Large and muscular, this impressive-looking dog weighs about 30-38.5kg when fully grown. Adult males are 65-70cm in height and females are around 68cm. The short coat is black with specific tan markings, or tricolour (grey and black with tan markings).
Originating from the Beauce region of north-west France, possibly as far back as the late 16th century, this breed is also known as 'Red Stockings' ('Bas Rouge') because of his coat markings. Used for herding and guarding livestock, the Beauceron dog breed is the largest of the French sheepdogs and is closely related to the longer-haired Briard. The Beauceron was used in the world wars for guarding and for carrying messages between trenches, and continues to be used by the military and police today.
The Beauceron breed is bold, courageous and quick to learn. A 'people dog', he needs human company and dislikes being left for too long. However, he's also strong-willed and this, together with his need for training and exercise, means he's not ideal for first-time owners, requiring more experienced handling. Naturally suspicious of strangers, early socialisation is especially important.
The Beauceron is generally a very healthy breed, but it is advised that breeding dogs are hip scored and eye tested to ensure the breed remains free of these problems.
Essentially a working dog, the Beauceron dog breed has lots of energy – in mind and body – and needs at least two hours of exercise a day. He does well in the canine sports, such as working trials and flyball, and thrives on spending training and exercise time with his human family.
Large breed dogs, as well as having large appetites, benefit from a different balance of nutrients including minerals and vitamins compared to smaller-breed dogs.
The short, thick coat is about 3-4cm long, quite coarse and lies close to the body. The coat is shorter on the head and a little longer at the back of the thigh and under the tail – an area that could tangle if neglected. Brush through the Beauceron's coat two or three times a week. Like several French shepherd breeds, the Beauceron has a large double dewclaw on each hindleg which should be checked regularly, together with the rest of the nails.