The Keeshond shares its lineage with several other breed of arctic ancestry: the Samoyed, Chow Chow, Norwegian Elkhound, Finnish Spitz, and Pomeranian. They were originally employed as guardians on farms, riverboats, and barges. They enjoyed significant popularity in Holland in the 1700s and were adopted as a mascot of the Dutch Patriot political party headed by Kees de Gyselaer, after whom they are named. Upon the defeat of that political party, the Keeshond became rare but was revived a century later and its renewed popularity spread to England and America. Keeshonds are a gregarious, affectionate breed and their “spectacled” eyes add to their expressiveness. They are intelligent and sensitive and tend to follow their owners lead in new situations. Their abundant gray, black, and cream coat does well with two weekly brushings.
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. They also work to assure 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 become members of the parent breed club to meet like-minded enthusiasts and to support the club’s mission. The nation’s top breed experts are members of the parent club.
The national parent breed club is the first and best place to go to learn about a breed or find a knowledgeable, experienced breeder.