The American Eskimo Dog

By BarkUpToday

Image Credit: Wiki

The American Eskimo Dog, also known as the American Spitz, comes from Germany. This dog breed is part of the UKC, Northern Group, and the AKC, Non-Sporting Group.

Brief History

The American Eskimo Dog was bred from white spitz dogs that arrived in the U.S with German immigrants. It’s thought that this dog breed is related to the Volpino Italiano dog breed and the Japanese Spitz. This is a great companion dog that has also been used for guarding.

The name “Eskimo” has nothing to do with this dog breed. German farmers came to Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Ohio, and other cities involved with the brewing industry and brought their dogs. These dogs were also used in circuses. 

By 1917, during World War 1, there was an anti-German trend, and the German Spitz was called the American Eskimo dog. In 1995 the American Eskimo dog breed was registered with the AKC. These dogs worked hard on Midwestern farms and in circuses. Today they are companion dogs and enjoy hanging out with their families.

Physical Description

The American Eskimo dog breed is squarely built and has a strong body. With a wedge-shaped head and ears that are triangular and erect, this dog breed is strong and agile. It is a Nordic-type dog breed that is always white or biscuit white in color. The lips, nose, and eye rims are black. 

The coat is thick and is a double coat with a thick ruff around the neck. The tail is plumed and is carried over the back. There is long hair on the rump and back legs. There are three sizes: Toy, Miniature, and Standard.

The eyes are medium brown to dark and oval, not slanted, with an intelligent and keen expression. The muzzle is broad, and neck erect, and medium in length. The chest is deep and wide. The movement is agile and well-balanced. The temperament is friendly and alert.


Toy: 9-12 inches

Miniature: 11-15 inches

Standard: 14-19 inches


 Toy: No standard available

Miniature: No standard available

Standard: No standard available

Life Expectancy

12-15 years


The American Eskimo Dog is energetic, friendly, and very smart. This is a loyal and hardworking dog breed that is always eager to please. It is wary of strangers but good with family members. That said, this breed makes for a good watchdog. Additionally, it is smart but can quirky if not exercised regularly. 

Because it is very stubborn, it does well with positive dog training and early socialization commencing during puppyhood. If not socialized enough, the American Eskimo dog breed may become irritable and snappy. It has solid territorial instincts and needs to be around people and other animals from puppyhood. This dog breed needs to be indoors with his family and does not do well alone all day. It should not be used for guarding purposes. This dog breed is brilliant and easy to train.

Activity Level


Special Needs

The American Eskimo Dog enjoys people and having an active life. It needs plenty of grooming, and special care needs to be given to positive dog training and early socialization. The American Eskimo Dog breed is an adaptable dog breed that does well with either apartment living or farm living. Positive dog training for this dog breed needs to be consistent and start early on during puppyhood. Dog training needs to mold the needs of this intelligent dog breed. 

The best way of training this dog breed is to include plenty of games and long walks. It does well with apartment city living, as it does not require excessive exercise. The American Eskimo dog may tend to be territorial.

Regular walks and off-leash trips to the dog park work well for the American Eskimo Dog to keep him relaxed. Extra care needs to be given to grooming issues. This dog breed needs to be kept cool during the hot summer months. Hot and humid climates can be lethal to this dog breed. The American Eskimo Dog also needs to be kept indoors in hot temperatures. This dog breed becomes destructive with a lack of exercise. Once this dog breed passes middle age, he mellows out. All methods of flight and travel need to be avoided for this dog breed during high temperatures. If traveling by air, the American Eskimo Dog needs to travel in-cabin and not cargo.

Possible Health Concerns

The American Eskimo Dog is a very healthy and active dog breed that may be susceptible to the following health conditions:

  • Hip Dysplasia: is the abnormal development of the hip joint in large dog breeds like the American Eskimo Dog Breed. It is generally characterized by a loose joint and then common degenerative disease. This dog breed should be fed a high-quality diet that is geared towards their life stage. A puppy American Eskimo  should only be fed high-quality puppy dog food. Excessive growth, types of exercise, nutritional factors, and hereditary factors all play with hip dysplasia. Ask your veterinarian for the best nutritional advice for active dogs like the American Eskimo Dog breed.
  • Bloat: often occurs in larger breeds with narrow chests like this breed. Exercise needs to be avoided right after eating or drinking large amounts of water. Left untreated, this will usually result in death. Symptoms include dry retching, vomiting, pacing, heavy panting, and an enlarged abdomen. Contact your emergency veterinarian right away, even if it’s the middle of the night. This condition cannot wait to be treated and is considered an emergency.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) is the name for a group of diseases that cause degeneration of the retina. This will include inherited abnormalities of the light-sensitive cells.


The American Eskimo Dog is an energetic dog breed that does well with plenty of regular exercises and canine sporting activities. This dog breed needs to be mentally stimulated when out exercising for mental well-being. The American Eskimo Dog needs lots of dog toys for stimulation. Long walks, trips to the beach and dog park make for fun family activities.

Flyball is also another fun activity and is a team sport that is social and stimulating for both dogs and handlers. Obedience trials are popular today, with obedience training being the basic building block for your dog. The sooner positive puppy training begins, the sooner your dog understands and responds to what you’re asking him to do. 


All dogs require the very best in nutrition, just like humans! Without a high-quality diet, dogs may suffer from numerous health conditions, which will cost you a whole lot more in veterinary bills. Health problems arising from poor diets are the following:

  • Skin and coat problems
  • Malnutrition
  • Allergies
  • Fatigue

With options like bison, duck, venison, quail, wild boar, lamb, salmon, and turkey, there are many dog food choices today. Dog food brands offer unique and unusual protein sources that are healthy for dogs. Look out for raw food diets and dehydrated diets for your American Eskimo Dog.

Some dog food diets do not contribute to plaque buildup since they do not contain sugars, salt, or added preservatives. If you frequently travel with your dog, there are lightweight, easy-to-carry dog food options. The benefits of feeding dehydrated foods are also a healthy alternative to feeding a raw diet to picky eaters. 

Consult with your veterinarian as to the best high-quality dog food diet for your dog. There is no best diet for all dogs since all dogs have different dietary needs, so it’s always wise to find the best dog food to match your particular dog. 


This dog breed has a fluffy white coat that needs to be kept clean and groomed every day. The undercoat is short and dense. This dog breed sheds a lot. By brushing every day, you’ll remove all the dead hair before shedding can occur. The American Eskimo has an oily coat.

That said, it prevents dirt from sticking to it, making this dog breed easy to keep clean. 

As with any dog breed, long or short-haired, daily grooming is a must! Dogs tend to chew on matted fur and then develop skin conditions. Dirty coats also promote parasites and sores. 

The American Eskimo Dog does mat. All dogs need to have their nails trimmed regularly. Ears need to be kept clean by wiping with a cotton ball or wipe, and an ear-cleanser made especially for dogs. That said, daily teeth brushing is required with doggie toothpaste and a dental brush. Dogs develop gum disease from tartar buildup.

Adopting an American Eskimo Dog

You and your dog will spend a lifetime together! The human-dog bond between an American Eskimo Dog and a human is like- no- other. That said, keep in mind that this dog breed is easy- to- train and picks up new obedience commands fast, just by watching other dogs in training classes. 

American Eskimo Dog is eager to please and has to have human companionship and friendship! With so many dogs up for adoption, it’s the only way to go! As with any dog adoption, make sure that you have the time and resources to take good care of your dog!

Woofs & Wags!


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