Bouvier Des Ardennes
The Bouvier des Ardennes is a robust quadruped. Originally bred to herd large livestock, he still shines today due to his high adaptability and versatility. Dog lovers appreciate him because he is curious, playful, agile and sociable. A Bouvier des Ardennes feels good when his human is also doing well.
Belonging to the herding and driving dogs, the breed has a solid build. Bouviers des Ardennes are medium sized, stocky and have a heavy bone structure. They are distinguished by their large head, long, pointed ears and stubby tail. The dog is assigned to FCI group 1.
The coat of the Bouvier des Ardennes is rough and disheveled, in the face he wears a characteristic chin and mustache. In Germany he has been bred only for a few years. Therefore, he still belongs to the less known dog breeds in this country. But he really has a lot to offer dog lovers. Give him a task and you can be happy about a faithful companion and real friend. Whether agility, retrieving or tracking - he masters all this effortlessly.
The Bouvier des Ardennes is always enthusiastic to make his human happy. Since he has a strong protective and herding instinct, he is ideally suited as a house and farm dog. Due to his thick coat, low temperatures hardly bother him. In winter, his already dense undercoat grows even more. Thus, the Bouvier des Ardennes is always well protected even in harsh weather conditions. Bouviers des Ardennes are docile and fit in well everywhere - therefore they are particularly suitable as family dogs.
The right food
A Bouvier des Ardennes consumes quite a bit of food, he is known for his pronounced appetite. So he eats everything you put in front of him with enthusiasm. At the same time, since he has a strong urge to move, he is not prone to obesity if he is sufficiently exercised. Nevertheless, you should make sure to present him with a balanced diet and give him treats only in moderation. A varied diet containing all the necessary nutrients is recommended. Proteins and healthy fats are especially important, as they provide the dog with energy. It is better to ban food with added substances from the menu.
Bouvier Des Ardennes Care
The care of a Bouvier des Ardennes is uncomplicated. Brush his coat once a month and check eyes, paws and ears for abnormalities, then you have already done the most important things.
The breed is susceptible to cataracts and hip dysplasia, so regular vet visits are necessary for control. Due to its size and athleticism, the Bouvier des Ardennes needs a lot of exercise. Therefore he is not suitable as an apartment dog. It is better if you can offer him a home, preferably with a spacious garden area.
He is a literal workhorse, so he will be happy if you give him lots of exercise and varied activities. Then he is well-balanced and also shows his harmonious and cuddly side at home. The Bouvier des Ardennes is not only a herding dog, but also a hunting dog and carries a corresponding instinct. When walking through the forest together, it is therefore advisable to keep him on a leash.
The Bouvier des Ardennes is a playful contemporary. That's why you can give him great pleasure with balls and retrieving objects. A simple stick can be enough for retrieving, but special training aids such as throwing ropes and the like bring variety to the game.
Since the shaggy herding dog is a good tracker, you also have plenty of opportunities to challenge him with targets, marking hats or a few hidden treats. It's also important to have a good leash that gives him plenty of exercise while playing together. For young dogs that still need to get used to leash work, a drag leash is also recommended.
Origin & History
The dog breed originates, as the name suggests, from the French and Belgian Ardennes. There he was common in the 18th and early 19th century as a farm and herding dog. His task was to round up sheep and cattle and guard the property.
The living conditions at that time were rough and the people poor. Thus, mainly robust and resistant dogs were needed for the supporting work at home. The dogs were made for this purpose. Farmers bred the Bouviers des Ardennes over many years into a robust, nimble and adaptive worker.
Due to industrialization, the need for suitable working dogs decreased. For a long time the breed fell into oblivion. In 1983, rather by chance, it was rediscovered and henceforth rebuilt. In the 90's, more attention was paid again to the breeding lines of the Ardennes. In 1996, the breed received official recognition from the FCI under Standard No. 171. The willingness to perform, docility and friendly, people-oriented nature of the animals ensured that the Bouvier des Ardennes experienced increasing popularity.