The Laekenois is a type of Belgian Sheepdog. It has an original appearance and is quite smart. It is the only type of Belgian Sheepdog not recognized by the American Kennel Club.
The Laekenois is a herd dog with a muscular build, but a light appearance. They are a light brown to a rich red in color with black stomach areas. They have a pointy muzzle and very small ears. They have an unruly wiry coat that is shaggy in appearance. They are very eager to please and have great natural tendencies to be guard dog.
The Laekenois is known for its fur. It has a woolly and thick coat. Most often they are white or brown in color but they can be found all over the world in different color variations. The coat often requires care to keep it from tangling. The Laekenois coat is waterproof as well.
The Laekenois was bred in Belgium and known as the Belgium Sheepdog. The breed is known under different names around the world and can be in a variety of different colors. The Laekenois has historically been known as a herding dog. Today they are used as guard dogs and police dogs. With good training in social skills they can be good pets, as well.
The Laekenois is a good family pet that needs early social skills installed in order to be good around people. They need a firm hand, but need to be treated gentle to respond well. They may not interact well with other animals and tend to herd them more than anything. They do need to be part of a family and so do not react well to isolation. They can be rather territorial but good social training can curb this natural instinct. They need one specific owner whom they will become attached and will listen to. They can become rather clingy to their chosen master.
The Laekenois is active and has a lot of energy that requires plenty of physical activity and attention. They are not a breed to just lie around, but rather prefer to be stimulated in some way. They are best as a work dog of some kind.
This breed can become withdrawn and lose confidence in themselves when they do not receive enough attention. This can be done through good training. They need to feel accomplished, which is just a part of their natural breeding. They need a job and they will be lost without one.
The Laekenois is a healthy breed that does not usually have health problems. However, they can often fall victim to hip dysplasia which is common in larger dogs. They may also suffer from skin problems and eye problems. Overall, though, choosing a good bred dog will keep most problems away. Problems with the skin can often be avoided through good grooming, which means bathing only when it is needed and not to an excess.
The Laekenois are not demanding as far as grooming goes. They need their coat detangled when needed and a trim two times a year. They are not a shedding breed so that is not a concern. They should only be bathed when absolutely necessary.
The Laekenois should also have regular nail trimming and good dental care to prevent health problems.
The Laekenois is a work dog and as such needs plenty of physical activity daily. They need to be stimulated mental as well. They love to play and this can make for good exercise of the breed. Regular exercise is important, though, because without it they will develop behavior problems. They do well with constant training and may also be great at joining performance groups.
Laekenois training should always be challenging to the dog. They need to be stimulated and work hard. They are willing to learn and eager to do things that makes their master happy, so they are up for almost any type of training you will give them. They are very smart and agile, so you can try out different types of training and see what works best for your particular dog.
They need a confident trainer who can react to them in a firm, but loving manner. Sometimes new owners may find they need to hire a professional or enroll in a group training to be most efficient. They are responsive to positive reinforcement and will ac out if negatively treated.
The Laekenois needs good socialization. This helps them to learn how to react to people and curbs the tendency to be shy. Their natural instincts as a herd dog may also be reduced by good training. They need constant reassurance or they can lack confidence in themselves which can lead to social problems.
It is important to keep in mind that this is a really metal breed of dog. They need more mental challenge than physical challenge. They need to be approached with a training manner that reflects this.