BRIE SHEPHERD BRIARD DOG

Unlike the famous goat cheese of the same French area, there is nothing soft or processed in the Brie Shepherd or Briard; it is a natural and hard working dog. 
A good sized, attractive dog, with pretty long hair, the male Briard should not be shorter than 62 cm and taller than 68 cm; the female, between 56 and 64 cm. As any shepherd with a strong build, the Briard is potent but without being coarse. It is not heavy, but almost square, slightly taller than long. The head seems long, and should have enough width, without being heavy. The standard describes the bead as two rectangles of equal length that join; the wider forms the skull, and the other the muzzle. The long hair adorns and almost hides the head. The eyes, placed horizontally, barely visible through the hair, should be dark. The ears well separated and open, high inserted; docked ears should be carried high and parallel, natural ears should not drop, but elevate slightly in alert (attention to current prohibitions in each country regarding this). The muzzle with its moustache and beard is somewhat wide; the nose is always black. The body is built with a slight sloping, from the withers marked to the straight back, to the wide lumbar area and the rump slightly descending. The tail is not docked, well provided with hair, forming a hook at the end, carried low. The hindquarters have a double hock that must not be removed. The coat is dry to the touch and slightly wavy (as goat hair); the undercoat is fine and thick. The color of the coat should be uniform; dark shadings are preferred, never white; the coat should not have spots and a white spot at the chest it is only allowed if it is not more than 2.50 cm in diameter.  
 
WHO IS IT RIGHT FOR     
To guarantee that the Brie Shepherd is kind to people, its socialization should begin as soon as three weeks after birth.
Protective by nature, the Brie Shepherd is a great family dog, with a strong instinct to keep its herd. It is prone to bond more with a determined family member, and there have been cases of dogs protecting children from their scolding parents (it is a great dog for children!). The adolescent Brie Shepherd can be dominant, so a firm but affectionate education is needed. As in other smart breeds, the Brie Shepherd loves to test its owners; the smartest owners perform as a leader dog and continue socializing their dog, and turn their Brie Shepherd in a manageable and obedient dog.   
 
The adolescent Brie Shepherd is like a child during puberty, always testing authority. The breed needs plenty of human contact and partnership in its life.
 
DEVELOPMENT 
   
The Briard mother is very protective of its young. The ear docking should not be performed too soon to avoid mistakes in ear growth.
After eight weeks the Brie Shepherd puppy weighs between 3 and 5 kg. It grows quickly, and after three months it can already weigh as much as 12 kg. Adequate nutrition is vital to ensure correct growth. However, complete maturity is not reached until after three years, although the maximum height is usually reached at around the year. The ear docking, if performed, should be done at three dogs. Socialization is essential to get and keep this breed’s potential. The Brie Shepherd changes color when maturing. The dark puppies lighten up to the year, when they obtain their fawn color. This color usually darkens again and the coat turns rougher with maturity. The black puppies can have grey hairs in between the coat when maturing.
 
HEALTH
As other large breed, the Brie Shepherd puppy grows quickly, and can pass through an irregular growth phase.
In general, the Brie Shepherd enjoys good health. It needs plenty of exercise to satisfy this working dog’s energy needs. Hair care is also considerable, although it doesn’t require special grooming. Plenty of brushing, with the coat brushing technique until reaching the skin, the coat should be kept clean and without knotting, and at the same time to help limiting the hair loss, dermatitis and other possible skin problems. There was a time when hip dysplasia was common in the breed, but it has been reduced due to careful breeding. Always insist on X – rays to discard dysplasia. Progressive retinal atrophy happens relatively rarely, but is still a concern. Of course the most serious problem is stomach torsion, and the owner should follow a very careful feeding and exercise. There are also hypothyroidism cases, as well night blindness and certain heart and blood anomalies. The Brie Shepherd can live an active life until the tenth or twelfth year.
Dark puppies lighten until after a year.