NEW YORK (AP) — An athletic Hungarian farm dog and a tiny pet of bygone Russian aristocrats are the latest breeds in the American Kennel Club’s purebred lineup.
The club announced Tuesday that it’s recognizing the Russian toy and the mudi. That means they’re eligible to compete for best in show at many U.S. dog shows, including the AKC’s big annual championship and the prestigious Westminster Kennel Club show.
The mudi (pronounced like “moody”) descended from long lines of Hungarian sheepdogs before a museum director took an interest in the breed and gave it a name around 1930. Fans say the medium-size, shaggy dogs are vigorous, versatile and hardworking, able to herd sheep, hunt boars, snag rats and compete in canine sports such as agility and dock diving.
“They’re very perceptive, and they have a subtle quality” and are very trainable, but they need things to do, said Kim Seiter, an Oak Ridge, New Jersey, dog agility trainer who has four of them. “They’re not for the inactive person.”
The dogs — the proper plural is “mudik” — were featured on postage stamps in their homeland in 2004, as were some other Hungarian breeds.