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The Schapendoes (also known as Dutch Sheepdog) is a herding dog, originally from Netherlands. This is a rare breed which almost went extinct. However, Dutch Sheepdogs again became popular in their home country and other European countries. In the United States, this breed is still uncommon though.

Height: up to 18 inches  Weight: 26-50 lbs  Lifespan: 12-15 years


The Schapendoes has a very compact body, which makes him dynamic and active. This breed is characterized by great intelligence and courage and therefore excels at a variety of dog sports. Since Dutch Sheepdogs belong to the working breeds, they can withstand any type of weather. Nowadays, these dogs are very popular as family companions. Comparable Breeds: The Puli and Old English Sheepdog.


The Schapendoes is loyal to his master. He is tough, strong, smart and tireless. This dog gets along well with teenagers and pets within the family. Dutch Sheepdogs have wonderful a character, but they will not hesitate to bark when they feel threatened. This breed is distinguished by an independent mind.

Coat / Care:

The Schapendoes has a double coat. The outer layer is wavy, long, hard and thick, while the undercoat is soft and dense. The Dutch Sheepdog sheds sparingly, and he only changes the undercoat. This breed needs a daily brushing but should be bathed only when absolutely necessary. Make sure to use a mild shampoo. Also, it is recommended to clean the dog’s face, ears and paws on everyday basis. The Schapendoes has no genetic predisposition to health problems.


Early socialization and obedience training are very important for proper development of the Schapendoes. Hence, education has to be sufficiently rigorous and consistent.


Dutch Sheepdogs are very energetic and need serious physical exertion. Hence, these dogs are not suitable for living in an apartment or townhouse. Accordingly, the Schapendoes is best suited for life in the countryside, where he can spend quality time with his family.

Photo credit: Lovisa/Flickr

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