Species group: Non-Sporting Group dogs
Other name(s): Kees; Keeshonden; Dutch Barge Dog; Smiling Dutchman; Chien Loup; German Spitz; Deutscher Wolfsspitz
The Keeshond looks like it was born to be cuddled, but this adorable Spitz-type dog is more than just a powder puff. For centuries, the so-called Dutch Barge Dog was employed as a watchdog on riverboats, farms, and barges, and they still have something of a tendency to bark. However, they are not a ferocious animal. In fact, the bark is often more of a greeting than a threat. And they are extremely well-regarded for their gentleness with children and their desire to involve themselves in family life. Don't toss them in a backyard and expect them to be happy. They want to be part of things with their people.
Some individuals can be sensitive or even timid. Socialize them early and with lots of love, praise, and food rewards.
Appearance / health:
The Keeshond is a medium-sized, square dog with a fox-like appearance. The dark brown, almond-shaped eyes are of medium size. The triangular ears are small, mounted on high, and carried erect. Unique markings and shadings surround the eyes giving the impression of intelligence and alertness. The wedge-shaped head exhibits a definite stop. The neck is covered with a mane. The tail is moderately long and well feathered.
Regular weekly brushing is necessary to keep the coat in good shape. Keeshonden are average shedders though they shed heavily twice a year.
They do not require too much exercise though a daily walk is necessary to keep them healthy and happy.
Hip dysplasia (abnormal hip formation that can cause lameness) is common in Keeshonden. Luxating patella, or dislocation of the kneecaps, may occur in some dogs. Some dogs may develop thyroid and eye problems.
Behavior / temperament:
Keeshonden love to be with their owners. They love to greet people they know by displaying an expression that may appear to be grinning. When left alone for too long, some Keeshonden may indulge in destructive behavior such as excessive barking, digging, chewing, or escaping. Some Keeshonden love snow. They express themselves through "talking", and tend to bark often. They rarely bite.
Training a Keeshond may be a challenge. Patient, firm, and kind training along with early socialization are necessary for this otherwise intelligent breed.
Some Keeshonden bark a lot.
intelligent, happy dogs, ideal family pet, Kees beautiful coat, wonderful temperment
barking, warm climates, High Maintenance, grooming, recreational barkers
good vacuum, excellent watch dogs, Wonderful Family Addition, people especially children
"As a purebred Keeshound, Hans had all the markings of his breed. He had the distinctive gray/silver lion-like ruff, the tightly curled tail, and the full double-coat. As a medium sized dog, Hans weighed around 35 to 40 pounds. <br><br>With the thick double-coat, Hans required daily brushing, especially after an outdoor evening run. Twice a year, he shed his undercoat, so trips to the groomer were necessary during these times. In his mid-age, we began buzzing off his coat, but leaving the ruff and tail, and fur around his legs. Not only did Hans love having his coat this way, he looked like a mini-lion dog!<br><br>Hans was a playful companion, and he enjoyed running outside in the evenings, playing fetch with flying discs, and loved to play with our German Shepard. Any time Hans could get outside to run, he certainly was in his element. <br><br>He was also an excellent guard and watchdog. If Hans heard any movement outside, he’d run from window to window, barking at the neighbor walking down the street or the mail carrier delivering mail. <br>While he was a great protector, he was also timid. New people, objects or sounds caused him to tuck his tail between his legs. It would take time for him to adjust to new things in his immediate surroundings.<br><br>Hans did wonderfully with obedience training. He was easy to train, and he enjoyed learning new tricks. He was especially keen and had a good wit about himself. <br><br>Overall, Keeshounds require constant companionship. They don’t like to be left alone too long and do like to have their noses into everything. <br><br>The image of the Keeshound was taken by "Keeshond beech" by JB (John) - Flickr. Licensed under CC BY 2.0."
From esteebeck Jun 28 2015 3:01PM
"I got my Keeshond, Haku, when he was about 4 month old. By the time I got him I was amazed to find that he was already somewhat potty trained and crate trained!<br><br>Haku was a great dog. Unfortunately, due to financial issues, I had to give him to a friend. But in the time that I had him I was so happy and in love with my dog!<br><br>Keeshonds are absolutely beautiful dogs. They are usually black and grey in color and have big fluffy fur and curly tails. Because they have so much fur they require regular brushing and grooming, as well as baths. They are medium sized dogs, so walks are important to keep them healthy and happy. <br><br>Keeshonds are very affectionate. There were times when I was upset, and it was almost as if Haku could sense that a cuddle and lick would help. They become very attached to their owners and will protect you no matter what. Because of how attached they get, they do not like being left alone for very long, so if you have a very busy life this might not be the right breed for you. They can be crate trained very easily, but they don't really like being in the crate.<br><br>Keeshonds live to please their owners.<br>Haku was extremely easy to potty train. I was able to fully potty train him in about two weeks! He also learned basic commands in a very short period of time. <br>The trick to training a Keeshond is being gentle, but firm. Don't yell at the dog as this breed does not respond to that type of training. Make it clear that you are in charge while remaining gentle.<br><br>Haku was also a very good guard dog. He was always aware of his surroundings and was very protective of me. This was good and bad, as he barked a lot, especially when he heard knocks on the door or if people were sitting on our porch. He also growled at large men, but never, ever attacked anyone. <br><br>Keeshonds, in my experience, are good with kids. They are very gentle with younger children especially, never once was my two year old sister bitten or scratched by Haku. With the me and older kids, he would run, fetch, and play tug of war. Haku also did well with my guinea pigs, my roommate's cat, and other dogs. He was cautious, but playful with other animals. <br><br>Keeshonds can swim well and seem to really love water. The first time I took Haku to the beach he jumped right in! <br><br>Overall, I think with the right training and attention, Keeshonds make fabulous companions. They do well with big and small families alike and will do just as well if it's just you. I will definitely be looking back into this breed in the future.."
From MaddyAshwell Aug 4 2015 1:30PM
"Nikki was my family dog growing up. She was beautiful and very, very sweet. Unfortunately, we were not the right type of family for her. Let me explain why.<br><br>First of all, Nikki required more attention than a busy family with teenagers and two working parents could possibly give. She wanted to be involved in everything and hated to be left alone. Her attention-seeking behavior was not simply nuzzling you in hopes of being pet. She would put her face in yours and pant relentlessly. Even guests quickly tired of her in-your-face nature. If she didn't get what she was looking for, she'd get into things: the trash, the cat litter box, or your dirty clothes. She eventually started chewing the corners of the walls.<br><br>On top of her energy level and neediness, her grooming needs far exceeding the resources of a working-class family. She needed to be brushed daily and professionally groomed at least once per month. We just couldn't afford to do that.<br><br>In summary, my experience with this breed is that they would be perfect for a retired person or couple with plenty of free time and disposable income. Had she received the affection she needed, Nikki would have been the perfect dog. However, she was way too high maintenance for my family.<br><br>Photo credit: "Keeshond image 001" by Flickr user dancing_with_wolves . Photo cropped by commons user ltshears - Flickr here. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Keeshond_image_001.jpg#/media/File:Keeshond_image_001.jpg."
From rbtarr Mar 28 2015 3:00PM