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Working dogs belong to one of seven different groups described by the American Kennel Club. There are 30 different species of dogs that are part of the group. Each has been bred, raised, and trained to perform specific tasks.


Alaskan Malamute


The breed was named for the native Mahlemut tribe among the Inuit people. They remain the oldest breed used as sled dogs. Their thick, waterproof coat enables them to withstand the harsh wintery conditions. Malamutes were conditioned to haul sleds and heavy loads over the Arctic ice and snow. The dogs have an affectionate, loyal and playful nature. They make wonderful pets. Owners must use a firm but loving hand to train them.


Bernese Mountain Dog


The dogs are similar in appearance to the St. Bernard. But, they are slightly smaller in stature and weight. The dogs were bred and trained in Switzerland to drive cattle, protect the herds and property from predatory attacks. Their mighty strength also enabled them to haul carts carrying heavy loads. Although large in size, the gentle giants are loving and playful. They are particularly patient and affectionate with children.




The breed developed in Germany during the latter years of the 1800s. They were used to attack and contain bears, bison and boars. In recent years, the intelligent and versatile breed has been used on the farm to help with cattle. They also serve in law enforcement and military capacities. The athletic breed is affectionate and playful but fiercely protective of their human family members.


Doberman Pinscher


Dobermans were also bred and raised in Germany during the 19th century. Their compact but athletic stature and protective nature make them ideal for working in law enforcement and the military. Their intelligence and loyalty also enable their use as therapy companions and service dogs. Today, the breed might be found working search and rescue missions.


Great Dane


The gentle giants originated in Germany and remain one of the largest of all the dog breeds. They were used to hunt alongside their owners in search of wild boars. The dogs are generally affectionate, loyal and playful. However, they can become fierce and devoted guard dogs. Their size and bellowing bark are often enough to deter would-be predators.