All About the Breed Belgian Laekenois

Have you recently fallen for the Belgian Laekenois or do you simply love rare breeds? Learn about about them here, including: Breed History, Personality Traits, Train-ability, Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed, and Common Health Concerns.

Also known as the Belgian Shepherd Laekenois and Chien de Berger Belge, the Belgian Laekenois is a large, elegant, and attractive breed.

But how do you know whether you are ready to purchase a dog and if this breed is right for you?


In the fall of 1891, The Belgian Shepherd Dog Club was created to compare and study the various native Belgian breeds. The majority of these native dogs were remarkably close in size and proportion, but striking differences were noticed in marking and coloring. In the early 1900's, as the club members were still obsessively studying these dogs, the fawn-colored of the Belgian breeds was finally declared the Belgian Laekonois.

The Belgian Laekenois was then bred for the purpose of herding and serving as a watch dog, guarding homes and properties alike. During World Wars I and II, this breed even served as an efficient messenger dog, which caused the Laekenois' numbers to decrease dramatically at that time. Breed enthusiasts can be thanked for keeping the Laekenois numbers up after the wars.

Unfortunately, this breed currently remains rare in most parts of the world, including the United States.

Personality Traits

The Belgian Laekenois is a hard working and determined animal with a strong will to learn. This breed is athletic and resourceful, making a perfect guard dog or addition to a family farm.

Due to high energy levels, the Laekenois is not recommended for just any dog lover or previous pet owner. These dogs are very strong and confident, therefore domination and training must begin immediately after obtaining a Laekenois. Only owners with experience handling of large and athletic dogs should purchase this breed.


While the Belgian Laekenois can be overly confident and a bit stubborn, these dogs are typically quick to respond to training. This is an efficient, hard working, and intelligent breed, which can learn most anything if its master is up to the challenge. Given their love for work and keeping busy, the Laekenois is one of only very few breeds that actually enjoys learning and progressive training.

Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed

There are many benefits to owning a Belgian Laekenois. These are large and strong dogs, which can be depended upon to complete almost any reasonable task set before them. Although the Laeknois is known primarily for being hearty working dogs, they also make nice pets and companions, and have even been successfully trained as service dogs for the blind and disabled.

Unfortunately, there are disadvantages to owning this breed. Due to their hard working nature, the Belgian Laekenois needs rigorous daily exercise and room to run outdoors. Anyone wishing to purchase a Laekenois without the adequate time and space for this large breed is strongly advised against doing so. A Laekenois not receiving the proper amount of exercise can become quite the nuisance, destroying property and ignoring commands and training.

The Laekenois was originally bred as a herding and working dog, and its instinct to chase and herd is very strong. This instinct can make an untrained Laekenois a serious danger to small children, other pets, and anything that can trigger their urge to chase.

As previously mentioned, the Belgian Laekenois remains an extremely rare breed and can be quite difficult to obtain. High prices and long wait lists are very common when attempting to purchase this breed outside of Europe.

Common Health Concerns

The Belgian Laekenois is a generally healthy breed and is affected by only a few common health problems, including: various skin allergies, eye problems such as cherry eye, hip and elbow dysplasia, and other joint issues.

So now that you've learned all about the Belgian Laekenois, are you sure this is the right breed for you?

Remember, purchasing a pet is an important decision that should be thoroughly discussed with your entire family.