Berger Picard Dog Breed Facts & Information

Maybe you're looking for medium to large dog. You love otterhounds, but they're extremely rare. You've considered a vizla but aren't sure if you're prepared for their energy level. Why not consider a berger Picard? These mid-sized cuties are super friendly, love people, and make great pets.

Berger Picard at the 140th Annual Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
credit: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images Entertainment/GettyImages

The Basics

The berger Picard, or simply the "Picard," is a French breed of dog of herding dog. "berger" means "shepherd" in French, and Picardie is the region where the breed is from. Picards are friendly, loyal and active. Picards are generally considered a healthy breed, with no significant health problems besides the occasional bout of hip dysplasia (common in many larger breeds). A medium-large dog, they weigh between 50-70 pounds and have a life expectancy of 12-13 years.

The History

The berger Picard is thought to be the oldest of the French Sheepdog. The breed was brought to northern France in the 9th century. Its numbered dwindled during World Wars I and II, and while they've bounced back somewhat, the Picard is still a rare dog in both Europe and North America. In 2006, the Berger Picard Club of America was formed, with the mission of protecting and promoting Picards in the United States. The breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 2007. Fun fact: the 2005 movie Because of Wynn-Dixie starred several Picards who alternated playing the role of Wynn-Dixie.

The Personality

Picards are herding dogs, and as such are very active and energetic. They are enthusiastic and athletic and love spending time with their humans. With lots of energy and stamina to boot, Picards make great jogging or hiking companions. Some even love to swim! Picards also excel at challenges like agility courses.

Picards are even-tempered and should get along well with both children and other pets, though both situations should be supervised (at least in the beginning).

The Appearance

Picard males are 23.5-25.5 inches at the withers, while females are 21.5-23.5 inches. They weigh between 50-70 pounds. Picards have triangle-shaped ears that stick up adorably and thick "eyebrows" that frame their faces. Their mouths often have the appearance of smiling. They have a long, wiry coat that comes in two colors: fawn and brindle.

Berger Picard outdoors on a leash
credit: ernstboese/iStock/GettyImages

Berger Picard essential facts

  • Personality: Lively, friendly, energetic
  • Energy Level: Active
  • Trainability: Highly trainable
  • Good with Children: Yes, with supervision
  • Good with other Dogs: Yes, with supervision
  • Shedding: Infrequent
  • Grooming: Easy - occasional grooming is fine
  • Barking Level: Barks when necessary
  • Height: 23.5-25.5 inches (male), 21.5-23.5 inches (female)
  • Weight: 50-70 pounds
  • Life Expectancy: 12-13 years

Interested in other breeds? Check out this article about German Rottweilers and this list of different doodle dogs.