Overview of Briards

  • The Briard is a big dog with a big personality: He can be a clown, a tease, a show-off, gentlemanly, and even a “reserved philosopher.” He can be reserved with strangers, but his loyalty and bravery make him a natural guardian of home and family.
  • Briards have a long and storied past, appearing in popular culture as early as the 14th century (and apparently, the breed was a favorite of Napoleon, who wasn’t known to care much for dogs in the first place).
  • Briards left at rescues if you can find any are going to be cheaper, around $200 to $400 and will have medical needs taken care of but it’s more likely to be an adult aged dog rather than a puppy.
  • The Briard is “vigorous and alert, powerful without coarseness, strong in bone and muscle, exhibiting the strength and agility required of the herding dog,” according to the AKC standard.
  • Briards view strangers as suspicious and can be a bit dog aggressive, but with the right handler it will blossom into a first-class pet that can happily coexist with other pets.
  • Briard temperament, personality, training, behavior, pros and cons, advice, and information, by Michele Welton, Dog Trainer, Behavioral Consultant, Author of 15 Dog Books
  • Briards have been used in a variety of service and therapy roles to help those with disabilities and comfort those in hospitals, schools, and retirement communities.
  • Briards require little trimming, so you can either choose to groom them yourself (if you have a place to bath and dry a large dog) or take them to a professional.
  • Briards, or Berger de Bries in French, were bred to protect flocks from poachers and wolves, gaining a reputation as a brave and heroic breed.
  • Briard of Ath declared he had found nothing offensive in it, after he had first been told all sorts of bad things about it.
  • Barking

    Exercise Briards need an hour of exercise per day—without enough opportunity to burn energy through running, play, and training, destructive behaviors or excessive barking may develop.


    The Briard has a life span of 10 to 12 years and is somewhat healthy but does have some issues they are prone to such as eye problems, hip and elbow dysplasia, bloat, hypothyroidism, von Willebrand’s disease, CSNB and cancer.


    “A dog of heart, with spirit and initiative, wise and fearless with no trace of timidity,” the unique Briard is “intelligent, easily trained, faithful, gentle, and obedient,” according to the AKC breed standard–quite a package of virtues wrapped up in this one rare breed.


    Cancer is a leading cause of death among dogs in their golden years.Early detection is critical!Many cancers are cured by surgically removing them, and some types are treatable with chemotherapy.We’ll do periodic blood tests and look for lumps and bumps at each exam.Your Briard is a bit more prone to certain kinds of cancer starting at a younger age.


    “Briards are also known for developing what’s called night blindness, and it’s actually an inherited issue,” says Jessie Sondel, owner of the Sondel Family Veterinary Clinic.“If Briards are carriers for it, they don’t have the clinical signs, but they’re usually tested for this gene.” Because they’re double-coated, Briards have excess hair in their ears and between their toes, which should be trimmed often to prevent ear and skin infections.“In the summer, you’ll need to be very careful that your dogs aren’t overheating,” he adds, “making sure that they’re not getting burs, mats, and infections in their hair coats and under them.”Briards are fairly healthy, though they have been known to suffer from hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, epilepsy, blood-clotting disease, and hernias.


    It should come as no surprise that Briards love to have a job to do.Briards are happy to curl up on the couch by their humans, but daily walks and other activities are necessary.Properly caring for a Briard in a standard family home then comes with a responsibility to channel their energy both physically and mentally, a task that can be done through high intensity activities like biking and hiking, as well as brain games like nosework and hide-and-go-seek.

    Eye Problems

    Both parents should also have their eyes checked each year or should have their eyes cleared for life.Eye problems in American Briards are not common, but there have been some cases of disease in English Briards.

    Genetic Predispositions

    At the end of the booklet, we have also included a description of what you can do at home to keep your Briard looking and feeling her best.This guide contains general health information important to all canines as well as the most important genetic predispositions for Briards.This information helps you and us together plan for your pet’s unique medical needs.You will know what to watch for, and we will all feel better knowing that we’re taking the best possible care of your pal.


    A dog with such a thick coat will need a lot of fur brushing to keep it looking great the whole time.For Briards, regular combing and brushing of the hair down to the skin with a pin brush and an undercoat rake to remove the dead hair and minimize shedding is part of a good grooming practice.


    You can minimize serious health concerns in a Briard by purchasing him from a reputable breeder who engages in responsible breeding practices, and through screening for common diseases and conditions.


    In France and America, the ears of most Briards are surgically cropped at five-to-six weeks of age.Proper care after surgery hat shortens the ears causes the ears to stand erect, emphasizing the parallel lines of the head and the long, proud neck.The cropped Briard is the only long-haired breed with erect ears, which gives a unique, alert expression to an already pleasing head.The ears face forward, attentive to the slightest sound, and long hair falls over the opening.The erect ears may also enhance the dog’s hearing ability, prevent ear infections, and inhibit predators from grabbing and damaging the ears of Briards guarding the flock.

    Life expectancy

    Get a copy to keep at home.It will help you prevent the painful health issues that can plague your lovely Briard pet from expressing his winning personality and maximizing his life expectancy.Note: Don’t let the many issues above scare you.The best way to approach health problems is to prevent them in the first place.The Ultimate Guide to Dog Health is a great place to start.


    Instead, give her a hug, brush her fur or teeth, play a game with her, or perhaps take her for a walk.It is a serious disease that may cause or worsen joint problems, metabolic and digestive disorders, back pain and heart disease.Obesity can be a significant health problem in Briards.She’ll feel better, and so will you!Though it’s tempting to give your pal food when she looks at you with those soulful eyes, you can “love her to death” with leftover people food and doggie treats.


    “Either you’re going to own the Briard or it’s going to own you.“It’ll work it too.Briards are tireless dogs.” They also aren’t happy staring at the leaves on the lawn.Extremely intelligent, a bored Briard will turn into Dennis the Menace, chewing your favorite high heels and nipping everything that moves.Hearts of gold wrapped in fur, Briards are amazing dogs, but they’re not for everyone.If you’re athletic with a strong personality who can provide a lot of toys, attention, and firm training, the Briard will see you as its equal and entertain you with its goofball antics, protect your family from strangers and smother you with kisses.The breed isn’t a soft-tempered dog.They need plenty of exercise such as long walks, swimming or running alongside your bicycle.You give it an inch and it’ll take a mile if it can get it,” Meyers says.


    All puppies of any breed need training and socialization to develop their personality and self-confidence to the fullest, but the Briard takes more time, effort, and firmness than some other breeds to counteract their natural instincts and temperament.All puppies should be purchased from a reliable breeder who has given the puppy a good start and should be enrolled in a puppy kindergarten class to continue the training under a competent teacher.Each person in the household must be sure to assume the role of “alpha dog” — the head of the pack.From an early age, a Briard puppy will begin to assert his dominance over his human “littermates” if he’s permitted to do so.In addition to formal training at home and in class, Briard puppies must have intensive socialization until at least one year of age.In spite of its appealing appearance, charming personality, and trainability, the Briard is not for everyone.People who are remiss in socializing their puppy or who don’t want to be tough enough should be reminded that prospects for these dogs has changed.Socialization is the process of exposing the puppy to as many different people, places, and situations as possible to prevent him from forming fearful reactions to new people and events.The same characteristics that make the breed a loyal guard dog and an excellent herding dog can be more than a first-time dog owner or an easy-going person can manage.Today Briards should be well-adjusted, obedient, loving members of the householdhardly the same expectations that the French shepherd had when he left his dog alone on a hillside with a large flock of sheep and potential predators.


    Although training and socialization is of paramount importance in raising a Briard, potential puppy buyers should choose a puppy from a breeder who places good temperament at the top of the list of priorities.Fortunately, there are responsible breeders who choose breeding animals that are nice pets as well as top show dogs or herding dogs, start the socialization and training process from birth, and place the right puppy with the right new owner.Some breeders value the tough, dominant side of the breed (sometimes a problem with breeders from France); some breeders lack the experience and expertise to evaluate temperament and handle large working breeds; and some breeders consider color, size, structure, coat, etc., more important than temperament.When looking for a puppy, meet the parents if possible, and with the breeder’s help, select a puppy that best fits your needs, your lifestyle, and your level of experience.


    “After a lot of training, we got to the point where he would look at us for direction,” she says.“Now, we don’t introduce him to strangers or dogs on the street anymore.Once he’s calm, we allow them to play.” Briards need firm, sensible training and not strict, harsh treatment.The only Briard in Hoboken, New Jersey, Lucca went through a stage where he’d bark and snap at dogs and people because he was afraid so DuSoleil watched a lot of training videos on YouTube and followed trainers on Instagram.They also need supervision because when they play, they play rough, meaning that the breed isn’t ideal for toddlers or small children.When people or dogs come over, we have him wait in place.

    Are Briards Family Dogs?

    The Briard will make a loyal and loving companion for your family.They’re wary of those they don’t know, but always loyal and carry an independent initiative to take care of you and your family.

    Can I Afford a Briard?

    If you’re going to buy from a good breeder, a quality Briard puppy will cost around $1100.For a show dog, you’ll have to pay more.

    Conclusion: Why the Briard?

    The Briard is a faithful, protective, and fearless breed.They are a tried and true family dog who absolutely adore children.

    Do Briards Have A Lot of Health Problems?

     The Briard is a healthy breed, but they can be prone to certain health conditions like most purebreds.

    Grooming: Is it Difficult to Maintain Those Locks?

     Begin grooming your Briard puppy from a young age, as this will prepare your baby for the frequent grooming appointments when they are older.

    How active is the Briard?

    It is a very active breed, and is agile and powerful.It is not suited to apartment living as it needs a large yard or some land and it also needs owners who are committed to being active.If not being kept as a working dog it needs daily exercise in the form of a couple of long walks, joining you for hikes, bicycle rides, jogging and even swimming.It also needs some time somewhere safe off leash where it can run free and safely.It is fast and able to make very abrupt turns and start with a spring so make sure it is leashed when not somewhere safe.Also just as important as the physical exercise is the mental stimulation too.It needs engaging and sometimes challenging things to do and a chance to vent a lot of energy, if it does not get that it gets bored, over excited, will act out and that includes barking and destructive behavior like chewing.

    How Do you Train a Briard?

    The Briard dog breed temperament allows them to make decisions without human help.While this is great when performing a job, it can make training difficult.

    How is the Briard with children and other animals?

    Briards are good with children if they have been socialized and it really does help too if they have been raised with them.In the right homes where they know their place in the home they are affectionate with them, playful, energetic, loving and protective too.For example they have been known to step in to protect children who are being scolded or punished by their parents.It is a good-natured dog but it does not like to be teased so it is better with older children who have learned that.Make sure children are taught how to approach dogs safely, how to touch them kindly.

    Is It a Briard?

    We are a group of animal lovers dedicated to rescuing Briard dogs. We love all dogs and animals in general, but by focusing on one breed we have a better chance of connecting these dogs to the proper care and resources that they need and financially assist their transportation to new homes for these wonderful pets.

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    The Father of…Dog Licenses?

    Jefferson is credited with introducing the idea of dog licensing.He thought all dogs should wear collars with their owners’ names on them, so all would know whom to blame if a dog misbehaved.

    What Do You Know About Briards?

    We’ve learned all about some other French breeds in the past like the Papillon, Basset Hound, and Brittany, and now it’s time for the Briard.

    What Does a Briard Look Like?

    The AKC breed standard provides you with all the details regarding appearance.

    What kind of dogs are part of your family?

    Help us get you the most relevant information.

    What will training look like?

    For people with experience the Briard is easy to moderately easy to train.It is intelligent and can train, some are even eager to please.Results will be gradual but they will happen as long as you are firm, confident, consistent and stick by the rules you set.Unfortunately a lot of adolescent and adult Briards can end up in shelters or rescues because too many people with no experience get them and then cannot handle them.It is important as the owner you are the clear boss, the pack leader, the one it must obey.It can become stubborn, withdrawn, willful and very difficult if that is not clearly established.Avoid being harsh with it, being firm does not mean scolding it all the time.You can still use positive techniques, offer it praise and encouragement, use treats to motivate.Early socialization is just as important as basic obedience training.From an early age you should be exposing it to different places, people, sounds, animals, dogs and so on.The more it can get used to these things early on, the more likely it will be able to respond appropriately to them when older.Briards not socialized can become suspicious, aggressive or even excessively shy which in itself can also lead to aggression.

    What Would They Nom?

    One last thing – I always ask myself what the breed of the week would like as a treat.My guess is that the Briard would enjoy either a bag of Rabbit Entree’ Jerky or the Jones Natural Chews Dino Bone.I can just see Norman chowing down on a big old Dino Bone.NOM NOM NOM.

    What’s your primary interest in dogs?

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    Where Does The Briard Dog Come From?

    The Briard, the Shepherd of Brie, or the Berger de Brie originated in France’s northern dairy region.Others believe the breed was developed by Aubry de Montdidier, a famous french owner.

    History of Briards

  • In 1973, the British Briard Club was formed by a group of enthusiasts with the idea of furthering the breed in all spheres; the sound breeding animal, the happy, healthy companion and the elegant show dog.
  • In 1863 a man named Pierre Megnin differentiated two types of sheepdogs, one with a long coat, which became known as the Briard, and the other with a short coat, which became the Beauceron.
  • In 1863 there was a dog show in Paris and after that the Briard started gaining in popularity.
  • In 1865, briards got introduced into the dog show and during the first world war, they played major roles in finding wounded soldiers and towing supply carts to the soldiers.
  • In 1897 the first french shepherd dog club was formed into which both the Briard and the Beauceron were accepted.
  • In 1897 the first shepherd dog club was founded and both the Beauceron and the Briard were accepted into it.
  • In 1909, Les Amis du Briard was founded, a French society that drew up the breed standard by 1925.
  • In 1912 and 1913, several local kennel clubs recognized standards for Bouviers; however they usually had different standards for the Roeselare and other variants.
  • In 1912 and 1913, several local kennel clubs recognized standards for Bouviers; however they usually had different standards for the Roeselare and other variants.[2]
  • In 1922 brought more development to the Alaska state capital is 592 miles of!, Chowder, Chabrador lab chow mix white Labrachow, or Chow Shepherd mix, black…
  • In 1922, the French breed club, the Club des Amis Du Beauceron, was founded.
  • In 1947, the Komondor was used to acquire fresh blood in the rare South Russian Ovcharka.
  • In 1981 they bred the first litter in the U.S.A producing 6 puppies.
  • In 1994 it was UKC recognized, and it entered the AKC FSS program in 2007.
  • In 1998, the first US Registered Bergamasco sired from Silver Pastori, Fauno and Gae dell Albera, was introduced to Canada.
  • In 2006, the breed was recognised by the United Kennel Club and included it to the Herding Group, using the name Portuguese Sheepdog.
  • In 2006, the United
    Kennel Club (UKC) recognized him as a rare breed.
  • In 2015, Maria DuSoleil discovered the Briard at the American Kennel Club’s Meet the Breeds event in New York.
  • In the 1850’s, the Briard was crossed with the Barbet and the Beauceron, leading way to the Briards that we know today.
  • In the 1970s, another Komondor cross was made.
  • In the 1970s, another Komondor cross was made.[7] It is also believed to be related to the Briard, the Catalonian Sheepdog, the Cão da Serra de Aires, the Pyrenean Shepherd and the Bergamasco shepherd, but the Bergamasco has flocks unlike the Komondor.[8]
  • In the 1970s, another Komondor cross was made.[7] It is also believed to be related to the Briard, the Catalonian Sheepdog, the Cão da Serra de Aires, the Pyrenean Shepherd and the Bergamasco shepherd, but the Bergamasco has flocks unlike the Komondor.[8]