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UK is home to first litter of Korean Jindo puppies

A healthy litter of six Jindo puppies – the treasured, national breed of Korea – has been born here in the UK, the first time a Jindo litter has been born outside the breed’s homeland.

Overhill Kennels, Bristol, is responsible for the care of the new litter as well as for the continued health and welfare of six adult Jindos, all of which were the first to be introduced to the UK from the Far East.

Commenting on the latest additions, owner-breeder of Overhill Kennels Meg Purnell-Carpenter explains: “We are absolutely delighted to welcome the UK’s first litter of Jindo puppies. The breed is highly revered in Korea and is under the protection of the Korean government as a national treasure, so it is a real privilege for Overhill to look after such a much-loved and respected breed. The puppies are a delight, and have already secured a legion of admirers who were previously unaware of the breed and who are now keen to learn more.

Originating from Jindo Island, located off the south coast of Korea, the Jindo is a medium-sized dog with bright eyes, erect ears, and has a curled or sickle-shaped tail. The breed has an acute hearing and scenting ability, keeps itself clean and is extremely easy to house train. Most common colours are red or white. In height, males range from 50-55cms (19.5” – 21.5”) and weigh 18-23 kgs, with female heights ranging from 40-50cms (15.5” – 19.5”) and weight from 15-19 kgs.

In 1962, the Korean government designated the Jindo a National Treasure (no 53), the highest honour given to precious native cultural artifacts, animals or individuals, as well as passing the ‘Jindo Preservation Ordinance.’ In addition, a Jindo Institute, located on Jindo Island, was also established to actively research and preserve the breed. The Institute evaluates all puppies born on the Island at 6 months and if the puppy is deemed to meet the breed standard and is sound, it is micro chipped. Only micro chipped Jindos are allowed to remain on the island unless they are neutered. Chipped Jindos cannot leave the Island to ensure the responsible preservation of the breed. As of 2002, there were 14,000 micro chipped Jindo on the island, all are under the special auspices of the government.

In terms of overseas awareness of the breed, the Jindo is currently registered with the FCI (provisionally accepted), and for the first time during Crufts 2003, General, a then 15-month old male, was introduced to visitors on the Samsung stand. Working closely with the Korean government to protect and preserve the breed, Samsung once again plans to raise awareness of the Jindo at this year’s Crufts and throughout 2004.