History of the Spitz Family

Ancient Seal c 3,000 BCAncient Seal c 3,000 BC

Archaeological evidence suggests that as far back as the 'Neolithic' period (3,000 BC) medium sized 'Spitzlike' dogs lived in close proximity with humans. Fossil remains of this period from this Bronze Age people have been found among remains of pile dwellers in many parts of Europe. The Lapphunds and other Scandinavian Spitz dogs probably came across the Baltic Sea to settle first in 'Pomerania' which eventually became Germany in the mid-1800's. Originally called Esquimaux dogs, once domesticated they became our family of Spitz breeds[1].

Pariah Dogs

Australian DingoAustralian Dingo

Pariah Dogs are primitive dogs which are considered to be close ancestors of the Spitz family. They are medium-sized fairly square in outline with a double coat, a wedge shaped head, pricked ears and a tail curled over the back. They lived in free-roaming packs in large areas of Asian wilderness from the Middle East to the Indian subcontinent to South East Asia, and also in North and Central America and Australia. They first existed by scavenging for food from human settlements and then gradually became domesticated. They include not only some breeds which still live in the wild like the Australian Dingo and the New Guinea Singing Dog, but also the now recognized pure breeds of the Canaan DogPharaoh Hound, the Ibizan Hound and the Basenji[2].

References and Further Reading

[1] Alice Gatacre, 'The Keeshond' Published by London Country Life Ltd 1938 'The Keeshond in History and Art'  Illustration in an article called 'Anitquity' by Dr Max Hiltsheimer from the German 'Zeitshrift fur Hundeforschung' Page 1

[2] Lee Boyd and Victor Kaftal 'Canaan Dog' Published by T.F.H Publications Neptune City N.J, USA ISBN 0-7938-0800-6 Origin and History of the Canaan Dog Pages 7 - 8.


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