Bouvier des Flandres

THE BOUVIER des FLANDRES

The Bouvier des Flandres is a powerfully built, compact, short-coupled, rough-coated dog of notably rugged appearance. He gives the impression of great strength without any sign of heaviness or clumsiness in his overall makeup. He is agile, spirited and bold, yet his serene, well-behaved disposition denotes his steady, resolute and fearless character. His gaze is alert and brilliant, depicting his intelligence, vigor and daring. By nature he is an equable dog.

His origin is that of a cattle herder and general farmer’s helper, including cart pulling. He is an ideal farm dog. His harsh coat protects him in all weather, enabling him to perform the most arduous tasks.  He has been used as an ambulance and messenger dog. Modern times find his as a watch and guard dog as well as a family friend, guardian and protector. His physical and mental characteristics and deportment, coupled with his olfactory abilities, his intelligence and initiative enable him to also perform as a tracking dog.

A FRIEND FOR LIFE

The Bouvier des Flandres is a regal dog with both the power and determination to win your heart and become a loyal companion for life. Bouviers establish themselves as significant members of the family and give their all to please and protect the home and the occupants.

Bouviers are intelligent and learn quickly when given the opportunity to gain positive reinforcement throughout the learning process. This breed works well in obedience, agility, herding, tracking and conformation.

Bouvier des Flandres is a great family dog and can be very helpful to have them as your watch dog or guard dog. They might be quite inactive indoors and prefer most of the time being outdoors.

They are given the French name due to their Flemish origin. They originate from Belgium and have a life span of about 10 to 12 years. On an average female Bouvier des Flandres litter about 8 puppies. Their body is fully covered with fur and rough coat and requires continuous grooming. They have to be bathed frequently and trimmed several times in a year. They can be good friends with other dogs as well as long as they are socialized at a very young age. Though they can be good friends with your child, but might not be very friendly with your child’s friends. Therefore, it is advised not to leave them with your children.

Bouviers are the best pets and they also require good care. Regular visit to the veterinary doctor and the vaccinations are required. To overcome these expenses you have the option of investing in a life time pet insurance cover or set aside a certain amount every month to meet the expenses.
 

Bouvier des Flandres Information

The Bouvier des Flandres makes a great family pet for those who would like to have a watch dog and guard dog combination. She can be relatively inactive indoors and can be exercised via many walks. A better situation for her is a properly fenced in exercise area. She is good with other dogs and pets, especially if she has been socialized with them early on. She is generally good with children but may have a problem with their friends.

SPECIAL GOOD POINTS
• Very good watch dog.
• Very good guard dog.
• Generally will stay home, not roam.
• Good with children but maybe not their friends.
• Can tolerate cold.

SPECIAL BAD POINTS
• May be aggressive to other dogs.
• High pain threshold. Hard too tell if they are hurting.
• She needs an experienced owner.
• Slow to mature.
• May be suspicious of strangers.
Most dog breeds have certain inherited health problems associated with that specific breed and the Bouvier des Flandres is no exception. Be on the look out for bloat (Gastric Dilation-Volvulus, the second leading killer of dogs, can kill within the hour, this space is too limited for a complete explanation but you should read up on this). Feeding more then once a day and avoiding exercise right after meals may help guard against bloat.
Also be aware of canine hip dysplasia (genetic based looseness in the hip that can lead to arthritis pain and lameness), Laryngeal Paralysis (muscular narrowing of the airway especially during exercise) and eye problems. This disease list is an informative guideline only. Other diseases may also be significant threats, please contact your veterinarian for a complete list.
She should visit the veterinarian several times in the first year for shots, boosters and check up. Then, as an adult, she should visit the veterinarian yearly for shots and check up. As she gets older, six years and on, she should visit the veterinarian twice a year for check ups and shots. Remember; avoid feeding your dog sweets.

Grooming of the Bouvier Breed

A Bouvier des Flandres has a weather-resistant double coat and depending on how you look at it, can be a curse for you and a blessing for the animal. The thick and coarse outer coat keeps it protected against extreme weather conditions as oppose to the undercoat, which is dense and fine.
The Bouvier breed do not shed excessively, but grooming is essential in keeping their coats looking good. You need to start grooming the Bouvier breed as puppies so that they are used to the process as part of its life. They get dirty and grubby very easily and owners can expect dirty and wet beards, feces on the hindquarters, muddy paws and leaves, etc. on the coats.
A Bouvier des Flandres coat must be brushed several times a week and checking for burrs, ticks, and weeds every day is recommended. Bathing the dog every six to eight weeks and keeping its coat trimmed regularly will make life much easier for you and the animal. Often owners use professionals to groom their Bouvier breed, but even in this instance you need to brush it on a daily basis.
Owners considering getting a Bouvier des Flandres must take this into consideration, as it is a time consuming and often an expensive animal to keep for this reason. Preventing bad breath and gum disease in the Bouvier breed requires that you brush the animals’ teeth daily in removing bacteria and tartar buildup.
A Bouvier needs to get its nails trimmed once or twice a month and as soon as you can hear the nails clicking on the floor, you need to trim it. If you do not know how short to trim it, get advice from a vet, as the toenails have blood vessels in it and cutting to far can cause bleeding. Check the Bouvier breed’s ears regularly for bad odors and redness, which is an indication of infection.

Characteristics of Bouvier des Flandres

The Bouvier breed is generally large with an adult male weighing around 95 pounds. Their fur can be a mixture of black and white, fawn, blonde, gray, brindle, and black. Some Bouvier des Flandres even have a white chest patch. The Bouvier breed is double coated animals, long bearded faces and their overall physique is dense and thick overall. The outer coats of these animals are tough and coarse and protect them well in extreme weather conditions. The inner coat of a Bouvier des Flandres is much smoother and softer.
Their temperament is friendly and docile and takes to new commands easily and well receptive learning dogs. Other characteristics of the Bouvier breed is intelligent and brave, very loyal, playful, confident, and tranquil. It is found in some of the dogs that they have aggressiveness and until you know your dog, it is safe to keep in mind around children.
The Bouvier breed is a strong and hard working dog and often found on farms and a lively dog, full of vitality. When keeping a Bouvier in a yard or apartment it is extremely important to allow the dog to have sufficient physical exercise. It is not only vital for the animals own health, but in will also keep its temperament in check. These dogs are kept in apartments, but do not do as well as their counterparts in rural settings and suburban areas.
The Bouvier des Flandres has a life expectancy around 10 – 12 years if taken care off. It is a healthy and robust dog that can settle well in extreme climates, due to its thick coat. The Bouvier des Flandres however may be vulnerable to ailments such as gastric torsion, hypothyroidism, hip dysplasia, cataract and more, but as with any other animal it should be taken for regular check-ups at the veterinarian.