If you’re looking for an imposing yet gentle giant of a dog, the Broholmer is hard to beat. This Danish dog has a long and fascinating history deep-rooted in royal tradition.
In this guide, we’ll take a closer look at the physical characteristics, temperament, health, and lifespan of the Broholmer breed. Read to learn if this dog is the right fit for your lifestyle.
A Brief History of the Broholmer Breed
The Broholmer is a large, muscular breed that was originally bred for hunting game, primarily deer. The breed dates back to the Middle Ages and is one of Denmark’s oldest breeds. The Broholmer’s origins can be traced back to the dogs used by Vikings and later to the dogs owned by royalty.
Origins in Denmark
The history of the Broholmer breed is deeply entwined with the history of Denmark. Originally, these dogs were bred by the Danish aristocracy for hunting deer on the Broholm estate.
The breed was so specifically bred for this purpose that it was named after the estate, and the breed remained exclusive to the estate for many years. However, the Broholmer soon became popular among the common people as well.
The breed’s loyalty, intelligence, and gentle nature made it a beloved companion for families across Denmark. The Broholmer’s popularity continued to grow, and it soon became a symbol of Danish national pride.
Royal Connections and Popularity
The Broholmer quickly became popular with the Danish royal family during the 16th and 17th centuries. King Frederick VII of Denmark owned several Broholmers and even gifted one to Queen Victoria of England.
The breed’s popularity continued to soar, and soon, Broholmers could be found in households across Europe. However, the breed’s popularity waned during the 19th century.
The rise of industrialization and urbanization in Europe led to a decline in hunting, and the Broholmer was no longer seen as a necessary breed. The breed’s population began to dwindle, and it was in danger of becoming extinct.
Near Extinction and Revival Efforts
By the 20th century, the breed was nearly extinct. Dedicated breed enthusiasts worked tirelessly to revive the breed. They scoured the countryside for any remaining Broholmers and crossed them to increase genetic diversity.
Eventually, the breed’s population began to grow. Today, the Broholmer breed is still relatively rare, but efforts are made to keep this beloved symbol of Danish national pride alive and thriving.
Physical Characteristics and Appearance
Originally bred for hunting and guarding, the Broholmer is a majestic breed that exudes strength and power. It has a commanding presence and is known for its impressive size and muscular build.
Size and Build
The Broholmer is a true giant, standing between 27.5 to 29.5 inches tall at the shoulders. It has a strong, muscular build and weighs between 90 and 150 pounds.
Despite their size, Broholmers are surprisingly agile and can move quickly when needed. They are known for their endurance and can cover a lot of ground without getting tired.
Coat and Colors
The Broholmer has a short, thick, and dense coat that’s designed to protect them from the harsh Scandinavian winters. The coat is straight and coarse, and it has a slight wave.
The coat comes in three main colors – yellow, black, and red golden. The Broholmer dog’s coat is relatively easy to maintain and only requires occasional brushing to keep it looking healthy and shiny.
Distinctive Facial Features
The Broholmer has a powerful head with a broad, flat forehead. The muzzle is broad and well-proportioned to the head. Breed members have strong jaws with a scissor-type bite. These dogs have medium-sized, brown eyes that give them a calm, intelligent expression.
The Broholmer’s distinctive facial features are a testament to their strength and power. Their broad forehead and strong jaws give them a commanding presence, while their calm, intelligent expression shows their loyalty and devotion to their owners.
Broholmer Temperament and Personality
The Broholmer breed is known for its loyalty and affectionate nature. These dogs have an even temperament and are generally patient and gentle, making them excellent companions for families with children. Let’s take a closer look at their temperament and personality.
Loyalty and Affection
Broholmers are incredibly loyal and protective of their family. They thrive on human companionship and will form a close bond with their owners. These dogs love to be around people, and they’re known for their affectionate nature.
They are the perfect addition to any family, and their loyalty cannot be overstated. They will follow their owners everywhere, and they will protect their family members with their lives.
It’s not uncommon for Broholmers to become attached to one person in the family, but they will still be affectionate towards everyone. They are happiest when they are with their family and will often become anxious when left alone for extended periods.
Intelligence and Trainability
The Broholmer is an intelligent breed that’s quick to learn. They are eager to please their owners and respond well to positive reinforcement. These dogs are relatively easy to train, but they require firm, consistent leadership.
Training should start at a young age to establish good habits and prevent any bad behavior from developing. Broholmers are excellent candidates for obedience training.
They are quick learners and enjoy the mental stimulation that training provides. Broholmers are also exceptionally good at agility and other dog sports.
Socialization and Interaction with Other Animals
Broholmers are generally good with other pets, including dogs. However, they need proper socialization from a young age to reduce their natural prey drive.
They should be introduced to other pets and animals gradually and in a controlled environment. Socialization will help them develop good manners and prevent any aggressive behavior from developing.
Health and Lifespan of the Broholmer
Like all breeds, the Broholmer dog is predisposed to certain health issues. It’s important to be aware of these issues so that you can recognize the signs and take action promptly if your dog develops any symptoms.
Common Health Issues
Some of the Broholmer’s common health issues include:
- Hip Dysplasia: An orthopedic and genetic condition in which the bones forming the hip joint do not fit, resulting in mobility issues and pain
- Elbow Dysplasia: An orthopedic condition caused by a misfit between the bones forming the elbow, causing pain and impaired mobility
- Bloat: Bloat or GDV (gastric dilatation and volvulus) is a life-threatening issue in which the stomach fills with gas and twists
Regular visits to the vet for checkups and vaccinations are essential to keep your Broholmer healthy and happy.
Exercise and Diet Requirements
The Broholmer requires a well-balanced diet that’s appropriate for their age, weight, and activity level. These dogs need plenty of exercise to stay healthy, and they enjoy taking long walks and playing games outside.
It’s essential to provide your Broholmer with enough exercise to prevent obesity and other related health problems.
The average lifespan of the Broholmer dog is typically between 8 and 10 years. However, with proper care and attention to their health, some Broholmers have been known to live longer.
The Broholmer is a large and majestic breed that’s known for its loyalty, affectionate nature, and protective instincts. Although this breed is relatively rare, it’s gaining in popularity, and more people are discovering the joys of owning a Broholmer.
If you’re considering adding a Broholmer to your family, be sure to do your research and find a reputable breeder who can provide you with all the information you need to care for this noble breed.