Briard is a dog of handsome form. They are vigorous and alert, powerful without coarseness, strong in bone and muscle, exhibiting the strength and agility required of the herding dog. When cropped, their ears should stand erect and parallel with the base being wide and tapering to a rounded point with hair covering the opening. Their long coats require extensive grooming. The outer coat is coarse, hard, and dry.
Country of Origin: France
AKC Breed Popularity: Ranks 132 of 196
AKC Classification: Herding Group
UKC Classification: Herding Dog
Exercise Requirements: >40 minutes/day
Height: Female: 22-25.5 in.; Male: 23-27 in.
Weight: Female: 50-80 lbs.; Male: 60-100 lbs.
Physical traits: Strong, Muscular, Powerful
Personality traits/Temperament: Confident, Smart, Faithful
Coat: Length: Long
Characteristics: Double coat, straight, coarse
Colors: All uniform colors except white
Overall Grooming Needs: High
Energy Level: High
Tendency to Drool: Low
Tendency to Snore: Low
Tendency to Bark: Moderate
Tendency to Dig: High
Social/Attention Needs: Moderate
Life Expectancy: 12 years
The Briard is a healthy breed. Their life expectancy is 12 years. Some dogs can develop itchy skin conditions where baths with a high-quality dog shampoo and conditioner is recommended. Flea control is also essential. A responsible breeder needs to screen their breeding stock regularly for certain health conditions such as cancer, hip dysplasia, congenital stationary night blindness, cataracts, corneal dystrophy, retinal folds, hypothyroidism, immune diseases, exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, and kidney disease. Discuss any questions or concerns with your breeder and veterinarian so you can make educated decisions regarding your dog’s health.
The Briard dog depends on high-quality dog food, whether commercially manufactured or home-prepared. Add a high-quality dog multivitamin to complete the nutritional circle. Provide a diet according to the different stages of a dog (puppy, adult, or senior). Some dogs are prone to getting overweight, so monitor your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Don’t give human foods that are not safe for them. Consult with your veterinarian for further advice.
The Briard was bred to make executive decisions without the help of a human. Sometimes this can make them difficult to train. They are eager to please, however, and when training methods are positive and the sessions kept lively, energetic, and interesting, the Briard’s natural intelligence will have him at the top of the class. They learn quickly and have an excellent memory. Socialization should begin early and continue throughout the Briard’s life.
Briard requires a job to be happy. Their zest for life makes them brilliant companions for hikers, and joggers. They need a large, securely fenced area where they can run free. Chasing a tennis ball thrown by his owner can help a Briard work off excess energy and giving him the human companionship that he loves. Briards can compete in dog agility trials, obedience, showmanship, flyball, Schutzhund, tracking, and herding events. Use paw balm daily to protect their feet.
The breed gained new responsibilities during times of war, when it helped to locate wounded soldiers, hunted, tracked, and worked as pack animals, and became the French army’s official dog.
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