|Good with kids:|
What He's Like:
The Schipperke, or "Skip," is a quick, high energy, intensely curious, confident, playful, devoted and loving dog. He bonds very closely with his family and wants to be with you as much as possible. He is not a good dog to leave alone, and can become destructive if he is bored or left feeling ignored. He needs a great deal of attention, activity and stimulation, and wants to be involved in your daily life. He is nosy and loves to explore and discover everything in the world around him. He loves adventure! He makes an excellent boat-dog, and also enjoys traveling and riding in cars. He is fun-loving and ready to play indoors, but he also needs to play outside and if possible run fast and free in a safely fenced area. He makes an excellent jogging companion. He is extremely quick and needs to be on a leash when you are out walking or running with him, as he loves to herd and chase small animals and can easily escape and run away. He is an independent and confident dog who also makes a good watchdog. He is faithful and very protective of his family. He has a sharp bark and will quickly raise the alarm at a strange sound or person. He is not yappy, but he will both bark and howl, and sometimes can bark too much. He is reserved with visitors and will adopt a watchful posture with them at first. If he is socialized to guests and new people while still young, he will learn relax after a moment and be polite and comfortable with them. He is very easy to train, eager to please you and quick to learn; but he can sometimes be willful or stubborn, and needs variety and interesting things to do in his training to keep from getting bored. He excels at learning dog sports like herding, obedience, and agility. He can be difficult to housebreak. He generally gets along with other pets, but he does have strong hunting instincts, so might not be good with smaller pets. He gets along wonderfully with responsible children, especially if he is raised with them. He is a high shedder, and so is not be a good pet if you are worried about dog-hair in the home.
The Schipperke is 10 to 13 inches tall (to shoulders) and weighs 12 to 16 pounds. His coat is medium-length, thick and straight, and he may have either a single or double coat. His coat color is usually black, but can also be brown, tan, red, cream, white or gray.
He only needs an occasional brushing. But because he sheds enormous amounts of hair you could find yourself brushing him daily to catch some of the dead hair before it falls out inside your home.
The Schipperke originated in the Flemish provinces near Belgium, and was shown in Brussels as far back as 1690. He is probably descended from older Belgian sheepdogs, and was developed to be a herding and guard dog as well as one who could hunt rats and mice. His name is thought to mean "little shepherd," or perhaps "little skipper." He was quite often used on canal barges to keep mice and thieves away. The first Schipperke was imported to America in 1888, and a club was briefly formed in 1905, although it disbanded during World War I as interest in the breed waned. The present-day Schipperke Club of America was established in 1929, and interest in the Schipperke has been rebuilding since then. His AKC popularity was 86th out of 157 breeds in 2007.