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Answers from vets about your dog:

The Belgian Tervuren

Posted June 06, 2014 in Dog Breeds

Background
The Belgian Tervuren, naturally, comes from the village of Tervuren in Belgium; although, in his native land he is known as the Chien de Berger Belge. His history is somewhat obscured until the 1800s when he started to be used as a herding dog and provided security on farmlands for families and their livestock.

The Belgian Tervuren was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1959.

Sizing up

  • Weight: 40 to 65 lbs.
  • Height: 22 to 26 inches
  • Coat: Double and harsh coat
  • Color: Fawn and black
  • Life expectancy: 10 to 12 years

What’s the Belgian Tervuren like?
The Belgian Tervuren is alert, active and interested. He will become your sidekick and will want to be involved in everything you do. He gets along with children and other animals that he knows well, but generally prefers more mature company. Make sure you give him plenty of exercise, if not you’ll have a very destructive dog on your hands.

The Belgian Tervuren is an alert and vigilant watchdog.

The Belgian Tervuren is highly intelligent and learns very quickly. When training him, always be firm and consistent while using positive reinforcements such as praise and rewards. Always begin training the day you bring him home. Socialization is also very important to start at a young age and is something you’ll need to keep up with well into adulthood.

As far as grooming goes, you should only have to groom him about twice a week to remove any dead hair. However, because of his harsh, double coat you will need to dedicate a little extra time to each brushing.

Health
The Belgian Tervuren is generally a healthy breed with a few concerns to watch for:

Allergies

Epilepsy

  • A condition of repetitive seizures. Some cases can be hereditary

Cataracts

  • A condition that clouds the lens of the eye and in some cases can lead to blindness.

Pannus

  • A condition that affects the cornea of the eye and gives it a pink coloration

Progressive retinal atrophy

  • An eye condition that essentially worsens over time and could lead to loss of vision  

Hip dysplasia

  • One of the most common diseases seen in dogs, with larger breeds being the most affected. It is ultimately a malfunction of the hip joints.

Osteochondritis dissecans

  • A medicinal condition that interrupts the development of cartilage to bone in the early development of the fetus, usually caused by a break in

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Tori has more than 2 years of experience in the pet health industry and is junior editor of IDEXX’s Pet Health Network team.