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Schapendoes Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Schapendoes so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Working Dogs
Popularity Rank336
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Other Names
What other names does the Schapendoes have? The dog breed also known as...
Dutch Schapendoes, Nederlandse Schapendoes
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
AKC Group
Is Schapendoes recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Not recognized by the American Kennel Club.
FCI Group
Is Schapendoes recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Sheepdogs and Cattledogs (except Swiss Cattledogs) group, in the Sheepdogs section.
How much does the Schapendoes puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it? Schapendoes price:
If you choose to purchase the Schapendoes, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Schapendoes for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Schapendoes gets to a happy place.


The Schapendoes, also known as “Nederlandse Schapendoes”, is the sheepdog of Holland. With the rough, dense, long coat and drop ears, the breed is physically similar to the Beardie, Puli, and other European varieties. Very little is known with certainty about the breed but according to experts the rootstock is believed to be the same as that of Briard, Bearded Colie, and Bergamasco. Although the Dutch Sheepdog has been in existence for many centuries, they are not well known by many people. They did not attract the attention of the royalty back in the time but remained a dog of common people, therefore they were rarely found in art or literature.

Although the origins of the Schapendoes will probably never be fully known, a few stories and hypotheses developed over the years. Some have theorized that the Romans brought their sheep herding dogs to Belgium, from where they spread to the Netherlands. On the other hand, others believe that the Germanic tribes possessed a long-coated sheepdog very similar to the Sheep Poodle, which would explain the distribution of such dogs across lands that were settled at one time or another by German speakers. Still, others think that these dogs might have been introduced much more recently by Dutch wool traders who may have acquired English dogs while doing business in London. However, until more evidence is discovered we cannot actually know the truth.

Moreover, what we know for sure is that the Schapendoes was an all-around farm dog and sheepherder in the 19th and early 20th centuries, most commonly found in the province of Drenthe, in the northeast part of the country. The shepherds valued the breed for the tireless pleasure they took in their work and also for their intelligence. However, eventually, the flocks of Dutch sheep were taken care of by two sorts of shepherd dogs. The larger of the two, the Dutch Shepherd and the smaller hairier now known as the Schapendoes. These two land breeds had complementary tasks with the herd. The Dutch Shepherd was the herder, who kept the herd together once they reached their destination, and the Shapendoes was the drover, whose job was to bring the flock to the destination. However, the native sheep dog’s popularity in its home country declined and one of the reasons behind this was the importation of the English Border Collies. Being imported from the United Kingdom, the Border Collie proved to be so successful at herding sheep in the Netherlands that it largely replaced the Schapendoes and other native breeds. However, the breed remained relatively popular among the Dutch farmers who preferred to use their traditional breed right up until World War II. World War II generally impacted the future of the breed, as, despite the country’s attempt to remain neutral, the Netherlands was occupied by Nazi forces. The German occupation placed a substantial hardship on the Dutch people and their dogs. Some Schapendoes dies in the blitzkrieg or in the resistance movement. Also, many farmers were forced to abandon their dogs when they could no longer afford to care for them. Breeding almost fully ceased.

However, there was a Dutch inspector and publicist, P.M.C. Toepoel, who discussed the breed’s characteristics with others who were also interested in the breed. He became the driving force behind preserving the Schapendoes. Furthermore, he gathered a group of experts and dedicated breeders that gave the breed a solid foundation, and in the 1940s the first specimens were shown. Their cheerful and playful temperaments, with their rough and tumble appeal, increased the Schapendoes’s popularity. The growth in numbers has been tempered with caution by wise breeders and eventually, the breed became known in several European countries as well. In 1947 the breed club was founded, and 5 years later the Schapendoes was recognized by the Kennel Club in Holland. In 1954 the standard was set up and a studbook started. At the beginning of the 70’s the closure of the breed registry started which meant that the dogs of unknown heritage could no longer be involved in the breed registry. However, it had progressed far enough to be able to carry on using only dogs with certain ancestry. Thanks to the people who dedicated themselves to reconstruct the breed, the sheepdogs are still working in their native land, firmly nudging the animals with their noses and shoulders. Their weather-resistant coats serve them well in the harsh weather as well. In 1989, the breed was also recognized internationally by the Federation Cynologique International (FCI). The first Shcapendoes arrived in Canada in 1998 and in 2005 the Canadian kennel Club also fully recognized the breed in the ‘herding group’ under the name of ‘Dutch Sheepdog’. A year later, in 2006, the United Kennel Club granted full recognition to the Schapendoes as a member of the herding dog group as well.

General Appearance

What size is this breed? How big is this dog? Schapendoes size:
How much does the Schapendoes weigh? Schapendoes weight:
26-55 pounds (12-25 kg)
Avg. Weight
What is the average weight of the Schapendoes? Schapendoes average weight:
40.5 pounds (18.5 kg)
How tall is the Schapendoes? Schapendoes height:
15-19 inches (40-50 cm)
Avg. Height
What is the average height of this fido? Schapendoes average height:
17 inches (45 cm)

Hair & Care

What type of coat does the Schapendoes have? What does this canine coat look like?
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Schapendoes's coat?
BrownTricolorBlue GrayWhiteBlack
How to groom the Schapendoes and how often?
Easy to groom: The Schapendoes doesn't require a lot of grooming. Seasonal flea treatment is needed, but cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer isn't necessary. Ears and eyes should be cleaned regularly to avoid infections. Schapendoes is a good choice if you don't have the time, skill or money to take care of a high maintenance dog. Recommended for beginners.
Shedding Level
How much do Schapendoes dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Dutch Schapendoes? Schapendoes shedding level:
Schapendoess shed moderately. It's a natural process of the hair growth cycle. Regular brushing reduces the amount of hair that sheds. It mostly depends on their health status and breed type.


What kind of personality does the Schapendoes have? What characteristics does the breed have?
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Schapendoes? Are they intelligent?
Average: Schapendoes's has average obedience intelligence. Patience is needed for teaching this breed to any tricks and commands though, but it's worth the effort. They understand and memorize new commands in 25-40 repetitions. This breed obeys for the first command 50% of the time or better.
Are Schapendoes dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Schapendoess are quite easy to train. Sometimes they can be challenging, but if you're consistent in teaching new commands they will obey for sure.
How playful is this breed?
The Schapendoes is a playful breed. Excited barking and sometimes nipping will alert you to play.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Schapendoes sensitivity:
They are a little bit more sensitive than other dog breeds. Soft punishment affects them emotionally. Schapendoess don't tolerate irregular daily routine, noisy household and frequent guest visits really well. They are receptive to their owner's emotions and make wonderful family companions.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they?
Schapendoess are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers. They enjoy quality time with their owners despite the activity and considered as a great therapy dog for those in need. This breed responds strongly to their handler's emotions because they bond closely. Their happiness is your happiness.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Dutch Schapendoes need? Schapendoes social needs:
Schapendoess are a social breed. They enjoy being around people or other animals. This breed doesn't tolerate being left alone.
Do Schapendoes dogs bark a lot? Why does my Nederlandse Schapendoes bark?
Low to Average: The Schapendoes rarely barks. This breed could be a good choice if you're looking for a quiet breed. They don't bark unless there is a good reason. Top reasons for barking: protection, alarm, fear, boredom, attention seeking, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking.
Watchdog Ability
Is Schapendoes good as a watchdog?
Schapendoess are average watchdogs. If they sense something different, they will alert you, but the observation isn't considered as their main job.
Do Schapendoes dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their territory?
Schapendoess strongly protect their territory. This breed is a complete security guard, so you don't have to be afraid in case of danger.
Biting Potential
Do Schapendoes bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Dutch Schapendoes? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Schapendoes? Why do dog bites happen?
The Schapendoes has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Schapendoes do?
Schapendoess have an average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Schapendoess need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Schapendoes to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Schapendoes roam?
Schapendoess tend to escape less than other breeds. They have low to average wanderlust potential. Exploring the world is not the best activity they can imagine.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Schapendoes have high prey drive?
Schapendoess have low to an average impulse to chase and catch something like a cat or any other small aminals.
Apartment Friendly
Is Schapendoes good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Schapendoess are not the best choice for an apartment lifestyle, but they don't mind being inside if you walk them several times every day.
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Schapendoess adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments. They don't mind moving from one place to another with their owner.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Schapendoess do best when a family member is at home during the day or if their workplace is dog-friendly so they can take the dog at work.
Fighting Dog
Where Schapendoes dogs used as a fighting dog in the history?
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they friendly with strangers?
Schapendoess are stranger friendly dogs.
Child Friendly
Are Schapendoes dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Schapendoes and children:
Schapendoess are kid-friendly dogs. This breed is a good choice if you have children.
Cat Friendly
How well do Schapendoes dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats?
Schapendoess are cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Is Schapendoes good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Schapendoes dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Schapendoess are dog-friendly dogs. If you want more dogs in your family or you'd like to join dog meetups, the Schapendoes can be a great choice.
Office Friendly
Are Schapendoess good office dogs? Do Schapendoess make good office friendly dogs? Can Schapendoess be office dogs?
Schapendoes is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Schapendoes dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Dutch Schapendoes temperament with senior people? Are Schapendoes dogs good for elderly owners?
Schapendoess are usually recommended for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Schapendoes dogs get along with other pets? Are Schapendoes dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Schapendoess are usually friendly towards other pets.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Schapendoes breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
Schapendoess are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Schapendoes be a service dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Schapendoes is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Schapendoes be a therapy dog?
Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Schapendoes is not the best breed for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Schapendoes be a sniffer dog?
Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Schapendoes is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Schapendoes be a search and rescue dog?
Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people. The Schapendoes is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Schapendoes be a boat dog?
Not really
Schapendoes breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Schapendoes be a drafting dog?
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Schapendoes is not the best breed for drafting purposes.

Health Factors

Health Issues
Is it a healthy breed? Do Schapendoes dogs have health problems?
Schapendoess tend to have more and frequent health issues than other breeds. Regular vet check-ups are needed.
Life Expectancy
How long do Schapendoes dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Schapendoes be?
12-14 years
Is the Schapendoes breed hypoallergenic?
Schapendoess don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Schapendoes have?
Schapendoess have an average energy level, so if you live a semi-active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Exercise Need
How much exercise does this dog need? How much exercise do Schapendoes dogs require per day?
Schapendoess have an average exercise need. This breed is satisfied with short walks every weekday and a long one on weekends.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Schapendoess sleep 12-14 hours a day as an average dog and they're not considered as a lazy breed.
Avg. daily food consumption
How much food does the Schapendoes need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
1.5 to 2.5 cups of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals.
Weight Gain Potential
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Schapendoes risk for obesity:
High: The Schapendoes breed has a strong tendency to overweight. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you want to keep balance, increase the amount and frequency of your daily dog walk and play with the Schapendoes more often. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the Schapendoes's weight regularly.
Weather & Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot and cold weather & climate?
Tolerates warm and cold weather.
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?
The Schapendoes has an average chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling tendency
Does the Schapendoes drool?
The Schapendoes is an average drooler. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.


Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long is the Schapendoes pregnant? How long does it take to have this dog puppies? Schapendoes pregnancy time period:
60-64 days
Reproductive cycle of the female Schapendoes: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
How often can the Schapendoes have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Schapendoes have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
4-6 puppies

Pros & Cons of Schapendoes

  • Grooming: Easy to groom: The Schapendoes doesn't require a lot of grooming.
  • Impulse to Wander or Roam: Schapendoess tend to escape less than other breeds.
  • Adaptability: Schapendoess adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
  • Child Friendly: Schapendoess are kid-friendly dogs.
  • Cat Friendly: Schapendoess are cat-friendly dogs.
  • Dog Friendly: Schapendoess are dog-friendly dogs.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: Schapendoess are usually recommended for elderly people.
  • Health Issues: Schapendoess tend to have more and frequent health issues than other breeds.
  • Hypoallergenic: Schapendoess don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Weight Gain Potential: High: The Schapendoes breed has a strong tendency to overweight.
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone: Schapendoess do best when a family member is at home during the day or if their workplace is dog-friendly so they can take the dog at work.
  • Office Friendly: Schapendoes is not the best dog breed for office environment.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Schapendoess are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.

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