The Shipperke has a very robust build. Its body is medium-sized with a deep and wide chest. The breed’s head is moderate in size, but well proportioned to its body. It has a muzzle that is average in length and a well defined stop. The ears are relatively small in size and “V” shaped. The neck is elongated and slightly angles to its straight back. Its coat is straight and very coarse on top. the undercoat is much softer. The coat varies in length. It is most profuse and long at the collar. The breed does not have a tail. The breed stands on well-muscled and straight front legs and angled back legs.


The Shipperke is a good family pet. It generally gets along fine with everyone in its family, except cats. It will coexist peacefully with other dogs. This breed is a natural protector and makes an effective guard and watchdog. The breed is aloof with people it doesn’t know. The Shipperke is responsive to training, but may be stubborn.

Height and Weight

Male and female Shipperkes weigh about 12-18 pounds. Male types stand about 11-13 inches tall, while female types are about 10-12 inches tall.

Health Problems

The most common health problems associated with the Shipperke include luxating patellas and epilepsy. The breed may also develop hip dysplasia, a common condition among breeds similar to its size.

Ideal Living Conditions

The Shipperke will remain active whether it lives indoors or outdoors. However, it will require more exercise if it resides indoors. If the breed spends any amount of time outdoors, it should be enclosed within an average-size fence that is well built. This will keep the curious breed from attempting to escape.


If given the space, the Shipperke will spend countless hours running around. It has a moderate energy level and shold obtain a significant amount of vigorous exercise daily. Training time spent with the breed counts toward exercise.

Life Expectancy

The Shipperke lives an average of 15 years.

Litter Size

The Shipperke has an average of 5 puppies.


Like a cat, the Shipperke grooms itself. It doesn’t shed much, but brushing helps to remove loose hair.


The Shipperke was developed in the 19th century to assist hunters of small game.




Black is the only acceptable color for the Shipperke.