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Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Dutch Shepherd Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Dutch Shepherd Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Dutch Shepherd

The Dutch Shepherd is a mid-sized breed with plenty of muscle. It’s generally calm and makes a great family pet but will also work as a herder, and some law enforcement agencies use them for tracking.

Breed Overview


22 – 24 inches


15 – 35 pounds


40 – 75 years


Brindle, gold, silver, red, black, brown

Suitable for

Family, herding, tracking


Affectionate, alert, loyal, and obedient

It’s a relaxed dog that is also alert and will make a great watchdog. If you would like to learn more about this interesting breed, keep reading while we take a deep dive to learn all we can learn about the Dutch Shepherd dog to see if it would make a good pet in your home.

Dutch Shepherd Dog Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.


Dutch Shepherd Puppies

dutch shepherd puppy_Nico Weinhold_Pixabay
Image by: Nico Weinhold, Pixabay

Higher quality breeders are going to be expensive, but you are more likely to receive a healthy dog with no genetic defects. If you didn’t pay for breeding rights, you would likely need to get the dog spayed or neutered as part of your contract.

You will also need to purchase vaccines and get your dog regular checkups to catch any potential illnesses early. Dog food treats and toys will be an ongoing expense that can add significantly to your costs each year.

Temperament & Intelligence of the Dutch Shepherd

Image by: Ksenia Raykova, Shutterstock

The Dutch Shepherd is an extremely loyal dog that builds a strong bond with family members and will protect them with its life. It’s very active and enjoys going for long walks. If it doesn’t get the attention and activity it needs, it might get destructive and tear up your furniture, bark, or dig holes in the yard.  It’s well behaved and gets along with children and other pets and can be quite friendly if socialized as a puppy.

The Dutch Shepherd dog is also extremely intelligent and easy to train to perform complex tasks. Many law enforcement agencies use them for tracking, but they also make great watchdogs, stable hands, and even pull heavy carts.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Yes. As we mentioned earlier, the Dutch Shepherd makes a fantastic pet that makes a great watchdog that will fiercely protect your home. It’s affectionate to family members and gets along well with small children and guests that come to your home. Early socialization will help your pet be more open to meeting strangers. It requires plenty of exercise, so a large family will find it easier to get the dog enough activity. More people will also make it easy to give your dog the attention it requires. It doesn’t like being ignored and can misbehave if it gets bored.

dutch-shepherd dog_mariuszopole_Pixabay
Image by: mariuszopole, Pixabay

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Your Dutch Shepherd will get along with most other dog breeds without any trouble. It usually makes friends with strange dogs quickly and shouldn’t have a problem making friends with any other dogs you have, and it doesn’t get into a lot of fights with other dogs when out on a walk, even when aggressive dogs approach it. However, it has a strong prey drive, so it will likely chase any rabbits and squirrels that come into your yard. It may also chase after your cats, but you might be able to get them to coexist with plenty of early socialization.


Things to Know When Owning a Dutch Shepherd Dog:

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Your Dutch Shepherd is a high-energy dog and will require plenty of high-quality protein to develop strong muscle. Protein will also provide your dog with energy and will help it feel full longer, so it doesn’t come looking for food. We recommend looking at the ingredients list and choosing brands that don’t use a lot of chemicals or dyes. It should contain chicken, beef, turkey, or other meat and include real fruits and vegetables. Brands fortified with omega3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation and will help promote a shiny and healthy coat. Probiotics can help balance the digestive system and can help reduce the frequency of diarrhea and constipation.

Dutch shepherd dog_Piqsels
Image by: Piqsels

Exercise 🐕

Your Dutch Shepherd is a hard-working dog with plenty of energy. We recommend setting aside at least one hour each day to make sure your dog gets enough activity. Long walks are its favorite, but it also enjoys running after a tennis ball or chasing a frisbee. Having multiple family members in the home will make it a lot easier to split up the hour into smaller, easier-to-manage segments.

Training 🎾

Your Dutch Shepherd is highly intelligent and easy to train. Holding short training sessions at the same time each day will help get your dog into a routine. It will look forward to learning new tricks and will arrive focused and ready. Plenty of positive reinforcement with treats and pets will make sure your dog is having a good time, and it will believe you are too. Consistency, patience, and keeping a light, fun atmosphere are critical to success. While this breed is smart, it can still take several weeks for your pet to learn a new trick.

Grooming ✂️

The Dutch Shepherd is available in three coats, and the amount of maintenance required will depend on the length of the coat. Shorter coats will only require weekly brushing, while the long fur will need brushing three times a week or more, especially during the shedding seasons of spring and fall. Some owners may even get the long coat professionally groomed every few months to keep it manageable and tangle-free.

We recommend manually brushing your pet’s teeth as frequently as possible to help slow the progression of dental disease, and you will need to clip the nails if you hear them clicking on the floor.

dutch shepherd_petrahagedorn_Pixabay
Image by: petrahagedorn, Pixabay

Health and Conditions 🏥

Minor Conditions
  • Obesity

Because your dog is so active, not getting enough exercise can easily cause it to become obese. Obesity is a serious concern among dogs in the United States, with many experts claiming that as many as 56% of dogs needing to lose weight. Obesity can lead to a wide range of health problems, including heart disease and diabetes, which can shorten the lifespan of your pet. Plenty of exercise and closely following the potion size on high-quality dog food are the best ways to keep your dog healthy.

Serious Conditions
  • Hip Dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia is a condition that affects the hip joint of many dog breeds, especially active dogs like the Dutch Shepherd and large dogs like the Saint Bernard. Luckily, this is a genetic condition that is becoming much less common because skilled breeders can sometimes find and breed it out. Hip dysplasia causes the joint to form incorrectly, so it doesn’t move smoothly and wears down quickly as the dog ages. Obesity and high activity put stress on the joint, causing it to wear down faster. Symptoms include difficulty getting up and a reluctance to climb stairs. Your vet will usually treat it with weight management, medication, and surgery.

divider-pawMale vs Female

The Dutch Shepherd is one of the few pure breeds to have very little difference between males and females, with both having the same standard height, weight, and temperament.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Dutch Shepherd Dog

1. The Dutch Shepherd is so curly that you cannot see the brindle pattern.

2. Dutch Shepherd dogs are often charged with taking the sheep out to the pasture in the morning and returning them at night.

3. The Dutch Shepherd Dog first appeared in 1898.


Final Thoughts

The Dutch Shepherd is an amazing dog that makes a great family pet and is also suitable as a working dog. It’s strong enough to pull carts, smart enough to learn complex tasks, and help search for missing people, and it also makes a great watchdog that doesn’t bark too much. It can get into trouble if left unattended too long or you are not giving it enough attention, but a large family can help it stay entertained and active.

We hope you have enjoyed our look into this somewhat rare breed and have learned something new. If we have convinced you to get one of these dogs for your home, please share this guide to the Dutch Shepherd dog on Facebook and Twitter.

Featured Image Credit: baerle97, Pixabay

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