Bouvier Des Flandres

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Species group:

Other name(s): Flanders Cattle Dog; Vlaamse Koehond

The basics:
The Bouvier des Flandres is a serious-minded working breed developed in Belgium to perform such tasks as hauling carts, droving cattle, herding sheep, and protecting farm and family. They are loyal to family but intimidating to intruders, and you will definitely need to know what you're doing to properly socialize this strong-minded dog. The herding urge means that this dog will sometimes nudge people or appear to be a bit pushy if not well-trained. However, their calm temperament means that they can make an excellent family dog. Despite their working heritage, they do know how to turn it off and relax. Indeed, some owners have reported that their pets are a tad lazy, so you may sometimes have to provide the motivation to get them to exercise.

As part of their farm dog history, this breed traditionally had cropped ears and tail, perhaps to avoid them getting caught while they were on the job. However, the practice of cropping is becoming a thing of the past. Indeed, it is illegal in most of Europe.

Appearance / health:
Bouvier des Flandres is a powerfully built, strong boned, well-muscled, rough-coated dog of notably rugged appearance. The head is in proportion to the body, accentuated by beard and mustache. The eyes are oval and dark brown in color. The nose is large and black with flared nostrils.

Bouviers need be thoroughly combed or brushed at least once a week to prevent matting. They need to thoroughly combed or brushed before giving them a bath to prevent matting. They may be trimmed once in two months. Toe nails can be trimmed once in a week. Ears should be checked and cleaned regularly. Occasional brushing using special toothpaste and toothbrush available at pet stores prevents tartar build up.

A long walk twice a day is necessary to keep the dog physically and mentally stimulated. Puppies can be taken for shorter walks.

Bouviers are prone to hip dysplasia (a hereditary disease that eventually causes lameness and arthritis of joints). They are also disposed to bloat (torsion) and volvulus (twisting of intestine).

Behavior / temperament:
Bouviers make excellent guard dogs. They thrive in the company of their owners and do not like to be left alone for more than few hours. Separation anxiety may lead to destructive behavior like digging and barking. They also have a tendency to chase moving objects.

They are intelligent, calm, and eager to please with a good attention span. Early basic obedience training is must for Bouviers as they can be difficult to control as an adult. They need to be trained firmly and consistently.

Is a Bouvier Des Flandres right for you?

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What owners are saying about Bouvier Des Flandres health

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What owners are saying about Bouvier Des Flandres behavior and training

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A Quirky, Playful, Beautiful Breed

If I had a dollar for every time someone stopped me in the dog park or on the street to tell me how beautiful my pet "bear" was, I'd have enough money to adopt all the Bouviers in the country. As a puppy, Bauer—named after Jack Bauer from 24—was very athletic. He loved to go...

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