Belgian Shepherd (Laekinois) - Information and NZ Breed Standards

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Belgian Shepherd (Laekinois)

General Information - Belgian Shepherd (Laekinois)



10-12 years

Very high


Very high

Watchdog Ability:
Very high

Protection Ability:
Very high

Area of Origin:

Date of Origin:

Other Names:
Chien De Berger Belge

Original Function:
Stock herding


Towards the end of the 19th Century, there were many varieties of sheep-herding dogs that existed on the European continent. While many of these dogs shared similar working abilities, type was quite varied. Fanciers, fearing extinction of many of the breeds, gathered to decide on a set of standards that would be the Belgian Shepherd Dog. While there was little confusion surrounding the structure and abilities of the dog, there was no common ground on what the coat type or colour should be. Therefore, four distinct varieties of the one breed emerged, based on coat-type. They were the Groenendael (known in America as the Belgian Sheepdog), the Teuverian, the Malinois, and the Laekenois (not recognised by the AKC); these varieties were named after the area in which they were most favoured. These energetic, smart dogs fit well into family and need plenty of outdoor activity, and excel in obedience if given the opportunity. The Laekenois is the rarest of the four varieties.


These dogs exhibit the qualities inherent to true working dogs: alertness, protectiveness, confidence, extreme intelligence, and affection. This breed excels in obedience and makes a devoted family pet.


The Laekenois needs a good deal of exercise, either a good long jog or a long, strenuous play session. It needs room to move during the day and does best with access to a yard. Although it can live outdoors in temperate to cool climates, it is family-oriented and happier if it can share time in the house with its family. Its double coat needs brushing and combing twice weekly, more when shedding.

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