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Top Winter Dog Breeds

All dogs are not made equal - some are better suited for the cold outdoors. Dogs with heavier and thicker coats are the obvious choice for trekking through harsh terrains and colder temperatures. The following breeds have a long history of weathering tougher conditions. With these breeds, you'll be happy to know they'll never need to wear a jacket!

Newfoundland Newfoundlands are a special breed known for their intelligence, strength and kindness. These dogs originated in Newfoundland before it became part of Canada, accounting for their thick coat and ability to thrive in cold weather. These dogs are known for being superb swimmers, making them excellent rescue dogs in areas.

Siberian Husky The Siberian husky finds its origins in the harsh tundra of the Siberian Arctic, close to the northern pole, where temperatures reach as low as -4.2 degrees Fahrenheit. This handsome breed was imported from Northeastern Asia to Alaska and Canada as sled dogs during the Nome Gold Rush of 1898. The rush lasted for a full decade and gave the America's a new cold-weather breed dog.

Samoyed Samoyeds are bred to herd and pull sleds. The breed originated in Siberia- so, like the Siberian husky, they are no strangers to the cold. These friendly dogs are bred to be excellent companions and diligent watchdogs. In addition to herding and sledding they have been used for guarding property and keeping their owners warm.

Akita The Akita is a rare breed that originated in the northern regions of Japan. This breed as a short coat with two layers, much like the Siberian Husky, which allows it to endure extremely cold weather. This breed is very intelligent and known for its loyalty. Akitas were known as a regal breed in Japan, often belonging to Samurai and used for hunting large game such as bears.

Saint Bernard St. Bernards are known for their ability to rescue people in cold weather. The breed has been famous for their daring rescues since the mid-nineteenth century. St. Bernards are a very large breed of dog and due to their cold-weather background they might have trouble adapting to warm environments.

Icelandic Sheepdog Icelandic Sheepdogs are a very rare breed that was originally brought to Iceland by the Vikings. These dogs were bred to herd- but with a unique emphasis. Rather than herd in the traditional sense, these dogs were focused on preventing animals from straying from the herd. This talent allows them double as a reliable watchdog as well.

American Eskimo Dog Like the Siberian Husky, Akita, Icelandic Sheepdog, and Samoyed, the American Eskimo Dog is a member of the Spitz family. The Spitz are characterized by their thick fur, pointed ears and snouts, and curly tail. This breed originated in Germany and was originally called the German Spitz until anti-German sentiment during World War I led to the adoption of its new name. These dogs are small and affectionate, making them perfect pets.

Bernese Mountain Dog The Bernese Mountain Dog originated in the Swiss Alps, where it was bred as a working dog to pull carts. They have adapted to the cold with a thick coat and have a natural propensity for herding that was not actively bred into them. These calm animals make excellent work dogs or pets.