Updated date:

What Dog Breed is Nicknamed the "Dutch Barge Dog?"

When it comes to dog breeds, many of them are provided with nicknames. Some of these dog nicknames are plain cute, describing endearing traits or physical characteristics, others are more on the honorable side, and then some are crafted to depict some significant roles these dogs filled. We therefore have dog breeds nicknamed the "Firehouse Dog" and the "Gamekeepers night dog," just for sake of example, and then we have the "Dutch Barge Dog."As the name implies, these dogs were employed in the Netherlands and worked nearby rivers or canals. Can you therefore guess this trivia question?

What dog breed is nicknamed the "Dutch Barge Dog?"

A Bouvier des Flandres

B Dutch Shepherd Dog

C Wire-haired Pointing Griffon

D Keeshond

The correct answer is: drum roll please...


[otw_is sidebar="otw-sidebar-1"]

The correct answer is D, the Keeshond is the Dutch Barge Dog!


Keeshond in a Chair, by Otto Eerelman

A Closer Insight

The keeshond is an an ancient dog breed dating back to the 16th century in Holland and that is categorized as a German spitz dog, also known as Wolfsspitz.

German spitz dogs are characterized by a head that has a wolfish or fox-like appearance, a double coat, high-set triangular ears and a tail curled over the back.

The keeshond is therefore related to other spitz-like breeds such as the Samoyed, Chow, Finnish Spitz, Norwegian elkhound and Pomeranian. Because of being related to the latter, the keeshond was also often infamously referred to as the "overweight Pomeranian."

The hallmark of this breed is its spectacles, dark lines running from the outer corner of the eye to the base of the ear which makes these dogs appear as if they're wearing glasses.

Discover More

puppy in the grass

Are Puppies Born With Parasites?

Whether puppies are born with parasites is something new breeders and puppy owners may wonder about. Perhaps you have seen something wiggly in your puppy's stool or maybe as a breeder you are wondering whether you need to deworm mother dog before she gives birth. Veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Masucci shares facts about whether puppies can be born with worms.


Ask the Vet: Help, My Dog Ate Donuts!

If your dog ate donuts, you may be concerned about your dog and wondering what you should do. The truth is, there are donuts and donuts and there are dogs and dogs. Some types of donuts can be more harmful than others and some dogs more prone to problems than others. Veterinarian Dr. Ivana shares whether donuts are safe for dogs and what to do if you dog ate donuts.


Do Dogs Fall Off Cliffs?

Yes, dogs fall off cliffs and these accidents aren't even uncommon. As we hike with our dogs, we may sometimes overestimate our dog's senses. We may take for granted that dogs naturally know what areas to avoid to prevent falls. However, the number of dogs who fall off from cliffs each year, proves to us that it makes perfect sense to protect them from a potentially life threatening fall.

Did you know? The presence of spectacles is so important that the American Kennel Club considers the absence of "spectacles" a very serious fault!

idea tip

A Look Back

Dutch barges by Adam Silo

Dutch barges by Adam Silo

Also known as the "Smiling Dutchman," due to this breed's bright, cheerful, and lively demeanor, the keeshond was used in the 17th and 18th century as a watchdog on barges that navigated through the Rhine River, a river that flows from Germany to the Netherlands.

What are barges exactly? Barges are small cargo vessels equipped with living quarters for the captain and his family. Keeshonds worked as zealous guardians of their owners’ belongings on these vessels and made great playmates for their children.

However, as the barges became larger, this breed became less favored and soon became scarce. Thankfully, their numbers were restored courtesy of the efforts of Baroness Van Hardenbroek.

Did you know? The plural form of keeshond is "keeshonden." So if you own a couple of these fellows, remember this!

idea tip

The Breed Today

While keeshond lost their jobs on the barges long ago, they have still retained their strong watch dog instincts and are always on duty, sounding the alarm for anything they believe is unusual. Being sensitive, keeshond may be reactive towards loud noises and may not cope well in families where there is lots of tension or shouting.

They are also nicknamed "velcro dogs" because of their tendency to follow their owners around and wanting to be involved in every activity. This breed therefore does best in the home with its family as keeshond are very people oriented and being around their people is what makes them most happy!

Did you know? Talk about politics! The name Keeshond derives from Cornelis "Kees" de Gijselaar, Dutch politician and leader in the rebellion during the Dutch Republic against the House of Orange. Cornelius owned a keeshond which soon became a symbol of the rebel party. When Cornelis was executed, the breed unfortunately became unpopular because of its political association.

idea tip


The Keeshond Club, The History of the Keeshond, retrieved from the web on December 6th, 2016

Photo Credits:

  • Wikimedia, Německý špic vlčí Zuza Punkt Widzenia, Public Domain
  • Wikimedia, Dutch barges by Adam Silo, Public Domain
  • Wikimedia, Keeshond in a Chair, by Otto Eerelman Public Domain

[otw_is sidebar="otw-sidebar-1"]

Related Articles