There isn’t a single characteristic that can best describe these dogs as a group with the exception of their often friendly nature. This is a category that exists in the United States, with the same breeds split within different groups in the British Kennel Club. A collection of dogs to feature several exotic breeds, such as a fur-collared Chow Chow, a little Bichon Frise, or a Chinese Shar-Pei.
A common name often used with these dogs is a ‘utility dog’ as a lot of the non-sporting canines are highly intelligent and suited as companion or therapy dogs for assistance needs or for people with seizure disorders.
Many of these dogs have unique and interesting histories and include some of the more ancient breeds. Often small to medium in size, including such dogs are Dalmatian, Chow Chow, and the French Bulldog.
A dog within the non-sporting category has a physical appearance that’s squared, with a boxy frame, rather than a build that’s elegant and sleek. Dalmatians are categorized as a pet in America but considered more as a working dog in the United Kingdom.
Popularity in a children’s movie (101 Dalmations) has resulted in serious breeding concerns with a lot of Dalmations bred in the U.S. Over breeding these dogs to cope with demand has weakened its bloodline and resulted in conditions that were once almost rare to once again become common. Deafness and hyperactivity in Dalmations are far too common in the United States as a consequence of a poorly regulated breeding program.
Some of the highest-rated members within this category are cherished for their unique personalities.
Bichon Frise – a cute puppy to adore, it resembles a large cotton ball or powder puff, a very affectionate and playful breed that barks seldom. This breed can be dotted on and will love every minute of it. A fluffy coat that sheds little, although as with a lot of smaller breeds, the Bichon can at times be difficult to housetrain. The Bichon Frise gets on well with children and other household pets. Not always suited to small children, as these dogs can’t take rough treatment.
Boston Terrier – a breed that’s highly intelligent and loves to be able to learn new tricks and to train for obedience. Great with older children with can be extremely affectionate. Those wishing a breed with ample personality favor these dogs and offers ease in taking on travel with its family members.
Bulldog – one of the drawbacks to these dogs is its lifespan. Health concerns, often as a result of over-breeding in the past, have resulted in average life of 8 to 9 years. A Bulldog often likes all those around them, except when food becomes involved. Mealtime is a passion for these dogs, and don’t’ take to other dogs or pets near their food. A dog in need of little exercise, although will be playful as a puppy, and develop to be a dignified adult. Although, these dogs do tend to snore loudly and often pass gas.
Chinese Shar-Pei – the physical appearance of these dogs isn’t the only unique quality. A Shar-Peis can be amongst the easiest to house train, yet tend to be more strong-willed and challenging when it comes to obedience training. A breed best on its own, without other household pets – due to it potential aggressive nature and dominant personality. Shar-pets can be exercised in a secure yard or on a leash if other dogs are about.
Chow Chow – a dog that’s isn’t ideal in the hands of an inexperienced owner. A Chow Chow is often easy to house train and clean but can be difficult to socialize. These dogs are a one-person animal and often seen to be aloof. Playing isn’t high on the agenda of activities and a training routine needs to begin early as well as being consistent. A well-trained Chow is well behaved and able to act as a highly rated watchdog. These dogs are favored for their coat and a heavy ruff of fur around the neck, in a similar way to a lion in the wild.
French Bulldog – a sweet-natured dog, that’s amongst the funniest and friendliest. Easy to care for and a low shedder, a bulldog for small apartment living and can tolerate children. Ideal living arrangements are a sole pet as these are dogs that love attention and don’t take to competing for it.
Lhasa Apso – a dog with an adorable appearance, yet houses a highly intelligent, strong-willed and self-absorbed canine. A breed that doesn’t take to other pets, children or strangers, and is in need of obedience training and socialization from a dominant owner with knowledge of the breed. A Lhasa Apso can often be treated like a lap dog due to its small build, and also seems to wind up dominating a home.
Poodle (Standard) – a breed often counted as one of the more intelligent in the canine world (with the first spot occupied by a Border Collie). A dog with a good nature, great with children and adults, a devoted companion and extremely attached to its family. Puppies are entirely cute, and throughout its adolescent years a bit rambunctious, and as an adult a highly-rated family dog. The Poodles have a non-shredding coat often sought after by allergy sufferers and a dog that even a novice could obedience train.