America's first dog was the Native American dog. During the earlier times when Native Indian tribes inhabited all of North America, canines of unknown origins accompanied them everywhere. 

The Native Americans were aware of how important it was to prevent inbreeding to keep their dogs healthy. In order to prevent this, the tribes would introduce new blood from other tribe's dogs which accounted for the many types of dogs that were often portrayed in history books.

The northern tribes of Native Americans developed a dog with more of a wolf like appearance while in the western regions the smaller Plains dog was developed. These dogs were very intelligent and versatile as they were expected to fill many roles in a Native American village. In some tribes, dogs pulled a travois carrying the nomadic family’s belongings as they followed their food supply. Dogs were used to hunt for food and as faithful and protective watch dogs over the village. They were even reliable as “babysitters” for the children and elderly when the women were gathering roots, berries and herbs. In certain tribes ,some of the dogs even played important roles in the tribes’ religious ceremonies.

Although it was a wonderful and versatile dog, the Native American dog has become nearly extinct due to the tragic treatment of Native Americans during the last couple hundred years. They were forced to move onto reservations and the traditional lifestyle which relied on the native dog so heavily was lost. Today there are some breeders that are trying to recapture this wonderful dog of the past. By mixing several northern breeds, such as huskies, malamutes, chinooks and also german shepherds with some current Indian reservation dogs, they have been able to selectively breed for the appearance, characteristics and traits of the original Native American's dogs.

The results of these selective breedings has come up with a dog that is friendly and good with other animals and children. It is a very intelligent dog that is eager to please and affectionate and loving with familiar people. This dog does need a yard to exercise in and some good long walks to keep it happy as the original native american dog was able to go for long distances and pull heavy loads. It also has a fluffy coat but it is easy to maintain. All the wonderful characteristics that the early Native Americans valued so much in a trusted friend, companion and working partner that their dogs signified for them.

Responses to "Bringing Back America's First Dog"

  1. Anonymous says:

    great to see. this is a breed that has history and is a welcomed addition to the family.

  2. Anonymous says:

    it would be nice to have one of these, since i've been looking for a wolf dog for over 2 years

  3. Anonymous says:

    I think this is a good thing! They are a beautiful breed. I would just love to have a male and female to breed and raise, to give to my family members! A great dog!

  4. Anonymous says:

    I never knew this. I'm glad to continue my education even outside the classroom.thank you.

  5. Anonymous says:

    nice beautiful animal

  6. Anonymous says:

    where can I find one?

  7. Anonymous says:

    Such a wonderful animal to be lost because of the,(in your words, and I agree) tragic treatment of our great Native Americans. (great is my wording ;o}) I do hope they can bring them back and be recognized for the beautiful animal that they are. They sound like they are the epitome of the family dog. But of course, what else would American Indians have? Peace and Love-Thumper ;o}

  8. Anonymous says:

    I actually have one of these fantastic animals and he is one of the best dogs I have ever had, he is beautiful, super intelligent, loving, loyal to a fault and very protective. He is pure white and would have been considered a spirit dog and he is, have actually had people who claim to be terrified of dogs want to come up and pet him and that usually ends up with him getting hugs and kisses. These truly are amazing animals that can look deep into your soul with their amber stare and steel your heart with a flick of their tail.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Interesting article, and a beautiful animal

  10. Anonymous says:

    Beautiful! Very much resembles the true Finnish Lapphund, also an original breed or 'first dog'.

  11. shewolfuk says:

    he looks gorgeous,I would love to meet one

  12. Anonymous says:

    In response to shewolfuk - Actually the picture is of a female, and she was Majestic View's Whitney, unfortunately it has been said that after she fulfilled her requirement of producing litters for several years, (I believe she was about 8 yrs old or more), she was euthanized by the breeder because she was terrified of people and no one could touch her except the breeder and those Whitney was familiar with, so she would not have been a good candidate to be placed with anyone. But I agree she was a beautiful dog and an ancestor of many of my dogs.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Where are these dogs bred? Whitney was a beautiful dog, although it is bittersweet to know that she was mother to a New generation of dogs, but that to be euthanized hecause she was afraid of people...

  14. Anonymous says:

    I had the PLEASURE of having a Wolf, Malamute, Huskie mix!!!! He was one of the most beautiful best friends I've ever had!!! I for one am thrilled that the Native American Dog is coming back....keep up the good work....maybe one day we will start being more like the Native American People....that would be wonderful!!! Even more important would be treating the people with respect and give back there way of life!!! Sorry I tend to get carried away.....Love, Light and Peace to all <3

  15. Dawnwolf says:

    These dogs are not Wolves at all! Please do not think they are.If you come across someone selling a wolf mix they are not part of the Native American Indian Dog breed.

  16. I think i already have one.!i=832291814&k=hF7a5

    This is my companion Angie. She is, a very sweet, kind, smart, beautiful dog. She once saw a satellite and will not get on Grandma's couch even though no one has told her not to, even though she gets on our couch whenever she wants.

  17. Anonymous says:

    I agree that Native American people along with many other First Nation and aboriginal people were treated very badly, their inherent kindness and honesty, betrayed. I struggle as a feminist to believe that dogs were baby sitters while women went to gather berries and nuts...perhaps women were also cleaning hides, collecting water, hunting? I don't mean to be pedantic but we can never recoup 'America's first dog' because it is lost to time. This is one small result of the seriousness of racism. I hope all dogs in America and throughout the world are looked upon and cared for as very special creatures. Human beings could not have evolved the way we have without the loyalty of canines and we should learn from them. May we all learn to live more along the teachings of native people. Earth, our shared home, would benefit enormously if we loved more, consumed less and listened more than we speak. Whitney is indeed a very beautiful dog. Peace be x

  18. Anonymous says:

    I would love to learn more about this breed, where would i go to find more about it?

  19. Anonymous says:

    I have nothing to say to this except that it is dangerous for these animals to bring them into homes when they are wild. All you are doing is killing them. Look up the Carolina dog, the Dixie Dingo. THAT was the first Native American dog. That breeder who euthanized that dog should be brought up on charges. He should have cared for her until she dropped dead from old age. In fact I am going to see if I can find this person and open a complaint. This is ridiculous.

  20. Beautiful, That is where I got my Dog, A Group on the Reservation is trying to do the same. My puppy was dark when she was little, Now she is white, blonds, black/grey. She is a wonderful dog, full of so much energy. She is German Shepard, Husky, Border Collie.

  21. Anonymous says:

    If their dogs are anything like the Nokota horses -- WOW!

  22. Moira Cue says:

    Last year on my birthday (7.20) a starving husky found me and asked me to save her from life on the street. Since I have a loft with no yard, I placed the dog with a friend who lived near the park and had a yard. The woman became an ex-friend, which made me upset about not seeing the dog. Seeing the photo of this Native dog and reading the article helps me understand why the wound of losing my spirit friend was so painful for me. Thank you.

  23. Anonymous says:

    I had a coy dog at my side for 15 years. She was a little aloof with strangers but always warmed up fast. I never bred her. Truth be told, as a mule skinner, I had no idea hybrids could breed. Either way she was a damn fine dog. Always at my side (or on the back of my horse, quad, tractor or pickup) loyal to a fault. A d she had this cute "woo woo" yodel she'd let out when I came home. She never barked or yapped. A very quiet, very well mannered girl indeed. And yes...One hell of a babysitter.

  24. Anonymous says:

    I have a 3/4 wolf Belgian mallinios cross the best most loyal dog in the world. Does she like strangers ? No she's MY dog why would I need her to like other ppl. That's just stupid dog are for companionship and protection and that's exactly what they do

  25. Southern Ohio Wolf Sanctuary has a Few for Adoption You must pass a screening process to get one home though

  26. had a pure white one in texas as a boy, he used to run with the wolves all night some time bring a couple home with him, dad backed over him with a car by accident. he came from three hundred year blood line i was told. sad but true.

  27. Anonymous says:

    I met a couple at the Michigan Ren Faire a couple of years back. Very beautiful and big!

  28. Steve Urquhart says:

    The Europeans said the Catawba of the Carolinas had wolves as dogs.

  29. This dog is absolutely beautiful.

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