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Belgian Shepherd Dog
Belgian Shepherd Dog (Laeken)
Chien de Berger Belge
|Country of origin
The Belgian Shepherd Dog (Laekenois) is a breed of dog, sometimes classified as a variety of the Belgian
Shepherd Dog rather than as a separate breed. The Laekenois is
not fully recognized in the United States. However, they can be shown
in Britain, along with all three of the closely related breeds
which share a heritage with the Laekenois: the Tervuren, the Malinois, and the Groenendael, the
last being shown in the U.S. as the Belgian Sheepdog.
Like all Belgian Shepherds, the Laekenois is a medium-sized,
hard-working, square-proportioned dog in the sheepdog family with sharply triangular
ears. The Laekenois is recognized by its woolly brown and white
coat, intermixed so as to give a tweedy appearance. Most kennel
clubs' standards allow for black shading, principally in muzzle and
tail, indicating the presence of the melanistic mask gene.
The Belgian Laekenois originated as a sheep herding dog at the
Royal Castle of Laeken. It is
considered both the oldest and the most rare of the Belgian
Shepherd Dogs. Until the advent of dog shows in the early 1900's,
the four varieties were freely intermixed, in fact, there are only
three genes (short/long coat, smooth/wire coat, fawn/black coat)
that separate the varieties genetically. Purebred Laekenois
occasionally give birth to smooth-coated puppies, which, depending
on the pure-bred registry, can be registered as Malinois.
See Health section of Belgian Shepherd
for more information.
Dog". http://www.seefido.com/html/belgian_shepherd_groenendael__.htm. Retrieved