The Iditarod is coming up quick! The iconic Alaskan race starts on March 4th this year, with the 2023 event marking its 51st anniversary. While not all of our canine companions are suited for cold weather, some pups definitely are dressed in winter clothes. In this article from Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, a local vet shines the ‘spotlight’ on one of these lovable pooches, the American Eskimo Dog, or Eskie.
One of the Spitz breeds, the American Eskimo Dog is nicknamed ‘the dog beautiful.’ These pretty pups have fluffy white coats and dark eyes, and come in three sizes: toy, miniature, and standard. Fido was welcomed into the ranks of the UKC in 1919. In 1970, he got his very own club, the National American Eskimo Dog Association (NAEDA).
Believe it or not, Eskies were once renowned circus performers. Back in the 19th century, Fido charmed audiences in the US and Europe with a repertoire of adorable tricks. In fact, the most well-known American Eskimo Dog was likely Stout’s Pal Pierre, a doggy circus star with Barnum & Bailey who was famous for his ability to walk on tightropes.
Like many other Spitz dogs, Eskies are double-coated. This is important to know for two reasons. One: you should never clip your canine pal, as this could damage his fur. Two? Eskies do need some help caring for all that hair. The good news is that you won’t need to bathe Fido very often. In fact, overbathing can dry out his fur. However, your pup will need to be brushed regularly. (We probably don’t have to tell you that these guys are heavy shedders. Tip: wear an apron, and brush your pooch outdoors when possible.)
Eskies are known for being cheerful, loyal, and affectionate, as well as a bit frisky. Fido is extremely smart, so he’s going to need lots of entertainment and activity. Unsurprisingly, Eskies often do very well at doggy sports, such as obedience training and agility.
Eskies are quite hardy. However, the official breed standards do recommend having certain screenings done, such as a hip and ophthalmologist evaluation. Ask your vet for specific care advice.
Do you have questions about your furry friend’s health or care? Contact Arapahoe Animal Hospital, your Boulder, CO vet, serving Louisville and surrounding areas, anytime!