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Size: Small

Weight: 12 - 18 lbs.

Height: 10" - 13"

Life Span: 16 - 18 years

Health Problems: Epilepsy; Legg-Perthes disease; hypothyroidism; hip dysplasia; cataracts; MPS111B (a new disease). Do not overfeed; prone to weight gain.

Origin: Belgium

Also Known As: Barge Dog

Group: Non-Sporting

Category: Companion Dog

Exercise Needs

The Schipperke requires little to moderate exercise. This breed will be a good apartment dog if provided with regular walks and runs. The ideal setting for this breed is a fenced yard.

Grooming Needs

Weekly brushing needed for your Schipperke, more often during shedding time. Dry shampoo if necessary.


Bright, high-spirited, curious, independent, active, agile and stubborn. The Schipperke tend to be a territorial breed that loves to howl and bark at strangers. This dog can be difficult to train due to a short attention span. Obedience classes can be helpful.

Compatibility with Kids

Excellent with kids. Should do well with other animals.


This breed dates back to the 17th Century in the Flemish provinces of Belgium. It descends from the black sheepdog "Leauvenaar." It was originally used to hunt vermin and was important to seafarers to catch rats. The breed was also used as a watchdog."

Pet Facts

This black, tailless dog has a fox-like face. It is small and thick-set with a distinct coat, it has a long ruff, cape, and leg fur. The breed became popular in the U.S. in the 1930s. The breed can adapt to any accommodations and is good on boats.