The Bouvier des Flandres comes from Belgium and is the product of centuries of breeding for purpose but not necessarily form or pedigree. Their early breeders were farmers, butchers, or cattle merchants not too concerned with creating a purebred dog. The first Bouviers varied in size, weight, and color but were recognizably Bouviers and had a variety of names: Vuilbaard (dirty beard), Keeshond (cow dog), and touched de boeuf or pic (cattle driver). They are driven, hard-working farm dogs whose intelligence, energy, and strength serves them well in agility, tracking, obedience, carting, and conformation. Their confidence and stability results in a dog suitable for dual roles as protector and family companion. They are adaptable to household living but must get daily exercise. Their profuse, double coat protects them from harsh weather but necessitates frequent brushing to prevent the build-up of dead hair and matting.
Each AKC approved purebred breed has its own national club. The mission of these “parent breed clubs” is to improve and preserve a particular breed by advancing knowledge about its history, its health and care requirements and by assuring that the breed’s form and function remain true to its historical physical type and character: A Dalmatian, for instance, should be athletic and have a natural affinity for working with horses. A Fox Terrier should have the right body size and shape, and a drive to go after vermin.
Pet owners, breeders, trainers, veterinarians, and others with a special love for a breed, join the parent breed club to meet like-minded enthusiasts and to support the club’s mission.
The national parent breed club is the first place for the public to go to learn about a breed or find a knowledgeable, experienced breeder.