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Portuguese Water Dog

February 12, 2012 by staff 

Portuguese Water Dog, The Portuguese Water Dog is a breed of working dog as classified by the American Kennel Club. Portuguese Water Dogs are originally from the Portuguese region of the Algarve, from where the breed expanded to all around Portugal’s coast, where they were taught to herd fish into fishermen’s nets, to retrieve lost tackle or broken nets, and to act as couriers from ship to ship, or ship to shore.

Portuguese Water Dogs rode in bobbing fishing trawlers as they worked their way from the warm Atlantic waters of Portugal to the frigid fishing waters off the coast of Iceland where the fleets caught cod to bring home. Portuguese Water Dogs were often taken with sailors during the Portuguese discoveries.

In Portugal, the breed is called C?o de ?gua (pronounced Kow-the-Ah-gwa; literally “water dog”). In its native land, the dog is also known as the Algarvian Water Dog (“C?o de ?gua Algarvio”), or Portuguese Fishing Dog (C?o Pescador Português). C?o de ?gua de Pêlo Ondulado is the name given the wavy-haired variety, and C?o de ?gua de Pêlo Encaracolado is the name for the curly-coated variety.

The Portuguese Water Dog is a fairly rare breed; only 15 entrants for Portuguese Water Dogs were made to England’s Crufts competition in 2002. Though some breeders claim they are a hypoallergenic dog breed, there is no scientific evidence to support the claim that hypoallergenic dog breeds exist. However, their non-shedding qualities have made them more popular in recent years. The Portuguese Water Dog has recently gained more fame by being the chosen dog of US president Barack Obama. He was given the name of Bo.

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