most people are familiar with the white Samoyed,
it is easy to explain to the uninitiated that the
Keeshond is similar in looks to the Samoyed
except smaller and silver/black in colour. Like
the Samoyed, the Keeshond has a double coat
comprised of a thick soft undercoat and harsh
outer guard hairs which is non-greasy, dirt and
water resistant and does resist matting if
groomed often enough.
The Keeshond seldom needs
bathing if kept clean and well presented with a
weekly grooming session. The healthy Keeshond has
no doggy odour and kept clean and dry is
acceptable as an indoor house pet even for the
The coat provides insulation
against excessive heat and cold and when caught
in the rain a Keeshond coat will "seal"
preventing water penetration so that all that is
required is a brisk rub down with a towel to make
your Keeshond presentable for your home or car or
just for a cuddle.
Almost all dogs shed hair
and one look at a Keeshond will tell you that
hair shedding is going to be a major problem,
right? Wrong! A short-haired dog leaves hairs
deeply embedded in carpets and upholstery which
are just about impossible to remove, while greasy
residue leaves brown stains and strong odour.
The long dry coat of the
Keeshond is easily picked up with a vacuum
cleaner and leaves no grease marks. In the car a
velour clothes brush works wonders. The Keeshond
has a coat which is not only practical to itself
in all climates but also to the owner who is
concerned about ease of maintenance and moulting.
However, this does NOT mean you do not have to
groom your Keeshond at all !
The Keeshond will lose a
small amount of hair at all times, but will also
"moult" at regular intervals. Bitches
usually blow significant amounts of coat with
each six monthly season, however if your bitch is
speyed coat loss will not happen as often.
Generally speaking, males will lose their coats
at much greater intervals, typically eighteen
months or more.
The moult continues over a
few weeks and whether showing or just for
convenience it is best to remove loose hair as
soon as possible by gentle stripping and
brushing. The process can be accelerated by a
warm bath followed by blow drying (cool or low
heat) while you brush.
The Keeshond's purpose in
life was that of companion and watch dog. To-day
the Keeshond fills the role of family pet
admirably - an alert watchdog who will sound the
alarm at any intruder, yet not aggressive to
other breeds. They are loyal family members who
love human company, tolerant and trustworthy with
children. Although not an attacking breed, the
Keeshond is substantive enough in size and
capable of looking formidable enough to provide
security simply by his presence.
In addition the Keeshond is
particularly intelligent - obedience enthusiasts
can attest to their prowess in training and
trialling - and, being gifted with the most
adorable and expressive face, they have no
trouble with conveying their moods and
intentions. A friend, a companion for the modern
The typical Keeshond is
happy, healthy and not prone to injury or disease
but do note -
The following conditions listed occur
infrequently in Keeshonden obtained from a
reputable breeder, but occasionally are present
in the breed - hip
displasia, luxating patellas, congenital heart
and hypothyroidism. Both Diabetes and Epilepsy
have both been demonstrated to have a genetic
component in this breed.
However, as with all domesticated pure bred dogs,
man totally controls the breeding of the Keeshond
and it is therefore essential that prospective
new puppy owners seek out responsible, ethical,