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Schipperke

 

We can neither confirm nor deny that the Schipperke line has a bit of demon dog in there somewhere. That smile sure makes her look like she's up to something, though. And she probably is: Schipperkes are intelligent, mischievous, intense, and bursting at the seams with canine curiosity.

Originally from Belgium, this small-sized breed can grow to between 10-16 pounds and lives an average of 12-14 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Non-Sporting group.

 

AKC RecognizedY
Breed's original pastimeCompanion
OriginBelgium
Breed groupNon-Sporting
Average lifespan12-14 years
SizeSmall
Bark factorI love to talk!
AKC Ranking78
FamilyScenthound, pointer
Date of origin1800s
Original function Ratting, companion
Today's functionCompanion
Average size of maleHeight: 11-13 Weight: 12-16
Average size of femaleHeight: 10-12 Weight: 10-14

 

Other nameNone
Energy level High energy
Exercise needs Medium
Playfullness Moderately playful
Affection level Very affectionate
Friendliness toward other dogs Friendly
Friendliness toward other pets Friendly
Friendliness toward strangersShy
Ease of training Moderately easy to train
Watchdog ability High
Protection ability Moderately protective
Grooming needs Low maintenance
Cold tolerance Medium tolerance
Heat tolerance Low tolerance

BEHAVIOR & TRAINING

WHAT IS A SCHIPPERKE'S PERSONALITY LIKE?

Schipperkes are perky and impudent little dogs, full of intensity and confidence. Their small size means that they'll play best with supervised children and other dogs. This breed bonds closely with her chosen people, but isn't overly effusive with strangers.

WHAT IS SCHIPPERKE BEHAVIOR LIKE?

The Schipperke is a very active little devil — no one can accuse this dog of having idle paws. And all that energy has to go somewhere. Schipperkes are natural diggers and explorers, so keep an eye on yours while she's out in the backyard. Left unattended for too long, this dog will re-landscape your hedges, dig her way under the fence, and follow the next interesting smell or furry critter to cross her path.

You might not know it to look at her, but the wee Schipperke was bred to work hard. Though most are companions these days, this breed will be happiest and healthiest with lots of time to run, explore, and play. They make willing watchdogs. Schipperkes can be vocal; be sure to discourage nuisance barking early and often.

HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A SCHIPPERKE?

Schipperkes are smart and amenable to training, but this breed definitely has a mind of her own. Be patient and consistent while training this furry rascal. Keep your training sessions fun and short. Reward good behaviors with play, praise, or treats. Schipperkes often participate in agility, obedience, rally, and herding events.

Their curiosity and prey drive make them poor candidates for off-leash play outside a well-fenced area. And we mean well fenced: this breed is more than determined enough to plow right through underground electronic deterrents.

CARE & HEALTH

HOW MUCH DO SCHIPPERKES SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?

Schipperkes shed moderately, and will blow their undercoats twice each year. Despite their lush locks, these dogs require only weekly brushing to keep them looking diabolically dashing. Bathe them as needed.

WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO SCHIPPERKES HAVE?

As a breed, Schipperkes are generally healthy. Some are susceptible to orthopedic problems, eye disease, or thyroid issues. Epilepsy also manifests in some Schipperkes. Legg-Perthes disease and mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS) type IIIB may also be a problem.

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