Care and Health of the Groenendael

Another important point is the care of your dog. You can now find out how you can care for your Groenendael’s fur, what health risks you should be aware of, and how you feed your dog.


The Groenendael is characterized by its black, long, magnificent hair. However, there is not a lot of maintenance involved. The fur itself is already dirt-repellent and has no real odor of its own. Even when wet, there is no strong unpleasant odor.

All you have to do in terms of grooming is give the coat a good comb through twice a year. It is best to do this in the year of the coat change. On the one hand, this means that no tangles can develop in the fur and you can also comb out hair that would otherwise land on the floor.

Aside from grooming, you should always keep your Groenendael’s ears clean.


As such, Groenendaels are not susceptible to disease. Since they are very weather resistant, your dog is less likely to catch a cold. Despite the fact that hereditary diseases have been all but eradicated through breeding, there are still two diseases that appear more frequently in Groenendaels.


According to a study, 9.5 percent of all Groenendaels are affected by epilepsy. As in humans, rapid and bright changes in light in particular can trigger an attack with this disease. Driving in the dark, for example, would not be optimal for your dog in this case.

The seizures will not shorten your dog’s lifespan. However, this reduces his quality of life. The leading cause of death among Groenendaels is epileptic seizures. That’s because as the dogs get older, they can’t get past the seizures due to weakness.

Hip dysplasia

This disease refers to an often congenital misalignment of the acetabulum. Groenendael is affected by this disease relatively often. Experts advise avoiding too much endurance training at a young age. This should protect your dog’s joints during the growth process.


When it comes to food, the Groenendael is not picky. He eats everything from dry food to barf. You should adjust the portions to the size and age of your dog. If you are unsure about the dosage, you can ask your veterinarian or other experts for individual advice.

Attention: It can always happen that the individual Groenendael has less appetite. Due to the dense fur, however, it is sometimes difficult to tell how thin the animal is. Therefore, you should always check if your Groenendael is eating enough.

Activities with the Groenendael

As already indicated, the Groenendael is a dog breed that needs a lot of exercises and mental challenges. If he is not constantly challenged, he is unhappy and gets frustrated. So you should always keep him on his toes.

It is extremely suitable as a companion for sports. Be it jogging, cycling, or horseback riding. Your Groenendael is at your side with great pleasure. Aside from purely athletic activities, however, this breed also needs mental challenges. Therefore, agility training or training as a service dog is highly recommended for the Groenendael.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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