BELGIAN SHEPHERD DOG BREED
The Belgian Shepherd (also known as the Groenendael in Europe) is a medium-to-large herding dog. The Belgian Shepherd is a muscular dog with a proportionate body, slender legs and almond-shaped eyes. Smart and affectionate, Belgian Shepherds show their best side in rural areas, but they are also suitable as pets. As these dogs have very strong guarding instincts, they make excellent watchdogs.
Height: 22-26 inches Weight: 60-75 pounds Lifespan: 10-12 years
Elegant and graceful, this breed has a long black coat and an imposing appearance. Attentive, alert, loyal and intelligent, the Belgian Shepherd requires more extensive socialization than most breeds. They are quite suitable for the role of companion dog, provided that their owner occupies a dominant position. Comparable Breed: Belgian Malinois, Anatolian Shepherd Dog.
This is a very energetic and active breed, so it must be in constant motion. If left alone for a long time, Belgian Shepherd can become bored and destructive to the environment. The Belgian Shepherd gets along well with children, especially if raised together, but in relation to other dogs may behave aggressively. These dogs have a high prey drive and will pursue anything that moves.
Coat / Care:
The Belgian Groenendael has a long-haired double coat. The outer coat is abundant with long, straight hair that`s harsh to the touch, never wiry or silky. The soft, dense undercoat provides perfect protection from the weather. The hair on the rest of the body is longer and denser, forming a beautiful collar around the neck. The male is more ornamental than the female. The color is black, although there may be small blotches of white on the chest, chin or toes. The Belgian Shepherd’s coat requires daily combing and brushing. Bathing should be done thoroughly, until the undercoat, in order to avoid tangling. Belgian Shepherds shed more at the onset of warmer weather, and hence the care is especially important at this time.
Belgian Shepherds are generally healthy, but like all breeds, they’re prone to Hip Dysplasia, Anesthesia Sensitivity, Elbow Dysplasia, Cancer, Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA), Hhypothyroidism and Epilepsy. The Belgian Shepherd has a life expectancy of 10 to 12 years.
The Belgian Groenendael is the most popular variety of Belgian Shepherds. This is a very smart and obedient dog, with strong protective and territorial instincts. Early, consistent training and socialization are critical! You need to set clear and understandable rules, avoiding course, oppressive or brutal methods. Belgian Sheepdogs are not recommended for inexperienced dog owners, since they are sensitive, temperamental and very demanding.
Belgian Shepherd Dogs can handle apartment living, but they do better in homes with a fenced yard. Belgian Shepherd requires vigorous physical and mental stimulation, and they’re in need of constant communication their owner. This dog excels in performance activities, so consider training him to compete in obedience, tracking, or agility.