10 Weird Dog Breeds That Look Like Bears

Dogs that look like bears

There are some pretty weird looking dog breeds out there, and some of them look a lot like bears! 

So if you want to check out some ‘bear looking’ dogs, you’ve come to the right place 🙂

If you’re looking into getting a dog (that doesn’t necessarily look like a bear!) check out our post on how to choose the right dog for you.

Table of Contents

1. Keeshond

The Keeshond is a  small spitz type dog. Spitz dogs are characterized by their pointed ears and muzzles, thick coats, and plumed tails that curl over their backs. 

Keeshond dog breed really looks like a bear

But despite their small size, they really look like bears – especially when they’re pups!

They have a dense double coat of silver gray and black fur with a ruff around the neck and feathers on the hind legs. 

The Keeshond is an alert, friendly dog that’s easily trained –  making them a great companion for active families. 

2. Chow Cow

The Chow Chow really looks like a bear and like many of the dogs on this list, also comes from China.

Chow cow - the most bear like dog?

It has a thick coat, a wide head, and a curled tail.

This breed is known for being respectful and independent, and for having bright eyes.

This breed doesn’t require as much care when it comes to grooming and isn’t as “needy” as some other breeds.

3. Tibetan Mastiff

The Tibetan Mastiff  is an ancient breed of bear like dog that has been around for over two thousand years. 

Tibetan Mastiff - a VERY bear like dog

Originally bred to protect Tibetan villages and monasteries from predators and thieves, but nowadays it is mostly kept as a pet. 

The Tibetan Mastiff is a very large dog, with males reaching up to 30 inches (76 cm) at the shoulder and females up to 27 inches (69 cm)! They are heavily built, with thick fur coats and are known for their independent nature and aloof personality.

4. Akita

The Akita dog is a Japanese breed of dog that looks remarkably like a bear! They are large, sturdy dogs with a thick double coat that can be a variety of colors, including red, sesame, brindle, and white.

Akita - a dog that looks like a bear

Akitas were originally bread to help farmers protect their farms from bears, and they still retain their bear-hunting instincts today – but don’t let that put you off them!

They have distinctive long, erect ears and are loyal and devoted to their owners.

With the right training they can make great family pets.

5. Alaskan Malamute

The Alaskan Malamute is another dog that looks a lot like a bear.

Alaskan Malamute is a dog that looks like a bear

They are large, muscular dogs with a thick fur coat . They were originally bred in Alaska, to pulls sleds in order to transport goods across the frozen tundra.

These day’s they are growing in popularity as family dogs, and also make great guard dogs because of their loud bark and strong look  – I mean, would you want to mess with one?

6. Cane Corso

The Cane Corso is an absolutely huge – and almost bear sized dog breed.

They have a long body and a massive, bear like head – but don’t be scared, they’re usually very friendly!

Carne Corso - pretty much the size of a bear!

Cane Corso come from Italy and were originally bred for hunting and as guard dogs.

They are very strong and able to take down large pretty much anything that gets in their way. 

This is definitely not a dog for a first time dog owner, but if you’re confident with training dogs, the Cane Corso make incredibly loyal companions. 

7. Chinese Shar-Pei

The Chinese Shar-Pei is was originally bred in China for hunting and Guard Duty. The breed is known for its distinctive blue-black tongue, wrinkled skin (VERY wrinkled), and stocky build.

Chinese Shar-Pei dog

If thinking gives you wrinkles – these dogs must be geniuses!

It’s thought that the Shar-Pei’s wrinkles evolved to help protect the dog’s eyes from brush and debris while hunting, and their black tongues may have served as camouflage when stalking prey.

The Chinese Shar-Pei is a relatively rare breed; in 1973, it’s thought there were only 200 dogs remaining in China and it was near extinction.

However, the breed has since been popularized internationally, and is now recognized by the American Kennel Club, seeing it’s number grow across the world.

8. Deutsch Shephard

The Deutsch Shephard is well known for it’s distinctive ‘shepherd dog’ look, with it’s long head and neck, and soft woolly fur.

Deutsch Shephard

They were originally bred in Germany for herding sheep, but they are now also used as family dogs and guard dogs.

They are gentle dogs that are usually very obedient, but can be stubborn if they don’t get their own way.

 They make great pets if you’re prepared to put in the extra effort to train them – but they definitely aren’t a ‘walk away’ type of dog!

9. English Bulldog

While British bulldogs may have a reputation for being tough, they are actually quite sensitive dogs that need lots of love and attention. 

Photo of British Bulldog

They don’t like being left alone for long periods of time, and can become anxious or depressed if not given enough human interaction. 

They’re are also known to snore loudly due to their short noses, which can be a nuisance for some people – you have been warned lol!

10 Finnish Spitz

The Finnish Spitz was originally used for hunting small game and birds, but is now primarily kept as a household pet. 

Finnish Spitz

The Finnish Spitz is a medium-sized dog, typically weighing between 20 and 30 pounds. The coat is thick and dense, usually red or golden in color. The breed is known for its distinctive face and pointed ears. 

They active dogs that require a lot of exercise; they are also intelligent and independent, which can make them challenging to train.

Do dogs actually have anything in common with bears?

Genetically speaking, dogs and bears are actually closely related. They both belong to the family Canidae, which includes wolves, foxes, coyotes, and jackals. 

Of course, there are many differences including size and diet habits. 

Many breeds, such as the Eurasier, Keeshond, and Chow Chow, have thick fur that is similar to that of a bear’s, while other breeds such as the Alaskan Malamute and the Akita have facial features that could easily be mistaken for those of a bear.

While the physical similarities between bears and dogs may be striking, it is important to remember that these two species have very different behaviors.

Dogs are much more domesticated than their wild cousins.

You probably wouldn’t want a bear waking you up with the newspaper in the morning…you’re call!

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