THE AMERICAN ESKIMO DOG
|GR CH 'PR' THORNE'S LICKETY-SPLIT KOYOTEE|
The American Eskimo is a member of the Spitz family. Referred to as a spitz in the past, but now has acquired the nickname Eskie. Eskies are truly beautiful canines when they are in full coat. The thick, double fur, keeps them well insulated against winter's chill. The white fur acts as a heat deflector in the sun.
The American Eskimo is an alert, active watchdog, who loves to play. They are extremely intelligent, with loving devotion to their master. They are exceptional companion animals.
They come in 3 sizes, toy, miniature, and standard. No size designation is made on AKC or UKC registration papers. In AKC, all 3 sizes are typically shown together. In UKC, standards & miniatures have separate classes, then compete against each other. UKC does not recognize the toy size, but they are shown in the miniature classes, where undersize is only considered a fault, and not a disqualification.
Toys - 9 to 12 in. Miniature - over 12in. to 15 in. Standard - over 15 in. to 19 in. Measured from the floor to the top of the shoulder. The UKC standards calls for the females to be 1 in. shorter than the males. This causes a little confusion to someone new to the breed. Example, a 14 ½ in female is a Standard or a Miniature, depending on whose rules you are going by.
UKC recognized the breed, and keep stud records since 1913. AKC allowed the breed into rare breed classes in 1994. Full AKC recognition in 1995. AKC studbooks were reopened, and will remain so until 2003
CARE OF THE AMERICAN ESKIMO
|Sparkles with a full coat||Sparkles with a blown coat|
I use a metal comb, with long teeth to lift out the undercoat. Remove the loose fur prior to bathing, to prevent matting. Blow drying is an added plus to blow the fur away. My favorite spot, is the picnic table on a windy day. The birds love the white fluff. My better half tries to persuade me to rake it up. You need to check for mats behind the ears. If showing, you can split the ear mats with a seam ripper, and remove them. You can cut them off with a scissors, but be careful not to get a piece of skin. I've known people to use their vacuum cleaner on their eskie's fur. If you get severe matting, usually on loose dogs that have gotten into briers, you can shave your eskie. There is a chance of sunburn for a few days. The fur will all grow back in a few months. Your eskie will look like a different breed for awhile. Some owners in very hot climates do shave their eskies yearly.
Eskies are white, but require very little bathing, unless you are showing them. Puppies should be given a regular bath until they learn to co-operate. If you don't bathe a pup, and all of a sudden it's a year old, shedding, and needs a bath, you will have a contest of wills. Eskies raised near water, usually love it, and will go swimming. Others don't want to get their feet wet, and will resist going anywhere near the tub.
Try out different kinds of shampoo for white dogs, and you will find one that you like. If your dog has tear staining, there are many products on the market to remove the stains. Most of them are worthless. Some Eskies have tearstains. Many of the tiniest pups will have staining that goes away as their tear ducts grow. If the eskie has more tear production than the duct can handle, it will stain. Occasionally, you can find a reason for the excess tearing, fleas, ear mites, irritation from plants hitting the eskie at face level also tear ducts that are plugged or missing etc. Many light colored breeds have tearstains; some owners put their dogs on antibiotics to prevent the stain.
TEMPERAMENT AND SOCIALIZATION
Eskies must be well socialized to be acceptable members of human society. Take your eskie new places or introduce it to new people every week prior to 1 year of age. Take your eskie to puppy classes or beginning obedience classes. Plan on completing one class prior to 6 mo. and another prior to 1 year of age. Usually, after a year, your eskie's disposition is set. It is much easier to prevent problem behavior than to try and correct it.
Eskies need to be socialized to other animals. Children and Eskies can be the best of friends, but children must be supervised at all times with a new puppy. Adult Eskies who have been kid proofed can be very tolerant. Puppies react in the only way they know to protect themselves if teased, molested, or injured by children. The pup/dog needs a place in the household to get away from the child if things have gotten out of hand, or if the puppy just wants a nap.
Eskies are very intelligent. If you don't train and teach them to live according to your rules, they will train you. Being bossed around by your own dog, is not pleasant & usually means that the dog will be discarded. Read a book on canine behavior. All breed books are best.