Three new breeds added to this year’s National Dog Show, airing on Thanksgiving Day

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For many, the National Dog show on Thanksgiving Day is a tradition. This year, some new dogs will be joining in on the event.

The National Dog Show will feature three new American Kennel Club-sanctioned breeds on Thanksgiving Day during the annual two-hour TV special on NBC.

The Barbet and the Dogo Argentino entries earned championships during the year and will compete for Best In Show. The Belgian Laekenois breed did not produce a champion because of COVID-19 dog show cancellations but will also be part of the broadcast.

With the addition of the three new breeds, 208 breeds and varieties are now eligible to compete in AKC confirmation dog shows.

So, what do these dogs look like? The following descriptions of the first-time entries are sourced from the American Kennel Club ( and the breed clubs):


Barbet dog breed
The Barbet

The Barbet (Bar-bay) is a strong, sturdily built, medium-sized dog with the agility to be a hunter and swimmer.

Covered in a dense, curly coat from its head to its long, sweeping tail, the breed’s is also intelligent and composed.

The breed nearly became extinct after the World Wars, but although rare today, continues to amaze people around the world with its fierce loyalty and its versatile abilities.

The Barbet will be eligible to compete in the Sporting Group this November.



Dogo Argentino

Dogo Argentino
Dogo Argentino

Probably the most familiar sounding (to many) of the three new breeds is the Dogo Argentino (Dog-o Argentino). This breed was originally developed in the Cordoba region of Argentina in 1928 as a fighting dog.

This breed gives off the impression of explosive power and energy through its athletic build. The large, powerful, pure-white Dogo Argentino might look imposing, but despite being a natural hunter and watchful guardian, it is a cheerful, friendly breed and family companion.

The Dogo Argentino will be eligible to compete in the Working Group this November.


Belgian Laekenois   

Belgian Laekenois   
Belgian Laekenois

The Belgian Laekenois (Lack-in-wah) is the rarest member of four closely related Belgian herders (the Belgian Sheepdog, Malinois, Tervuren, and Laekenois).

This breed is distinguished by a rough, tousled coat that comes in shades of red or fawn or grayish tones. The coat requires regular brushing and occasional bathing.

The Belgian Laekenois is known for being strong, sturdy, and often protective of his or her master and property, and needs daily exercise. They are considered quick learners and they were often called on as messenger dogs during World War I and II. This type of dog is typically observant with strangers, but is affectionate and friendly with those he knows well.

The Belgian Laekenois will be eligible to compete in the Herding Group this November.

Look for these breeds and many more during the annual two-hour TV special on NBC. The National Dog Show begins at noon in all time zones immediately following the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Further information on the National Dog Show and the Kennel Club of Philadelphia Dog Shows can be obtained at


National Dog Show to feature ‘cutouts’ as backdrop Thanksgiving Day; you or your dog’s likeness could be seated front-row, center



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