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Care Requirements

Health Maintenance: Berger Picards due to lack of over breeding is a relatively healthy, disease free breed. Hip dysplasia is known, but not common because the dog is not super heavy. Nevertheless a reputable breeder will have hips and elbows x-rayed and eyes certified for hereditary diseases.

Exercise: Bred to work the fields, Picards are very athletic and revel in exercise. They enjoy swimming, running beside a bike, and a nice long walk. The Berger Picard makes an excellent jogging companion. Exercise is therefore a must for this breed. Otherwise boredom will give way to destructive doggie behavior and rowdy play. The breed's intelligence and sensitivity are also making them increasingly popular in dog sports like Agility, Tracking, Schutzhund, Flyball, and French Ring Sport.

Living conditions: Despite being more suited for being outdoors, Picards can do surprisingly well in city life provided they are given enough energy releasing exercise. However, the Picard always tries to stay close to its owner and family, so even if you have a big yard and give the dog the choice of where it wants to be, it will rather stay inside with you than alone outside. Inside the house the Picard is usually a very quiet dog, waiting for its time to go out to run, play and sniff around.

Socialization: Like many herding breeds, Picards require human companionship and lots of it. Since they can be demonstrative to their owners and enthusiastic friends towards other animals, obedience training and socialization is a must. Athletic, loyal and filled with a desire to work a long day, the breed excels in any "job" as long as enthusiasm and praise is a part of the task. Combine this with its charming face the Picard can be a good choice for a therapy or service dog.

Grooming: The Berger Picard is truly a low maintenance dog. The rough, tousled coat does not mat or require special care to yield its rustic appearance. Brushing should only be done once a month. Bathing, believe it or not, is rarely done. Their fur should never be trimmed except maybe around the ear edges. They are not profuse shedders and have no doggie odor.

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2009 Berger Picard Club of America & Nimh Design