11 of the Most Interesting Looking Dogs in the World

coolest and most interesting looking dogs in the world illustration

Treehugger / Ellen Lindner

There are many factors that people consider when choosing a dog — temperament, activity level, cuddliness, and looks. There are lots of beautiful and unusual looking dog breeds, with mixed breeds being the most interesting of them all. When it comes to appearance, some might be looking for a hairless companion, while others are more interested in a canine with an impressive coat that can reach the ground. 

Looking for a dog with a unique appearance? Here are 11 of the most interesting looking dogs in the world.

Millions of pets (including many purebreds) are available to be adopted from shelters. We always recommend adoption as a first choice. If you've decided to buy a pet from a breeder, be sure to choose a responsible breeder, and always avoid puppy mills.

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Komondor shaking its dreadlocks while standing outside on a lawn

Everita Pane / Shutterstock

This large, muscular breed — also known as the Hungarian sheepdog — is also noted for its corded white coat. The unusual coat helps the komondor blend in with the sheep this working dog helps protect. It also keeps it warm out in the elements and protects the dog from prey.

It takes a lot of work to keep the komondor's corded coat in good shape. If not cared for regularly, the dog's white coat can look grimy and dull. The Komondor Club of America makes a helpful but challenging suggestion for keeping up the komondor’s coat — never allow the dog’s coat to get dirty.

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Xoloitzcuintli looking to the side and sitting on a green lawn

Mitrofanov Alexander / Shutterstock

The Xoloitzcuintli, also called the Xolo or the Mexican hairless dog, comes in two varieties: hairless and coated. The hairless version of the Xolo is noted for the absence of all (or nearly all) hair. Some dogs have stubble on their faces and small strips of hair on their heads, but are sleekly bare everywhere else on their bodies.

The Xolo, which has been around for thousands of years, is one of the world's oldest and rarest breeds. It has a temperament that can be calm, aloof, and trainable.

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two mudis standing side by side outdoors, one blue pearl and one fako

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Another herding breed from Hungary, the mudi is said to have evolved from a mix between puli, pumi, and German spitz breeds, with maybe a few other herding breeds mixed in. The mudi's coat is distinctively curly or wavy and comes in white, yellow, brown, gray, black, and black merle. Mudi’s have been described as having the looks and temperament of both the German shepherd and the miniature poodle.

There are only a few thousand mudis worldwide, and the breed is rare in the United States. An effective herding dog, the mudi is active, intelligent, and immensely trainable.

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Bedlington Terrier

side profile Bedlington terrier standing outdoors on a path with green foliage behind it

Rita_Kochmarjova / Shutterstock

When groomed in a certain way, this terrier looks decidedly like a little lamb. But don't be misled by its gentle barn animal appearance. The Bedlington was originally bred as a hunting dog. So while it can be sweet and quiet, it can also run at high speed when in pursuit of small prey.

This inquisitive breed is smart and trainable. Just be prepared for second looks wherever you go. It's the almond-shaped eyes, the little tassels on the ends of the ears, and the curved, lithe body that just looks ready to gallop off at full tilt.

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Chinese Crested

Chinese crested dog walking on a green lawn

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Best known for the distinctive hairless variety, the Chinese crested actually comes in a genetically recessive powderpuff version too, which has hair all over its body. The hairless variety only has tufts of hair on its head, tail, and feet. Many of the winners in the annual World's Ugliest Dog Contest have been Chinese cresteds. 

An affectionate breed, the Chinese crested is happy with a little exercise and a lot of time with its owner.

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Puli standing outside next to a large tree

oNabby / Shutterstock

This shaggy-coated Hungarian sheepdog is known for its long, tassel-like cords of fur. The puli's coat is solid black, solid white, or black with a sprinkling of white hairs, giving the dog a silvery sheen.

Pulik (the plural of "puli") are agile, smart, and sensitive dogs.. Like the similarly coiffed Bergamasco and komondor, it typically takes about five years for the puli's distinctive long cords to grow all the way to the ground.

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double nose Catalburun dog standing and looking up

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The catalburun is a Turkish pointer known for its distinct double nose. The breed's name in Turkish is derived from "catal" meaning fork and "burun" meaning nose. One of the few dogs with this trait, the catalburun is a rare breed with an estimated total population of 200

Because its double nose can lead to a severe cleft palate, some breeders no longer consider the double nose a positive trait and have stopped breeding for the characteristic.

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Bull Terrier

bull terrier lying on a green field with its paws outstretched

tratong / Shutterstock

The primary characteristics that stand out for bull terriers are its ovaI head, dark eyes, and closely placed, triangular ears. These are also the AKC standards for this playful breed. Their small piercing eyes and pointy ears are all located on the dog’s egg-shaped head.

This muscular dog has a sense of humor and its sweet and friendly temperament makes it a great family pet.

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Brussels Griffon

Brown Brussels griffon sitting in a field of grass and flowers

Ann Tyurina / Shutterstock

The tiny Brussels griffon is a toy breed that comes in a smooth or rough coat, but trimmed a certain way, the mighty pup can resemble a small lion or sometimes a monkey. The dog has a short muzzle with a nose that is usually higher set between its eyes, which are large and friendly. 

These small and spunky dogs love to be close to their owners and don’t enjoy spending time alone.

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Peruvian Inca Orchid

Peruvian Inca orchid dog standing in a grassy field with green foliage behind it

Lenkadan / Shutterstock

Also called simply the Peruvian hairless dog, the Peruvian Inca orchid has just a small amount of hair on its head, tail, and feet and a few stray hairs on its body. A small number of these dogs have coats, but they are the minority. The exposed skin on the Peruvian hairless can be solid colored or mottled with white or pink spots in shades of black, gray, blue, brown, and blond. 

This energetic and smart breed is friendly and affectionate and enjoys frequent walks and a lot of play time with its human family.

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Bergamasco sheepdog lying on green grass with its tongue out

slowmotiongli / Getty Images

With origins in the Italian Alps, the Bergamasco was used primarily as a herding dog. The breed's unusual coat is actually made up of three types of hair, according to the Bergamasco Sheepdog Club of America. The dog's felted hair will form loose mats that continue to grow throughout its life, eventually reaching the ground by the time the dog is about five years old.

The Bergamasco’s long mats keep the breed warm in winter and cool in summer and protect the dog's skin from insect bites. Even with all that long hair, these friendly and intelligent dogs don't need brushing and only need baths a few times a year.

Why Pets Matter to Treehugger

At Treehugger, we are advocates of animal welfare, including our pets and other domestic animals. The better we understand dogs, the better we can support and protect their wellbeing. We hope our readers will adopt rescue pets instead of shopping from breeders or pet stores, and will also consider supporting local animal shelters.