The Catalan Sheepdog is a Spanish dog breed that has been working with Spanish farmers for centuries helping them herd and guard their flock. This breed had a close extinction call in recent times and breed lovers and enthusiasts had to work hard to save them from that cliff.
The Catalan Sheepdog is slowly regaining its former popularity but in a slightly different role. They were a popular working breed and these days they are mostly family pets. Their pet popularity is on the rise because of their playfulness, intelligence, and most of all its good nature. These dogs make wonderful, playful pets that get along extremely well with all family members.
FUN FACT: The Catalan Sheepdog is an excellent detection dog and is often chosen for the role of law enforcement’s K9 detection unit.
18-22 in (45-55 cm)
38-55 lb (17-25 kg)
Dog Breed Characteristics
The Catalan Sheepdog is a medium-sized dog breed that is well-built and is known for its beautiful coat. These dogs are a bit longer than they are high and they have well-developed muscles that are rarely seen under their long coat. The nose of the Catalan Sheepdog should always be black and their ears should be set high, triangular, and pointed. These dogs should have round eyes that are dark amber in color.
Their body should always give the impression of strength, power, and agility. Their topline should be straight and their chests should be well-developed, wide, and reaching to the elbows. An interesting thing is that these dogs can have a long and a short tail, and some are even born with a naturally docked tails.
FUN FACT: This Spanish breed is extremely popular in Andorra and they can still be found there working alongside shepherds.
Catalan Sheepdog standards
- Group 1 (Sheepdogs and Cattle Dogs, except Swiss Cattle Dogs). Section 1 (Sheepdogs)
- height - males 47-55 cm (18,5-22 in), females 45-53 cm (18-21 in)
- date of acceptance - 11/30/1954
This breed is not accepted by the AKC
Catalan Sheepdogs have a long and slightly wavy coat with abundant undercoats. Regular brushing will take care of the dead hair, and since these dogs are moderate “shedders,” brushing will also help you keep the place clean and hair-free. Dogs’ coats have natural, protective oils that can be washed off if they are being washed too often. They will also need other basic care; brush their teeth at least three times a week. Check their ears for signs of infection and redness, bathe them every 4-5 weeks (more if they live inside the house), and trim their nails if they don’t wear them down naturally.
Catalan Sheepdog coat colors:
- brown more or less reddish
Catalan Sheepdog temperament
The Catalan Sheepdog’s temperament has developed through years of its working among flocks they were trusted to guard. They are fairly intelligent and are display problem-solving skills. These dogs display some independent qualities yet are very loyal and devoted to their families.
They were employed as flock guardians for years and those traits they still retain. They are quick to react if they feel their family is threatened and are naturally distrustful towards strangers at first. The Catalan Sheepdog is especially protective of the children from their own family. If these dogs are not on duty, they are extremely peaceful and will adapt to any situation they might be in.
Catalan Sheepdog training
Catalan Sheepdog’s training should be a piece of cake for even the most inexperienced dog owners out there. These dogs are very eager to please their owner and they love working. They are natural herders and that behavior can be polished and trained so that your Catalan Sheepdog becomes a great herding competitor. Use only positive training methods with such a breed and you will start noticing great results in no time.
Catalan Sheepdog’s socialization should be a treat for everyone. They are extremely friendly towards other dogs and taking them to a busy dog park should be a pleasure. They can be distrustful towards strangers and if they are not properly socialized, that sort of behavior has the potential to become problematic. Exposing your dog to strangers while they are still puppies will make sure your dog learns when protection is necessary and that not all strangers are a threat.
Catalan Sheepdogs are dogs with a life expectancy of 12-14 years. Like any other dog breed, they are prone to some health problems that every (future) owner should be aware of. To be sure that you'll get the healthiest possible dog, never buy a dog from a puppy mill breeder or a pet store. Catalan Sheepdog can suffer from
- hip dysplasia
Catalan Sheepdog breeders
If you decided that this is the right dog for you, now it's time to find a good and responsible Catalan Sheepdog breeder. Buying a dog from such a breeder will provide you with a healthy puppy who will not have health and temperament problems. These dogs became very popular, and many unethical and bad breeders started to breed these dogs to earn money without worrying about puppy health, temperament, and well-being.
Buying a dog from a responsible breeder will cost you more money, but you can be sure that you will get a healthy puppy. If you are unable to buy a dog, we advise you to search for local animal shelters because there is a chance you can find Catalan Sheepdog in them.
World Dog Finder team