Description: The Berger Picard is an average sized dog that was originally a herding dog. This is a well muscled dog. The head is in good proportion to the dog and the eyes are visible, round and dark in color, although this breed has bushy and thick eyebrows.
The ears are erect and high set and are wide at the base giving the look of being big, but blend in well with the face. The tail has a slight J curve at the tip and comes down to the hock.
The height is 21 ½ inches and the weight is 50-70 pounds in both the female and male. The coat is weather resistant and has an undercoat that is not too thick. The outer coat is harsh to the touch this is about 2-2½ inches in length.
The colors come in grey and fawn, the two colors, but you get many shades and variations. Life expectancy is 13-14 years.
History: The Berger Picard is thought to be the oldest of the French Sheepdogs. This breed was brought to France by the Franks, specifically the northern regions, in the 9th century.
There is some thought that this breed is related to the Briard and Beauceron, others say it shares the roots of the Dutch and Belgain Shepherds. It had its first dog show in France in 1863.
This dog has a very rustic look, which has not endeared this breed to the people of the time or led this breed to being a show dog. As with some other breeds this dog really suffered in the World Wars’ and with populations concentrated on the farms of north-eastern France.
There was also trench warfare in the Somme and this breed nearly become extinct. Today the picture is slightly better with some 3,500 dogs known in France and 500 in Germany.
Due in part to the film “Because of Winn-Dixie” in 2005, five of these dogs were imported to the USA as they have the look of the dog on the front cover of the original book.
That is how this dog, the Berger Picard, was introduced to the American people. Some 200 dogs have since been imported to the USA and Canada. This dog was recognized by the UKC in 1994 before the film.
Temperament: The Berger Picard is easy to train due to their bright intelligent nature. They are a lively dog and have great humor. This dog is sensitive and will respond best with good leadership that is calm and firm, not harsh or shouting.
This breed are at their happiest with a job to do this can even be in obedience or agility but this dog has never gone far from its roots as a working dog. They love the company of people and their family and are good with children.
They can be demanding of their owners and so obedience is needed. Socialize this breed well as they love animals as a rule but need to know their place and when to obey the owner.
They make good guard dogs and are protective of their family. Here is a dog that loves life and is loyal. Positive praise is what this dog will seek as a reward for a task well done.
For the right owner, that has the time and ability to work this dog into shape, this is a great companion dog. If given enough to do this dog is of mellow temperament.
Without the right amount of training, work, and exercise this dog can be very stubborn. The Berger Picard can be a picky eater. The Berger Picard loves to swim and walk for a few hours daily if given a chance.
Health issues: Hip dysplasia is known but this is rare. This dog is of good general health.
Grooming: The Berger Picard only needs brushing once a month. The coat doesn’t mat and needs little attention to maintain its rustic appearance.
Living conditions: With a lot of the right exercise the Berger Picard can live in an apartment and has adapted well to city life. They will require a garden of at least medium size.
If you can’t find a local breeder in your area don’t worry, many breeders are using the major airlines like American, Delta, Continental and Northwest airlines for shipping their puppies.
At this time the airlines will ship puppies to the following States: Alabama AL – Alaska AK – Arizona AZ – Arkansas AR – California CA – Colorado CO – Connecticut CT – Delaware DE – Florida FL – Georgia GA – Hawaii HI – Idaho ID – Illinois IL – Indiana IN – Iowa IA – Kansas KS – Kentucky KY – Louisiana LA – Maine ME – Maryland MD – Massachusetts MA – Michigan MI – Minnesota MN – Mississippi MS – Missouri MO – Montana MT – Nebraska NE – Nevada NV – New Hampshire NH – New Jersey NJ – New Mexico NM – New York NY – North Carolina NC – North Dakota ND – Ohio OH – Oklahoma OK – Oregon OR – Pennsylvania PA – Rhode Island RI – South Carolina SC – South Dakota SD – Tennessee TN – Texas TX – Utah UT – Vermont VT – Virginia VA – Washington WA – Washington, D.C. – West Virginia WV – Wisconsin WI – Wyoming WY – Hawaii HI.