Maremma Sheepdog vs Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) - Breed Comparison

Maremma Sheepdog vs Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael)Maremma Sheepdog is originated from Italy but Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) is originated from Belgium. Maremma Sheepdog may grow 7 cm / 3 inches higher than Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael). Maremma Sheepdog may weigh 15 kg / 34 pounds more than Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael). Both Maremma Sheepdog and Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) has almost same life span. Both Maremma Sheepdog and Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) has almost same litter size. Maremma Sheepdog requires Moderate maintenance. But Belgian Shepherd Dog (Groenendael) requires High maintenance

Basic Information

Group:
Working dog
Working dog
Origin:
Italy
Belgium
Height Male:
65 - 73 cm
25 - 29 inches
60 - 66 cm
23 - 26 inches
Height Female:
65 - 73 cm
25 - 29 inches
56 - 62 cm
22 - 25 inches
Weight Male:
35 - 45 kg
77 - 100 pounds
25 - 30 kg
55 - 67 pounds
Weight Female:
35 - 45 kg
77 - 100 pounds
23 - 30 kg
50 - 67 pounds
Life Span:
10 - 13 Years
12 - 14 Years
Litter Size:
6 - 9
6 - 10
Size:
Large dog
Large dog
Other Names:
Maremmano, Abruzzese Sheepdog
Belgian Groenendael, Belgian Shepherd, AKC: Belgian Sheepdog
Colors Available:
White
Black
Coat:
Long and Thick
Dense double coat
Shedding:
Moderate, Seasonal
Constant, Seasonal
Temperament:
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Stubborn, Territorial
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Sweet, Territorial
Grooming:
Moderate maintenance
High maintenance
Trainability:
Easy
Easy
Hypoallergenic:
No
No
Kids Friendly:
Yes
Yes
New Owners Friendly:
Yes
Yes

History

maremma sheepdogKnown also as the Cane de Pastore Maremmano-Abruzzese, the Maremma Sheepdog is often referred to as the Maremmano or the Abruzzese Sheepdog.

This is a working dog – a guardian of sheep and an indigenous dog to central Italy. The dog has been used for centuries already to guard sheep.

It was in 1924 that the first standard for the breed was published.

belgian shepherd dog groenendaelLooking much like a pitch black German Shepherd dog, the Belgian Shepherd is a beautiful looking dog. Their roots go back to the 1800s to Groenendael, Belgium. This is where they were bred by a certain Nicolas Rose in 1910. The Groenendael is one of four different Belgian Sheepdog varieties but the Groenendael is sometimes treated as a distinct breed.

They have always been used for their intelligence, serving for instance in the police force and being message carriers in war situations. Originally, Belgian Shepherds were used to herd livestock. It was in 1911 that the Groenendael was registered in the United States, and not much later the first Belgian Sheepdog Club of America formed. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1912.

Description

maremma sheepdog puppyThe Maremma Sheepdog is a large dog with a muscular build. Some people who have owned these distinctive-looking dogs say he is like a big bear. He stands at 65 to 73 cm in height, both male and female, and he weighs 35 to 45 kg.

The coat is long, thick and white with a dense undercoat. If you look you’ll see flashes of pale orange or apricot amid the white. There is thicker, longer hair around the neck area.

The nose is black, the eyes brown and the ears medium length and floppy. The long tail is set low and is thickly feathered. You can expect 6 – 10 puppies from these dogs.

Temperament:

The Maremma has always been used to guarding sheep, and today even though he is looked upon as a wonderful, friendly companion dog, he also makes an excellent watch dog, being brave and courageous. He isn’t the kind of dog that you think of as getting wildly excited over something, as he has a dignified aura about him.

He is an independent dog, so training and sociaization will be absolutely imperative as he is strong-willed and likes to do things his way. Once trained and socialized, it is amazing to see such a large dog obeying all your commands such as ‘lie down, come, sit an stay'. He is very intelligent and shouldn’t have any trouble learning these basic commands.

He is calm and gets on well with children as well as other pets in the home. With his role as guardian of sheep, he has learned to be loyal and patient and will make a loyal ad loving family pet he takes his role as guardian very seriously.

He loves hard work, and shepherds have always appreciated the splendid work he does guarding their flocks. As a companion you will also appreciate the many excellent qualities he possesses.

The Maremma Sheepdog isn’t recommended for life in the city where there is a tiny garden. He has always been accustomed to large open spaces and requires a large garden. He won’t tolerate heat well with that thick coat of his and will require a shady spot in your garden to retreat to.

Large, Strong and Well Proportioned

belgian shepherd dog groenendael puppyWith his alert, bright brown eyes, the Groenendael, referred to often as the Belgian Sheepdog, has erect ears with a long, feathered tail. The straight, strong legs are also feathered. He is well proportioned, athletic and strong. He has a dense double coat, and this working dog’s coat is black, but you sometimes find some small white markings around his paws and muzzle. The size of the Groenendael is roughly 60-66cm at the withers with the females sometimes being slightly smaller. The weight of the dog is roughly 25–30 kilograms.

He’s a Social Dog who Craves Companionship

The Groenendael is an active, intelligent breed and training and socializing will be necessary to ensure he knows how to behave around his human family. He is a big, social dog and won’t do well when left alone day after day in the back yard. In fact he may even show signs of separation anxiety if you leave him indefinitely. He makes for an excellent family dog, just loving their companionship and he becomes very protective of them.

An Intelligent, Alert Breed

He is used to making use of his intelligence and therefore he will need mental stimulation as opposed to lying around all day. He gets on well with adults, children and other pets, but he needs to grow up with children and not be put among children when he is already an adult. He is loyal and loving to his human family, forming a deep bond, especially with just one member of the family.

Health Problems

maremma sheepdog dogThis ancient dog breed is robust and can reach 11 to 13 years of age when cared for properly. Like any other dogs, he can be prone to certain health problems.

One of these is hip dysplasia. Preventing your dog from becoming overweight can work towards preventing these kinds of musculoskeletal issues. Hip dysplasia occurs when your dog’s hip joints don’t develop properly so that the hips partially dislocate.

It is painful for your dog and it can be debilitating, leading to arthritis too and making it difficult for your pet to get around and to get up from lying down. There are a number of treatment options offered by your vet.

belgian shepherd dog groenendael dogThe Belgian Groenendael is a healthy, strong breed with no major health problems and with an average lifespan of 12-14 years.

As with every dog breed, there will be some health issues to be aware of. Skin allergies, epilepsy, eye problems and hip- and joint dysplasia are some areas to look out for

Dental disease for instance, is a common problem with pets, and your Belgian Shepherd can have serious problems with their teeth. Tartar build-up on the teeth ca take you down a trail of infections and gum disease. If you don’t want to make use of a special canine toothbrush and toothpaste, your vet will do it for you.

Your Groenendael will also be susceptible to ticks, fleas and bacterial and viral infections. As a puppy of 6 – 8 weeks, vaccinations for parvo, rabies, and distemper will be necessary. You’ll also need to be generally watching your pet’s health and to get him to the vet when he shows signs of being run-down and ill.

Caring The Pet

Exercise:

maremma sheepdog puppiesAs already suggested, this large dog will need space and he will need to be exercised. Apart from long walks in he countryside or in the park or your neighborhood, he will also need other activities that stimulate him mentally and physically.

Grooming:

The thick, all-weather coat of the Maremma will need a thorough bushing at least twice a week to get rid of all those loose hairs. When you are brushing him, look around for signs of ticks and fleas too and run your hands over him to feel for any unusual lumps.

Diet:

The Maremma is a large-breed dog, so before you get a big dog like this, decide whether you have the financial means to feed him and look after him properly. He is going to cost a lot to feed, so think it through first.

He will need to be fed a high-quality commercial dog food which has been specially formulated for a dog of his size. Keep the food of dogs simple. We’re all tempted to feed our dog treats like things such as chocolates, coffee, nuts, onions, grapes and raisins but these can cause havoc with your dog’s stomach.

Stick to simple, nutritious food. Boiled chicken, brown rice or pasta and vegetables such as potatoes, spinach and carrots can do wonders for your pet when you sometimes mix this into his kibble.

Try and mix some raw meat into his diet occasionally. Make sure he always has access to fresh, cool water.

belgian shepherd dog groenendael puppiesThe Groenendael has a double coat and because it is also fairly long, his black coat may well be high maintenance and brushing every 2nd day will be necessary to keep the coat unmatted and to also get rid of those loose hairs. In fact, heavy shedding is part of this breed’s life and while heavy shedding happens twice a year, light shedding continues throughout the year. Sometimes is may be necessary to send him to a dog grooming parlour to snip his hair and to wash it.

Other care routines to watch for -

A healthy, quality diet it absolutely imperative. Speak to your vet about the best kind of wet- or dry food suited to an energetic breed like this and appropriate to his age. You need to include raw meat into your pets diet every day now and then to avoid skin problems. Always ensure a bowl of clean, cool water is available, The bowl will need to be washed out every other day.

make sure his ears are cleaned. Once again you have to be careful when prodding in a dog’s ear and your veterinarian will show you how.

keep him well exercised with long walks and ball games.

Characteristics

maremma sheepdog dogsThis is a beautiful dog, but large, so don’t make the mistake of wanting a large dog like this for his looks. He will be expensive to feed.

If you have the means to provide a good home for him, he is friendly and good natured, even though he is strong-willed and independent.

Provide him with a good home and you’ll have a most splendid pet and companion.

belgian shepherd dog groenendael dogsYour Belgian Shepherd is an intelligent, active, loyal companion for you. He is highly intelligent too, and will need the right owner who can meet his energetic needs. He therefore wouldn’t do well with in a small place where the owners are couch potatoes. He is a working dog and will require being kept busy.

Provide him with good food, look after that thick, lustrous coat of his, provide him with a warm, dry place to sleep and plenty of exercise, love and attention and he will turn out to be the wonderful pet that makes him such a popular breed.

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