It's one of the four Belgian shepherd dogs considered one breed with four varieties in all countries, except the U.S.A, where each variety is considered a separate breed. Its ancestor is the Persian shepherd dog, from which, through many crossbreedings, the present day specimens resulted. In the Middle Ages there were many types of Belgian shepherd dogs. In 1891 a commitee of experts decided that the Belgium shepherd dogs have the same length of the body and the same shape, the difference being in the length, texture and colour of the fur. These four types were the names of the regions where there were developed.
It is a medium-sized dog, with a harmonious, proportional shape, brawny and elegant, without being heavy. The head is well delineated, moderately long, with the muzzle of the same length as the head and narrower towards the nose. The eyes are medium-sized, slightly almond-shaped, lively, sharp and dark hazel. The ears are triangular and straight. The tail is medium-sized, carried low at rest and as high as the backline when alert. The hair is shorter on the head but longer on the rest of the body, especially on the neck and chest where it forms a collar. The fur is double-layered. It is copper-red to mahogany, with black hair tips and a completely black head.
It is an intelligent, active, jolly, watchful dog, devoted to its master. It is a rustic dog, used to living in the open. It is very resistant to weather changes. It is reserved with strangers and it gets along well with children. Some of these animals are aggressive with other dogs, but there shouldn't be a problem if they were socialized adequately.
It doesn't require too much grooming. A brushing during the shedding period is recommended.
It is not hard to train because it is an obedient dog which learns pretty fast. It is an independent breed with a strong character and that is why they need training from an early age and getting accustomed to new things, people and animals. They must not be hit and a gentle, but firm tone should be used. Most of these dogs enjoy ball games, swimming, running beside a bike and long walks. They are successful in agility contests and flyball.
It is a good watchdog of herds and houses. It is a pleasant companion, a good dog for protection and defense. It is used by the police to detect substances and for pursuit.