Belgian Sheepdog

History/Evolution:

Known as the Groenendael, or Chien de Berger Beige in most parts of the world, the Belgian Sheepdog traces its origins to the late 1800s. Like all Belgian shepherds, the breed was an accomplished herder and guard. In the early 1900s Belgian Sheepdogs were gaining a reputation as police dogs. During World War I and II, they served as sentry dogs, message carriers, and ambulance dogs. Today they continue to serve society well, as guide and therapy dogs and as devoted companions.


Size:

Medium to large; females 22 to 24 inches, 40 to 60 pounds; males 25 to 26 inches, 50 to 75 pounds.

Color:

Black.

Temperament:

Watchful, attentive, courageous, and intense; possessive and aggressive toward dogs and animals. Intelligent but independent. Aloof with strangers.

Energy level:

High.

Best owner:

Patient but firm owner with time for training and socialization.

Needs:

Tolerance with shedding and weekly brushing, fenced yard, cool climate, plenty of mental and physical stimulation (herding trials).

Life expectancy:

10 to 12 years.