This breed has been around since the 19th century. At that time, four different types of Belgian shepherd developed. The best known is the Malinois - optically it is closest to its relative, the German Shepherd Dog. A Belgian shepherd dog of this type has short, light fur and a darker mask.
Belgian Shepherd Malinois: herding and cattle dog
The best known of the four types was originally bred as a herding dog. Today he is kept primarily as a service or sports dog. For example, the Malinois is used a lot in the police, military and customs sectors because of its work enthusiasm and intelligence.
The Laekenois, another variant of the working dog, is also short-haired, but with a rough coat. He is the rarest representative of the Belgian Shepherd breed. In essence, the Laekenois - like all types - resembles the Malinois.
Belgian Shepherd Dog: Active family dog
Tervueren and Groenendael: Long-haired German Shepherds
Tervueren and Groenendael are the long-haired subspecies of the Belgian Shepherd Dog. The color of the Tervueren is similar to that of the Malinois: the overall coat is relatively light - mostly tending to reddish brown - and its mask black, while the Groenendael is completely black. Like the other two species, these four-legged friends are smart, able to learn, but also fond of children. It is not for nothing that they are popular family dogs. But a specific task also helps them: They can be used as watchdogs, alternatively dog sports such as agility are available.