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Belgian Sheepdog


  • Weight55 - 75 pounds (male), 45 - 60 pounds (female)
  • Height22.5 - 27.5 inches (male), 20.5 - 25.5 inches (female)
  • ColorsBlack
  • SheddingHigh
  • GroomingMedium
  • Energy LevelVery Active
  • Barking LevelBarks When Necessary
  • Life Expectancy: 11 - 14 years


The existence of the Belgian Sheepdog can be traced back to Belgium in the 1800s where they were used for centuries to herd sheep and even guard property. In 1910, the Groenendael (pronounced "groe-nen-dael"), heir to the name Belgian Sheepdog, was named after the kennel who selectively bred these solid black dogs since 1893. During the 19th century, Professor Adolphe Reul of the Belgian School of Veterinary Medicine categorized the shepherd dogs of Belgium into eight groups, which were further condensed to the four varieties we see today that includes the Groenendael (longhaired, black), Laekenois (wirehaired), Malinois (shorthaired), and Tervuren (longhaired, "blackened" fawn or mahogany). In Belgium, they are considered four varieties of the same breed since all coat types would appear in one litter. In addition to herding, the Groenendael has been used in police work, guardian positions, and as customs agents.


Although the Belgian Sheepdog, or Groenendael, is the most elegant-looking of the four varieties, they are also muscular, well-built, and hard-working herding dogs. Their striking black weather-resistant coat has a long-haired topcoat over an extremely dense undercoat. Tireless and determined, the Belgian Sheepdog can work for long hours and tends to move in circles rather than straight lines due to Belgian Sheepdogtheir herding instincts. Their dark brown eyes are slightly almond-shaped and they have triangular-shaped ears that stand straight up. The muzzle of the Groenendael is moderately pointed with a black nose to match the gorgeous dark color of the coat and they have a large sturdy tail that hangs low at rest.


Although known for their work ethic and watchdog capabilities, Belgian Sheepdogs are not all work and no play. They love spending time with their families and will follow their human from room to room. Noted for their alertness, independence, and confidence, the Belgian Groenendael is incredibly intelligent and requires plenty of socialization, positive reinforcement during obedience training, and dedication from a firm owner to prevent the independence and protective nature of the breed from leading into behavioral problems as an adult. They tend to enjoy being a playmate with well-behaved children of all ages but toddlers should be supervised since they do not tolerate rough play (pulling on the dog's hair, ears, and tail). Despite their high prey drive, Belgian Sheepdogs can learn to get along with cats and other dogs if they have been raised with them or properly socialized from puppyhood. These hard-working dogs are extremely active and require enough exercise to fulfill their herding background by running, participating in dog sports such as agility and flyball, or having access to a large yard with another dog for a playmate. Do not let their graceful appearance fool you, the Belgian Sheepdog can make a vigilant and keen protector that ensures their family is safe, but can also make a great companion for active families with well-mannered children.



Contact Us

Breeders Kennel Club, Inc.

PO Box 464723

Lawrenceville, Georgia 30042


Monday - Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm


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