History, Characteristics, Personality and More
Keeshond puppies are born as little fur balls of joy with a teddy-bear like appearance just begging for cuddles.
This breed is preferred among the many other breeds belonging to the Spitz family because of its quieter, less demanding temperament.
If you are considering adopting a Keeshond puppy, you may be happy to learn that this breed has many great qualities that make it a bright, cheerful and lively companion.
Whether you are thinking about buying a puppy or adopting an adult dog and want to know if this is the right breed for you or just want to learn more about this breed, I hope this article will help you find the answers to your questions.
Keeshond Breed Information and History
Also known as the Dutch Barge Dog, Smiling Dutchman, Chien Loup and German Spitz, the Keeshond's name was crafted to honor Cornelius de Gyselaer, an 18th-century Dutch patriot who owned a Keeshond named "Kees". The word "Kee" derived from the nickname for "Cornelius," whereas, the word "hond" was the Dutch term for dog.
Soon, this breed, commonly used as a watchdog on the vessels navigating the Rhine River, became a popular symbol of the patriot rebel party and was featured in many posters and drawings.
Unfortunately, the breed fell into deep disfavor once the Prince of Orange put an end to the rebel party. However, some specimens working on local farms and on a few barges in Amsterdam had survived and kept the breed going.
Thankfully, Baroness Van Hardenbrock and Miss J. D. Van Der Blom helped revive the breed about a century later, and soon Keeshond dogs became the National Dog of Holland.
This breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1930 and was categorized under the non-sporting group.
Physical Characteristics of Keeshond Puppies
This is a sturdy medium-sized dog with a pretty fox-like face. This breed has an overall Northern appearance courtesy of the contribution of the Pomeranian, Finnish Spitz, Samoyed, and Norwegian Elkhound bloodlines.
The body of the Keeshond is square, compact, sturdy and well-proportioned. The moderately long neck is elegant and well settled within the shoulders. The back is short and straight with a slight slope towards the hindquarters. The chest is deep and strong. The feathered tail is set high and curls tightly over the back.
The front legs in this breed are straight, with long pasterns and good proportions. The rear legs boast good muscles. The feet are cat-like and compact, with black nails and arched toes.
The Keeshond dog breed features an alert and intelligent expression. The head appears wedge-shaped when admired from the above. The almond-shaped eyes are dark brown with black eye rims. The triangular ears are small and erect. The white, strong teeth meet in a scissor bite.
This breed's double coat consists of straight outer coat and thick undercoat. The accepted coat color is a mixture of gray, black and cream in either light or dark hues. The undercoat is pale, whereas the outer coat boasts hairs with black tips.
|Male||17 to 18 inches||30 to 45 pounds|
|Female||17 to 18 inches||30 to 45 pounds|
Temperament and Behavior
The American Kennel Club describes this breed as a friendly and outgoing companion. Other qualities include a strong people-oriented character, high level of intelligence and alert demeanor. The breed is also known for an independent and stubborn streak.
While the average Keeshond is quite people-oriented, early socialization is a must with this breed so to build a confident and outgoing demeanor and prevent suspicious behaviors towards strangers.
While a Keeshond may sound the alarm at the sight of people entering the property, because of its friendly disposition, this breed makes an overall poor guardian. A Keeshond's bark, in this case, is mostly a warm welcome rather than anything else.
This is a very sensitive breed that dislikes tension and shouting. It responds best to a calm and even, yet firm, voice.
House training Keeshond puppies is fairly easy and should not be particularly troublesome.
This loving breed is fond of children and plays nicely with them, but as with any dog, all interactions should be supervised. If Keeshond puppies are introduced to other pets at a tender age, then they will most likely accept them as part of the family.
Best Owner and Living Conditions
This breed craves attention and companionship; therefore, the best owner is a person who will not leave his pet home alone for excessive periods of time. Failure to provide a great deal of companionship may result in excessive destructiveness and separation anxiety.
The Keeshond dog breed thrives in cold weather. Your Keeshond will love playing in the yard in the crisp fall and winter weather. While a yard is a great place to explore and play, a Keeshond is definitively not a backyard dog and should never be left alone for too long.
Activity and Exercise
Keeshonden (plural of "Keeshond") require moderate exercise. If you are a couch potato, you may be happy to learn that a brisk walk and some play will likely suffix.
If you enjoy canine sports, you may love the fact that this sure-footed breed excels in the sport of dog agility.
You may be a bit discouraged by this breed's double coat, but grooming a Keeshond is not a terribly difficult task. Frequent brushing and combing will keep this breed's coat in order while minimizing the amount of stray hairs left around the house. Make sure you get Keeshond puppies used to being brushed from an early age.
Yes, this breed sheds a lot. Expect your Keeshond to blow its coat at least once or twice a year. Thankfully, you can trap many of those hairs within the bristles of a brush.
On a brighter side, this breed is fastidiously clean, grooming itself like a cat, so frequent bathing is not needed. Also, this breed's coat does not have a distinctive doggie odor as in other breeds.
While Keeshond puppies are generally healthy, some specimens may develop hereditary and non-hereditary disorders. Some of the conditions this breed may be predisposed to include hip dysplasia, luxating patellas, epilepsy, Cushing's disease and hypothyroidism.
To purchase a healthy Keeshond puppy, skip pet stores and backyard breeders. Instead, look for responsible Keeshond breeders who health test their breeding dogs and ensure they're equipped with sound temperaments and are free of genetic diseases. Also, expect Keeshond puppies to come with a health guarantee.
Even healthy dogs get sick. While many health problems will require an immediate attention from your Vet, there are many others that you may handle on your own. Learn how to save time and money (and how to prevent small problems from becoming big problems) by diagnosing and treating dog health problems that don't require your Vet's attention.
The average life expectancy for healthy Keeshond puppies is between 12 and 14 years.
While used mostly as watchdogs in the past, today Keeshond dogs make great family pets and happy companions. Rest assured that your days will be surely brightened should you decide to open your heart and home to adorable Keeshond puppies.
Did you ever consider adopting your next pet?
If this is the breed you are interested in, and adoption appeals to you, consider contacting your local Keeshond rescue and adoption center. There are thousands of pets waiting for a loving home and, yes, it's possible to adopt a purebred dog.
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Not happy with your pet's behavior? Need help with training your dog for obedience? Then check this dog behavior and obedience training guide.
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