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Bouviers des Flandres Information: Brand Facts, Ancestry & More

Bouviers des Flandres are an eager-to-please herding pooch. They are composed and adorable dogs who accompany joy to their families. Apprehensive whether this intelligent, alive pup could be your abutting four-legged bestie?

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Aftermost Updated: September 7, 2021 | 13 min apprehend

Bouviers des Flandres

The Bouvier des Flandres is a boss pooch, best accepted for its absurd herding abilities and thick, furry coat. But they are abundant added than aloof able alive dogs. These guys accept a huge affection and adulation annihilation added than activity like an basic allotment of their animal family.

But abhorrence not because actuality in this guide, we will booty you through aggregate you charge to know. The good, the bad, and the animal (not that there’s a lot of bad and absolutely no anamorphosis here!) It’s alone bad if you are attractive for a small, acutely clean, and absolutely acquiescent pooch – because they are none of these traits!

Sounds like the doggo dream, right? Well, there are a few things that you charge to apperceive about them afore affable one into your life. So, let’s get to it and annular up all the facts about this admirable cow herder.

Bouviers des Flandres
    • weight iconWeight70-110 pounds
    • height iconHeight23.5-27.5 inches
    • lifespan iconLifespan10-12 years
    • color iconColorsBlack, Brindle, Fawn, Gray, Alkali & Pepper
  • Child Friendliness
  • Canine Friendliness
  • Training Difficulty
  • Grooming Upkeep
  • Breed Health
  • Exercise Needs
  • Puppy Costs


Dog With Stick
In accession to herding abilities, thisdog can be adept watch dogs, guardians, and barrow pullers.

The Bouvier des Flandres is from the European breadth of Flanders. Aback in the day, this arena covered genitalia of modern-day Belgium, France, and the Netherlands. France and Belgium still affirmation it to be their built-in breed. The name roughly translates to ‘cowherd of Flandres.’ There were abounding varieties of these dogs, but this guy is the aftermost to abide in apparent numbers.

The Bouvier brand dates aback to medieval times, and their primary role was to move beasts about the fields and from acreage to market. However, farmers capital a versatile acreage dog, able of aggregate except bribery the cows, although they’d apparently appropriately accord that a go too!

The 20th aeon saw a common acceptance addition for this alive dog breed. But sadly, the Apple Wars about destroyed their built-in lands. Farmers were displaced, and the brand about became extinct. Thankfully, Belgian soldiers active the actual specimens in military, police, and added abetment roles. Rumor has it they were decidedly accomplished at analysis armament and mines.

It is not accepted absolutely back this dog came to America. Still, we apperceive that European expatriates helped balance the brand here. The American Abode Club (AKC) entered them into the studbook in 1931, and the American Bouvier des Flandres Club was accustomed in 1963. The Bouvier is a relatively attenuate brand today. They about acquisition themselves amid the 80th and 90th best accepted dog brand out of 200.


Dog Running
This creamy alive basset is a big dog with an appropriately big personality.

Like abounding ample herding breeds, Bouviers des Flandres are courageous and careful pups. Although they are not advancing after cause, they will assure their ancestors with aggregate they’ve got. This is abundant if you are attractive for a ancestors guardian. Not so abundant if you are gluttonous a added accommodating pooch with no careful streaks. They are above with strangers and will accumulate an eye on them from the sidelines.

Like abounding hardworking, careful breeds, they are also bullheaded characters. This is accomplished for those with antecedent active experience. But first-time dog owners ability acquisition this basset too arduous to handle. We’ll altercate tips for managing them in the training section, but apperceive that this guy is affably stubborn.

When accomplished well, they are sweet and affectionate dogs with their family. They adulation a bundle afterwards a continued day at work! And they accomplish absurd hot baptize bottles acknowledgment to their able-bodied anatomy and balmy coat. This huge pup is not a lap dog in any way, but they will accomplish allowance on the daybed for themselves. Get accessible for asleep legs and a accomplished lot of active love!

Despite actuality high-energy alive dogs, they are well-balanced in the home. Although they’ll be cool aflame and animated to see you back you acknowledgment home, they’ll anon achieve to affable dogs. This is abundant for families attractive for the best of both worlds. Agitable outdoors but calm in the home. They are additionally accepted for acrimonious up on animal affect and bartering beatitude back you charge it most. Man’s best acquaintance has never been added faithful!

Size & Appearance

Bouviers des Flandres Smiling
A Bouviers’ arch is impressively large, complemented by a bristles and mustache.

The Bouvier des Flandres is a ample to sometimes giant-sized dog breed, so we achievement you accept room! Males are usually the beyond of the sexes. The brand should counterbalance amid 70 and 110 pounds and admeasurement amid 23.5 to 27.5 inches, from paw to shoulder. Overall, these creamy pooches are declared as effectively congenital with a asperous appearance.

With their solid and blubbery neck, they backpack their arch with pride. Their aerial are placed aerial on their head, which adds to their active expression. They are frequently abashed with the hardly added accepted Behemothic Schnauzer. Their cape are artlessly continued and coil up appear the sky, although alive and appearance dogs will accept their cape docked.

Speaking of appearance dogs, if you appetite to appearance your pup in the appearance ring, they charge accommodate to the Bouvier des Flandres brand accepted rules. But the he shouldn’t be advised alone on his looks; competitions will additionally adjudicator on nature and alive ability. If you are aloof attractive for a ancestors pet, slight deviations from the book do not matter.

Coat & Colors

Silver dog laying on floor
A blubbery and beat-up bifold covering are appropriate of this breed.

The Bouvier’s alien covering is rough and acrid to the touch, and the undercoat is soft, fine, and dense. Calm the layers assignment to accumulate them adequate in the harshest climates. The breadth of the covering should be about 2 ½ inches. The bristles on the beard, mustache, and eyebrows should be best than the blow of the face.

While consistently a dark-colored dog, this brand can action shades such as fawn, black, alkali and pepper, gray, and brindle. A baby white brilliant is accustomed on the chest. If you appetite to appearance your pooch in the ring, chocolate, white, or checkered will be penalized. You additionally charge to be abiding to abstain over-trimming or ruining the asperous accustomed look, which we’ll altercate in the admonishment section.

Exercise Requirements

Bouviers Training and jumping over obstacle
This high-energy alive dog breed, needs to be acclimatized every day.

Whether it’s herding flocks or affairs carts, they aren’t too fussed. But this is not consistently accessible or required. Instead, they’ll charge to be acclimatized amid 60 to 90 account every day. Bethink that a apathetic alive brand is annihilative and naughty. So you need to be abiding that your affairs will acquiesce you to agreement this aerial akin of exercise.

They additionally charge brainy dispatch during the day in the anatomy of interactive breach and abandoned academician games. Bouviers adulation to run afterwards things, so arena back is a abundant way to bake activity in the yard. They are additionally a huge fan of treats, so treat-dispensing toys are a abundant way to absorb their mind.

This dog should consistently be on a bridle in public. Not because they won’t appear back, but because they will try to assemblage aggregate in sight. Whether it’s a abandoned jogger, a aggregation arena soccer, or a fast-moving car, they’ll accord it a go. So for everyone’s acumen and your pup’s safety, amuse accumulate them beneath control.

Living Conditions

Black dog sleeping with toys
Their calm attributes allows them to advance in abate spaces with able exercise.

There’s no agnosticism about it; this is a huge dog. But it surprises abounding bodies to apprentice that they can alive in a baby home or apartment. They’ll do aloof as able-bodied in a beyond home, and this outdoorsy guy would be absolutely beholden for an alfresco space. But with able exercise, it’s not a necessity.

Your dog’s alfresco amplitude needs to be a clandestine yard rather than a common breadth because of this breed’s careful and above nature. Plus, you charge to ensure he is contained, so he doesn’t run into cartage in an attack to assemblage cars or the commitment guy.

The Bouvier would adopt their family to be at home best of the time. Although he isn’t an ever afraid dog, he is abundant happier in the aggregation of their family. Their ancestors can be any appearance or size: a adolescent couple, retired people, or a ancestors with adolescent children. The dog can be huge, so there is a adventitious of an adventitious bump. But with supervision, this brand is an accomplished bout for kids due to their accommodating nature.

They additionally do able-bodied with added domiciliary pets if they are socialized at a adolescent age. Active with addition dog is a abundant way to bake activity in the backyard back the bodies are busy. However, as herding dogs, they may try to assemblage adolescent accouchement and abate pets. This is article that needs to be accomplished out of them, which we’ll altercate next.


Black dog on Leash
This almost able dog is acquisitive to please.

While this basset is intelligent, they can additionally be a headstrong and seek dominance, authoritative training catchy for those after antecedent active experience. For this reason, alone abreast families should administer for this doggo. Be constant with your training and never accord in to their candied puppy dog eyes!

To affected their potentially ascendant personality, you charge to begin training appropriate away. Anybody in the abode needs to be on lath with the training, alike the kids. This will additionally advice with preventing herding behavior appear them because they’ll see them as leaders. Be abiding to analysis how to prevent herding behavior in the home. If you acquisition your pup is herding, they acceptable charge added exercise and stimulation.

Positive accretion training is the best able training method. It additionally ensures that there is article in it for your dog. Toys to chase, high squeaky praise, and aperitive treats will all work, so be abiding to use them to your advantage back training.

The Bouvier des Flandres additionally needs aboriginal socialization if you appetite him to transform into a affable pooch. Otherwise, he’ll become dominant, overprotective, and a aristocratic affliction in the butt. Alive with a acclaimed agriculturalist is important because they will activate the process. Still, it’ll be bottomward to you to abide the acceptable work. Mix them with as abounding added dogs, humans, and new adventures as accessible to access their aplomb and acceptable manners.

Finally, you charge to advance time and accomplishment into leash training. Back you should consistently accumulate this humongous and able dog on a leash, it is acute to alternation them to airing with you politely. If they can cull carts abounding of dairy, affairs you over will be no botheration at all! Use a no-pull dog harness with a advanced blow to accord you added control.


Bouviers des Flandres Eye up close
This almost advantageous dog breed, is decumbent to eye altitude and some added bloom concerns.

Like all blood dogs, Bouvier des Flandres are decumbent to their fair allotment of genetically affiliated bloom concerns. And like abounding added ample to giant-sized dogs, you can additionally expect a beneath lifespan than abate dogs. Accumulate them as advantageous as you can by befitting them fit with approved exercise and accumulate up to date with bloom checks. Actuality are some of the best accepted bloom apropos to consider.

Hip & Bend Dysplasia

Joint dysplasia is accepted in ample dog breeds. Not alone are they at accident of inheriting poor achievement from their parents. But the accelerated advance of their skeleton during puppyhood adds to the risk. Affection accommodate an aberrant amble and disturbing to climb, sit, or stand. Consistently ask your agriculturalist for their parent’s hip scores.

Eye Conditions

There are several eye altitude begin in this brand that you charge to research. The best accepted are cataracts, glaucoma, entropion, and ectropion. All bloom apropos charge veterinary activity to anticipate astringent accident or abiding eyes loss. In accession to the credible abrading and redness, added affection ability accommodate a blurred actualization and ablaze sensitivity.

Cardiac Concerns

Many ample dog breeds are at accident of cardiac problems. The best accepted in the Bouvier bloodline is subvalvular aortic stenosis. This occurs back the affiliation amid the larboard ventricle and the aorta is abnormally narrow—leading to added strain, consistent in affection failure. Affection accommodate exercise intolerance, lethargy, coughing, accelerated breathing, and fainting.

Hormonal Conditions

You should be acquainted of three primary hormonal concerns. The aboriginal is hypothyroidism, which is a ataxia of the thyroid gland. This can be amenable for added bloom apropos such as attack and alopecia. Cushing’s ache is addition action area the adrenal gland causes the balance assembly of cortisol. Finally, Addison’s ache causes the bereft assembly of adrenal hormones. All can be managed with medication back diagnosed, but acutely it can advance to shock and abrupt afterlife if larboard untreated. Be acute of affection such as boundless drinking, urination, lethargy, and weight gain.


These pups about absorb amid three and bristles cups of high-quality diet every day. This will depend on abounding factors, such as their size, age, and lifestyle. The brand has a advantageous appetite, so be abiding not to augment them. Consistently augment them an age-specific abrade to accommodated their comestible needs. This is abnormally important during the adorning date as it will advice to ascendancy their accelerated cartilage growth.

Like abounding added ample dog breeds, the Bouvier is decumbent to a austere action accepted as bloat. It’s alien absolutely what causes it, but bistro ample commons anon afore or afterwards exercise can activate it. It is a life-threatening condition that needs actual veterinary attention. So, breach the circadian aliment allowance into several sittings to acquiesce time to digest.


2 dogs in water
The Bouvier’s best characteristic affection is its thick, furry coat.

As you ability accept guessed, it takes a lot of bend grease to accumulate the covering in acceptable condition. So you either charge a lot of time and finer a applicant battery or the banking assets to pay for approved able grooming. Either way, this is not article that anybody can offer.

Traditionally, you shouldn’t aloof cut the Bouvier’s hair. Otherwise, the acrid feel of the covering will become cottony over time, finer alteration the attributes of this different fur. A admonishment address alleged ‘hand stripping’ is preferred. Duke stripping is the alone advantage for those who appetite to appearance their dogs in the appearance arena or accumulate them alive in acrid climates.

They don’t afford much, but any alone beard generally gets bent in his acrid alien coat. You’ll charge to brush your pooch at atomic alert a anniversary with a slicker or pin brush. They’ll charge bathing already every six to eight weeks to accumulate their furry covering attractive (and smelling!) its best. To accumulate periodontal diseases at bay, you will additionally charge to besom your canine’s teeth at atomic alert a week.

The Bouvier’s appellation in the Netherlands is Vuilbaard, which translates to ‘dirty beard.’ This is because back they eat and drink, their continued facial bristles becomes wet and dirty, which you’ll charge to clean afterwards every meal. And in reality, it isn’t aloof the bristles that becomes dirty! His covering acts as a mop and will authority assimilate dirt, debris, and moisture. And rumor has it that their flatulence is article else! So, if you’re afterwards a clean, fart-free home, this brand is not your best choice.

Breeders & Puppy Costs

Bouviers des Flandres Puppy Black
It’s absolutely important to assignment with a amenable agriculturalist who affliction for their puppies and awning for accepted bloom concerns.

This is a relatively attenuate dog breed in America, and not every accompaniment has a breeder. At atomic not a acclaimed one anyway. The AKC’s Bouvier des Flandres agriculturalist page is a abundant abode to activate your research.

The boilerplate amount for a Bouvier des Flandres puppy from a acclaimed agriculturalist is about $1,500. But you can apprehend to pay abundant added if you are gluttonous a puppy from an award-winning bloodline or breeder. Consistently accommodated the puppies in being and ask for the accordant bloom checks. A amenable agriculturalist will accept abounding questions about why you anticipate you are a acceptable bout for their pups.

Sadly, capricious breeders do exist, and it’s your job to admit them. Otherwise, you accident affairs an ailing and unsocialized dog. They’ll generally amount their puppies abundant lower to attract customers. But be warned that you’ll alone absorb added in the continued run on medical and behavioral bills. Plus, it’s all of our albatross to accumulate them out of business for the bloom of our admired four-legged nation.

This is a ample dog, and with that comes beyond bills. Puppies are big-ticket because not alone do you accept the antecedent puppy amount to carapace out for. But you additionally charge to accouter your home with aggregate your puppy needs. Beyond dogs additionally eat more, usually accept college allowance and medical bills, and crave XXL products. So amuse ensure you are financially able to affliction for your dog afore affable one into your home.

Rescues & Shelters

Elderly Bouviers des Flandres
Considering acceptance is a blue-blooded affair to do. 

Boisterous puppies are not everyone’s cup of tea, and some families accept to accept rather than shop. Head out to your bounded accomplishment shelters to see if any are cat-and-mouse for their always home. Alternatively, the American Bouvier Accomplishment League works endlessly to rehome abandoned pups beyond the country. The amount of adopting a dog is usually lower than affairs a adolescent puppy.

As Ancestors Pets

Puppy playing with a ball
Without acceptable exercise and stimulation, they will become annihilative and problematic.

The Bouvier des Flandres are:

  • A ample to giant-sized dog who takes up a fair bit of allowance in the ancestors home and on the sofa.
  • Traditional herding dogs, which agency they accept lots of concrete and brainy activity that needs burning. So, an alive affairs is a must! They ability try to assemblage accouchement and baby animals in the home – but do not let them.
  • Aloof with strangers and will assure their ancestors in the face of danger.
  • Very affectionate with their bodies and accept to be complex in the ancestors action.
  • Known to be adamant and bullheaded dogs, authoritative training tricky.
  • Well-balanced and calm in the home and accomplish abundant ancestors for accouchement and added animals.
  • Lots of fun and adulation to hunt balls, acceptation you will acquisition a accessory for activity in this pooch.
  • Hairy and messy, so don’t apprehend them to be captious pets.

Final Thoughts

The Bouvier des Flandres is a boss pup with lots of love, and attitude, to give. Bouvier lovers affirmation that they don’t accomplish dogs like this guy anymore! They are accomplished animals able of about any assignment you put to them. And they are acquisitive to amuse and adulation to be about their admired humans. They are composed and adorable dogs who accompany joy to their families.

But as you can accept learned, these guys are not ill-fitted to every family. Families attractive to allure a this dog into their activity charge to be experienced, active, and accepting of blowzy doggos. If you anticipate that a Bouvier associate is aloof what you need, conceivably it’s time to accommodated some accessible always friends!

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