11 Dogs That Look like Wild Animals

A popular trend with dog owners is to find dogs that look like other animals, specifically wild animals. While some dog breeds naturally resemble other animals (the Tibetan Mastiff, for example, which has the mane of a lion) others must be groomed or dyed. As with any dog, these dog breeds each have their own characteristics and should be studied carefully before any purchase or animal adoption. An animal cannot be judged exclusively by it's fur coat!

Read on to find out which specific breeds resemble lions, leopards, tigers, pandas, raccoons, and wolves.

1. Dogs That Look like Lions: Tibetan Mastiff

Tibetan Mastiff vs Lion
Tibetan Mastiff vs Lion

Tibetan mastiffs are native to Tibet, where they are known as "Do-Khyi". They can be spotted in the northern part of Nepal, India, and Bhutan. In Nepal, they are known as "Bhote Kukur". Bhote means "outsiders to Nepal that represent Tibet" and kukur means "dog".
These giant Himalayan mountain dogs have strong, broad heads and sturdy bone structure, long bodies, and heavy trunks. Their size and long coats give them the look of lion. They are fearless but loyal and protective to their family. But be careful: Tibetan Mastiffs are stubborn and won't always obey.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Tibet
  • Height: 61 -72 cm.
  • Weight: 48 - 82 kg.
  • Coat and Colour: Long, double coats in a wide variety of colours, including solid black, black and tan, and various shades of red.
  • Temperament: Strong-willed, protective, aloof, tenacious, stubborn, and intelligent.
  • Category: Working.
  • Lifespan: 10 - 14 years.

Mastiffs are protective like lions, too!

Tibetan Mastiff VS Lion
Tibetan Mastiff VS Lion

2. Dogs That Look like Leopards: Louisiana Catahoula Leopard

Leopard vs  Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog
Leopard vs Louisiana Catahoula Leopard Dog

Louisiana Catahoula Leopard dogs are very intelligent. The name "Catahoula" is actually taken from an Indian word meaning "clear water". These dogs have strong muscles and deep chests, blue eyes, and coloured patches on their fur. These coloured patches and eyes give them the appearance of a leopard. American and Canadian farmers developed this breed by combining native American dogs, Spanish Mastiffs, and Greyhounds as hunting and guard dogs.
These athletic dogs need a fair amount of running. They are very intelligent and active and become destructive if they don't get enough exercise. In general, Catahoula are gentle and loving with children but not with other pets. They may become aggressive with unfamiliar dogs so this breed is not recommended for homes where there is already a dog or for an owner who has never owned a dog. They are good dogs, however, with masters who are steady and firm.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Louisiana
  • Height: 51 - 61 cm.
  • Weight: 16 - 36 kg.
  • Colour: Striking, short- to medium-length fur that may be spotted, brindled, patched or solid.
  • Temperament: Loyal, independent, protective, and territorial.
  • Category: Sporting, hunting, and herding.
  • Availability: North America, France, and Europe.
  • Lifespan: 10 - 13 years.

Loyal and territorial, Catahoula were bred to be guard dogs.

Cathahoula Leopard Vs Leopard
Cathahoula Leopard Vs Leopard | Source

Another Dog That Look Like Leopard: Peruvian Inca Orchid Dog

Leopard Vs Peruvian Inca Orchid Dog
Leopard Vs Peruvian Inca Orchid Dog | Source

The Peruvian Hairless Dog is another breed of dog that look like Leopards, The Peruvian Inca Orchid has dark, round eyes that tend to squint in the sunlight due to over sensitivity, The ears have some wisps of hair, Also it can have some hair on top of the head. You can find some pups are born with hair cuts and for same litter other can be hairless., without coat or hair.

3. Dogs That Look like Tigers: Tiger Dog

Tiger dogs are not naturally occurring. They are Golden Retrievers that are painted or dyed to look like tigers. The trend to paint dogs began in China and has since spread to the West. Dogs painted to look like tigers and panda bears are now received positively in dog shows, but still many think it’s not a good practice to paint animals and shouldn’t be encouraged.

Tiger Vs Tiger Dog (Dyed to a look Like Cheetah)
Tiger Vs Tiger Dog (Dyed to a look Like Cheetah)

4. Dogs That Look like Pandas: Dog Panda

Panda vs Panda Dog
Panda vs Panda Dog

Like the so-called Tiger Dog, Dog Pandas are also painted. White Chow Chow dogs are dyed with black paint. During a dog show in China, these dogs were the main attraction and soon after it became popular in the U.S. to paint poodles to look like other animals.

International organizations have spoken out against this practice, expressing concern over the toxicity of the dye that is used.

5. Dogs That Look like Bears: Bush Dog


Bush Dogs, also called Savannah or Vinegar dogs, are very different from other breeds. Native to the Amazon basin, they are darkest when they are puppies. Adult Bush Dogs have long, soft brownish-tan fur with highlights.

Spotting a Bush Dog in the wild is difficult as they are very shy. They are top-notch swimmers and can even dive underwater. The unique combination of a shy nature and extraordinary swimming talent makes them very special.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Central and North America
  • Height: 55–75 cm.
  • Weight: 6-9 kg.
  • Coat and Colour: Long, brown, and tan fur with lighter reddish tinges on the head, neck, and back.
  • Temperament: Wild.
  • Category: Endangered, wild dogs.
  • Lifespan: 6-8 years.

Naturally shy, Bush Dogs are excellent swimmers.

6. Dogs That Look like Sheep: Bedlington Terrier


The Bedlington Terrier is small and appears to innocent and quiet, but this breed is actually good at fighting and hunting. They are energetic dogs, good athlete, and swimmers. They love water, are very friendly, and are good with children and other pets. Bedlington Terriers have a tendency to be barkers and need to be trained not to bark irrationally.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Northumberland, England
  • Height: 15 - 17.5 inches.
  • Weight: 17–23 pounds (7.7–10.4 kg).
  • Coat and Colour: Curly with blue, liver, or tan colours.
  • Temperament: Loyal, playful and very friendly.
  • Category: Sporting.
  • Lifespan: 12-14 years.

Bedlington Terriers are great with kids.

7. Dogs That Look like Monkeys: Silver Wolf Sable Keeshond/Pomeranian


Keeshonds and Wolf Sable Pomeranians are small, toy-sized dogs. Their undercoats are grey and their outer coats are a deep shade of gray and longer around the chest and neck. Their dark shaded, furry faces resemble Indian Langur monkeys.

These playful dogs are Intelligent and friendly but have "small dog syndrome" and are barkers. They not considered good with children and are not good watch dogs.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Germany and Poland
  • Height: 7 - 12 inches.
  • Weight: 3 - 7 pounds (1 - 3 kg).
  • Coat and Colour: Long, thick, double coat with sable colours.
  • Temperament: Intelligent, eager to learn, but barky.
  • Category: AKC Toy.
  • Lifespan: 11-15 Years

Keeshond and Pomeranian are "toy" dogs that like to bark.

8a. Dogs That Look like Wolves

Other Wolves Like Dogs

German Shepherd Vs Wolf
German Shepherd Vs Wolf
Siberian Husky vs Wolf
Siberian Husky vs Wolf

The Alaskan Malamute descended from the Arctic Wolf. They are big, powerful sled dogs and are quite friendly. A Malamute rarely barks, has a strong build, and great stamina. Malamutes are exceptionally intelligent and loyal. As snow dogs, Malamutes cannot tolerate warm weather. They need daily exercise and regular outings and are not fit for apartment life.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Alaskan/Nordic region
  • Height: 23 - 25 inches.
  • Weight: 32 - 43 kg.
  • Coat and Colour: Long, thick, double coat with facial markings like a wolf.
  • Temperament: Very friendly, loyal, and calm.
  • Category: Working.
  • Lifespan: 12 to 15 years.

Dogs like Wolves

Malamutes and Samoyeds are loyal and devoted cold-weather animals.


Dogs Like White Wolves

Samoyeds are a Russian breed that get their name from the Samoyedic people of Siberia. They are strong, well-built, and broad headed. They are very lively and good companions. They are known for the "Sammy smile" they make with their petite, curved mouths. Samoyeds are calm, devoted, very friendly, and pleasant dogs. They were bred to hunt and they love hiking, tracking, and keeping their owners warm by sleeping on top of them at night.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Northwestern Siberia
  • Height: 46 - 60 cm.
  • Weight: 22 - 30 kg.
  • Coat and Colour: White and shades of white with long, thick fur.
  • Temperament: Friendly, gentle, and devoted.
  • Category: Working.
  • Lifespan: 11 to 14 years.

9. Dogs That Look like Raccoons: Tanuki


The Tanuki is a member of the canid family but is not a true dog. Because of their resemblance to raccoons they are known as Raccoon Dogs. They are native to Asia and they live in pairs or small groups. Male Tanukis are helpful fathers, bringing food to their pregnant mates and helping to raise the young. In China and Finland, Raccoon Dogs are killed for their fur, which is widely faked as the fur of other species. Raccoon Dogs feed on insects, rodents, amphibians, birds, fish, reptiles, mollusks and carrion. Apart from their extensive fur and resemblance to raccoons, they have another quality that makes them to unique: They do not bark, but growl.

10.Dogs That Look like Foxes: Dhole


The Dhole is a wild Indian dog, also known as a Red Dog or Fox Dog. Their physical structure is very like an Australian Border Collie. Dholes can kill prey up to ten times their own size and run very fast. African wild dogs can run up to 37 miles per hour and Dhole can run 34 miles per per hour. Dholes are classed as endangered by the IUCN. This dog is very social and lives in large clans which occasionally split up into small packs to hunt.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: Southeast Asia and India
  • Height: 17 - 21 inches.
  • Weight: 12-18 kg.
  • Coat and Colour: Short, thick, and dense red fur.
  • Temperament: Social wild dogs.
  • Category: Wild dogs.
  • Lifespan: 8 -10 years.

Quick view, Top 10 Dogs Like Animals

11. Dogs That Look like Hyena: African Wild Dog


African Wild Dogs are the largest of the African dogs and are very dangerous. These wild dogs live and hunt in large packs and are known for their excellent hunting skills. They can run up to 37 miles per hour. Their jaws and muzzles are similar to a hyenas, but Hyenas are much stronger than African Wild Dogs.

Breed Characteristics:

  • Origin: African Savannas
  • Height: Up to 30 inches at the shoulder.
  • Weight: 55 - 70 pounds.
  • Coat and Colour: Dark brown, black, and yellow patched fur.
  • Temperament: Wild, highly intelligent, and social.
  • Category: Wild.
  • Lifespan: 10 - 12 years.

© 2014 ARADHYA

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Ervin 3 weeks ago

Wild dog like animal with dog feet but raccoon head and hair thick has very large teeth probably 2 1/2 feet tall. What is this? In Florida wild forest eats hard corn . It is not scared of me and very deep growl . I've worked as a logger for 30 years never seen nothing like it.

JulesVerne 2 months ago

An interesting article, but I feel the need to point out that keeshonds are actually medium-sized dogs, not toys. They generally weigh around 30-40 lbs and certainly do not suffer from "small dog syndrome," although they do bark a lot.

srai01 profile image

srai01 4 months ago Author

Thanks Norlawrence!

norlawrence 5 months ago

Great Hub. Very informative. The pictures were great.

Awesome Animals 10 months ago

How do these dogs look so much like wild animals?! It's so awesome!

srai01 profile image

srai01 2 years ago Author

Dr. Mark,

This is an interesting article;

But I was more specific for "mean dog-dog aggression" and "aggression to other pets".

I think you couldbe the only right person to write on that, I do not have any such experience and like many others, I also like to know, hope soon we can see an article from you :) ..


DrMark1961 profile image

DrMark1961 2 years ago from The Beach of Brazil

I always recommend an eye ointment be applied before the dog is dyed, just for that reason. Some of the dyes (like kool-aid, the powder drink) are really mild. They do not last as long, but are easier on the dog´s skin too.

On the friendly issue, did you mean aggression? Here is a link:

If you mean dog-dog aggression, though, I do not have an article. I am training a Pitbull on the beach every morning for the last two months and he has that problem. It is really difficult to deal with, and for some dogs impossible. I have seen recommendations to get rid of a second dog if there are constant dog-dog aggression issues. If you have any new ideas write it up, I am sure you will get some traffic if it is original.

Good luck.

srai01 profile image

srai01 2 years ago Author

Hello Eiddwen,


I am fond of dogs and have experience of 9 dogs even by profession I am an IT professional. I appreciate your great effort on HP, 283 wonderful articles.

srai01 profile image

srai01 2 years ago Author

Hello Dr. Mark,

Thanks! it's great to have a compliment from you.

About dying to the pet, I think it's all depends how much care and precaution we are taking. Because for dog panda, dying their eyes ...?

Do you have any article how to make our pets friendly with other dogs and pets? I searched in your hubs but, couldn't see .. ?

Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 2 years ago from Wales

Thank you for sharing this great hub. I am a sucker for anything to do with animals and this gem was original , interesting and a great read . Looking forward now to so many more by you.


DrMark1961 profile image

DrMark1961 2 years ago from The Beach of Brazil

Hi Santosh thanks for another interesting article.

I had a Maltese years ago, and, although I never dyed him like a wild animal, we used to dye his topknot. He was free advertising for my clinic, and certainly did not seem to mind the blue hair since everyone wanted to look at him, pet him, and give him lots of attention.

I bet those silly tiger and panda dogs like it too.

Voted up and interesting.

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