(Västgötaspets, Vaestgoetaspets, Vallhund, Swedish Cattle Dog)The Swedish Vallhund is a Corgi-like dog. The breed’s smiling, round face leads into a small muzzle. They have large yellow or brown colored eyes, and their large ears stick straight up. These dogs should have a light color of fur down the middle of the face and on the muzzle. Like Corgis, they have very short legs compared to their body size. Their tail is bushy and curls up on their back like the tails of many arctic breeds. A top coat of fur is not soft and is medium length. Many coat colors are acceptable, such as red-yellow, gray, gray-brown, red-brown, and some white markings.
This breed should be born with a maximum tail length of 4 inches, but a full length tail is now allowed in the show ring. Docking is not accepted. Standards state the dog should have harness markings and a head that is slightly fox like. Their bodies should not be as long and low as the Corgi. They are very flexible even when running full speed. They have a wooly undercoat and require very little grooming despite their thick coat. They have a very muscular body.
The Swedish Vallhund is sweet and loving but likes to clown around. It is protective of its owner and property. Being the center of attention is important to the Swedish Vallhund. They get along with children who are respectful. If they are socialized at a young age, they will also be friendly with strangers. They bark very often, so they will warn of strangers and make good guard dogs. A strong herding instinct makes them want to nip at people’s heels. They are very active herding dogs and can easily be taught to take up this type of work.
Swedish Vallhunds are a relatively hardy breed with a few genetic faults that rarely occur, such as CHD (canine hip dysplasia), cryptorchidism, luxated patellas, and retinal dysplasia. The Swedish Vallhund can live about 12 to 14 years.
It is common for them to live to 17 and still be fully allert although a bit slower.
The Swedish Vallhund is definitely related to the Pembroke Welsh Corgi, but the rest of its origins are not clearly known. One theory is that the dog was brought to Britain by the Vikings. Their name means “Swedish herding dog.” However, the breed was not only used for herding. These dogs were also used as watch dogs.
There is no proof that this breed is related to the Corgi although many think the Vikings are resonisble for spreading them throughout the world. Although they are smaller and not as tall, they look very much like the other Scandinavian Spitz breeds. This breed is a member of the Spitz family.
Grooming is simple for the Swedish Vallhund. Brushing should be done regularly but baths are only needed on occasion. These dogs are active and smart, so they need activities to keep them busy. Playing games and herding are enjoyable activities for these dogs. However, they release plenty of energy by running in the house. They also like training because it keeps their minds active. Socialization is important at an early age so the dogs will not be wary of strangers.
The Swedish Vallhund is an active, fun loving dog. Apartment living is fine for this breed. They need to get plenty of exercise but most can be obtained in the house. As long as children are respectful, this breed is friendly with them. They are a good companion for older people. Socialization is extremely important so they are not wary or over-protective around strangers. Their owner needs to have time to train them to not nip at people’s heels. Training is something the Swedish Vallhund enjoys and excels at. They bark a lot which can make them a good watch dog but can also be annoying to families and neighbors.
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