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Beauceron

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About the Beauceron

A tireless French sheepdog, the Beauceron dates to the late 1500s. Intelligent with a natural guarding instinct, this large breed makes a loving, loyal and gentle companion. The Beauceron is eager to learn and easily trained. His strong personality fits best with experienced, dedicated owners. A natural athlete, he requires daily exercise, but his short coat needs little grooming.

Did you know
A Beauceron named O'Cara Bleue de St. Sacrement was among the dogs used in the search-and-rescue efforts following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City. “Cara” used a special camera placed around her neck to search for signs of life in places unreachable by humans.

Bedlington Terrier

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About the Bedlington Terrier

A hardy breed known for his curly, woolly coat, the Bedlington Terrier was developed in 19th-century England to catch vermin. His gracefully shaped body gives the Bedlington the capacity for great speed and endurance. Mild and gentle with a lovable nature, the breed makes a wonderful family companion. He is an energetic but not overly rambunctious companion that needs daily exercise. His coat requires regular trimming.

Did you know
The Bedlington Terrier was popular with John D. Rockefeller and his family. The Bedlington, named “Timmie,” who won the 1948 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show was owned by Rockefeller's grandnephew, William A. Rockefeller.

Belgian Malinois

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About the Belgian Malinois

Alert and confident, the Belgian Malinois is a popular police and military dog. One of four types of Belgian sheepherding dogs, the Malinois was developed in the 1800s by dedicated trainers who prized the breed’s excellent working character. Distinguished by his short fawn coat and black mask, the Belgian Malinois is affectionate with his owners but also naturally protective without being overly aggressive.

Did you know
The Belgian Malinois is named for Malines, a city in northern Belgium where the breed originated. After World War II, the Malinois decreased in popularity in the U.S. until the 1960s, when importations of the breed increased, contributing to steady growth ever since.

Belgian Sheepdog

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About the Belgian Sheepdog

An elegant, muscular dog, the Belgian Sheepdog is a loving companion that excels as a herding and guard dog. Originating in the 1800s, the Belgian Sheepdog is an intelligent, easily trained, active breed that does best when given a job or purpose. One of four types of Belgian sheepherding dogs, he is distinguished by his long, black coat, which has a dense undercoat and requires weekly brushing.

Did you know
During both World Wars, Belgian Sheepdogs proved themselves valuable by working as message carriers, ambulance dogs and pulling machine guns. The first Belgian Sheepdog kennel was established by Nicholas Rose of Groenendael, Belgium, and his black sheepdogs, Petite and Picard d’Uccle.

Belgian Tervuren

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About the Belgian Tervuren

Bred as a general purpose herding and guard dog, the Belgian Tervuren has a strong protective instinct. One of four types of Belgian sheepherding dogs, this breed is distinguished by his medium-long fawn-and-black coat, which should be brushed twice weekly. Intelligent and devoted, the Belgian Tervuren is a loving dog that excels as a therapy dog and companion to the disabled.

Did you know
The Belgian Tervuren is named for the Belgian village of Tervuren, home to M.F Corbeel, an early breeder who is credited with breeding the foundation stock. A famous fawn Tervuren, Milsart, became the breed’s first Belgian show champion in 1907.

Bengal Cat

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About the Bengal Cat

Bengal Cats are curious and confident with the tameness of a domestic tabby and the beauty of an Asian Leopard Cat. Learn more about Bengals and their playful personality, plus information on their health and how to feed them.

Lifespan

12 to 16 years

Colors

One of the most distinctive features of this feline is its unique coat pattern and color. Most Bengal Cats’ coats have rich, highly contrasted shades of bright orange to light brown, with dark spots or a distinctive marbling pattern. Some even have a “glitter” to the tips of their fur, which glistens when the light hits it.

Characteristics

Bengal Cats have an athletic appearance with well-defined muscles, creating a lean, balanced appearance. They feature high cheekbones, dark markings around the eyes and the ears are small and pointed but round at the tips. Their coats have a unique, plush feel unlike any other cat breed.

History

The Bengal Cat is a hybrid of a domestic cat with the wild Asian Leopard Cat. The first crossbreed was performed by Jean Mill in 1963, but the hybrid wasn’t perfected until the mid-1980s. Today, Bengals are bred only with each other.

Facts

The Bengal Cat’s name comes from the scientific name for the Asian Leopard Cat, Prionailurus bengalensis.

  • Bengals are the only domestic cat with rosettes that resemble the markings on leopards, jaguars and ocelots.
  • The International Cat Association (TICA) accepted the Bengal for championship status in 1991 and the American Cat Fanciers Association (ACFA) accepted the breed shortly thereafter.
  • The ACFA rescinded their acceptance after second-generation felines reportedly caused problems at cat shows. The Bengal was reinstated to ACFA in 1997 with the caveat that any cats shown had to be fifth generation.

Shedding

A Bengal is fairly low maintenance. She won’t shed much and is an efficient self-groomer.

Health

Although responsible breeders make every effort to avoid health complications and genetic disorders in their felines, there are some conditions you should be aware of.

Bengals may suffer from distal neuropathy and flat-chested kitten syndrome, both of which typically resolve on their own as the kitties mature. As they age, Bengals may develop other problems like hip dysplasia, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, patellar luxation and progressive retinal atrophy.

Choosing the Best Food for Bengal Cats

Because of their energetic nature, Bengals need a complete and balanced cat food rich in protein, such as Pro Plan Savor or Pro Plan True Nature dry and wet food. Always consult with your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns, and slowly transition your feline companions to a new food to avoid digestive upset.

Choosing the Best Food for Bengal Kittens

Bengal kittens need additional nutrients to support their growth and development. Consider a kitten food like Pro Plan Focus Kitten dry and wet products or Pro Plan True Nature Kitten Grain Free dry and wet products to provide your kitty everything she needs to reach her full potential.

Bergamasco

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About the Bergamasco

This ancient Alpine breed, believed to be 2,000 years old, was originally developed to guard and herd livestock. Today, he is widely recognized as a loving family companion. Gentle, patient and caring, the Bergamasco thrives on human attention and doesn’t like to be left alone for long periods of time. His signature, considerably hypoallergenic coat doesn’t require much grooming other than occasional bathing, but his nails should be clipped and teeth brushed regularly.

Berger Picard

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About the Berger Picard

Lively and alert, this rustic farm dog has been a working companion of French farmers since the 14th century. A stable and sturdy dog, the breed’s weather-proof, wiry coat may be fawn or brindle and requires little grooming. With a friendly expression, the Picard is a charming and lighthearted dog, but is known to be stubborn and will require a patient but firm owner.

Bernese Mountain Dog

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About the Bernese Mountain Dog

Bernese Mountain Dogs, affectionately referred to as “Berners,” are a strong working breed. Their strength and size are contrasted by their calm, loving nature toward their families.

Temperament

The calm, confident Berner thrives when he’s with family. He’s affectionate toward adults and patient with children, making him an ideal family dog.

Though the Bernese Mountain Dog is not an outdoor dog, he loves going on outdoor adventures like long walks or hikes to satisfy his need for moderate daily exercise. The Berner is smart and eager to please, which can make obedience training easier.

Characteristics

As a large breed, the Bernese Mountain Dog was built to work. Though the body is sturdy, his sweet temperament is evident in his soft features, including big brown eyes.

Lifespan

7 to 10 years

Colors

Berners are easily recognized by the black, white and rust tri-color markings on their face and coat.

Shedding

The Berner’s long, thick coat protects him in cold conditions, but sheds throughout the year. A Berner will shed more heavily during the spring shedding season. Daily brushing, particularly during those seasons, will help remove the loose hair.

Health

As with other large breeds, Bernese Mountain Dogs are at risk of bloat, a life-threatening condition. Other health conditions Berners may develop include hip and elbow dysplasia, certain cancers and blood disorders. Responsible breeders screen for such health conditions.

Best Dog Food for Bernese Mountain Dogs & Puppies

Because the Bernese Mountain Dog is a large dog, he’ll benefit from a large breed dog food. Large breed formulas offer additional support for healthy joints and mobility.

A Berner puppy can also benefit from a large breed puppy food, which has all the nutrients he’ll need for healthy growth and development in his first two years of life.

History

The Bernese Mountain Dog originated on Swiss farms where he worked as a cattle drover, draft dog and guardian. Despite their hard work and gentle companionship after the workday, the Berner’s numbers were in serious decline by the end of the 19th century.

Professor Albert Heim led a Swiss breed club in 1907 in an effort to preserve the Bernese Mountain Dog. By 1926, the breed made its way to the U.S. by way of a Kansas farmer. The breed’s popularity took off and the American Kennel Club (AKC) registered their first Berner in 1937.

Facts

  • The Bernese Mountain Dog is one of four varieties of Swiss mountain dogs. He’s the second largest and the only one with a long, silky coat.
  • Berners can pull many times their own weight, which is why they excelled as drafting dogs.
  • Roman soldiers brought the Berner’s ancestors to Switzerland over 2000 years ago.

Bichon Frise

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About the Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise breed packs an incredible amount of personality into a small but sturdy body. The American Kennel Club (AKC) calls them outstanding “personality dogs.” 

Temperament

Gentle-mannered, sensitive and affectionate, the Bichon Frise is an excellent family companion who enjoys the company of children and other dogs. 

This playful breed loves activity and requires regular exercise. They are easy to train and eager to perform for the people they love. 

Characteristics

The Bichon Frise is a Non-Sporting breed with a plush, snuggly-soft white coat. His curly coat sheds very little, so this breed may be a good choice for allergy sufferers.
 
The Bichon’s large, dark eyes, and black nose and lips are nestled in an inquisitive round face. 

Lifespan

14 to 15 years

Colors

The Bichon Frise’s coat is always white. 

Shedding

The Bichon Frise is considered to be a low-shedding breed, because the hair he does shed gets caught in his undercoat. This hair needs to be brushed out, so mats don’t form. 

The hair also keeps growing, so this breed needs to be groomed every four to six weeks. 

Health

The Bichon Frise is generally a healthy breed, but responsible breeders will check for health conditions such as allergies, bladder infections, luxating patella, and cataracts and other eye diseases.

Bichons also need regular dental care or they can be susceptible to complications from gum infections, such as tooth loss. 

Best Dog Food for Bichon Frise Dogs & Puppies

Like other small breeds, Bichons may benefit from a small breed dog food. For Bichons who need help with weight management, consider a healthy weight formula

Bichon Frise puppies should eat small breed puppy food for their first year of life to aid in their growth and development.  

History

The Bichon Frise breed is one of the ancient group of breeds known as the Barbichon types, which also includes the Bolognese, Havanese and Maltese. During the 13th century and into the Renaissance, the breed became favorites of the royal courts of Spain, Italy and France. 

During the French Revolution, Bichons lost their privileged status. When these bright, trainable, charismatic dogs were turned out from their pampered homes, they found their place as performers with street entertainers and circuses. 

In the wake of two world wars, and the austerities that followed, many Bichons again found themselves without support. The breed survived, thanks to the efforts of enthusiasts who took in dogs from the streets of France and Belgium. 

The Bichon Frise breed achieved AKC recognition in the Non-Sporting Group in 1973. 

Facts

  • “Bichon Frise” is French for “curly lap dog.” “Bichon” is a type of lap dog, and “frise” is French for “curly.” 
  • The Bichon Frise appears in a number of works by the noted Spanish painter Francisco de Goya.

Birman Cat Breed

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About the Birman Cat Breed

The Birman is a cat of distinction as well as legend. With their exotic ancestry, luxurious pointed coats, “white gloved” paws and mesmerizing blue eyes, this is a breed with undeniable charisma.

Temperament

The Birman’s sweet and gentle nature makes her an ideal companion and pet. Birmans are playful and love to be with people, and are also patient and social with children and other pets.

While Birmans tend to be fairly quiet, they will “talk” with soft, chirping voices. They enjoy attention, and want to be where their people are, helping with whatever activity is happening. 

Characteristics

This healthy, long-lived breed has an outstanding, semi-long silky coat and a luxurious, long bottle-brush tail. Brilliant blue, almost-round eyes are prominent features of her sweet expression.

Lifespan

15+ years

Colors

Birman coats can be seen in any pointed color: seal point, blue point, chocolate point, lilac point or tortie point.

Shedding

Birmans are a moderate-shedding breed. Their coats have no undercoat and are not prone to matting, so they require only weekly grooming with a stainless steel comb to keep shedding under control.

Health

Birmans are generally healthy cats, especially from a reputable breeder. Like many other cat breeds, they are at risk for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, the most common type of heart disease in cats. Responsible breeders will screen for this genetic condition, but it may not develop in cats until later in life.

Best Cat Food for Birman Cats & Kittens

Birmans will generally thrive on the nutrition of a quality adult cat food. For Birmans who need help with weight management, consider a healthy weight formula.  

Birman kittens should eat a kitten food for their first year of life to aid in their growth and development. 

History

The Birman legend begins in the temples of Burma (now Myanmar), where their ancestors were said to be the carriers of the souls of departed priests.

Around the beginning of the 20th century, a pair of Birman cats was transported from Burma to France. Sadly, the male cat died during the ocean voyage, but the female arrived pregnant with his offspring, bringing the Birman breed to Europe.

The breed almost became extinct after WWII, but breeders revived it. The Birman breed arrived in the United States in 1959 and was registered with The Cat Fanciers’ Association (CFA) in 1967.

Facts

  • A cat of mystery and legend, the Birman was the sacred cat of Burma, believed to be the companions of the priests of the temple.
  • Like all color point cats, Birman kittens are born all white and develop their color as they mature.
  • Birman cats do not reach full maturity until they are 3 years old.

Black and Tan Coonhound

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About the Black and Tan Coonhound

With his powerful nose, fierce desire to hunt and great endurance, the Black and Tan Coonhound is used to track raccoons, deer and bear. This breed originated in the late 1700s when hunters in the Southeast crossed Bloodhounds and Foxhounds to create a new hound capable of independently tracking prey and following cold trails for long distances. Outgoing and playful, the breed requires moderate or fenced exercise daily.

Did you know
The Black and Tan Coonhound does equally well hunting alone or with a pack and can handle even the most rugged terrain.Like many coonhounds, the Black and Tan is named for his coat color, which is black with rich tan markings above the eyes and on the chest and legs.