Portuguese Sheepdog

A 100-year-old breed, the Portuguese Sheepdog is a herder at heart, originating from southern Portugal where it bred with local mountain dogs. As such, this breed made for a great companion of shepherds, but was nearly extinct by the 1970s. Today, middle-class Portuguese dog owners love this breed for its shaggy appearance, docile nature and kind-hearted behavior.

The Portuguese Sheepdog grows to a height of between 16 and 22 inches and a weight of between 26 and 40 pounds. This breed has a long, smooth coat with colors of chestnut, gray or black. Its fur is goat-like in appearance, and as such is very coarse. This dog features a beard, round, dark eyes and moderately-sized ears that hang to the cheeks. Walking high on its legs, the Portuguese Sheepdog has a deep chest, and strong legs and feet, well suited to rough terrain. With a wide head and large nose, this dog has a pointed tail and strong jaws. It has a short, compact body, with a short back and sloped croup. Personality: Considered one of the most devoted of all the sheepdogs, this happy dog is eager to please and will work if you need him to. He forms deep bonds with his humans, yet needs well-balanced training. Its above-average intelligence allows it to learn new tasks easily, but this breed can display dominant and stubborn traits if not taught to respect its master. They do well with other dogs and kids, although males can be quite territorial. Perfect as a watchdog, the Portuguese Sheepdog is quick, lively and clever. He is also hardy, energetic, quick to please, happy and courageous, making this dog an all-around good choice.

Portuguese Sheepdog image
Life Span
12 - 13 years
Other Names
The Serra de Aires Mountain dog, Portuguese Shepherd Dog, Portuguese Sheepdog

Portuguese Sheepdog Build Information

Size
Medium

The Portuguese Sheepdog grows to a height of between 16 and 22 inches and a weight of between 26 and 40 pounds. This breed has a long, smooth coat with colors of chestnut, gray or black. Its fur is goat-like in appearance, and as such is very coarse. This dog features a beard, round, dark eyes and moderately-sized ears that hang to the cheeks.

Walking high on its legs, the Portuguese Sheepdog has a deep chest, and strong legs and feet, well suited to rough terrain.

With a wide head and large nose, this dog has a pointed tail and strong jaws. It has a short, compact body, with a short back and sloped croup.

Behaviour and Personality

Kid Friendliness
Affection Level
Activity Level

Considered one of the most devoted of all the sheepdogs, this happy dog is eager to please and will work if you need him to. He forms deep bonds with his humans, yet needs well-balanced training. Its above-average intelligence allows it to learn new tasks easily, but this breed can display dominant and stubborn traits if not taught to respect its master.

They do well with other dogs and kids, although males can be quite territorial.

Perfect as a watchdog, the Portuguese Sheepdog is quick, lively and clever. He is also hardy, energetic, quick to please, happy and courageous, making this dog an all-around good choice.

Appearance

Shedding
Little
Grooming
Low maintenance

It is recommended you don't brush this all-weather coat too often, as it can adversely affect the texture and rough appearance indicative of the Portuguese Sheepdog. Be sure to trim excess hairs that sprout up between the feet pads. Only shampoo when absolutely necessary, such as when he's been out playing in the mud or if he has fleas.

Breed's Talents and Facts

Training
Easy to train
  • The Portuguese Sheepdog does well with plenty of exercise and a big back yard
  • As such, apartment life is not the best life for a sheepdog like this one
  • It can be calm once indoors, provided it gets plenty of walking and running throughout the day
  • The Portuguese Sheep Dog is also known as the Serra de Aires Mountain dog and the Portuguese Shepherd Dog
  • Life expectancy for this breed is between 12 and 13 years

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Common Health Conditions in Portuguese Sheepdogs

These dogs have very few health problems; however, they may fall victim to common problems such as hip dysplasia and gastric problems that plague many dogs of all kinds.

Portuguese Sheepdog Pet Insurance

When adding a dog or cat to your family you want to make sure your pet is happy, healthy and protected. During its lifetime your pet is exposed to many illnesses and diseases and some breeds are affected by a congenital disease which is a condition existing at birth. At these moments when your pet is ill or maybe needs surgery, you want to be protected for the unexpected and high veterinarian costs.

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