Breeding group : Working
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GENERALBreed group: Working Type: Pure Breed
Talent: Agility, Competitive obedience, Military work, Narcotics detection, Police work, Search & rescue
PHYSICALSize: Large Weight: 55-66 pounds Fur length: Ears: Pointy Fur type: Straight
Fur Color: Black, Black & Brown, Dark Brown / Chocolate, Light Brown / Golden
ATTRIBUTESLife Expectancy: 10ÃÂ14 years Rarity: Common Availability: Hard to find
Climate: Good for every climate
The Belgium Shepherd, also termed as Belgian Shepherd or Chien de Berger Belge, is a breed of medium-to-large sized herding dog. It originated in Belgium and is similar to the other sheep herding dogs from their region. It includes the Dutch Shepherd Dog, German Shepherd Dog, the Briad and others. There are four types that have been identified by various registries as separate breeds or varieties, the Groenendael, Laekenois, Tervuren and Malinois. Each of the varieties are differentiated by hair colors and texture.
They commonly come in solid black. Others vary with combinations of tan, brown, black, sable or gray. They can come in basic black with a slight mixture of white on the paws or white spot on the chest.
The Belgium Shepherd has a coat that is stiff, thick, tight, double coated and can withstand the elements. It can be in medium or long in length, straight or slightly wavy.
Belgium Shepherd breeds are highly intelligent, alert, sensitive to everything going on around them and form very strong relationship bonds. They are loyal, fun, highly trainable and well suited to family life. Their herding heritage gives them a comparatively high energy level, and mental as well as physical exercise is necessary to keep a Belgian happy and healthy.
The Belgium Shepherds are afflicted with the most common dog health issues at rates similar to other breeds in general, reproductive, musculoskeletal and dermatological. They differ most notably from other breeds in the high incidence of seizures and/or epilepsy. This breed require a frequent daily brushing as they shed regularly, with seasonal heavy shedding. Bath when necessary and use a mild shampoo once or twice a year to clean out heavier dirt and to avoid drying out of skin. Food intake must also be monitored as they can easily get obese.
The Belgium Shepherd is not recommended for inexperienced owners. They have a strong protective instinct that requires an early intensive socialization and obedience training to refrain from dangerous territorialism when grown. Their training must be done with firmness, consistency, fairness and with positive reinforcement. They do not respond to harsh or heavy-handed methods which can possibly damage the dog's personality.
These breeds should receive plenty of socializing as puppies and will benefit from regular activity and close interaction with people throughout their lifespan. They do well in sports such as obedience training and dog agility. They are used as assistance and search and rescue dogs, as well as police, military and narcotic dogs. These breeds are moderately active indoors and will do best when given an access to an average sized yard to roam around. They will do okay in an apartment dwelling provided they are given sufficient exercise that they need. They can also be active outdoors and will need a lot of exercise, including a long daily walk.