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Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael)

Belgian Shepherd Dog Groenendael Africa de 3fi Female
Photo with thanks to Mrs. Mirta Schefini www.pastoresbelgas3ficotondetulear.com

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Group Pastoral Dogs (KC)

Origin / History The Groenendael Belgian Shepherd is named after a village in Belgium and is among the four Belgian Sheepdog varieties. These Belgian Sheepdog varieties are the Groenendael, Laekenois, Malinois, and Tervuren. In most countries, these four varieties are considered as just one breed. In 1959, though, the American Kennel Club gave recognition to the Malinois, Tervuren, and Groenendael as dogs of separate breeds, but did not give recognition to the Laekenois. The United Kennel Club, however, recognizes all four as separate breeds.

Nicholas Rose, a dog breeder coming from Groenendael, Belgium, developed the Groenendael breed. Dogs Dogs of this breed have been used for herding, and even as war and police dogs during the first and second World Wars. Aside from that, they have also been helpful for drug detection, and search and rescues. Nowadays, they also make good family guardians and companions.

Appearance Groenendaels appear to be strong, athletic, rustic, balanced, and imposing. They should not look as if they have just been prepared for the show ring. Their coats should not give the appearance of inhibiting their working ability. They have long, double coats that have outer coats that are dense and hard. Their undercoat must be profuse and thick.

Colours These dogs should always be black, although markings of white on the chin, toes, or chest are acceptable.

Temperament This is the most popular among the four varieties of Belgian Shepherd Dogs. Dogs of this breed are highly intelligent and obedient. They are watchful and serious and have strong territorial and protective instincts. They can be very sensitive or shy, which is why owners should make it a point to socialize their dogs at an early age. These are great guard and police dogs, but they are excellent pets as well. As companions, they are watchful, loyal and alert. They can get along well with children just as long as they are properly socialized with them. These dogs should be made to feel that they are part of the family and should not be locked up inside a kennel.

Height and Weight They are 55-66 cm in height and 25 - 32 kgs in weight.

Common Health Problems These dogs are generally healthy and do not exhibit major health problems. They do have minor health issues, though, and among these are skin allergies, excessive shyness, epilepsy, eye problems, and excessive aggressiveness. They are also susceptible to becoming obese, which is why the owner should not make the mistake of overfeeding them. There have also been some cases of elbow and hip dysplasia.

Living Conditions They prefer living with their family, but they can sleep outdoors. Since these dogs can be relatively active when indoors, they can live inside apartments, although owners must make sure that their dogs get adequate exercise. It would also be good if they have an average-sized yard wherein they could play around.

Exercise Requirements Since these dogs need mental stimulation, it would be good if their owners could give them a sports training session or have them play complex games. These dogs also need much exercise, so they should be taken out on long jogs or walks. Owners should also spend some time playing with their dogs in the yard.

Training Requirements Training Groenendaels should be done with determination, but owners should also be gentle since these dogs do not take well to harsh treatment. To achieve the best results, training methods should be awards-based. Since these dogs require mental stimulation, training methods should have some variation and not just be rote drills. Obedience training as well as sport-specific training will greatly benefit the dog. They should also be socialized with other people and animals at an early age to make sure that they will become well-rounded when they grow older.

Life Expectancy Groenendaels have life spans that range from around 13 to 14 years.

Grooming These dogs have coats that need to be combed and brushed on a daily basis, especially when they are shedding. They are heavy shedders, but they shed seasonally, around twice a year with additional shedding during the rest of the year. Owners should make sure to remove mats that have formed, particularly on the legs and in the ruff. They should also clip the hair on the outer ears and in between the toes of their Groenendaels.

Famous Examples

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Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) Photos
Belgian Shepherd Dog Groenendael Belle Chienne de 3fi (female)
Belle Chienne de 3fi (female)
Belgian Shepherd Dog Groenendael Igor de 3fi (male)
Igor de 3fi (male)
Photo with thanks to Mrs. Mirta Schefini www.pastoresbelgas3ficotondetulear.com

 

 

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