COUNTDOWN TO BELGIAN LAEKENOIS AKC FULL ACCEPTANCE
Did you know:
- Belgian Laekenois is pronounced Lak-in-wah
- The Belgian Laekenois in AKC Miscellaneous Group since June 2011.
- The Belgian Laekenois will achieve full acceptance in the AKC Herding Group on 1 July 2020.
- The Belgian Laekenois is also Laekense and Chien de Berger Belge.
- The Belgian Laekenois Foundation Stock Service status began in 1998.
- The American Belgian Laekenois Association (ABLA) founded in 1995.
The Belgian Laekenois:
Strong, agile and full of life, the Belgian Laekenois (pronounced “Lak-in-wah”) is one of four native dogs of Belgium. Although similar in body and temperament to the Malinois, Shepherd and Tervuren, the Laekenois differs in coat color, texture and length, as well as region of origin. The fawn rough haired varieties were given the name Laekenois (derived from the town of Laeken). The breed’s coat texture is rough and coarse, creating a disorderly, tousled look. All shades of red or fawn to grayish tones are acceptable with traces of black appearing principally on the muzzle and tail.
Laekenois are capable and dynamic with the ability to excel in any dog sport. In the AKC venues the Laekenois First to Title List is available at
In September of 1891 the Belgian Shepherd Dog Club (Club du Chien de Berger Beige) was organized to investigate the characteristics of the native dogs in Belgium. They defined the consistent type of this native dog that was identical in body and temperament but differing in coat (color, texture and length).
During the early part of the twentieth century, the owners and breeders in Belgium urged the acceptance of additional varieties based on the color and regions of origin. The fawn rough haired varieties were given the name Laekenois (derived from the town of Laeken). The abilities of these dogs as intelligent and versatile workers soon gained popularity in other countries.
The Laekenois’ original duty, in addition to guarding and tending the flock, was to guard linen drying in the fields. He was an enthusiast worker and a quick learner that made him a desirable choice for the task at hand. He was later called on to serve as a messenger dog during World War I and II. At this time his numbers were severely decreased. Many breeders worked very hard to restore this variety, while retaining the typical Belgian Shepherd Dog intelligence, type and structure. He is admired today for these attributes. He is still able to herd and guard his flock, and protect his people and their property. His ability to adapt to new situations and to respond to his master’s commands makes him an alert, intelligent, inquisitive animal. He typically is reserved with strangers.