The Berger Portuguese finds its origin in the Alentejo region (southern half of Portugal), where his ancestors already illustrated with local shepherds, including the Serra Aires which it owes its name. It has always been used for the management and care of all kinds of herds : sheep, cattle, horses and pigs. It is appreciated for its intelligence, its resistance and its ability to adapt to climate change. The breed was definitively recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale on November 16, 1954.
The Portuguese Shepherd is a medium sized sheepdog, slightly longer than tall, rustic, sober and robust. His agility, rapidity, physiognomy, and manner of movement are reminiscent of those of the monkey. This is why he is nicknamed "monkey dog" in his region of origin. The Portuguese Shepherd is also recognizable by its generously furnished dress, consisting of hairs whose texture evokes that of goat hair. Her hair: long, dense, evenly distributed throughout the body, smooth to slightly wavy, rough texture, longer on the head, trunk and limbs, forming a beard, whiskers and eyebrows. No undercoat. His color :
gray, tawny, charcoal, brown, yellow, in various shades of light to dark, to black.
His head: strong and broad without being massive, of medium size. The skull, slightly smaller in width, has an almost square shape. The frontal furrow is pronounced, the stop is well marked.
Its ears: triangular in shape, medium in size, as long as wide, tied high, dangling, not very thick and smooth.
His eyes: medium, round, hazel or amber to dark, displaying an expression of intelligence and docility.
His body :slightly longer than the height at the withers (about 10%). The top line is flat or slightly plunging, the tourniquet is strong, the back straight or slightly plunging, the kidney is short and saggy, the rump sloping gently, the chest well down and the stomach of medium volume.
Its tail: strong at its attachment, its thickness tapering towards its end. Attached high, of good length (reaching the hock), provided with a dense and long hair. Falling between the legs at rest, carried a little above the back when the dog is in action.
Behavior and character
The Portuguese Shepherd is a dog who is extremely loyal to his master, very protective of his flock and naturally wary of strangers , be they people or possible predators. Very intelligent, attentive and skilled , he shows great enthusiasm at work. The Portuguese Shepherd is nonetheless a pleasant companion and a great sportsman, who particularly appreciates the agility and obedience tests.
Education must be firm . This kind of active and energetic dogneeds to be cropped from a young age. His aptitude for work and play is an excellent vector for his education.
The Portuguese Shepherd is a rustic and robust dog . It has a good resistance to the roughness of the climate that characterize its region of origin. It does not present any particular health problems.
Maintenance & Hygiene
The Portuguese Shepherd is a rustic dog, he asks for a simple regular maintenance , especially at the level of his dress.
He needs to stay active to maintain his physical and mental balance. He asks for almost constant activity and work , always showing himself ready to please his master. He needs several long daily walks.
It is recommended to brush the dog once a week . Grooming is not necessary except in subjects to be exposed.
The Portuguese Shepherd prefers to evolve freely over large areas than to live in an apartment. The ideal would be that it has a large fenced garden. It is aimed at active people, who can be available and offer enough activities.
Price and budget