VOA Special English
Biewer Terrier Becomes Newest Kind of Dog


    The American Kennel Club, or AKC, has welcomed a new member breed: The Biewer terrier. The recognition means the breed can now take part in special competitions like the famous Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in New York City. It also can increase the market value of the pet animal.

    The Biewer terrier is little, weighing around 1.8 to 3.6 kilograms. It is part of the “toy” dog group. The Biewer has long, flowing hair that adds to its toylike quality.

    A pair of Biewer terriers. Courtesy of the Biewer Terrier Club of America and The American Kennel Club
    A pair of Biewer terriers. Courtesy of the Biewer Terrier Club of America and The American Kennel Club

    Dog breed experts say it looks a lot like the Yorkshire terrier from which it came. Biewer is the name of the German family who started breeding the dogs from Yorkshire terriers that had rare white markings.

    Dog breeder Adrianne Dering of Morgantown, West Virginia, said Americans began importing the dogs in the early 2000s. “They’re just very loving and easygoing. For a small dog, they’re not a high-strung dog,” Dering said.

    Dering said the dogs are active, playful and travel easily. However, they do need companionship, so they are not the best for people who leave their animals alone during long workdays.

    The AKC is the nation's oldest purebred dog registry. The AKC does not consider recognition of a breed unless there are at least 300 of the dogs spread across at least 20 states.

    Some animal rights supporters say working to increase interest in purebreds is wrong. They say it leads to cruel breeding operations. Activists also argue that too many dogs are in public shelters already and need owners.

    The AKC says responsible breeding permits people to choose pets with somewhat predictable characteristics. The club also notes that mixed-breed dogs compete in many events it supports, such as agility and obedience competitions.

    I’m Mario Ritter, Jr.

    Jennifer Peltz reported this story for the Associated Press. Mario Ritter Jr. adapted it for VOA Learning English. Caty Weaver was the editor.


    Words in This Story

    breed –n. a particular kind of dog, cat or other domesticated animal; a kind of animal that has been produced by breeding

    high-strung –adj. very nervous, easily upset

    companionship –n. a good feeling that comes from being with someone else

    characteristic –n. typical of a person, thing, or group

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