Belgian Tervuren Shepherds are members of the Belgian Shepherd family of dog breeds and are included in the herding group. It originated from Tervuren village in Belgium, after which they were named. AKC recognized the breed in 1960 under the name Belgian Tervuren.
The Belgian Tervuren is a proud-looking, agile breed that is born for the show ring. Primarily bred by dog fanciers, this breed is not all beautiful. As with other sheepdogs, this breed is protective of its territories. With height ranging between 22 to 26 inches and weight averaging 65 to 70 pounds, this medium-sized breed is muscular without looking heavy.
The Belgian Tervuren has a thick double coat in mahogany color with various degrees of black with a black mask. A small white patch may appear on the chest and toes with white tips. Tervurens with sable or gray color are also accepted.
The Belgian Tervurens are protective, attentive, highly active, and reserved. As with other breeds of Belgian Sheepdogs, this breed makes a great family companion when properly trained. They usually develop strong bonding relationships with a family member or two. They are energetic and would be happiest if given a job to do.
The Belgian Tervuren is a highly energetic and very active breed requiring a lot of exercises. They love retrieving things, and this is an excellent form of exercise.
The Belgian Tervuren requires brushing daily, and mats that form should be clipped. Extra care must be given to the back of the legs and on the ruff, as mats are likely to form there. Its hair should be trimmed around the outer ears and between the toes. This breed is a constant shedder, with heavy shedding twice a year.
The Belgian Tervuren dog has a square-shaped body ruff. The skull is parallel to the muzzle on the top line. This dog has tight black lips, and the teeth meet in a level or scissor bite. The eyes are oval and dark brown. The ears are pointy and triangular in shape, with height and width equal.
The chest is deep and reaches the elbow. Legs should be straight and have feathering; this takes your eye to the cat-like feet. The tail is full and strong, with an abundance of hair. Males have a mane that is prominent but is not as prominent in females. Colors include shades of grey with black tips and rich fawn to russet mahogany and a black mask.
The average longevity of Belgian Tervurens is about 16 years. Breed longevities in USA/Canada surveys are usually shorter than those in UK surveys. Leading causes of death are cancer (35%), old age (23%), and organ failure (heart, kidney, liver) (13%).