting dog, Dachshunds are developed to scent and chase several burrow-dwelling animals including rabbits and badgers. They stand low to the ground, that allows them to maneuver through tunnels with ease. There are three types of Dachshund: the short-haired, the wired-haired, and the long-haired. With each of these varieties there are three sizes.

Also, they come in a different color: black, red, chocolate, tan, crème, gray for solid colors. Four bi-color: black and tan, chocolate and tan, black and cream, chocolate and cream, gray and crème, gray and tan. Adult standard size Dachshund averages 14-18 inches in height and may weigh about 4.9 kg, while Miniature can reach up to 14 inches. The toy breed averages 12 inches (30 cm.) and weighs up to 3.5 kg.


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The Saluki is one of the oldest dog breed in the world. Records show that it was first domesticated in Ancient Mesopotamia around 3000 B.C. Widely admired for its beauty, speed and endurance, the Saluki is a good companion of nomadic desert tribes over an area stretching from the Sahara to the Caspian Sea. The overall appearance of the Saluki is one of grace and symmetry having well muscled shoulders, deep and narrow chest, long and well muscled neck with soft and smooth coat. Salukis may come in different colors: White, golden, cream, tan, fawn, red, black, grizzle and tricolor (white, black and tan). Adult males average from 23 to 28 inches in height.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

10 Remarkable Animals Beginning with A

A list of popular animals whose names begin with the letter A.

The animal kingdom comprises more than two million species; some beautiful and colorful while others are odd-looking and bizarre. If you are asked to name 10 popular animals that begins with the letter A, how would you do it? Below is my own list of popular animals that starts with the letter A.


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An agama is a long-tailed lizard inhabiting forests and bushes across Africa. Some agamas can be 5 inches long while others can be a foot long in length and can come in different colors. These lizards are active during the day looking for prey and at times eating seeds, berries, grass and even snatching eggs of other small lizards.

Adult dominant males have a red face with shiny orange and blue coloring. Males are known to have five or more females in their territory for breeding. During courtship, male agamas wear stunning breeding colors. The male bobs his head, which can turn bright blue, orange or yellow to impress the female. March to May is the usual breeding season.


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An Alligator is a species of crocodilian that falls under the family Alligatoridae. Alligators are found only in two countries: the United States and China. There are more than a million alligators that inhibit two U.S. states; Florida and Louisiana. The Chinese alligator is extremely threatened with only a few dozen inhibiting the Yangtze River valley.

Alligators and crocodiles differ in some features like: Alligators have wide, flat and rounded snouts, while crocodiles own longer, sharper snouts; and unlike crocodiles, alligators lower teeth are hidden when their mouths are closed. They grow to about 10 to 15 ft. in length and can weigh up to 450 kg. The average life span of alligators in the wild is about 35 to 50 years. Alligators’ main prey are smaller animals that they can kill and eat with a single bite and if they are hungry they’ll eat anything including humans.


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Around 12,000 species of ants are currently classified under the family Formicidae.Ants are social insects that can be easily identified by their elbowed antennae and a distinctive node-like structure that forms a slender waist. Ants are found on all continents except Antarctica. These insects build colonies that differ in sizes from over a dozen individuals in a more complex colony that houses over millions occupants.

Most species are omnivorous, and are able to locate food resources that include both plant and animal matter. Ants are intelligent insects and has the ability to find their way through fairly complex mazes. Ants defend themselves by biting or by stinging.


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These small placental mammals with leathery armor shell are prolific diggers; dogging through the interior of savannahs and forests of Central and South America. There are about 20 existing species of armadillo, which are identified by the number of bands on their armor. The armadillo can grow up to 75 cm. including tail; however, the Giant Armadillo grows up to 1.5 m while the small species Pinky Fairy armadillo can reach 12-15 cm in length.

Its diet includes: ants, termites, worms and insects. Armadillos have poor vision and can’t withstand prolonged frosts and must nestle into the ground to avoid the cold. Armadillo can move quickly, even though it has short legs and is a good swimmer; able to last 6 minutes underwater.


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An anaconda, also known as Water Boa, is found in Northern Africa and in South America. It lives in shallow waters and swampy waters. They are nocturnal animal - hunting its prey at night such as deer, pigs, caiman, fish, and larger prey. They often simply wait near the water on a tree limb and come raining down to catch animals as they come for necessary water. Anacondas kill by constricting the prey until it can no longer breathe and swallow the prey whole, head first.

African Wolf Spider

The African wolf spiders are members of the family Lycosidae, a group of ground-dwelling hunting spiders. There are about 2000 wolf spider species found abundantly in prairie areas. They have sturdy bodies and long, thick legs. They differ in sizes, ranging from 2 mm to nearly 40 mm in length.

African wolf spiders' bodies are slung low to the ground, that help them to run past in capturing their prey. They have diverse hunting strategies; some species hunt at day while others at night. Some dig tunnels and lie in wait for its prey. Others build a lookout point in higher ground while a few species designed their tunnels with moveable trap doors at the entrance.

African Tree Pangolin

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The Tree pangolin (Manis tricuspis) is endemic to Africa and one of eight existing species of Pangolin (”scaly anteater”). This nocturnal animal has overlapping brown scales on its back and average 35–45 cm head and body, a tail length of about 49–60 cm and weighs between 1.8–2.4 kg. African tree Pangolin has white skin and hair, lacking external ear and scaly tail. When threatened, it will roll into a tight ball, exposing only a shield of scales. They are toothless bit have strong and long claws that it uses to climb trees in search of insects such as ants and termites.

Archer Fish

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The Archer fish is the only genus in the family Toxotidae. They are found in India, Western Pacific, Australia and in Southeast Asia inhabiting mangroves. They have flattened, knife shaped body with bold black-and-white markings that serves as camouflage in catching preys. Archerfish can grow up to 25 to 40cm in length and weigh up to 750 g.

They are famous for their ability to shoot down insects with water droplets from their specialized mouths. They are capable of spitting water at insects that are close to the water, making the prey fall into the water where it is eaten. It uses its tongue and a groove in the roof of its mouth to get a high-powered jet of water.


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The Antechinus is a marsupial mouse native to Australia. It is found in rain forests, eucalypt forests, and woodlands. Its diet includes: spiders, beetles (including larva), and weevils feeding mainly on insects. They have pointed snout, medium-long hairy tail. It has short feet of beige to yellow-brown color. Its back is covered with a reddish-brown fur. It can grow to about 4 to 5 in length and it weighs about 1 oz.


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Anteaters are mammal species that falls under the suborder Vermilingua. They are found mostly in South America and Mexico. As their name suggests, they feed solely on insects such as ants and termites. They have long claws and sticky tongue that is helpful in scooping up its prey in and out of its mouth. Anteaters species include : The Giant Anteater that grows to about 1,8 meters long including tail, the Silky Anteater with an average length of 35 cm. including tail and Tamandua that can grow up to 90 cm long.

Check out the entire Animal Alphabet list here:
Amazing Animal Alphabet Series 1
Amazing Animal Alphabet Series 2

Thursday, January 10, 2013

10 Sturdy and Hardy Russian Dog Breeds

Looking for muscular and tough dog breed? These Russian dogs have the qualities you are looking for and have what it take to be a good companion pet or an ever-alert guard dog! Read on to learn more about the 10 sturdy and hardy Russian dog breeds. Check out each breed profile.

Aside from being sturdy and hardy, these Russian dogs are really gorgeous and stunning in their own right!


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The Samoyed is a working breed of dog whose origin traced back to Siberia. The Samoyedskaya,as it is called by the locals, was originally used for herding reindeer, sled pulling and hunting.

Typically, the Samoyed comes in white color. The breed has a compact, muscular body and a dense, double layer coat. It has a wedge-shaped head, black or brown almond-shaped eyes and erect triangular-shaped ears. Samoyeds are known for their ‘smiling’ black lips and tail that is held actually touching the back. On average, male measures 53-60 cm (21-23½ inches) in height and weighs between 20½-30 kg (45-65 pounds). Female averages 48-53 cm (19-21 inches) tall and 16-20½ kg (35-50 pounds) in weight. The Samoyed lifespan is about 12-15 years.

A hardy and eager worker, the Samoyed is a gentle, highly intelligent, loyal, confident, playful and easy-going type of dog. It is calm indoors and will fit in an apartment provided small provided it gets sufficient amount of exercise. Samoyeds are seasonally heavy shedders and need extensive grooming.

Caucasian Shepherd Dog

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The Caucasian Shepherd Dog (Russian: Kavkazskaïa Ovtcharka) is a breed of dog that is extremely popular in Georgia. The oldest living Molosser breeds, this sturdy and hardy dog breed have existed since ancient times. Caucasian Shepherd Dogs were originally used to guard livestock, protect properties, and for hunting bears and wolves.

The Caucasian Shepherd has strongly-boned, muscular body having two coat varieties: short and long. Coat color ranges from Brindle, Fawn, Gray, Fawn, Pied, Tan, and White. It has moderate, dark eyes; hairy ears and tail. The forelimbs are long, straight and large, heavy paws. Males average 72 and 75 cm (28 and 30 in) at the withers and weigh 50 kilograms (110 lb). Life Expectancy: About 10-11 years.

Caucasian Shepherds are strong-willed, assertive and courageous dogs. It is aloof to strangers, but is playful with family and friends. It serves well as a guard dog, protecting family and properties. the dog. The breed will not do fine in apartment life and is highly recommended for home with big spaces or at least a large yard. The long-haired variety needs regular brushing, while the Shorthaired type requires less grooming.

West Siberian Laïka

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The West Siberian Laika (WSL), also referred to as Zapadno-Sibirskaïa Laïka, originated from Northern Ural and West Siberia, where the breed was first used as hunting dogs. In 1947 the West Siberian Laika was officially recognized as a new Russian breed of dog.

A large size dog, this sturdy and hardy dog has a muscular body covered with a thick “double coat”. The breed comes in black, white, red and gray shades. It has a well-developed chest, triangular-shaped head and ears, and a curly tail that is carried over the back. Males average males 54 to 60 cm (21 to 24 in) at the withers and females measures from 52 to 58 cm (20 to 23 in).

The West Siberian Laika is very intelligent, loyal, affectionate, and a highly active dog. A dog who simply enjoys outdoor activities, the West Siberian Laika is not suited for apartment living. WSL needs regular morning walks and exercise. The breed is known as a healthy dog, but requires frequent baths.

Karelo-Finnish Laika

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The Karelo-Finnish Laika (Finlandskaja), used for centuries as a hunting dog, is the smallest of the four Russian Laika breeds. The breed is a close relative of Finnish Spitz. It is a cross between a fox and a Nordic-type dog.

Karelo-Finnish Laikas have muscular body with dense, stand-offish coat and own a very fox-like look. Coat color varies from fawn of various shades, white with shades of gray and black, and red with a white chest. Males measure 38 to 48 cm (15 to 19 in) at the shoulders and 11 to 14kg (26 to 35 pounds) in weight.

The KFL are known great hunters. The breed is alert, aggressive, quite stubborn, but very loyal and an affectionate dog. It will do okay in an apartment provided it gets daily walks and exercise.

Siberian Husky

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The Siberian Husky is a Spitz-type breed of dog that traced its root in northeastern Siberia. It is originally used for centuries by the Chukchi Tribe, for herding reindeer and sled-pulling. The breed is known for its amazing endurance. The Siberian Husky was recognized by the AKC in 1930.

This sturdy and hardy breed is a medium-sized dog with the dense - coat. The Siberian Husky’s thickly furred double coat comprises two layers: a thick undercoat and a topcoat having short, straight hairs. The coat comes in almost any color and patterns – pure white, black and white, copper-red and white, gray and white, and the seldom seen “Agouti” coat. It has medium-sized head, almond-shaped eyes, medium-sized muzzles, erect triangular ears, and bushy tail. Males average 53 and 60 cm (21 and 23.5 in) tall at the shoulders and weighing between 20 and 27 kg (45 and 60 pounds). Females are smaller and lighter. Life Expectancy: About 12-15 years.

Huskies are known to be territorial and quite a stubborn dog breed. It is intelligent, affectionate, independent, gentle, playful and an active dog. They can do well in an apartment with a fenced-in large yard. A regular walk and exercise will do good for the Huskies. For better grooming, huskies need to be brushed and combed daily.


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The Taigan is a member of the family of Eastern Sighthounds breed adapted to the extreme mountainous regions of Kyrgyzstan. The locals trained this dog to hunt for prey such as duck, fox, ibex, marmot, rabbit, Roe Deer and wolves. The breed is listed as Endangered.

Similar inbuilt to the Greyhound, this dog has a muscular body having a soft, long and thick coat. Coat color ranges from white, black, brown, gray, yellow and black with white. It has a wedge-shaped head, oval-shaped eyes, drooping ears covered with soft and long hair “bourki”. The Taiga has a wide chest, long neck, and ringed tail. Males measure 65 cm (23.5 to 25.5 inches) tall at the withers. The breed is known for its keen sense of smell.

The Taigan is highly intelligent, obedient, affectionate, loyal, and a very energetic breed of dog. This sturdy and hardy dog gets along well with children and other pets, Since it enjoys spending time outdoors, it will not do well in apartment living. The Taigan is not recognized breed by AKC or any other major kennel club.


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The Borzoi, also called the Russian Wolfhound, was developed by crossing the Arabian Greyhound with Russian sheepdogs. Originally, the breed was used to hunt foxes, rabbits and wolves. Today, it is considered as a companion dog. The Borzoi was recognized by the AKC in 1891.

The breed resembles a Greyhound, with a long, silky coat. The Borzoi comes in various color patterns — black, golden, gray with black markings, tan and white. Some features of the breed include: a slightly-arched muzzle, narrow chest, black nose, dark eyes, small ears, and a tail set low with a curve. Males can measure 80 cm (30 inches) at the shoulder and can weigh 34 – 48 kg (75 to 105 pounds). Females can measure up to 66 cm (26 inches) tall and 27 – 41kg (60 -90 pounds). Life expectancy is 10 to 12 years.

This hairy greyhound is an intelligent, quiet, sweet, gentle, athletic and independent dog. Borzois will do okay in an apartment with an average-sized yard. A regular walk and exercise will make this dog very happy. Bathing is done very often. Its long, silky coat requires regular brushing with a firm bristle brush.

Black Russian Terrier

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The Black Russian Terrier (BRT) or Stalin’s dog (Sobaka Stalina)is primarily developed to serve as guard dogs. A new breed of dog, BRT was only recognized by AKC in July 2004. Despite its name, the breed is not a true terrier.

This sturdy and hardy dog has well-built, muscular body with coarse, black, double coat. It has a block-like head, dark eyes, small folded ears, large, black nose and tongue with black mark. Males average 64 – 74 cm (25 – 29 inches) and weigh 36 – 65 kg (80 – 143 pounds). Life Expectancy is about 10-14 years.

Black Russian Terriers are highly intelligent, loyal, brave, calm, and very observant. This breed seeks intense human companionship. BRT will do okay in an apartment provided it gets a regular daily walks and lots of exercise. The breed is easy to maintain — a once a week brushing is fine and 2-3 times a year regular trimming will do.

Russian Toy Terrier

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The Russian Toy Terrier, also called Russkiy Toys, is a very unique dog breed originally developed in isolation in Russia from the English Toy Terrier. It was originally bred both as a watchdog and an anti-rat dog. The breed comes in two types; the smooth haired/coated type and the long haired type.

One of the smallest breeds in the world, The Russkiy Toy has a small distinctive head with a little muzzle, long neck, large imposing eyes and stand-up triangular ears. Dogs average 20 cm (8 inches) and weigh about 1.4 kg – 2.7 kg (3 – 6 pounds). Color ranges from black and tan, solid red of various shades, sable, brown and tan, or blue and tan.

They are affectionate, loyal, and good with all family members. Russian Toy Terriers are typically not shy, nervous, or aggressive. These cute dogs are good for apartment life. A regular daily walk will make them happy.

Grooming the smooth, short-haired coat is a simple, gently brushed occasionally, but the long-coated type requires daily brushing with a soft bristle brush.

Russian Spaniel

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The Russian Spaniel is a breed of spaniel developed in 1951 in Russia by cross breeding English Cocker Spaniels and English Springer Spaniels. The breed which resembles the English Cocker Spaniel, was originally used as hunting dogs.

The Russian Spaniel is a small, sturdy and hardy dog with a skintight coat. The coat may come in a solid color or combination like white with dark (black, brown, or red) spots and speckles. It has a characteristically small squared head with a long square muzzle and big impressive eyes. Also, it has a broad chest, wide neck and huge ears that are covered in wavy fur. Lastly, it has skinny legs and small feet. Dogs measure 38-45 cm (15-17 ¾ inches) at the withers, and weigh 13-16 kg (28-35 pounds). Life Expectancy is 12-14 years.

The Russian Spaniel is an active, energetic, cheerful breed. It is intelligent, easy to train and an extremely friendly dog. This dog will do okay in an apartment provided it gets enough exercise. It loves regular long daily walks or jogs. The breed needs very little grooming since its coat repels water.