Species group: Herding Group dogs
Other name(s): Belgian Groenendael; Belgian Sheepdog; Chien de Berger Belge
The Groenendael (Belgian Sheepdog) is one of four types of Belgian Shepherd, each variety differing in coat type and color-- this one being the long-haired black version. Exceptionally intelligent and courageous, Groenendael have been used to herd sheep, as police and war dogs, in drug detection, search and rescue, and as family companions and guards. This large, powerful breed is not a dog for the first-time owner. Intelligent and athletic, this working dog is happiest when it has something useful and interesting to do. However, it must be properly socialized and trained by a good dog psychologist who knows how to handle a dog with strong protective instincts.
Appearance / health:
The Groenendael is muscular. It is not heavy but has a proud carriage. The body is squarely proportioned. Its ears are triangular and erect. The muzzle tapers forward, but is not pointed. It has a flat skull that is parallel to the plain of the muzzle. The lips are tight, eyes are the brown and almond-shaped, and the nose is black. The chest, which reaches out to the elbow, is deep without being excessively broad or narrow. The hindquarters are muscular and the front legs are straight and parallel to each other. The Belgian Sheepdog has round cat-feet. The dewclaws are usually removed from both, front and hind legs. The feathered tail is long, reaching at least till the hocks.
The long, heavy outer coat and the dense undercoat require daily combing and brushing. This breed is a seasonal shedder, shedding heavily twice a year, with some additional shedding throughout the year; more care may need to be given when the dog is shedding. Mats, whenever formed, are clipped out, particularly in the ruff and on the legs, between the toes, and on the outer ears.
This working dog breed is accustomed to an active outdoor life. They need a lot of exercise, preferably off the leash as much as possible, in a safe area. It is ideal for Belgian Sheepdogs to go for walks for at least 45 minutes a day.
This is a hardy and healthy breed that has no major health issues. Some minor concerns include epilepsy, skin allergies, eye problems, excessive shyness, excessive aggressiveness, and occasional hip and elbow dysplasia (deformation of joints leading to lameness). This breed also has a tendency to become obese. Cataracts may sometimes develop between two and four years of age.
Behavior / temperament:
Belgian Sheepdogs are smart and obedient. They are loyal and thrive on loving companionship. This breed needs to be part of a family and may not take to being confined to a kennel; if left alone, the Belgian Sheepdog finds ways to entertain self, often at the owner's expense. This breed prefers to bond strongly with one or two people.
Belgian Sheepdogs are an intelligent breed and quick learners. They need extensive socialization from an early age, and gentle but consistent training by an experienced trainer. Harsh or overbearing training methods only serve to make them uncooperative. They are good for working and competition obedience. These dogs make excellent police and guard dogs. This type of work is their main occupation.
Belgian Sheepdogs bark loudly at outsiders, but are quiet otherwise.
good watch dogs, amazing dog, quiet dog, good guard, good family dogs
Socialisation, gentle hand
The way your dog's body was meant to be fed
There are so many misconceptions about raw feeding and I hope to quickly properly educate you so making an opinion for yourself is easier. I am a certified nutritionist for dogs and cats and the moment I finished my education I knew I needed to make better choices for my own personal dogs in regards to how I fed them. There are pros and cons to any feeding method so I cannot say it's going to be easy to know exactly what choices to make. The doubtful mind always says no, so anyone unfamiliar with anything is always hesitant. I see that a lot with other professionals in the field, specifically veterinarians. I am fortunate to have an integrative veterinarian who 100% supports this feeding method. Lets talk about the pros as there are many. There is no possible way to dispute that a dog's (especially cats) digestive system and teeth are designed for a diet of animal tissue, they are carnivores. Having jagged teeth throughout their mouth and a very short digestive tract, their bodies are not equipped to properly process plant material. Think of a cow's or sheep's flat teeth, made for grinding plants, and their 4 chambered stomachs, made to digest and assimilate nutrients from plants. They are herbivores. Feeding a diet of dry dog food, which is very heavy in plant based ingredients of many varieties,synthetic vitamins, and taste additives reeks havoc on their entire body systems over time. Some say feeding raw is expensive and time consuming. I'm part of a group with thousands and thousands of raw feeders around the world and we completely disagree. If you can follow a simple recipe you can make raw food for your pet. Learning how to shop for ingredients on sale and making relationships with local butchers is all you need to make it affordable. I feed two dogs raw cheaper than I wold purchasing an average quality dry food. It CAN be done if your pet's lifetime of health is important to you. There are so many support systems out there for this approach, it truly couldn't be any easier. The shelf life of raw food is far longer than that of dry food. Did you know that the nutrients and quality of dry food diminishes with the passing of each day? My dog's food is kept in a deep freezer and put in the refrigerator for thawing each night, ready for the next day. Freezing locks in all nutrients and can be kept for years without spoiling. Does your dog suffer from chronic conditions like ear infections and skin issues? Did you ever think it could be food related? Well let me tell you that it is. I have assisted with completely eradicating a host of chronic health issues in dogs and cats with diet alone. To most recently include a chihuahua with disc disease and no use of his hind legs. He now climbs steps and runs. He is 12 years old. No other therapy than a raw diet, regular massage, and one veterinary acupuncture visit. Let's talk about the cons. Now, most freeze dried and premade raw can be expensive for the amount you get. Feeding freeze dried is mostly for convenience. I use it when I need convenience like a weekend camping trip. I enjoy making my dog's food. There a lot of satisfaction in it for me. There is so much talk about bacteria like salmonella and e.coli when someone references raw food. Can it be present in raw food? Of course! But, did you know that your dry food can and does have the same bacteria? Dry and canned pet food recalls are a very common for bacteria. I have 100% control over the ingredients, processing, and storing of my pets raw food. Proper handling and sourcing of raw ingredients can and does deeply diminish the probability of bacteria. What about parasites? Again, yes of course raw materials can have parasites. As can dry and canned mass produced pet food. And again, the proper handling and sourcing of these ingredients remove this concern. (As a note: I have been raw feeding for over 5 years and NOT ONE of my dogs or clients have been treated for parasites or bacterial issues) Proper formulation can be a con to raw feeding. Honestly, its ridiculously easy. But without the proper ratio of ingredients you can cause issues. Companies make you think it is hard. They want to make you buy their product. It's a marketing scheme that works and unfortunately affects our pets negatively. I hope this review can shed light into the seemingly scary world of raw feeding. Educate yourselves and don't be afraid to jump in head first. Your pet's health and quality of life will be all the proof you need to know this is without a doubt the best decision you have ever made. .
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