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What are some rare breeds of dogs?

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Quick Answer

Some rare breeds of dog include the Canaan dog, native to Israel; the Mudi of Hungary; and the British harrier hound. While the harrier is in danger of decline, the Mudi has been subject of a restoration project, and the Canaan dog is a developing breed.

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Full Answer

The Canaan dog is derived from feral dogs that live in the Middle East and North Africa. A focused breeding program was initiated by Rudolphina Menzel of the University of Tel Aviv, and the dogs were used for military missions during World War II. As of 2015, there are about 1,600 of these dogs worldwide, not counting the original feral population.

The Mudi is a livestock herding breed from Hungary. During World War II, they were nearly wiped out. A restoration program began in the 1960s, though they are still rare, even in Hungary.

The harrier hound is an old British breed, similar to the English foxhound. They were once more popular than beagles, but as of 2015, they are among the least popular breeds in the world. Their reduction in popularity is partly due to their role as hunting dogs, not companion animals. Unlike beagles, they are almost entirely owned for hunting purposes.

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