Description Schipperke

Agile, Fearless, Curious
The Schipperke combines the best characteristics of a small, active dog with those of a shepherd dog. This dog is therefore the right choice not only for families, but also for active singles and couples. Long walks and exciting exploration tours make Schipperken’s heart beat faster. Because that satisfies his awakened curiosity.FCI Group: Herding Dogs – Cattle Dogs

  • Size: Small
  • Weight: 3-9kg
  • Life expectancy: 13-15 years
  • Coat Type: Medium Hair
  • Colours: black

Character Schipperke

According to the breed standard, the Schipperke belongs to FCI Group 1, the herding and cattle dogs. Furthermore, he is assigned to section 1 and is therefore considered a shepherd dog. The standard breed number is 83.
The exterior of the Schipperke resembles a small wolf. His shoulder height corresponds approximately to his body length.

This makes it look square.
The shoulder height of the Schipperke is between 28 and 33 centimeters in male animals. In females between 25 and 30 centimeters in height.
He has a pronounced forechest and a short, straight and strong back.
The Schipperke’s face is characterized by dark brown, almond-shaped eyes and a short muzzle.

This gives him a fox-like and very friendly face. His pointy, triangular ears show his alert nature.
The tail is set high and hanging. The top coat is hard and shiny. The fur is black and has a dense undercoat.

It’s a bit longer on the neck and paws, so these areas are a bit more defined. The ideal weight of a Schipperke is between 3 and 9 kilograms.
The character of this dog breed is characterized by willingness to learn and activity . These dogs love to be challenged and exercised. The Schipperke wants to be challenged both physically and mentally.

His character is lively and curious on the one hand and patient and cautious on the other .
He is often reserved towards strangers , while familiar people are greeted and treated very lovingly.
The sporty Schipperke has retained the hunting instinct of his ancestors. That is why he is an enthusiastic mouse and rat catcher. He is social with other dogs and has a special fondness for horses.

When dealing with children, he is characterized by patience and gentleness.
He is trainable and open to tricks or fetching . Since he tends to bark a lot and loudly, a focus should be placed on this when training him. Otherwise, this can quickly lead to disputes with the neighbors. However, if the Schipperke is trained in this area from the start, this habit can be mastered very well.

Since this dog breed is also considered to be very intelligent , it is well suited for training as a rescue or tracking dog . The Schipperke is also a very good watchdog . He draws his master’s attention with his barking. He also defends the items entrusted to him.
The Schipperke prefers to be in the fresh air, although any terrain is fine with him.

Tree stumps and roots are overcome with a skilful jump and the little explorer also enjoys a short swim in the lake. The Schipperke also likes to bark frequently when going for a walk, which speaks for its good self-confidence. This dog breed has an average life expectancy of 14 years.

Diet Schipperke

The diet of the Schipperke is generally very unproblematic. The only thing to watch out for is the amount of food. With his cute dog look, the Schipperke always manages to get people to drop a treat. And then there is no end to it.
If the Schipperke gets too many treats, he can quickly become overweight.

For this reason you should also hide the biscuits for your four-legged friend well. Because the Schipperke is a glutton. In addition, he is very intelligent and skilled. So he likes to steal everything edible that can be found in his vicinity.
Two meals a day are recommended for this dog breed, ideally consisting of 60% meat, 30% vegetables and 10% rice.

Your veterinarian will be happy to tell you what nutrients your dog needs and the best way to get them. He can determine the right diet for your dog based on age, sex and size.


The Schipperke is generally considered a low-maintenance dog breed . Due to its hard structure, the fur only needs to be brushed a little . You should only comb out your dog once a week when it changes its coat at different times of the year . Then he sheds less. However, it can be said that the hair loss in this breed is not particularly severe.

You can also bathe your Schipperke. However, you should only use water to rinse it off on the surface if it gets a little dirty.
The Schipperke is also easy to keep because it is considered to be very adaptable. Thus, he can be kept both in the apartment and in the country. However, it is important that you make sure that your dog is busy.

He should always get enough physical and mental exercise .


The history of the Schipperke can be traced back to the 15th century. Originally from Belgium, he is believed to be descended from the black Leuvenaar sheepdog breed. However, the Leuvenaar is now extinct. However, the assumption that Schipperke descended from him is controversial. There is also evidence of a relationship to the Kleinspitz.

The Schipperke was mainly bred in Belgium and the Netherlands.
This breed was especially popular in the 17th century. Even the Queen of Belgium , Marie Henriette, owned a Schipperke in 1885. Its long tradition as a watchdog is also evident in the fact that it is depicted in paintings depicting life in the past.
In addition, he is also often associated with inland navigation in the Dutch areas .

There he was often represented as a watchdog and escort on the ships. His hunting instinct was particularly useful here, as it kept the rats off board.
Therefore, the name of the Schipperken is often incorrectly derived from “schipers” and translated as boatswain. In fact, the name comes from the word “Scheperke” and means “little shepherd (dog)”.
The first breed standard of the Schipperke was established by the Belgian breed club “Royal Schipperkes Club” in 1888 after the breed had come to England in 1887.

Schipperke Accessories

As already described, the Schipperke is very enthusiastic about learning and intelligent. It is therefore advisable to have lots of toys, for body and mind. You can also work with treat toys. But keep in mind that the treats are not too fatty and healthy so that your Schipperke does not gain weight.

6Expert Score
Breed characteristics

There are so many different dog breeds that it can be hard to choose the right one for your family. Each breed has its own unique set of characteristics that may make it a better fit for some families than others. Our expert review system can help you find the perfect dog breed for your home.

We rate each breed on a scale from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best. We take into account things like temperament, size, and energy level to help you find the perfect dog for your needs. Whether you're looking for a playful pup or a calm companion, we can help you find the right breed of dog for your family

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