Schapendoes - Dutch Sheepdog

Schapendoes is a native breed of Netherlands. This breed is used to herd sheep, cattle and livestock. This shaggy looking farm dog is in existence since centuries. Apart from herding skills, the breed is bestowed with jumping ability, agility and obedience task. The breed is devoid of aggression and timidness which makes them great family pet dog. They are ready to play with children 24x7; hence your children will find in them their best friend.

They are medium sized amusing dog who will certainly make you laugh your heart out through his entertaining gestures. The breed’s ultimate motive is to enjoy life. It is free spirited and a treat to have in house. Work keeps the dog happy, its heart pumped with joy if it is in charge of any sort of work. If you are not providing herding opportunity to your dog, minimum one-hour vigorous exercise is must for them.


Schapendoes Origin

The breed originated in Netherland and is a century old dog. It is treasured in its country for its ability to herd, and tireless happiness it gets from work. Experts believed that the breed is close acquainted with Old English sheepdog. Experts are also of the opinion that romans were responsible in spreading sheep dog to Netherlands and its close places. Schapendoes is a result of crossing of many herding dogs in Europe.

The primary job of the dog was to herd and protect sheep. As its hidden potential got exposed to shepherds, it became an indispensible part of their life. Till 20th century the dog was bred mostly for its working and herding abilities. Presently it is bred for companionship purpose too.



Schapendoes Characteristics

  • The dog belongs to Netherlands and is a herding dog.
  • It is a purebred, healthy and hearty dog.
  • Its long and double coat helps the dog to withstand any kind of climate and terrain.
  • They are cheerful, funny, courageous and affectionate dogs.
  • The dog has astounding ability to jump and excels in agility related dog’s sports.
  • It coat is wiry and sheds little. Grooming the dog is easy.
  • The dog is suitable for active person who can provide the dog vigorous physical exercise.
  • It lives around 12 to 15 years of age.
  • Weight of the dog is 12–25 kg.
  • Height of the dog is 43–50 cm.
  • They come in combination of two or three colors - black, gray, white, brown and blue-gray.
  • It is not a hypoallergenic breed.
  • Average cost of the puppy is $500 - $700 USD.


It is a long coated dog with a light and effortless movement of its feet which helps in jumping. The profuse amount of hair on its face makes it head look bigger and wider. It has a short muzzle with clearly defined stop. Its eyes are button like deeply set and brown in color. Ears are of medium sized which hang freely. Its tail is long and is covered with feathered kind of hair. The dogs have lighter bones and athletically build up body.

Size and Weight

Ideal height of the male breed is 43–50 cm and that of female breed is 40–47 cm. Weight of the male should be 12–25 kg and female should weigh around 12–20 kg.

Coat and Color

They have a thick coat which is in abundance. Its hair is long with slight waves but should never be silky. Length of the hair is 7 cm or more. Lower portion of their face is covered with moustache and beard. They come in combination of two or three colors - black, gray, white, brown and blue-gray. Generally black and grey is preferred but rest colors are also accepted.



  • Personality - It is a shaggy looking dog with gentle temperament. It has flexibility in its body movement and has springy legs that allow it to jump and run effortlessly. Like other sheepdogs they have independent disposition. They like to act on their own and can instantly transform their personality from sweet home dog to devoted farm dogs. Herding extinct is deeply embedded in their genes. Nothing can make the dog happier than to work on farm and move the sheep from one place to another. At home they are amusing and engaging companion always ready for play.
  • Behavior - The dog is elated and energetic breed. It excels in challenging task that involves agility and endurance.  The dog will remain calm nerved inside home if you fulfill his desire to play with fly ball, ball or chasing. They make excellent companion to kids because of their sociality and perpetually kind behavior. They have low prey drive which makes them ideal pet for families with other small animals.
  • Activities Requirement - A tired dog is a well behaved dog. The dog thrives in an open field where it gets the opportunity to herd sheep. But if it is devoid of that pleasure, it is necessary to engage the dog in other sorts of work. One hour of physical and mental stimulation is must for the dog. As it is excel in dog’s games so do make your dog participate in dog’s competition conducted from time to time. It does better if it has a field or yard to romp, jump and run.
  • Trainability - The dog is easy to train provided it is in right and firm hands. It is obedient to its master so it can learn any skills like picking up newspaper, opening the door, etc. It is important to treat the dog respectfully while in training. Positive reinforcement is always fruitful in training a dog.


It is a medium sized dog with enormous energy. It should be fed high quality food which is rich in proteins. Foods like beef, lamb, meat should be given to your dog.


It lives around 12 to 15 years.

Health Issues

The dog is hypoallergenic in nature. It is a healthy and hearty breed with no major health issues.



Their coat should be in natural shape. There is no need to trim or clip its hair. They shed lightly. Weekly brushing followed by two to three times combing is enough to keep its coat healthy. This will also prevent its hair from getting tangled and getting attracted to dirt and mats. The dog doesn’t have doggie odor so bath it only when it gets tremendously dirty. Brush its teeth, check its ears and trim its nails periodically.


It can thrive in any climate. It is suitable for house which has open space or is accompanied with yard.

Pet Names

  1. Dolly
  2. Myra
  3. Liza
  4. Tom
  5. Jack

Things To Consider Before Buying  


  1. It is a delightful companion that loves humans to the core.
  2. It is a social animal and your children and other pets are safe around this dog.
  3. The dog sheds lightly and requires infrequent grooming


  1. If you are not an active owner, the dog is not for you.
  2. If you have cozy apartment, the dog is not for you.
  3. It is not a hypoallergenic breed.

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