The Beauceron is a dog breed that could be found throughout northern France, rather than just in the Beauce region, as its name might suggest. The Bas Rouge has a rich history and is known for many things. This breed served in both world wars as a messenger dog, supply transport dog, land mine detection dog and search and rescue dog. It is also known for its great herding capabilities, having been used to herd sheep and cattle and even protect them against wolves. Its role in the development of the Doberman Pincher is also well known. The Beauceron shares common ancestors with the Briard even though they are quite different in appearance. The trait that indicates their similar ancestral origin is the presence of double dewclaws on their hind legs. In 1809, Abbe Rozier wrote an article in which he described the differences between these two breeds, using the terms 'Berger de Brie' and 'Berger de Beauce'. In 1893 the veterinarian Paul Megnin defined the standard of the breed, with the assistance of M. Emmanuel Ball and in 1922 he created the Club des Amis du Beauceron. The breed made its debut in the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 2008.
The Beauceron is a large-sized, well-proportioned, athletic dog. It has a rather long skull and drooping ears. It has a double-layered short coat, with a rough outer layer and a wooly inner layer. The most common colour is black and tan and other colours such as tawny, grey or grey and black are now banned by the breed standard. The double dewclaws on the hind legs are a must-have and their absence will result in disqualification from dog shows.
The Beauceron is an intelligent, affectionate and confident dog. It enjoys learning and pleasing its master and is loyal and loving towards its master and family. The Bas Rouge is most commonly described as being 'gentle and fearless'.
The coat of the Beauceron is not difficult to groom: an occasional brushing, especially during the shedding the period, is enough to keep its coat healthy and clean.
This energetic breed is clearly best-suited for outdoor life, in a large-yard, but it could adapt to apartment life, only with the right owner that can provide sufficient exercise.
The Beauceron requires patient and consistent training and should be thoroughly socialized from an early age.
Due to all of its qualities it is an extremely versatile dog that can compete in: dog agility trials, obedience, flyball, tracking and herding events. It can also be a good guard dog or companion.