Belgian Tervuren vs German Shepherd

Belgian Tervuren History

Belgian Tervuren’s history is rich and varied, with its roots originating in the 17th century. This is an overview of their history, with detailed explanations of specific components. Belgian Tervuren is bred in Belgium, and their history stretches back for centuries. The breed had existed in Belgium since the 1600s when it was used to hunt wolves and other dangerous games by royal decree. By the 1700s, they were also being used to guard cattle against wolves and bears that had gotten into pastures during winter when pasture was scarce.

Their history bears the mark of the Roman Catholic Church, which ruled Belgium at the time. The head of the church had once been ruler of Belgium but had lost power during religious wars in Europe. The pope’s blessings were sought to have the royal family regain domination. A deal was struck with Belgium, agreeing to allow the ecclesiastical rule to keep peace among the kingdoms that made up Belgium. It is believed that Belgian Tervuren history began in 1680-1690 when a dog known as a Malinois was bred with a shepherd dog known as Groenendael.

German Shepherd History

The German Shepherd’s ancestors hail from Germany, Scandinavia, Russia, and Eastern Europe. Its characteristics from each region have been bred together to yield a unique type of dog compatible with a wide range of environments. As a result, the German Shepherd has been one of the most successful breeds guarding man’s property and flocks. In addition, they are known for their intelligence and versatility in tasks at home or abroad. The German Shepherd was first listed by name under the AKC registered breeds in 1887 after its arrival to America during the late 1800s. It came to be known as “Alsatian” dogs brought over by German immigrants who settled in Missouri.

Therefore, it is not true that they got their name from Germany or that most came from there. Despite differences in appearance, they are often referred to as “German shepherds” strictly because they descend from dogs used in German shepherding practices. The original Alsatian dogs owned by early settlers were likely kurzhaar mutts, short-haired mutts thought to have originated in Germany.

Difference Between German Shepherd And Belgian Tervuren

Difference Between German Shepherd And Belgian Tervuren


The German Shepherd typically grows to 24 inches (60 centimeters) at the shoulder and is about 18 inches (45 centimeters) tall. The Belgian Tervuren also typically grows to 23 inches (59 centimeters) at the shoulder, but it’s only 17 inches (43 centimeters) tall on average.


The German Shepherd is the larger of the two breeds and has a harsher coat. It also has a shorter muzzle than the Tervuren, and its ears are triangular as opposed to the long, rounded ears of the Tervuren. The Belgian Malinois weighs around 35- 50 pounds and stands approximately 18- 21 inches tall. Their colors can be fawn, dark red, black, brown, or gray. Their coat is short and smooth or coarse. Its head is shaped like a wedge with a strong muzzle and small ears that fold forward close to its head when alert.


When choosing between German Shepherd and Belgian Tervuren, exercise needs will differ depending on personality type.

  • German Shepherd Exercise

German shepherd exercise is active and moderately demanding. These dogs are very loyal to their people but will not tolerate strangers in the household. They need daily exercise, but reinforcing the bond with their owners is needed for this breed.

  • Belgian Tervuren Exercise

Belgian Tervuren is not generally active indoors; however, they need daily exercise to stay fit enough to be an excellent guard dog. Belgian Tervuren is characteristically gentle and obedient toward their people. They love children but can be protective of them if they feel like they are in danger.


The two breeds’ parent breeds, the German Shepherd and the Belgian Tervuren. Somewhat large, well-built dogs, in general, grow to be about 55 cm in height at the shoulder. They weigh about 36 kg when fully grown. Their coat colors differ somewhat between colors like black, red (known as redbone), brown (known as crème), fawn (known as apricot), white with black spots on chest and legs called “roan,” mantle, brindle or blue merle where one of each color may be present on either side of their bodies, and white with a tabby pattern.


The German Shepherd is fearless and takes on any threat. The Belgian Tervuren is more of the passive type of dog that prefers to escape than fight. One animal that can be used to describe the temperament of both dogs is the wolf. The wolf will do whatever it takes to protect its pack, including risking its life.

The German Shepherd Dog’s temperament makes them one of the most popular dogs for police duty. If a thief or robber were to break into your home, you could be assured that your German Shepherd will not only let you know by barking but will also scare them away by their fierce bark and teeth. The Belgian Tervuren usually prefers to escape rather than fight. When faced with danger, the Belgian Tervuren will try to run away from the situation.


Some dogs are easier to groom than others, but you need to know how to make sure your pet is happy during the process. German Shepherds and Belgian Tervurens, which may help you, decide if one is more suited for your home.

The two breeds are very similar in appearance, given they have both been bred for their intelligence, strength, and stamina. However, some key differences between them will affect their grooming needs.

  • Coat types

Belgian Tervuren’s coats tend to be longer and thicker than German Shepherds. Both breeds have a double coat, but it is held in a manner suited for the climate in which they live. Because of this, a Tervuren coat can protect them against the cold weather, and their long coats help retain heat. Because of this, their coats will need to be brushed regularly to make sure there aren’t any knots or tangles in their coats. Some owners choose to shave their Belgian Tervuren’s undercoats or trim them short. If this is done, they should be groomed once a week.

German Shepherds have a longer coat that sheds less than a Tervuren’s. However, they can become dull-looking because the length of their coats and brushing will not make them look any better. Grooming this breed should keep their coats in excellent condition, but not every day as it can cause matting and hair loss. When you brush your German Shepherd, try to do it at least every other week, and if the hair is heavy, you can do it more often. Beard trimming usually goes hand-in-hand with the grooming routine for German Shepherds because their beards tend to get loose and matted easily.


Most of their shedding is around spring and fall. The Tervuren breed sheds more than the German Shepherd. This is because the Tervuren has a shorter double-layered coat which makes it ideal for people with allergies to dog hair. And unlike the German Shepherd, the Tervuren does not shed in huge amounts but small amounts. Compared to other dogs, they are not considered heavy shedders, but once in a while, they do shed in larger amounts than usual, depending on where you live or how often they exercise or go outside.

Both breeds are shedders, but the Tervuren sheds more than the German Shepherd. That’s because the Tervuren’s long coat has a 2,300 per square inch density with an average length of 16-inches. As a result, the coat can reach lengths up to 40 inches, sometimes up to 60 inches, unusual for these breeds.


Both of these hypoallergenic dogs have giant sizes. The average weights of the Belgian Tervuren dogs range from 40 to 88 pounds. On the other hand, German shepherd dogs weigh between 65 and 100 pounds on average. Thus, it is obvious that Belgian Tervuren is larger than German shepherds in size. This difference makes them good for children because their size is closer to kids than adult people and dogs’ expectations.


The price of a Belgian Tervuren can vary depending on where the breeder is located and what breed of dogs they have available. If you find one online, they can sell for anywhere from $3,000 to $7,000 and up. However, if you find one at a show or in person, you will usually pay around $1,800 to $2,500 on average per Tervuren pup. The price for the German Shepherd tends to be more stable, with most breeders charging around $3,000.

Also Read: Liver Colored German Shepherd

German shepherd Vs. Belgian Tervuren: Health Issues

The German shepherd dog tends to develop hip dysplasia, elbow, and joint problems. The Belgian Tervuren is a healthier dog than the German Shepherd. Even though the Belgian Tervuren tends to develop hip dysplasia, it usually isn’t in the same severity rate as in German Shepherds.

 Final Words

Belgian Tervuren is a medium-sized herding dog that originates in Belgium. Generally, they have a long muzzle and rather short hair on their backs with a dense undercoat which gives them an almost shaggy appearance. On the other hand, German Shepherds are one of the most popular dog breeds in the world for several reasons, but mainly because they’re intelligent and obedient. They originated from Germany specifically for working livestock and guarding family farms against thieves. Both of these dogs are very tolerant, but it’s important to know their differences.