Recognized for his corkscrew-curled coat, expressive semi-erect ears and quirky expression, the Pumi is undeniably cute with an affinity for both work and play. This Hungarian herding breed is medium-sized, compact and agile, always on alert and ready for action. Versatile and adaptable, the Pumi is used to herd cattle, sheep and swine, and is equally skilled at gathering, driving and keeping livestock within its boundaries as directed by the shepherd.
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Friendliness to Other Pets
Friendliness to Children
Need for attention
Affection towards owners
Disclaimer: While the characteristics mentioned here may frequently represent this breed, dogs are individuals whose personalities and appearances will vary. Please consult the adoption organization for details on a specific pet.
Bold, spirited and lively, the Pumi does best in an active household in which plenty of activity and attention can be given. He’s eager to please and bonds closely with his human family. This intelligent, mindful breed deeply assesses each new situation in which he’s placed and can be reserved, especially among strangers.
The Pumi’s coat — half soft hair, half harsher hair — doesn’t shed much, but requires combing every three to six weeks, as well as a quick rinse to allow the coat to curl back up. Once it does, the coat may be trimmed. Because of the Pumi’s high energy and keen intelligence, he requires regular exercise to keep him physically and mentally stimulated. He enjoys games of retrieving tennis balls or flying discs, and also excels in agility, obedience and other dog sports. Keep in mind the Pumi is agile, courageous and insatiably curious, meaning he’s not afraid to climb over or under anything to get a good vantage point of what’s going on at any given moment. Early socialization and proper training are a must.
- Major Concerns: N/A
- Minor Concerns: N/A
- Occasionally Seen: Hip dysplasia, elbow dysplasia, patella luxation, degenerative myelopathy and eye disorders
- Suggested Tests: Hip evaluation, patella evaluation, PLL DNA test, degenerative myelopathy DNA test
- Lifespan: 12 to 13 years
The Pumi was developed over centuries by Hungarian shepherds to drive livestock from the village to pastures on the outskirts of town, keeping them away from nearby gardens and fields. During the day, the Pumi tended the livestock under the direction of the shepherd, and then drove them back into the village in the evening. The Pumi is one of three Hungarian herding breeds to have originated from Tibetan herding-guarding dogs that migrated with the Hungarians and their livestock to the Carpathian Basin of central Europe around 800 A.D. In the early 20th century, the Hungarians separated the Pumi, Puli and Mudi into separate breeds. The Pumi was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1996 and by the American Kennel Club in 2016.