Lagotto Romagnolos are an uncommon breed in the United States but are gaining in popularity across the world thanks to their lovely demeanor.

The Lagotto Romagnolo is an Italian breed that is commonly known as “the water dog.” These dogs were bred to be waterfowl retrievers in the marshy lands of eastern Italy. This breed is likely better known for their niche hunting skills – but it’s not mammals they’re after, it’s truffles.

Thanks to the Lagotto Romagnolo’s keen sense of smell, they have become the preferred dog for truffle hunters. The delicacy is a hot commodity but difficult to find as it grows in the wet, dark roots of old-growth trees. Beyond their expert water and truffle hunting skills, these curly-haired dogs are excellent family dogs.

This friendly Italian breed scores a 10/10 in the personality column. Their loving personalities and happy disposition make them an excellent choice for families with young kids and other pets. Sociable and obedient by nature, the Lagotto Romagnolo is easy to train and adjusts nicely to routine changes.

Health and size
Lagotto Romagnolos average 60 pounds, with very few health concerns. However, like any active hunting breed, they can suffer from hip dysplasia and chronic ear infections. Issues regarding their eyes can also arise, whether it be cherry eye due to irritation from their curly fur or their propensity to develop eye ulcers and loss of vision. All of these issues can be caught and managed when regularly consulting your veterinarian.

As a retrieving and hunting breed, it’s easy to assume that Lagotto Romagnolos would require a lot of exercise. That’s not entirely true. Moderate exercise, coupled with mental stimulation, is enough to keep this breed happy. A large backyard for exploring and playing can be all they require. But if you’re looking for more, they will happily join you for water sports and hikes – making them very adaptable to your lifestyle.

While this breed is generally low maintenance, they make up for it when it comes to grooming. Sporting a double-layered coarse, curly coat makes them prone to matting, tangling, and picking up pieces of the outdoors. The Romagnolo should be regularly groomed, including bathing and trimming the coat.

Stay tuned for the Westminster Dog Show and see which breed takes home the top prize. Will the French Bulldog retain top honors or will a new breed like the Lagotto Romagnolo rise to stardom?