This breed loves to work and has a strong herding instinct. They are good with children and other animals, but can be protective of their family and territory. Because they are so versatile, Berger Picards can be used for a variety of purposes, including as working dogs on farms, as guard dogs, or as pets.

Berger Picard Breed History

The Berger Picard, also known as the Picardy Shepherd, is an ancient breed of dog that originated in Picardy, region of France. They are considered to be a pastoral breed, and were originally bred for working with livestock. They are considered to be the oldest herding dogs in Europe. Their origins date back to the 9th century. It was not given its own breed name until 1925, when it was linked to the Briard and Beauceron. Others believe that they were related to Dutch and Belgian Shepherds.

During both World Wars, the indigenous sheepdog was much loved in France, but the Berger Picard nearly went extinct during both conflicts. This dog breed is considered to be rare. In the United States, Berger Picards are registered with the American Kennel Club (AKC) as a “Herding Dog”.

Picards Appearance

Berger Picard dogs are medium-sized and they usually weigh between 50 and 65 pounds and are about 23 inches tall at the shoulder. Their coat can be brindle or fawn with white markings. Their eyes are oval shaped, turned forward and their ears are quite large but erect and turned forward as well. Berger Picard’s are intelligent, alert and have a strong working instinct. Their tail is strong and curls at the tip forming the “J” letter. Their coat is harsh and crisp to the touch, neither flat nor curly, often with a slight wave. They have a double coat to prevent them from cold weather. Undercoat is soft, short, and dense. The shaggy, rough coat of the Picard is distinctive, and should never be wooly, soft, or so profuse that it hides the outline of the dog. The hair on the muzzle is slightly longer, which creates a characteristic beard and moustache. Berger Picard’s are considered to be handsome dogs with their unique coat and expressive eyes.

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Maintenance and Grooming

This breed do not require a lot of grooming, but picards require some basic maintenance. You will want to brush their coat every month to keep it free of mats and debris. Berger Picards do not need to be bathed very often either. Just a few times a year should be sufficient. However, you will want to make sure to clean their ears regularly and trim their nails as needed. In the spring and summer, more brushing will help remove the winter coat and reduce shedding. A coat rake may be used to remove the undercoat. There is no need for trimming. The long fringe on puppy’s ears should be removed by hand plucking or hand stripping, not by shaving or cutting.

Activity Level

The Berger Picard is a high-energy dog that needs plenty of exercise. They are happiest when they have a job to do, whether it’s herding livestock or playing fetch. Without enough activity, these dogs can become destructive and aggressive. Berger Picards should never be left alone in the backyard without anything to keep them busy. They are also not recommended for apartment living, as picards need at least an hour of exercise each day. They enjoy hiking, running, and playing in the park.


Berger Picards are easy to train and respond well to positive reinforcement. They are intelligent dogs that catch on quickly, but they can also be headstrong at times. Training should be started early and should be consistent. Berger Picards are excellent with children and make great family pets. If they are trained correctly, they will be obedient and well-behaved, but if the training is too harsh they can become shut down.


Berger Picards do best on a high-quality diet that meets their energy needs. They are prone to obesity if they are not given enough exercise, so it is important to monitor their food intake. Berger Picards should have access to plenty of fresh water and should be fed about 500 grams of food daily, but the exact amount will vary depending on the dog’s activity level, age and sex. If they are working dogs, they may need more food. it’s important to find a food that your Berger Picard likes and stick to it.

Personality and Temperament

The Berger Picard is a breed that is known for its intelligence, eagerness to please and wonderful temperament. They are loyal family companions and make great watchdogs. Berger Picards are gentle with children and get along well with other pets. They do not adapt well to apartment living, however, if they get enough exercise, they can do well in smaller living spaces. They are generally not barkers, but will warn their family of potential danger. They are energetic, intelligent, and versatile dogs. They’re also considered to be stubborn or independent at times, but overall they are a very trainable breed. They are quite reserved towards strangers, but once they know someone, they are very attached and devoted. Berger Picards are an excellent choice for families looking for a versatile, intelligent dog with a great personality. It is important that the socialization takes places early on in Berger Picard puppies lives as Berger Picards can be a bit shy around new people and situations. With proper training though, they will make great additions to any family.

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The Berger Picard is a healthy breed of dog and their life span is about 12-14 years. However, as with any breed of dog, there are some health concerns that owners should be aware of. Some common health problems Berger Picard owners may face include:

  • progressive retinal atrophy;
  • canine multifocal retinopathy;
  • hip dysplasia;
  • elbo dysplasia.

Progressive retinal atrophy is a degenerative eye disease that can cause blindness in Berger Picards. Canine multifocal retinopathy is a progressive eye disease that can also cause blindness. Hip dysplasia is a condition where the hip joint is not properly formed, which can lead to pain and arthritis. Elbow dysplasia is a condition where the elbow joint is not properly formed, which can also lead to pain and arthritis.

If you are considering owning a Berger Picard, it is important to be aware of these health concerns and talk to your veterinarian about them. By doing so, you can help ensure that your Berger Picard lives a long and healthy life. Also, be sure to have your Berger Picard regularly checked by your veterinarian to catch any potential health problems early. This can help minimize the severity of those problems and extend your Berger Picard’s life. Before you bring a Berger Picard into your home, be sure to do your research so that you are fully aware of what to expect from this breed of dog and search for a Berger Picard breeder who screens their dogs for health problems.

For Whom?

Berger Picards would make great companions for active couples and families with older children. They are not recommended for households with very small children because of their high energy level and tendency to play rough. Berger Picards may be wary of strangers, so early socialization is important. They are recommended for active people, who will provide them with plenty of exercise, as they are prone to boredom and can become destructive if not given enough activity. They are willful dogs and can be challenging to train, but their intelligence and eagerness to please make them quite successful in obedience trials. They are perfect for families and are get along well with other animals. They’re very loyal and make excellent watchdogs, however they’re not recommended for first time dog owners.

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Price For a Puppy

The cost of a puppy can vary depending on the breeder. Berger Picards typically sell for around $2000-$2500. They are considered a rare breed and are in high demand, so the price may be higher in some cases. Before purchasing a Berger Picard, be sure to research the breeder and their practices to ensure you are getting a healthy, well-socialized puppy.


  • Berger Picard was featured in several movies, including “Because of Winn-Dixie” (2005) and “Are We Done Yet?” (2007).
  • Berger Picard Club of America is a club that’s dedicated to promoting and protecting the breed.
  • There are about 3,500 picards in France.
  • The breed was almost extinct during the World War I and World War II.
  • They were used to smuggle tobacco and matches over the Belgian border.
  • Although the Berger Picard was first shown at the French first dog show in 1863, they didn’t gain a status of a show dog due to their rustic appearance.

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