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15 Dog Breeds That Look Like Foxes: Pictures, Facts & History

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

shiba inu dog in the grass

From the pointy ears to the bushy tails, there’s something undeniably canny about dogs that resemble foxes. Whether it’s their sleek, agile build or their striking facial features, these canine companions often turn heads wherever they go. In this article, we’ll introduce you to 15 dog breeds that bear a remarkable resemblance to the sly and clever fox.

From the renowned Shiba Inu to the charming Finnish Spitz, each of these breeds possesses its own unique qualities that make them not only look like foxes but also endearingly lovable in their own right. Join us as we journey through the world of canines that exhibit the mesmerizing allure of the fox!

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Top 15 Dog Breeds That Look Like Foxes

1. Finnish Spitz

finnish spitz out in the snow in the woods
Photo Credit: Christian Ustvedt Kavli, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 15.5 – 20 inches
Weight: 25 – 33 pounds

The Finnish Spitz, often referred to as the “Barking Bird Dog,” is a Spitz-type dog that hails from Finland and is characterized by its fox-like face, pointed ears, and a striking red-gold double coat. An exceptional hunting dog, the Finnish Spitz has been traditionally used to hunt game birds in its homeland.

This breed is alert, lively, and possesses a strong sense of independence. They are also famous for their unique “bark point,” where they use their melodious bark to alert hunters to the location of game. With their charming appearance and vocal talents, these dogs are a delightful addition to any household!


2. Pomeranian

white fox face pomeranian on the grass
Photo Credit: Tam and Trace Photography, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 16 years
Height: 6 – 7 inches
Weight: 3 – 7 pounds

Originating from the Pomerania region in Poland and Germany, the pint-sized Pomeranian is characterized by its distinctive double coat, plume-like tail, and a foxy face with expressive eyes and pointed ears.

Despite their small stature, Pomeranians are known for their confident and vivacious personalities. They’re highly intelligent and can be quite vocal, often using their bark to alert their owners to any potential intruders. Pomeranians are loving and devoted companions, forming strong bonds with their owners and often seeking attention and playtime. With their charming, fox-like appearance and bold personalities, Pomeranians have earned a special place in the hearts of dog lovers worldwide.


3. Shiba Inu

Young Black And Tan Shiba Inu Dog Outdoor
Photo Credit: Grisha Bruev, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 13.5 – 16.5 inches
Weight: 17 – 23 pounds

A proud and ancient Japanese breed, the Shiba Inu is hailed for its fox-like appearance and independent spirit. These compact dogs exhibit a striking resemblance to their wild counterparts with their erect, triangular ears, curled tail, and their signature expressive face.

Despite their independent streak, they are fiercely loyal to their families and can be quite affectionate. Shiba Inus require regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep them content, and they excel in activities like agility. Shiba Inus are a beloved breed, cherished for their striking looks and spirited personalities.


4. Akita

akita dog standing outdoor
Image Credit: FunFamilyRu, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 10 – 15 years
Height: 24 – 28 inches (male), 22 – 26 inches (female)
Weight: 70 – 130 pounds (male), 50 – 110 pounds (female)

Another Japanese breed, Akitas are imposing dogs that exhibit a dignified appearance with a broad head, erect ears, and a curled tail. Akita dogs are classified as working dogs and are celebrated for their courageous and protective nature.

They are deeply devoted to their families and often reserved around strangers, making them excellent guard dogs. While they are naturally independent, Akitas can also be affectionate and gentle with those they love.

This breed’s history is steeped in tradition, and they are revered for their striking looks and loyalty, making them cherished family members all around the world.


5. Norwegian Elkhound

Norwegian Elkhound Black dog lying on grass
Image Credit: Svitlana Hulko, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 20 – 21 inches (male), 19 – 20 inches (female)
Weight: 55 – 60 pounds (male), 48 – 55 pounds (female)

The Norwegian Elkhound is a medium-sized dog that possesses a sturdy build and erect ears that give them their fox-like appearance. Norwegian Elkhounds are classified as hound dogs and have a long history as skilled hunters, particularly of moose and other large game in the terrain of Norway. They are known for their endurance and determination on the hunt.

These dogs are loyal and affectionate with their families, making them excellent companions. They are alert and can be reserved around strangers but generally exhibit a friendly disposition. With their proud appearance and strong bond with their owners, Norwegian Elkhounds are cherished as both hunting partners and family pets.


6. American Eskimo Dog

American Eskimo Dog standing on grass
Image Credit: Scarlett Images, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 9 – 12 inches (toy), 12 – 15 inches (miniature), 15 – 19 inches (standard)
Weight: 25 – 33 pounds

The American Eskimo Dog, often referred to as the “Eskie,” is a striking breed known for its fluffy white coat and captivating appearance. These dogs belong to the non-sporting group and come in three size varieties: toy, miniature, and standard.

Eskies require regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep them content and are known for their tendency to “talk” or bark to communicate. Their fluffy white coat requires consistent grooming to maintain its pristine appearance.


7. Alaskan Klee Kai

alaskan klee kai dog with heterochromia
Image Credit: Mary Swift, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 16 years
Height: 13 – 17 inches (toy), 15 – 17 inches (miniature), 17 – 19 inches (standard)
Weight: Up to 10 pounds (toy), 10 – 20 pounds (miniature), 20 – 40 pounds (standard)

The Alaskan Klee Kai, a relatively rare breed, is known for its resemblance to the Siberian Husky, albeit in a smaller package. Alaskan Klee Kai dogs are intelligent, alert, and often reserved around strangers, making them excellent watchdogs.

They are deeply loyal to their families and can be affectionate with those they know well. Alaskan Klee Kai are cherished for their striking looks and their unique combination of Husky-like features in a smaller, more manageable size.


8. Jindo

korean jindo dog outdoor
Image Credit: jamongcreator, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 18 – 22 inches (male), 16 – 19 inches (female)
Weight: 45 – 60 pounds (male), 35 – 50 pounds (female)

The Jindo is a proud and ancient breed originating from Korea’s Jindo Island. These medium-sized dogs possess a well-balanced and muscular build, with a wedge-shaped head, upright ears, and an expressive face.

Jindos are classified as Spitz-type dogs and are celebrated for their loyalty and affection toward their families. Jindos are revered for their striking looks, strong work ethic, and devoted companionship, making them treasured family pets for those who appreciate their unique qualities!


9. Long-Haired Chihuahua

long-haird chihuahua portrait
Image Credit: HG-Fotografie, Pixabay
Lifespan: 14 – 17 years
Height: 5 – 8 inches
Weight: up to 6 pounds

While your typical Chihuahua may not exhibit the fox-like appearance we’re accustomed to, the Long-Haired Chihuahua does! A charming and petite toy breed, the Long-Haired Chihuahua is well-known for its dainty appearance and luxurious, flowing coat. These tiny dogs possess a delicate build with a rounded skull and large, expressive eyes just like their short-haired counterparts. The long hair on their heads, however, gives them their distinct fox-like appearance!

Long-Haired Chihuahuas are beloved for their loving and affectionate nature, often forming deep attachments to their owners. Long-Haired Chihuahuas make wonderful, miniature companions for those who appreciate their adorable looks and enjoy providing the care and attention these tiny dogs thrive on!


10. Volpino Italiano

Volpino Italiano
Image Credit: Olga Aniven, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 14 – 16 years
Height: 9 – 12 inches
Weight: 9 – 12 pounds

The Volpino Italiano, a charming and ancient breed native to Italy, is popular for its fox-like appearance and affectionate nature.

Volpino Italianos are beloved for their loving and devoted temperament, often forming strong bonds with their owners. Volpino Italianos are treasured for their companionship and affection, making them delightful companions for those who appreciate their unique charm!


11. Icelandic Sheepdog

icelandic sheepdog
Image Credit: Bildagentur Zoonar GmbH, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 16 years
Height: 16 – 18 inches
Weight: 20 – 30 pounds

The Icelandic Sheepdog is a medium-sized dog with a well-balanced build, pointy, upright ears, a bushy tail, and a weather-resistant double coat. Icelandic Sheepdogs are celebrated for their strong herding instincts and ability to work in challenging conditions.

These dogs are intelligent and thrive on mental stimulation and physical activity, which often includes herding or agility work. While they are generally sociable, early socialization is important to ensure they get along well with other animals and strangers. Icelandic Sheepdogs have a moderate grooming requirement due to their double coat, which helps them stay warm in cold climates.


12. Finnish Lapphund

a finnish lapphund dog resting on a rock
Image Credit: cynoclub, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 16 – 21 inches
Weight: 30 – 55 pounds

The Finnish Lapphund, a versatile and friendly breed hailing from Finland, is known for its striking appearance, friendly disposition, and strong herding instincts. Finnish Lapphunds were bred as herding dogs, with tasks that include herding reindeer in their native land.

This Finnish native sports a fox-like head, expressive eyes, a sturdy build, and a plume-like tail that often rests gracefully over their back—just like a fox!


13. German Spitz

german spitz
Image Credit: Lenkadan, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 13 – 15 years
Height: 11 – 12 inches (small), 12 – 15 inches (standard)
Weight: 17 – 18 pounds (small), 24 – 26 pounds (standard)

The German Spitz is a small to medium-sized dog that closely resembles a fox. German Spitz dogs are known for their alertness and make excellent watchdogs. They are intelligent, quick learners, and are often described as spirited and lively.

These dogs form strong bonds with their families and are typically affectionate and loving. They require regular exercise and mental stimulation to keep them content but are not excessively high-energy dogs.


14. Schipperke

Schipperke
Image Credit: dien, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 13 – 15 years
Height: 10 – 13 inches
Weight: 10 – 16 pounds

The Schipperke, a small and spirited breed hailing from Belgium, is known for its distinctive appearance, lively personality, and strong independent streak. This Belgian native may be tiny, but their fox-like appearance, larger-than-life personality, and overall confidence makes them a delight for any household!


15. Keeshond

Keeshond sitting on green grass
Image Credit: Olga Aniven, Shutterstock
Lifespan: 12 – 15 years
Height: 17 – 18 inches
Weight: 35 – 45 pounds

The Keeshond, a charming and lively breed originating from the Netherlands, is known for its distinctive appearance, friendly disposition, and strong sense of loyalty.

Keeshonds are celebrated for their role as watchdogs on Dutch riverboats, and they continue to be excellent alert dogs today. They are intelligent, quick learners, and are often described as affectionate and friendly. These dogs form deep bonds with their families and can be quite social, often getting along well with children and other pets.

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Conclusion

Our exploration of these 15 dog breeds that look like foxes has revealed not only their striking physical similarities that originate from around the world but also the diversity of their personalities and roles in the lives of their owners.

While their appearances may draw us in with their fox-like features, it’s their individual temperaments and the bonds they form with their human families that truly make them special. These dogs serve as a reminder that the world of canines is as diverse as it is enchanting, offering a perfect match for every type of dog lover.

So, whether you’re in search of a faithful companion, a vigilant guardian, or simply a furry friend that reminds you of the cunning fox, there’s a breed on this list waiting to capture your heart!

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Featured Image Credit: Spencer-Xu-Shutterstock

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