The Schipperke is a small black dog that thinks he is in a much larger package. Nothing gets by his watchful eyes and keen hearing. He can be wary of strangers, so it is best to let him make the first move when introductions to other humans are involved. Once he gets to know you, you will always be his friend. He is also an excellent judge of character. If he really does not like someone, you might want to be careful.
The suggested height for the male Schipperke is 11-13 inches, for a female it is 10-12 inches. You will find size differences in the breed. Always remember, quality should be given preference over size. However, the Schipperke should never look Toy-ish.
This is a square breed, the distance from the highest point of the withers to the ground and the distance from the point of the shoulder to the rearmost projection of the upper thigh should be the same.
Our Breed Standard states that the breed has a fox-like face. Notice it says “fox-like” and not “foxy.” What this basically means is that the Schipperke should have an alert expression with small, high set, triangular ears on a wedge-shaped head versus the triangular head of the fox. The skull is slightly rounded and is slightly longer than the muzzle, with a definite but not prominent stop. The eyes are dark brown and oval, but when excited they can become almost round.
You hear the terms “cobby” and “thickset” applied to the Schipperke. They mean pretty much the same thing, being the dog is compact in body length and height, resembling the cob horse. The Schipperke has a deep, wide chest with well-sprung ribs, making it a bit wider in the front than in the rear. It is also a double-tracking breed; however, if moving at a fast speed it will tend towards single-tracking.
Schipperkes make wonderful family dogs. They love children, and being an active breed, a child cannot wear one out by playing. There was a home for problem children in Texas many years ago that had several Schipperkes as therapy dogs.
Schipperkes are a long-lived breed; many live to be 17 and older.
Being a curious breed, a fenced yard is a must for a Schipperke. Being taught not to bolt out of an open door is also essential because if they get loose, they take off at 20-plus miles an hour and can be far from home in no time.
When purchasing a Schipperke, do your homework. Look for a heritage breeder, one who does health testing on their breeding stock and sells with a contract that, in addition to a health guarantee, includes a provision that they will take the dog back at any time in its life for any reason if the buyer can no longer care for it.
You can find breeder information on the Schipperke Club of America website.
Schipperke Breed Magazine
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Read and learn more about the confident Schipperke dog breed with articles and information in our Schipperke Breed Magazine.
Schipperke Breed Magazine - Showsight
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