Spotted: A xolo in Berlin

Not a great photo, but it’s the first time I’ve ever seen a xolo in person! This is a shot of a xoloitzcuintli running around Görlitzer Park in Berlin.

A xolo in Berlin

My youngest sister now lives in Berlin, and she confirmed my assessment of German dogs, who seem to live with the utmost freedom and decorum. Perhaps even more than London dogs, dogs in Berlin are unbelievably well behaved. They almost never wear leashes. They know how to wait to cross busy intersections without being told. They ignore other dogs and other people. I find it so astonishing and admirable, coming from a small town in the southeastern United States, where it seems that about 40% of dogs, including my own, are leash reactive. (And maybe it’s really just the leashes that are the problem…)

Anyway, I always get a little thrill when I see a rare breed in person. Have you seen any rare breeds lately? (And does anyone really know how to pronounce xoloitzcuintli?)

Deep meditation

Frida Kahlo and her xolo.

“Petting, scratching, and cuddling a dog could be as soothing to the mind and heart as deep meditation and almost as good for the soul as prayer.”

— Dean Koontz

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Happy Independence Day to US readers! Hope you and your dogs can experience (endure?) the fireworks bonanza in a peaceful way…

How well do you know your dog breeds? Rare dog breed quiz

As a child, I studied the dog breed encyclopedia with great fervor, and I still like to think I have a pretty decent identification skills of rare breeds.

How about you?

Here are some photos of (relatively) rare breeds. Do you know what they are? (Answers at the bottom of the post!)


How did you do?


(1: leonberger; 2: Norwegian lundehund; 3: kuvasz; 4: Pyrenean shepherds; 5: large munsterlander; 6: spinone Italiano; 7: kooikerhondje; 8: beauceron; 9: jindo; 10: otterhound; 11: sloughi; 12: xoloitzcuintli)

What’s your favorite rare dog breed?