It’s man’s new best amico. The bracco Italiano was officially recognized Wednesday as the 200th member of the American Kennel Clu
It’s man’s new best amico.
The bracco Italiano was officially recognized Wednesday as the 200th member of the American Kennel Club, which described the exotic dog breed as “affectionate,” “intelligent” and “enthusiastic.”
The announcement means the ancient Italian bird-hunting dogs can now compete for best in show at US dog shows, including the world-famous Westminster Kennel Club event next year.
The powerfully built but sociable bracco Italiano goes back more than two millennia in Europe but wasn’t brought to the US until the mid-1990s, according to the AKC. It’s sometimes called the Italian pointer or Italian pointing dog.
The ideal bracco should be “tough and adapted to all types of hunting, reliable, docile and intelligent,” while also friendly and neither shy nor aggressive, according to the AKC’s standard for the medium-to-large breed.
“They’re very easy to live with and be around, and yet it’s like a light switch — when it’s time to jump in the back of the truck and go hunting, and they’ve got a job, they just light up like a Christmas tree,” said owner and breeder Lisa Moller, of Portage, Wisconsin.
The dogs have a deep bark and are not afraid to use on spotting backyard wildlife, so “they may not be the right dog for everybody,” Moller warned.
AKC Executive Secretary Gina DiNardo called the bracco a great companion for active families who can provide “the love and attention it needs.”
The AKC opened the nation’s oldest dog registry with a mere nine breeds in 1878. In the last decade alone, the club has added over 20 breeds, ranging from the teeny Russian toy to the powerful dogo Argentino.
Criteria involve the total number and generations of registered dogs nationwide, their geographical distribution and other factors.
There remain many breeds that are registered elsewhere but not by the AKC, or aren’t formally recognized at all.
Animal rights activists denounce dog breeding, and they say that adding more breeds just exacerbates faddish demand for purebred pets and fuels puppy mills that feed it.
The AKC says it promotes responsible breeding aimed at preserving characteristics that equip dogs for various tasks and ease owners’ search for a pup they can live with and commit to.
With Post wires