Curly-Coated Retrievers are intelligent, hard-working, lovable dogs. These guys are believed to be the first retriever breed. Despite being the original, Curlys are now one of the least common retrievers.
Illustration courtesy of the Swedish Kennel Club
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After World War I, only 5 Curly-Coated Retrievers were registered.
The Curly-Coated Retriever is believed to be the oldest of all of the retrievers. Some think the breed is a descendent of the extinct English Water Spaniel, with some Poodle mixed in. This guy appeared for the first time at an English dog show in 1860. For a time, these dogs were loved by gamekeepers for their expertise in hunting and their courageous attitudes. Their popularity died off whenever the Labrador Retriever emerged. Today, Curlys are still a rare find. The most distinct characteristic of the breed is their coat. It is curly, obviously, but lacks an undercoat so it is very manageable. This is a dog that loves working and having a job, so training and daily exercise are a must. Curlys love people, but are a little more independent than other retriever breeds.
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