Black Portuguese Water Dogs

Interested in Black Portuguese water dogs? See how special ebony-coated Portuguese water dogs are. Read our guide for more facts & information…

The Portuguese water dog is a medium-sized, sociable, and intelligent breed. Most Portuguese water dogs or porties (which is a nickname used by dog lovers and aficionados to refer to its breed) are black – entirely black, or black with irregular touches of brown or white. Many porties have white chests, paws, or legs but black would be the dominant color in most cases, as dominantly white porties are somewhat rare. In Portugal, breed standards do not allow more than 30% white markings, though in the United States, Portuguese Water Dogs with white and black spots are becoming more common.

The Black Dog Syndrome

What comes to mind when thinking of a black dog? A Labrador Retriever? A Doberman, Border Collie, Rottweiler, a Barbet, and yes – even a Portuguese Water Dog? What many are not aware of however is the sad plight of black dogs in animal shelters and rescue circles. This phenomenon is known as the ‘Black Dog Bias’ or ‘Black Dog Syndrome.’

Black dogs are the least wanted by people who are looking for dogs to adopt. There are many theories behind this so called phenomenon including: black dogs do not photograph well, or these dogs have been stereotyped through movies, folklore, or literature as ‘evil.’ In the dogsledding arena, black dogs are discriminated against as well as they overheat faster compared to lighter colored ones. Black dogs tend to contribute largely to overpopulation in shelters and eventually, euthanasia of these canines is considered as a most viable option.

The First Dog: A Black Portuguese Water Dog

American President Barrack Obama may have unwittingly started a campaign against the black dog phenomenon when he chose a black Portuguese Water Dog to be the first family’s first dog.  Bearing the name Bo or even ‘Bo Obama’ to others, this black coated royal portie arrived at the President’s official residence in fulfillment of the campaign promise made by the U.S. Head of State.

The President thinks Bo’s a star and he’s right in saying this. Bo’s breeder is the same breeder of U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy’s water dogs. When the Senator learned of the pup’s availability, he immediately arranged for Bo to be offered to the first family. After weeks of obedience training, this lucky pooch from Boyd, Texas arrived at the White House to become a part of its new family on Tuesday, April 14, 2009. On this day, the black Portuguese Water Dog has arguably become one of the most famous dogs in the world. Dog lovers can only pray this stroke of luck extends not only to other black porties but also to other black dogs of other breeds that seem to be overstaying in animal shelters.

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