Beauceron is one of the most ancient purebred dogs originating in France. The impressive breed is more common in France and Western Europe than other parts of the world. This herding and guarding dog is not only adept at protecting livestock but is also considered as an excellent police and military dog.
The dog is good at competitive obedience and is skilled at detecting mines, picking up trails and other such tasks. In fact, these dogs were used by the French army during World War 2 for carrying food, ammunition and messages to the front line.
The breed shares its lineage with Briard. In fact, a man named Pierre Megnin differentiated these two types of sheepdogs in 1863. Certain other names for Beauceron dog breed are Beauce Shepherd, French Shorthaired Shepherd, Berger de Beauce, Bas Rouge etc. The breed is often mistaken as a mix of Rottweiler and German Shepherd dog breeds.
These large sized dogs are characterized by a sturdy and athletic build. The body tends to be longer than tall. Head is long but in proportion with the rest of the body. Eyes are dark brown in color and slightly oval in shape.
The high set ears are half pricked or drop-ears. They may be cropped or left natural. Cropped ears are carried upright. The well developed nose is proportionate to the muzzle and black in color. Tail is fringed and carried low.
Color: The hair coat is usually black and tan. Harlequin coat has patches of grey, black and tan.
Height: The average height of Beaucerons is 24 to 27.5 inches.
Weight: These dogs are generally 70 to 110 pounds in weight. The average weight of bitches ranges between 65 to 105 pounds.
Although these dogs are generally healthy, some lines may be susceptible to issues like bloating and Hip Dysplasia.
Life Expectancy: The average lifespan of these dogs is 10 to 12 years.
Litter Size: The average litter size is 7 puppies.
The short and smooth double hair coat of a Beauceron dog consisting of harsh, straight outer coat and wooly undercoat is easy to maintain. It simply needs to be brushed and combed on once or twice on a weekly basis.
A bit extra care would be required during shedding seasons when the coat sheds moderately. Other Beauceron grooming responsibilities include regularly trimming the nails, brushing teeth, checking and cleaning eyes and ears and so on. These dogs need to be bathed only when necessary.
Beauceron temperament is calm, intelligent, loyal, patient, obedient, courageous and protective. These dogs are affectionate and tolerant with kids. Due to their enormous size and strong herding instincts, supervision may be required around smaller children. However, they can be wary of strangers.
As for other household pets, they tend to get along well when raised with them. Beauceron puppies should be socialized right from the beginning to avoid possible problem behaviors.
Besides, these smart and devoted dogs are highly trainable. They need firm and consistent training. Apart from being devoted family pets, these alert and attentive dogs also make vigilant watchdogs.
These working dogs are moderately active indoors and do best when engaged constructively in a task. They need plenty of exercise. Therefore, it is recommended to take them out for long daily walks and let them run freely in safe open areas. Failure to provide adequate physical as well as mental stimulation can give rise to destructive dog behavior.
These energetic dogs do well in apartment situation as long as they are provided with sufficient opportunity to exercise. Hence, the dog should be provided with adequate amount of space in a large sized yard with proper fencing arrangement. Do not leave your beloved Beauceron alone for longer durations or else the dog is likely to suffer from separation anxiety.