Breed Organization American Dutch Shepherd Association Website:
http://www.americandutchshepherdassoc.org Native Country Netherlands Other Names Dutch Shepherd, Hollandse Herdershond Life Expectancy Approximately 12-14 Years Litter Size Average 8-10 Puppies Breed Group Herding - AKC/FSS
Breed Appearance The Dutch Shepherd is a medium-sized, medium
weight, well-proportioned, well-muscled dog of powerful,
well-balanced structure, with intelligent expression and lively
temperament. Depending on the coat the breed is distinguished as
short-hair, long-hair, or rough-hair.
Short-hair: All over the body, quite hard, close-fitting, not too
short coat with woolly undercoat. Ruff, breeches and tail plume are
Long-hair: All over the body, long,
straight, well fitting, harsh to the touch, without curls or waves
and with a woolly undercoat. Distinct ruff and breeches. Tail
abundantly coated. Head, ears and feet and also the hind legs below
the hocks are short and densely coated. The backsides of the
forelegs show a strongly developed coat, shortening in length
towards the feet, the so-called feathering. No fringes at the ears.
Rough-hair: Dense, harsh tousled coat and a woolly, dense undercoat
all over the body except for the head. The coat should be close.
Upper- and lower lip should be well-covered with hair, the whiskers
and beard, and two well defined, coarse rough eyebrows that are
distinct but not exaggerated. Furnishings are not soft. The hair on
the skull and on the cheeks is less strongly developed. In profile
it seems as if the head has a more square appearance. Strongly
developed breeches are desirable. Tail is covered all round with
hair. The brindle color may be less pronounced because of the
Color Brindle: The basic color is golden or
silver. Golden can vary from light sand-colored to chestnut red. The
brindle is clearly present all over the body, in the ruff, breeches
and tail. Too much black is undesirable. A black mask is preferable.
Heavy white markings on chest or feet is not desirable.
Breed Description Head: Clean, long, not massive. The
rough-haired variety has a slightly more blocky head. Straight
forehead. Stop barely perceptible. The muzzle is slightly longer
than the skull. Ears: Small, erect, held forward. Rounded ears are not
permitted. Eyes: Almond-shaped, of medium size. Dark color. Body: Solid and well-balanced. No dewlap. Deep chest. Ribs are
slightly sprung. Solid loin. Straight, short, powerful back. Tail: Attached low, hanging in a slight curve. Reaches the
hocks when relaxed; carried high when in motion. Hair: The most common variety has short hair over all of the
body, with a wooly undercoat. Collarette, culottes, and flag tail.
Long-haired variety has long hair over all of the body lying close
to the body. Straight, harsh, not wavy or curly, with a wooly
undercoat. Tail is covered with long, thick hair. The rough-haired
variety has thick, wiry hair over all of the body, held away from
the body by a thick, wooly undercoat. Dense, long hair on tail and
long culottes. Coat: Short and long-haired varieties: shades of brindle on a
brown or gray background. Black mask preferred. Rough-haired
variety: blue-gray, salt and pepper, gold or silver brindle Size: Dog: 57 to 62 cm. (22.5-24.5 in).Bitch: 55 to 60 cm
(21.6-23.6 in). Weight: Approx. 30 kg. (66 lb).
History The Dutch Shepherd was discovered as a
naturally occurring shepherd's dog type living in the rural areas of
the larger region that today includes The Netherlands. When the
first breed standard was written in 1898, the coat could be any
color. But in 1914 it was decided to allow only brindle to
distinguish the breed from the then similar German Shepherd and
Belgian Shepherd. The breeds eventually diverged into the three
distinct breeds as known today. However, the Dutch Shepherd remains
nearly the same dog it was more than 100 years ago. Today the Dutch
Shepherd is distinguished from the Belgian and German Shepherds by
the details specified in the breed standard, primarily of the head.
Behavior This lively, rustic breed has great endurance
and is an excellent jumper. He is affectionate, calm, loyal, gentle
with children, and very attached to his owner. The Dutch Shepherd is
fairly aggressive toward other dogs. A guard dog to the core, he
makes an excellent army or police dog.
Health The breed has no serious physical or mental
Advice This dog needs heavy physical activity on a
daily basis. The three hair-types require weekly brushing.
Function Originally the main function of the Dutch
Shepherd Dog was that of a shepherd’s dog in the countryside. From
early times, the Dutch had an arable culture that was maintained by
flocks of sheep. The dogs had to keep the flock away from the crops,
which they did by patrolling the borders of the road and the fields.
They also accompanied the flocks on their way to the common meadows,
markets and ports. At the farm, they kept the hens away from the
kitchen garden, they herded the cows together for milking and pulled
the milk carts. They also alerted the farmers when strangers entered
the farmyard. Around 1900, sheep flocks had for the greater part
disappeared in the Netherlands. The versatile skills of the Dutch
Shepherd Dog made him suitable for dog training, which was then
starting to become popular. They were then trained and used as
police dogs, as search and tracking dogs, and as guide dogs for the
blind. They are, however, still capable of herding sheep.