Berger Picard



It is believed that the Berger Picard (also known as the Picardy Shepherd) is one of the oldest herding breed ever bred in France. Hence, Picardy Shepherds were brought to northern France in the 9th century and were used for herding cattle and sheep. This breed was on the verge of extinction during the First and Second World War. Restoration of the breed was rather slow, but nowadays, there are a few hundreds of Picardy Shepherds. This breed was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2016.

Height: 23-26 inches  Weight: 50-70 pounds  Lifespan: 12-13 years


The Berger Picard is a rustic, brawny dog of medium size. At first glance, dogs of this breed are somewhat clumsy, but in reality, Picardy Shepherds are very elegant, full of self-esteem and quite attractive in appearance. Comparable Breeds: The Pyrenean Shepherd and Wirehaired Pointing Griffon.


The Berger Picard is not really suitable for the novice dog breeders. This loyal and sensitive dog is dedicated, well-balanced and always in a good mood. Picardy Shepherds do well with children and other pets, provided that they grew up together. Watchful, hardworking and energetic, the Berger Picard cannot stand being alone for long. Dogs of this breed are reliable guards of the family, livestock and territory.

Coat / Care:

The Berger Picard has a dry, coarse coat of medium length. The coat has weatherproof qualities, which makes it a perfect shield from bad weather conditions. The undercoat is rather thin but very dense. This breed sheds reasonably. Hence, Picardy Shepherds require minimal care. It is enough to comb the dog’s hair once a month. In order to preserve the protective qualities of the hair, bathing is not recommended. If necessary, you can use a dry shampoo to clean your pet. The most common health concerns of this breed are several eye diseases, PRA and hip dysplasia.


The Berger Picard is very clever and learns with ease, but he requires early socialization and general obedience training. Please note that these dogs can be quite stubborn, even capricious. In order to keep the Picard interested in learning, lessons should be short, varied and dynamic. It is not recommended to use harsh or heavy-handed training methods. Firmness, fairness, patience and consistency will be more effective.


The Berger Picard requires a significant amount of physical exercise and mental stimulation. These dogs are not suitable for living in a city apartment. Therefore, Picardy Shepherds thrive best in rural settings, where they could roam around in spacious, fenced enclosures. These dogs are in need of constant communication with family members, and they need a work to do.

Photo credit: Joy VanBuhler/Flickr

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