Breeds of dogs: Belgian Shepherd Groenendael

Breeds of dogs: Belgian Shepherd Groenendael

Origin, classification and history

Origin: Belgium.
F.C.I classification: Group 1 - shepherd dogs and cattle dogs (excluding Swiss cattle dogs).

Many authors and experts agree in assigning the role of creator of the Belgian Shepherd Dog Groenendael (Groenendal - Groenendaler) to Nicole Rosé, who was the first breeder. Rosé had the Groenendael castle, near Brussels, from which the breed took its name. The first name of the breed was precisely "Pastore Rosé". The history of the breed began with a mating, carried out by Rosé, between two of its specimens. The products and descendants of this mating were first exhibited in 1898 at the Brussels exhibition. In 1900 the Société Royal Saint Hubert gave permission to mr. Rosé to include in the national origins book the specimens of the new breed created. Subsequently the breed had a rapid spread and success enough to become a national breed. The breed subsequently declined in popularity, but then recovered around the 1950s. Currently there are four varieties of this breed, but at the beginning of its history they were considered five.

General aspect

Medium-sized medium-sized dog. It is harmoniously proportioned. Rustic, intelligent breed, accustomed to outdoor life, built to withstand seasonal weather and the so frequent atmospheric variations of the Belgian climate.
The breed must give an impression of elegant robustness. The breed includes four varieties of dogs, with the same structural and character characteristics, but which differ in the color of the coat and in the quality of the coat. Important measurements: body length, from the tip of the shoulder to the tip of the buttock, of 62 cm; back length, from the withers to the crest of the pelvis, of 41 cm; chest circumference behind the elbows, minimum 75 cm; chest height 31 cm; distance from the ground to the lowest point of the chest 31 cm; head length 25 cm; muzzle length from 12.5 to 13 cm.


The four varieties have identical behavioral characteristics. A dog very dedicated and fond of the family and his owner, he has an innate aptitude for the role of guardian of the flock and of the property. He is vigilant and attentive; his lively and questioning gaze denotes his intelligence. If necessary, he is, without hesitation, an excellent self-defense dog, who manages to bring out his indomitable courage and extraordinary agility. Tireless and affectionate playmate towards children.

Belgian Shepherd Groenendael (photo website)

Belgian Shepherd Groenendael (photo website)


- males 62 cm
- females 58 cm.
(Tolerance of 2 cm less and 4 cm more)
Weight: from 25 to 30 kg.

Trunk: it is powerful but without heaviness. The chest is not very wide, without however being tight. Chest not very wide, but on the other hand, deep and descended. The rib cage is circumscribed by the ribs which are arched in the upper part. Well accentuated withers. Straight, broad upper line with powerful musculature. Moderate developmental womb. Slightly sloping croup, wide but without excess.
Head and muzzle: well-chiseled, long, without exaggeration and dry. Skull and muzzle of equal length. Muzzle of medium length. Straight nasal bridge with parallel cranio-facial axes. Thin skin lips. Flat cheeks even if muscular. Moderate stop, non-prominent eyebrows. Medium-length skull.
Truffle: black, with well open nostrils.
Teeth: strong, white, regular, strongly implanted. Scissor closure.
Neck: well-loose gluing. Neck slightly elongated, well muscled, without dewlap. Nose slightly arched.
Ears: clearly triangular in appearance, rigid and straight, attached high, of proportionate length, shell well rounded at the base.
Eyes: medium in size, the shape is slightly almond-shaped, brownish in color, preferably dark.
Limbs: with compact bone structure, dry and strong musculature. Long and well muscled forearms. Short and strong pasterns; clean joints; without traces of rickets. Rather round feet. Powerful hindquarters with perpendicular perpendicular to the ground. Wide, heavily muscled thighs. Long and wide legs. Solid and short metatarsal.
Shoulder: long and oblique, well-fitting.
Gait: must be lively and loose, covering the ground as much as possible.
Musculature: powerful, especially in the hind limbs.
Tail: well placed, strong at the base, medium length.
Skin: elastic but tight on the whole body. Strongly pigmented external mucous membranes.
Hair: short on the head, on the external face of the ears, on the lower part of the limbs, except on the rear edge of the forearm which is garnished with long hair that extends to the elbow at the joints of the metacarpals, called fringe. Long and smooth coat on the rest of the body. Tail garnished with long and abundant hair, forming plume.
Allowed colors: only black.
Most common defects: too long hair, light prognathism, enognatism, silky hair, wavy or short hair, tufts of fine hair scattered with locks, tuft tail, non-standard sizes, colors not allowed, long muzzle, hanging ears, lack of premolars, incorrect gait, clear eyes, open feet, too straight shoulders, weak hind limbs, straight hocks, high carried tail, absence of undercoat.

curated by Vinattieri Federico -

Video: Belgian Shepherd Groenendael Dog breed (September 2021).