The Pumi was developed in the late 17th and 18th centuries by the crossing the Puli type herding dogs with terriers and German Spitz. The first known drawing of a Pumi is dated from 1815.
Puli's are longer haired herding dogs from Hungary that were introduced by the migration of the Magyars from Central Asia more than 1,000 years ago, and can probably be traced back to Tibetan herding/guard dogs from China and Tibet.
The breed later hit a tipping point in its evolution as Puli's were being cross-bred with French Briard's, Pomeranian's and other varieties of terriers during the 17th & 18th Centuries. Later into the 18th century vast quantities of Merino sheep were being imported in Hungary along with Pyrenean Mountain Dogs which will have been a factor in the development of dogs with a shorter and curlier coat.
Breeding for the Pumi's became possible again after the war from the 1960's onwards, along with increasing their numbers which had sadly dropped. The variations within the breed have since been reduced.
The Pumi was first exported to Finland in 1973 and Sweden in 1985; then onto the Netherlands, Italy and the USA in the 1990's.
In 2012 the Hungarian Government named the Pumi as one of its eight indigenous dog breeds and created a gene bank in order to preserve the Pumi's unique and endeared characteristics. In addition to this the Government also announced its support for breeding at the Hungarian National Breeding Centres.