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Meet the Europeans – Part 1 – The Italians

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198 – March 2017

text and illustrations by Ria Hörter

Many of today’s breeds originated in Europe. They were principally developed in Great Britain, Germany and France, but it would be hard to find any European country without a national dog breed. Meet the Europeans will explore the history of breeds on an old continent full of fanciers.

Part 1 – The Italians
Bergamasco · Bolognese · Bracco Italiano

Greek and Roman Monuments

Italy is situated in southern Europe, between Spain on the west, the coast of Croatia on the east, and Austria and Switzerland to the north. About 61 million people live in this country, which has been described many times as “the boot of Europe.” Italy is surrounded by the Mediterranean and Adriatic Sea and is a popular holiday destination, not only for its shores, but for its many Greek and Roman monuments.

Italy is the native country of thirteen FCI-recognized breeds: the Cane da Pastore Bergamasco, Bolognese, Bracco Italiano, Cane Corso Italiano, Cirneco del l’Etna, Maltese, Cane da Pastore Maremmano (Maremma Sheepdog), Lagotto Romagnolo, Mastino Napoletano (Neapolitan Mastiff), Spinone Italiano, Segugio Italiano (rough-haired and short-haired), Volpino Italiano and Whippet. More breeds (six, to be exact) that are not yet recognized – the Calabrese Shepherd or Cane da Pastore Calabrese; the Pastore Italiano (Italian Shepherd); Lupo Italiano (Italian Wolf); Cane Pecoraio Siciliano; Segugio Carnico and Segugio di Cravin – are outside the scope of this series.

I have visited Italy many times, traveling from Genoa in the north to the islands of Sicily in the south, and have been privileged to see the segugi (hounds) hunting in Tuscany, the Maremma guarding sheep in the Abruzzo mountains, and the Cirnechi on the slopes of Mount Etna.

Click here to read the complete article
198 – March 2017

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