Belgian Shepherd Groenendael

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The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is a medium-sized, robust and elegant dog. Harmoniously built, it has lean and well-developed muscles. His looks and his look give an impression of intelligence and gentleness. The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is distinguished from other Belgian Shepherd dogs (Tervueren, Laekenois and Malinois) by its long, exclusively black coat. He is a working dog as well as a guard dog and a companion dog. He excels in the latter area. Intelligent, reliable, protective and playful, he is also calm and athletic.



Photo: Belgian Shepherd dog Groenendael on Woopets
Hair type Long
Origin Belgium
Template Big
Head shape Long
Weight and size
Sex Weight Cut
Female From 20 kg to 25 kg From 56 cm to 62 cm
Male From 28 kg to 30 kg From 60 cm to 66 cm
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History of the breed

The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is from the Belgian village of the same name. The breed was created by Nicolas Rose in 1879 from a black , long-haired bitch, and a herding dog resembling her. The puppies resulting from this cross were then used as the basis for the development of this variety of Belgian Shepherd dog. Like the Malinois, the Tervueren and the Laekenois, the Belgian Shepherd Groenendael   was recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale on January 1, 1956. The official FCI standard in force for the breed was published on March 13, 2001, specifying the characteristics of each variety.

Photos of Belgian Shepherd Groenendael

Photo of Gaïa, Belgian Shepherd GroenendaelPhoto of Amarok, Belgian Shepherd GroenendaelPhoto of ryder, Belgian Shepherd GroenendaelPhoto of Maïla, Belgian Shepherd GroenendaelPhoto of Dyango, Belgian Shepherd Groenendael

See all pictures of Belgian Shepherd Groenendael of Woopets members

Physical features

His hair: long and smooth all over the body, with the exception of the head, the outer surface of the ears and the lower limbs. Dense and tight, it is associated with a woolly undercoat, the whole giving the dog a very good protection.
Its color: exclusively black zain.
His head: long, straight, well defined and carried high. The skull is moderately broad, the forehead is rounder than flat, the median groove is not very pronounced. The stop is moderate, the nose is black and the muzzle of medium length.
His ears: set high, small in size, triangular in shape, ending in spikes and well erected when the dog is active.
His eyes: almond-shaped, medium in size, brownish to dark in color. Show an expression that is at the same time intelligent, soft and lively.
His body: writable in a square. The line of the back and the kidney is straight, the withers accentuated, the back firm and well muscled, the loins solid, the croup well muscled, the belly slightly raised.
Its tail: moderately long, thick at its attachment, hanging down at rest, carried higher when the dog is awake.

Behavior and character

Barks / howls

Behavior with others

Cohabitation with children
Sociable with other animals
Love strangers

The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is a dog of great intelligence and overflowing with vitality . Vigilant , hardworking , in constant search of activity, he is as good at leading herds (he is, as his name suggests, a shepherd dog at the base) as at guarding and defense . His very strong instinct for protection , his courage and his determination will lead him to prevent any intrusion into his master’s house and any aggression targeting him and his family. The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael combines all the qualities of a working dog. He is also an excellent companion dog .

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The Groenendael is a frank and intelligent dog. Therefore, it is very easy to educate . He is gentle and particularly sensitive . This peculiarity obliges his master to show gentleness in an education that combines firmness and rigor associated with a good dose of play and affection to be obedient and balanced.

The latter should not give the Groenendael repetitive exercises because he might get bored of them. We must succeed in creating a climate of trust between this dog and his master. His flair, excellent, must be developed. It is not for nothing that it is often used as a research dog. In any case, he cannot stand brutality. It must be socialized very early in order to avoid dominant behaviors towards its congeners.

Living conditions

Suitable for apartment living
Good for new masters
Love it hot
Love the cold

Preferring life in a rural environment , in the middle of wide open spaces and with great freedom of movement, the Belgian Shepherd Groenendael can however adapt to life in an apartment if he enjoys enough daily activities. His master must be available (to offer him exercise), firm and fair. He needs to frolic in order to be happy and to develop fully. He doesn’t appreciate solitude at all. His master should always be by his side.


Ease of gaining weight

The double, long and thick coat of the Belgian Shepherd Groenendael provides excellent protection against the harsh climate. Like all Belgian Shepherd dogs, the Groenendael has robust health . However, even if it tolerates climatic changes very well it can be subject to a few diseases that affect large dogs.

Thus, he can develop hip dysplasia , hence the importance of moderating his physical activity when he is still young. In addition, it can be affected by muscular dystrophy . Finally, his ears are particularly sensitive and ear infections are often legion. However, in addition to these risk factors, it does not present any hereditary pathology .

Hypoallergenic breed


Litter size

Between 6 and 10 puppies

To protect you from these risks and insure your companion in the event of health problems, Woopets recommends a Belgian Shepherd Groenendael dog insurance .

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Life expectancy

Minimum: 10 years

Maximum: 12 years

The life expectancy of a Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is, on average, between 10 years and 12 years.

Calculate the human age of your Belgian Shepherd Groenendael!

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Maintenance and hygiene

Ease of maintenance
Cost of maintenance
Hair loss
Drool level
Ease of grooming

The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael remains subject to 2 moults per year . The maintenance of its long coat must be ensured on a regular basis. Despite its long coat, the Groenendael does not need to be groomed or washed. Regular brushing, twice a week , is more than enough.

His master must take care to properly clean his ears regularly because he is affected by ear infections and ENT infections.

Price and budget

Purchase price

Max € 500
1000 €

The purchase price of a Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is between 500 € and 1000 €.

Annual maintenance cost

€ 1300
€ 1350

The annual maintenance cost of a Belgian Shepherd Groenendael is between 1300 € and 1350 €.

No name is currently proposed. Use our tool to find the name of your Belgian Shepherd Groenendael!


A diet of high quality kibble is sufficient for this large dog. These croquettes must be able to cover all of their daily energy expenditure. Thus, it is advisable to choose kibbles adapted to their condition and rich in proteins and carbohydrates. Do not hesitate to contact a veterinarian to adapt your rations. The latter may also advise you to divide his ration in 2 in order to avoid any distortion of the stomach.

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Physical activity

Energy level
Potential to play

The Belgian Shepherd Groenendael needs a lot of exercise . He is naturally active and must be able to move sufficiently on a daily basis. He enjoys long walks with games and exercises . He is just as fond of agility courses to exercise thanks to walks in the forest or in the city.


Master character <span class="btnTooltip qTip2" title="- Calm: the master must be gentle and know how to show patience.
– Active: the owner must be energetic and dynamic to live in harmony with his dog.
– Hyperactive: the owner must be stimulating and very restless to suit the temperament of his dog.”>

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FCI Information



FCI Group

Group 1: Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs (except Swiss Cattle Dogs)

Recognized by FCI

Since 1956


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