What started out as an investigation by Evan ended with us adopting a new little sister for the girls! Evan came home telling us about these Schipperke (Pronunciation: SKIP-er-kee)puppies he'd seen while covering a call. None of us had ever heard of this breed before. That was followed by an online research, discussing all the pros and cons of getting another dog, a visit to their kennel, a family conference over sodas, another visit to the kennel, and picking up our new dog.
The Schipperke are quick, energetic little dogs. High-spirited, alert, and self-confident. Very devoted and loyal, especially with children. It really bonds to its master. Pet cats will be happily accepted and they are usually good with other dogs. They are very smart, curious and mischievous. These dogs do exceptionally well on boats. Among the Schipperke's best qualities are the ability to defend its home against intruders - backing down from nobody, and being an excellent friend to children.The Schipperke was bred in Flanders by a canal boat captain named Renssens. Thought to be descended from the same sheep-herding stock as the black Belgian Sheepdog, the Schipperke was bred smaller and smaller and eventually became a different breed entirely. It became a favorite choice to guard canal barges in Belgium. The breed was used for herding livestock, hunting game, or simply guarding his domain. In Flemish Schipperke means "Little Skipper", or "Little Captain". This being so, because the dogs were the "ratters", a very important function on a canal barge, and also usually the captain's dog. Hence, the name of the little skipper. The breed became very popular in Belgian households by the late 1800's. It first appeared at a dog show in 1880. From that point on it was exported throughout the world. Today he serves primarily as a companion dog. The Schipperke do very well on boats and people often get this breed to come along with them on boating and fishing trips. It makes a great guard dog when the boat anchors for the night, alerting of anything out of the ordinary and the dog thoroughly enjoys its trip.