Dog Breeds With Curly Tails

One of the most distinct features of a dog is its tail! If you end up as the owner of a curly-tailed mixed breed, you’re often able to make an educated guess about his or her background due to the limited number of breeds with this trait. These dogs hail from all over the world – from Japan to the forests of Norway! Check out our list of 12 curly tailed canines!

curly tail pug

Pug - Pugs have a different kind of curly tail than the other dogs on this list. It is tightly curled over the back and resembles a “cork screw”. Pugs are a happy breed of dog and are known for charming those that meet them. They are not an active breed; this makes them an ideal urban companion!

Akita - The Akita is also known as the Akita Inu. This Japanese breed is formidable and impressive looking. They were bred to be fighting dogs and hunting companions. Akitas are not for novice owners and can have aggressive tendencies if they are not properly socialized. A well-trained Akita is exceptionally faithful to his family. This breed is highly treasured in its native country. It is the largest of the curly tailed dogs on this list (ranging from 75-120 lbs)

Shiba Inu – Shiba Inus are very similar in appearance to Akitas (right down to that curled tail), but they are a lot smaller! The breed usually ranges between 16 and 25 lbs when full grown. Shibas are highly intelligent and independent dogs that have an almost obsessive desire to keep themselves clean! Some people compare them to cats. Many Shibas will go out of their way to keep from getting dirty!

Keeshond – The Keeshond’s curly tail should be so tight against it’s body that when you view them from the side, the tail should almost blend into the dog! This fluffy breed is a great family dog! They are quick to train, eager to please and adore children!

Basenji – The Basenji is a curly tailed dog that is sometimes referred to as “barkless”. This is not true. The breed makes an unusual “yodeling”-like noise and can also learn to mimic noises of other dogs if they are raised around dogs that bark. The breed is extremely independent and can be considered aloof by those who don’t understand their personalities.

Chow Chow – The Chow Chow is a widely built, curly tailed dog with a bluish-black tongue. The breed is endearing to look at, but they are not a dog for the novice owner. The Chow Chow can be quite dominant and will easily become the boss of your home if allowed. They are one family dogs that do not often welcome strangers with signs of affection.

Norwegian Elkhound – This curly tailed breed is the national dog of Norway. They are friendly and loyal, but also have an independent streak, which causes them to make their own decisions. They need a good deal of exercise and thrive on outdoor activities. The Elkhound has a loud bark which makes it a capable watchdog.

Siberian Husky – This Northern breed carries its curled tail over its back when standing still. When it is in motion, the huskies tail sometimes straightens. Bred to be sled dogs, Huskies have a huge amount of stamina and need an outlet for their energy or they can become destructive. Like many of the Northern Breeds (Alaskan Malamutes and Samoyeds) they often have a high prey drive and need to be carefully monitored around small animals.

Alaskan Malamute – The Alaskan Malamute is another Northern breed that is bred for sled work! These large curly tailed dogs range in size from 80 to 120 lbs. Some breeders have been producing “giant” Malamutes, but this is not considered to be a responsible breeding choice. Malamutes have a great deal of energy and need consistent exercise to keep them from becoming bored and acting out.

Karelian Bear Dog – The Karelian Bear Dog is considered a national treasure in its native country of Finland. These dogs were used to hunt moose, elk and, of course, bear! The Karelian’s curly tail is acentuated by a white tail tip that is required by the breed standard. This breed is very independent, as they were bred to hunt on their own for long periods of time. They are a dominant breed and can be aggressive with other dogs. However, Karelians are loyal to their families and do well with children.

Pomeranian – The smallest of our curly tailed breeds, Pomeranians usually range between 3 and 8 lbs! These happy little toy dogs are bright and cheery companions that crave the attention of humans. In spite of its small size, this breed makes a good watchdog! Pomeranians are always on alert and will let you know of any guests – welcome or unwelcome!

Samoyed – These fluffy white dogs were bred by nomadic Siberian reindeer herders. They kept the herd together, pulled sleds, and slept in tents with their masters to keep them warm. The Samoyed has a cheerful expression that has given them the nickname “Smiling Dog”. They require a great deal of brushing to keep their coats clean and well groomed. Their curled tails are probably the fluffiest of all the tails on our list!

For more articles that help you choose the dog breed that's right for you, visit our dog breed selection page.

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