Bouvier Des Flandres Breed Summary
Strong-Willed, Protective, Loyal, Dominant and Intelligent
These dogs have an extremely powerful presence and were originally bred to herd livestock in Belgium and France. They are known for their unique and impressive moustaches and beards, which give them a stern appearance.
They are extremely kind and gentle by nature and have very even temperaments. For these reasons they make wonderful family pets!
Fun Fact: Ronald Reagan, former President of the United States, owned one of these dogs!
|Kennel Club Group||Herding|
|Lifespan||10 - 12 Years|
|Height (at the withers)||Males 24.5in - 27.5in, Females 23.5in - 26.5in|
|Weight||Males and Females 70lb - 110lb|
|Coat||They have an Abundance of Hair, both Thick and Coarse. The Outer Coat is Shaggy and Shorted on a Dogs Legs. The Undercoat is Grained and Very Dense|
|Color||Black, Black and brindle, Blonde, Brindle, Brown brindle, Dark brindle, Dark gray brindle, Fawn, Fawn black mask, Gray brindle, Light brindle|
|Common health issues||Hip dysplasia, Cataracts, Eye problems, Elbow dysplasia, Hypothyroidism, Lymphosarcoma (Form of Cancer), Ovarian Cysts|
|Other Names||Flanders Cattle Dog, Vlaamse Koehond, Bouvier, Belgian Cattle Dog|
Bouvier des Flandres's are very strong-willed, given their history of herding and protecting flocks of sheep. For this reason, they are also inherently protective over their families, not in the obvious way like a Lab but they will happily curl up next to you as a sign of love. This also means they can't be left alone for long periods of time, as it will result in them developing destructive behaviors. Having a strong personality, it's vital your dog knows their place in the hierarchy. Without showing your dog leadership, they will try to take your place, so need to begin training as young as possible.
Bouvier des Flandres translates from French to 'cow herder from Flandres' so it's really no shock that they were originally bred to herd cattle! However, they were also used for pulling carts and helping the farmers family in whatever way possible, so we can only assume they were developed as a matter of practicality. Although we don't officially know the ancestry of these dogs, it's thought the Bouvier des Flandres's ancestors may include Sheepdogs, Dutch Griffons and Barbets. During WW1 and 2 many of these guys were used as messenger and search dogs! They were officially recognized by the Kennel Club in 1929 with a breed standard being put in place in 1912.