THE BELGIAN SHEEPDOG
The Belgian Sheepdog should reflect the qualities of intelligence, courage, alertness, and devotion to master. To his inherent aptitude as a guardian of flocks should be added the protectiveness of the person and property of his master. He should be watchful, attentive and always in motion when not under command. In his relationship with humans, he should be observant and vigilant with strangers, but not apprehensive. He should not show fear or shyness. He should not show viciousness by unwarranted or unprovoked attack. With those he knows well, he is most affectionate, zealous of their attention and very possessive. Viciousness is a disqualification.
- Excerpted from the Belgian Sheepdog Club of America for the AKC.
The qualities of the Belgian make it a loyal companion, but one that requires time, training, and socialization, and an outlet for his boundless energy. Due to his size, intelligence, sensitivity, vibrant personality, and elegant beauty, owning a Belgian Sheepdog is not a responsibility to be taken lightly. They are easily trained with gentle handling and without severe physical corrections. Daily physical exercise is required to keep them healthy and happy and to avoid destructive behaviors and barking. They are intuitively protective of their people which can require supervision, especially around children. But they thrive on human companionship and have an intense need to be near their owners. Belgians are happiest when kept in the house as family members. Dogs kept outdoors in securely fenced yards, need a significant amount of "people time" each day in order to remain emotionally healthy.