Skip to main content

7 Dog Breeds Got their Nickname After Animals

I like to share information about wildlife, animals, and pets—dogs in particular.

Dog Breeds Got their names after Animals

Dog Breeds Got their names after Animals

There are many breeds of dogs in the world, and they all have different names, some dogs are named after their place of birth, city or country. But there are also some unique dogs whose names are in reference to other wild animals. Know about seven such interesting breeds of dogs whose nickname is derived from animals.

  • Tanuki (Racoon Dog)
  • Papillon (Butterfly Dog)
  • Phenom Shepherd (Panda Shepherd)
  • French Bulldog (Nick name, Frog Dog)
  • Catahoula Louisiana Leopard Dog (Leopard Hound)
  • Fox Hound
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback (Nick name, African Lion Hunter)
Tanuki (Nick Name, Racoon Dog)

Tanuki (Nick Name, Racoon Dog)

1. Tanuki

The Tanuki is a member of the canid family, but is not a true dog, its a native to Asia that live in pairs or small groups. Male Tanukis are helpful fathers, bringing food to their pregnant mates and helping to raise the young. Because of their resemblance to raccoons, they are known as raccoon dogs. Tanuki dogs fed on insects, rodents, amphibians, birds, fish, reptiles, mollusks, and carrion. These unique and rare dogs, do not bark, but rather growl.

Origin and Physical traits of Racoon dogs,

  • Origin: Japan
  • Height: 50–65 cm (20–26 inches)
  • Weight: 7.5 kg (16.5 pounds).
  • Coat and Color: Dark facial mask and yellowish brown coat
  • Lifespan: 7–8 years in the wild
Phenom Shepherd (Nick name, Panda Shepherd)

Phenom Shepherd (Nick name, Panda Shepherd)

2. Panda or Phenom Shepherd

Panda Shepherd dogs are very intelligent and energetic. They are always keen to learn and crave a challenge. Panda Shepherd is not recognized by any major kennel club, and not accepted as a pure breed dog to participate in dog shows. They are piebald German Shepherd from a single GSD bloodline and a spontaneous mutation and have no White German Shepherds in their ancestry. And got their name "Panda Shepherd", because their coat colors look like a Panda.

Origin and Physical traits of Panda Shepherd

  • Origin : Piebald breed
  • Height : 55-65 cm
  • Weight : 25-40 kg
  • Group : Herding
  • Coat : Short and thick
  • Colour : 40 percent pure white with black and tan, red, silver, or sable
  • Life-Span: Up to 13 years

Papillon (Nickname, Butterfly Dog)

Papillon (Nickname, Butterfly Dog)

3. Papillon (Butterfly Dog)

The Papillon is a small dog from a spaniel group of dogs, also known as Continental Toy Spaniel, native to Europe (France, Belgium, Spain). It's a friendly, lively, intelligent, energetic, alert dog that makes an excellent family and apartment living pet. Papillon is known for its butterfly-like look, it has long and fringed hair on the ears that gives them a look of a butterfly.

The Physical Traits of Papillon dogs

  • Height: 8 to 11 Inches
  • Weight: 4 to 7 pounds
  • Coat: Long straight, silky coat
  • Color: White, White & Chocolate, Sable, Black & White, Red & White, Fawn & White
  • Life-Span: 13 to 15 years
French Bulldog (Nick Name, Frog Dog)

French Bulldog (Nick Name, Frog Dog)

4. French Bulldog

The French Bulldog is a breed of companion dog of the toy dog group that was created in France by mixing between the English Toy Bulldog with and local Parisian ratters. As its name suggests, it is a French dog, but some people believe that it is mainly a modified version of the Miniature English Bulldog, which is basically native to England.

French Bulldogs are also known by nick name "Frog Dog". They have bat ears, button shaped oval eyes, round face, compact and smooth body underneath, and short leg in comparison to their body. So when they sit, they have to spread their front leg, and stretch behind their chest. That gives them a look of a frog, and they are also called "Frog Dogs".

Catahoula Leopard Dog (Nickname, Leopard Hound)

Catahoula Leopard Dog (Nickname, Leopard Hound)

Scroll to Continue

5. Catahoula Leopard Dog

Louisiana Catahoula Leopard dog, recently its name has been shortened to "Catahoula Leopard dog", by AKC. The name "Catahoula" is actually taken from an Indian word meaning "clear water". The American and Canadian farmers developed this breed by combining native American dogs, Spanish Mastiffs, and Greyhounds as hunting and guard dogs. Its a medium to large sized that has strong muscles and deep chests, blue eyes, and colored patches on their fur. These colored patches and eyes give them the appearance of a leopard, from where it got it's name "Catahoula Leopard dogs" and also known with nickname "The Leopard Hound".

Origin and Physical traits of Catahoula Leopard dogs,

  • Origin: Louisiana
  • Height: 51 - 61 cm.
  • Weight: 16 - 36 kg.
  • Colour: Striking, short to medium-length fur that may be spotted, brindled, patched or solid.
  • Temperament: Loyal, independent, protective, and territorial.
  • Category: Sporting, hunting, and herding.
  • Availability: North America, France, and Europe.
  • Lifespan: 10 - 13 years
Fox Hound Dogs, Named after Fox

Fox Hound Dogs, Named after Fox

6. The Foxhounds (American and English Fox Hound)


The Foxhound is the scent hounds usually bred to hunt foxes. They were first developed in Britain in the 16th century, and were used for fox hunting, from which they got the name "foxhound".

English Foxhound

Today's fox hounds were first developed to hunt deer, but were later placed in a category "Foxhound", separate from the Deerhound and Staghound. The English Foxhound was developed by mixing between a Greyhound, a Fox Terrier, and a Bulldog. The English Foxhounds were recognized as a separate breed, by AKC in 1909.

Origin and Physical traits of English Foxhound

  • Origin: England
  • Height: 23 to 27 inches
  • Weight: 55 to 75 pounds
  • Coat: Short, hard
  • Color: Black, tan and white, or a combination of any of those three
  • Lifespan: 10 to13 years

American Foxhound

The American Foxhound is a scent hound and a relative of the English Foxhound that were developed to hunt foxes by scent. They are an intelligent, athletic and energetic dogs that are aloof and stubborn by nature. American foxhounds has lean and athletic build, English foxhounds are Stouter dog than American foxhounds.

Origin and Physical traits of American Foxhound

  • Origin: USA
  • Height: 21–25 in (53–64 cm)
  • Weight: 55–71 lb (25–32 kg)
  • Coat: Short, hard
  • Color: Red, tricolor, black and tan, blue
  • Lifespan: 10 to12 years
Rhodesian Ridgeback vs Lion

Rhodesian Ridgeback vs Lion

7. Rhodesian Ridgeback (The African Lion Hunter)

The Rhodesian Ridgeback is a large-sized sighthound dog breed, originating from the Southern Africa region also called African lion hound. They were developed by mixing between, native semi-domesticated ridged hunting dog with European dogs. Which has had a short, smooth coat with a distinctive ridge, from where they got their name "Ridgeback", and because they were originated from Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) they got their name "Rhodesian" after that.

It was actually developed as a boar hunter and livestock guardian. But it also has the nickname "Lion Hunter", not because it looks like a lion. They got this name to protect the prey from the attack of the lion and to detect the presence of the lion and to alert the hunters.

Origin and Physical traits of Rhodesian Ridgeback

  • Origin: South Africa (Rhodesia "Now Zimbabwe" )
  • Height: Male: 63–69 cm, Female: 61–66 cm
  • Weight: Male: 36–41 kg, Female: 29–34 kg,
  • Coat: short, smooth coat with a distinctive ridge
  • Color: Red Wheaten, Light Wheaten, Wheaten
  • Lifespan: 10 to12 years

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2022 Aaradhya

Related Articles