26-44 lbs
Dutch Sheepdog

The Schapendoes is a medium sized sheepdog that is intelligent and always on the lookout for a job to do. He loves working and in order for him to adjust into a family home he needs some type of job to do even if it is fetching the paper or putting his toys away. This Dutch breed needs daily exercise and continual training to ensure he is a well-adjusted family member. He does excellent with children and other dogs; he even does well with smaller pets such as cats and ferrets. The Schapendoes excels at dog sports such as agility, dock diving and herding. 

purpose Purpose
Herding, General Farm Dog
history Date of Origin
19th Century
ancestry Ancestry

Schapendoes Health

Average Size
Male Schapendoes size stats
Height: 17-20 inches Weight: 26-55 lbs
Female Schapendoes size stats
Height: 16-19 inches Weight: 26-44 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Usually A Very Healthy Breed
Minor Concerns
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Elbow Dysplasia
Occasional Tests
  • Blood Test
  • CERF
  • OFA on hips and elbows

Schapendoes Breed History

The Schapendoes is an all-around sheepdog that can have his ancestry traced back to the 19th century. He was most commonly found in the northeast part of the Netherlands in the province of Drenthe. He was the dog for the commoner and never attained royal status; therefore, his history was not well documented. Very little was known about the Schapendoes until the Nederlandse Schapendoes, a breed club, was formed in 1947. In 1952 the Schapendoes was provisionally accepted into the Kennel Club of Holland. Most people outside of the Netherlands did not know what the Schapendoes was, but he was very popular in the Netherlands until he faced extinction in the 1940s when Border Collies were imported to perform the same job. The newly imported Border Collie was something of a novelty and it took several breed enthusiasts to save the Schapendoes from total extinction. He was not actually recognized as a breed until after World War I. The breed standard for the Schapendoes was adopted in 1954 and the official studbook was established. The Schapendoes was not officially and fully called a Dutch breed until 1971. In 1989, the Federation Cynologique Internationale recognized the Schapendoes as a breed. He was accepted into the American Kennel Club’s Foundation Stock Service in 2005, but due to the limited number of Schapendoes located in the United States and Canada, he has not yet attained full registration recognition. In 2006, the United Kennel Club recognized him and allowed him to participate in all UKC events. 

Schapendoes Breed Appearance

The Schapendoes has a light build for a medium sized dog. He moves effortlessly and has great speed. His ability to quickly herd darting sheep is achieved by having well-muscled hindquarters. He has a long, double coat that is dense and lightly waved. Frizzy or overly curly hair is not acceptable on the Schapendoes. His coat must be dry and fine, but not silky to the touch. He is somewhat of an odd looking character with a definite topknot, eyebrows, beard and moustache. He has large, round eyes that are well set into his head and facing more to the front rather than the side. His eyes are brown, but should not be too dark. He has a black nose, but can be brown depending on his coat color. He has high set ears that hang free away from the head. His ears are heavily feathered. All coat colors are permissible but the most common are black, black and white, brown and white, gray and white, blue gray, and tri-color.

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Schapendoes eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Schapendoes nose
brown Schapendoes nose
Coat Color Possibilities
black Schapendoes coat
gray Schapendoes coat
pied Schapendoes coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Schapendoes wavy coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Schapendoes Breed Maintenance

The Schapendoes, despite his somewhat comical appearance with topknot, beard and moustache, is fairly easy to maintain. He is not hypoallergenic and does not drool. He does, however, shed profusely seasonally. This means he will shed heavily once or twice a year and will require more grooming during this time. Otherwise, he needs to be brushed once a week to make sure his coat does not tangle. Brush his coat with a pin brush and metal comb. His topknot and facial hair should be combed through, paying close attention to his beard and moustache. His beard and moustache should be washed weekly, but he does not need a bath as often. He will generally require a bath when he is shedding heavily. His ears should be cleaned each week and his nails should be trimmed every few weeks. A dental plan needs to also be put in place to ensure he has healthy teeth and gums.

Brushes for Schapendoes
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Schapendoes requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Schapendoes Temperament

The Schapendoes is a friendly, intelligent family companion. He loves playing games and spending time with children and adults alike. He enjoys working and does require a job to do around the house to be happy. The Schapendoes should never be left alone for long periods of time or he may become destructive or even a nuisance barker. He is not the typical sheepdog in that he does not usually use his teeth to herd the flock. Instead he will nudge the animals with his nose and shoulders to turn them whichever way he needs them. Since he is such an intelligent dog, it is easy to teach him tricks or engage him in dog sports such as herding, dock diving or agility. A sturdy fence is necessary to keep him out of trouble. His natural herding instincts can get him into trouble if he is not properly contained behind a fence. He does require a lot of early socialization so he is not shy around strangers.

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
14 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
90 minutes
activity minutes

Schapendoes Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
2.4 cups
cup per day cost cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$1.20 - $1.40
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$34.00 - $45.00
food bag monthly cost

Schapendoes Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Schapendoes size stats at six months
Height: 14.5 inches Weight: 19.0 lbs
Female Schapendoes size stats at six months
Height: 13.5 inches Weight: 16.5 lbs
12 Months
Male Schapendoes size stats at 12 months
Height: 17.5 inches Weight: 27.5 lbs
Female Schapendoes size stats at 12 months
Height: 16.5 inches Weight: 26.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Schapendoes size stats at 18 months
Height: 18.5 inches Weight: 40.5 lbs
Female Schapendoes size stats at 18 months
Height: 17.5 inches Weight: 35.0 lbs

Schapendoes Owner Experiences

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