At least two of the four new breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club recently seem family-friendly. And the other two might work in a pinch.

The four breeds are the Spanish Water Dog, Cirneco dell’Etna, Bergamasco and Boerboel. They have been given full AKC recognition and were OK’d to begin participation in AKC events Jan.

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SALESOUT NARCH EUO 3TPCourtesy AKC/REUTERS Spanish Water Dogs, a herding dog with a curly coat, bred as a multi-purpose farm dog and used for herding, hunting and assisting fisherman, was recognized by the American Kennel Club. SALESOUT NARCH EUO 3TPCourtesy AKC/REUTERS The Cirneco dell'Etna, a short-haired hunting dog from Italy was added to the American Kennel Club.

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(Reuters) - The American Kennel Club has recognized four more dog breeds, including a Spanish fishing dog and a South African guard dog, in a move allowing them to compete in prestigious canine competitions nationwide.

The Spanish Water Dog, the Cirneco dell'Etna, the Bergamasco, and the Boerboel have gained full club recognition and will be eligible to compete in its events starting Jan.

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This small Italian breed is unmistakably a spitz type, its face being not unlike that of a fox, with the muzzle short, straight, and rather pointed. The Volpino is usually pure white in coloration, the sable form now being rare. A fawn variety existed at one time, but this has now been lost.… Read the full post here

Descended from bichon stock, and so having the characteristic white, cottony coat associated with this group, the Bolognese may in fact have blond markings, although these are not considered desirable. This is a square-built and solid dog for its size.… Read the full post here

Closely related to the Papillon the Phalene can be readily distinguished from it by its ears, which hang down on the sides of its head.… Read the full post here