The Pumi is a medium-sized, agile breed of sheep herding dog from Hungary. It has slightly oblique, dark eyes and an elongated muzzle. Its upright ears are tipped forward while its compact hind legs are set back from the body. The feet are strong and have hard nails and elastic pads. It has a deep chest and flat ribs. The long, thick, and curled coat comes in a variety of colours such as reddish brown, white, black, and all shades of grey.
The Pumi was developed by crossing the Puli, an old Hungarian herding breed, with imported German and French herding dogs in the 1700s. It is also said that the blood of an ancient terrier is probably flowing in its veins. Having evolved into a breed of its own over the past 300 years, this dog has continued to gain popularity in its homeland and other parts of the world. It was exported to Finland and Sweden in 1973 and 1985 respectively. Later in the early 1990s, it was introduced to Italy, Netherlands and USA.
Apart from being energetic, the Pumi is also lively, alert, and intelligent. Ready to spring at the slightest provocation, this dog is a successful hunting and guard dog. On top of that, it is loyal to its master and is affectionate with members of the family. However, it is shy and reserved to strangers. While herding, this agile dog does not stray away from the herd and is comfortable working with sheep, cattle, swine, and goats.
The Pumi has a life expectancy of 13 to 15 years and is prone to a few health problems such as hip dysplasia, patella luxation, and congenital heart disease. To keep this dog safe, take it to your veterinarian for recommended vaccinations and regular check-ups.
Training and Exercise
One of the most interesting things about the Pumi is that it is easy to train. As compared to other types of dog breeds, it is smart enough to grasp commands quickly. A well trained Pumi is not only obedient, but is also well behaved and easy to handle. Be sure to seek the assistance of an experienced dog trainer within your locality to guide you on how to train your dog effectively.
As with other dog breeds, the Pumi requires adequate exercise and socialisation. It is an outdoor dog that does best by living on a farm where it can find more than enough work to do for itself, including guarding the entrance and rounding up the livestock.
If you have to live with this dog in an urban environment, then you have to keep it occupied with various engaging activities such as walking, jogging, running and dog biking. While walking or jogging with the dog, it is important to hold the lead to give it the impression that you are the leader. The Pumi also loves games such as Frisbee and chasing tennis balls.
One of the greatest advantages of the Pumi is that its hair does not shed easily, making it easy to groom. The hair requires low maintenance, occasional grooming by combing or raking about every three to four weeks will keep it looking tidy and attractive.
After raking or brushing the hair, use a pair of recommended grooming scissors to thin thick hair. While grooming the dog, do not forget to clip the nails and get rid of excess hair from the ears. Also, remember to brush the dog's teeth to help remove harmful bacteria from the mouth and improve general dental health.