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Welcome to Our !RARE! Breed of the Month Feature!
Previous !RARE! Breeds of the Month
January's !RARE! Breed of the Month
February's !RARE! Breed of the Month
March's !RARE Breed of the Month
2011 !RARE! Breed of the Month Recap
Featuring April’s !RARE! Breed of the Month
What is a Hovawart?Hovawart is German and means "guardian of the property". It is one of the oldest breeds that still exists today, and has its origins in the so-called Bronze-Age Dog. It was first mentioned in Germany in the 13th century, when a writer of that era told how a "Hovewart" had saved his life when he was a baby. The dog had carried him to safety when his family's castle was under siege. The "Hovewarts" were considered as very valuable and stealing one meant strict punishment.
History & OriginDuring the centuries the Hovawarts were used by the German farmers as guardians of home as well as of livestock. However, other breeds became more in fashion, and by the end of the last century, the Hovawarts were almost extinct. During the 1920's a group of enthusiasts started to revive the breed with a strict breeding program and in 1937 the Hovawart was officially recognized as a breed in Germany.
AppearanceThe Hovawart comes in three colors: blond, black, and black and tan. Its coat is long and thick, slightly wavy and double. The shoulder-height for males is 24-28 inches and for females 22-26 inches. The females are smaller and much more elegant in their appearance. Males are robust and powerful-looking but not heavy. The eyes are amber and the ears are flat. The tail is long and is carried low except when the dog is excited. The hair on the tail and on the legs is long and feathery.
TemperamentIt is a hardy and weather-proof dog, that is alert and faithful, trustworthy and extremely intelligent. Although very willing to please its owner, it can take up to two years before the Hovawart puppy matures enough for serious obedience training. At that age, though, he will learn very quickly, and with his outstanding sense of protection he makes a very good prospect for obedience and schutzhund training. They have an excellent sense of smell and are also very suitable for search and tracking. Although the Hovawart is an excellent family dog, it is important that he be trained from an early age to the fact that his owner is the "pack leader", or he will soon take over that role.
When training a Hovawart, one must be aware of the fact that these dogs do not respond well to the traditional, harsh, leash-jerking training methods. They are too intelligent for that approach. It is much better to use creativity, common sense and praise instead.
On the whole, a Hovawart is a perfect family dog and protector. His extraordinary intelligence makes him an excellent watchdog, but also has its drawbacks. Because he is so smart, a Hovawart needs an owner who is willing to spend a lot of time and training on his dog.
April's !RARE! BotM ~ the Hovawart ~ artwork by brooke-n
See more @ the !RARE! Breed of the Month Artwork Folder
Featuring April’s Targeted Breed of the Month
the German Shepherd Dog / Deutscher Schäferhund / Alsatian
The German Shepherd Dog is a breed that is subject to breed-specific legislation and other forms of discrimination, the breed is restricted in several cities across the United States, including other countries such as Ireland, Spain and Singapore.
The first impression of a good German Shepherd Dog is that of a strong, agile, well muscled animal, alert and full of life. It is well balanced, with harmonious development of the forequarter and hindquarter. The dog is longer than tall, deep-bodied, and presents an outline of smooth curves rather than angles. It looks substantial and not spindly, giving the impression, both at rest and in motion, of muscular fitness and nimbleness without any look of clumsiness or soft living. The ideal dog is stamped with a look of quality and nobility--difficult to define, but unmistakable when present. Secondary sex characteristics are strongly marked, and every animal gives a definite impression of masculinity or femininity, according to its sex.
• Country of Origin: Germany
• Functionality: Livestock herder, natural family guardian & police/military/overall working dog
• Coat Colors: Solid black, classic black/tan saddle(or blanket), black/red saddle, sable and other rarer varieties of sable are acceptable. It is common for most to have black masks and various black body markings. Blue, liver and in some cases solid white is unacceptable and considered faults.
• Height: Dogs – 24 to 26 inches & Bitches – 22 to 24 inches