Polish Lowland Sheepdog
(aka: Polski [Polish] Owczarek Nizinny, PON, Valee Sheepdog)
Polish Lowland Sheepdog Description
The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is a medium sized, rugged looking dog with an athletic build, which is sometimes disguised by his shaggy coat. He has a dense double coat, which comes in a variety of colors, although the most common variation is white with patches of gray, tan, or black. He has a cute, eager expression, with a floppy fringe and a beard. The weight of the Polish Lowland Sheepdog is around 30-50 pounds, and these dogs reach around 17-20 inches in height.
The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is a devoted family dog and is always eager to please his owners. These intelligent and loving dogs thrive on the love and companionship of their families and owners, and neglecting the Polish Lowland Sheepdog could lead to destructive behavior. This is not a dog for those with little time to devote to a pet, nor is it the right choice for inactive families, as the Polish Lowland Sheepdog needs plenty of exercise and has bags of energy. These perceptive dogs are very quick to learn and have plenty of enthusiasm although they can be stubborn and very independent. They are also known to have excellent memories. The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is best with an active family and an owner that is confident and experienced in dog ownership and training.
The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is a loyal and protective dog towards his family, and this makes him an effective watchdog and guard dog. When brought up around children he is very good with youngsters. Dominance and aggression towards other dogs can prove a problem and he should not be trusted around smaller animals that run. He will usually get along with other more submissive animals, but early socialization is important. His protective streak makes the Polish Lowland Sheepdog suspicious around strangers. Owners should also watch the dog's tendency to try and herd people and other animals, as is their instinct, by trying to push them together.
The grooming requirements for the Polish Lowland Sheepdog are not overly high, and brushing his thick coat once or twice a week should help to keep it clean and in good condition. You can also consider getting the coat clipped every few months. The Polish Lowland Sheepdog is a low shedder, and actually sheds into his coat, which means that he could suit those with allergies.
The Polish Owczarek Nizinny is sometimes simply shortened to PONS and is found throughout Europe. They have historically been descendants of the Puli breed, and these dogs were bred with Huns herding dogs in the early centuries of Europe. Originally from Poland, these lowland sheepdogs were used to work on the lowland plains. Guarding was another opportunity for these dogs to maximize their skills, and cross breeding did not begin until the early 16th century.
It is believed that a sailing from Gdansk to Scotland bought the first batch of PONS to the western world, and a shepherd asked for a pair in exchange for a fine horned ram. A deal was made and three dogs serve as the ancestors to the Bearded Collie with a close resemblance as the PONS we know today. These dogs are sturdy and have strong spirits; they are naturally good natured and very loyal to their trainers, caretakers, and owners.
The Polish Owczarek Nizinny needs consistent, firm, and ongoing training from a young age. These dogs can be very amusing and fun and may be distracted easily, but with the appropriate amount of training, they can become excellent working dogs and obedient family pets. Since these dogs are very intelligent, they can quickly pick up new behaviors and respond well to positive reinforcement. Their learning rate is very high, but they can also be stubborn.
Early obedience training is most suitable for these dogs and they are strong-willed and can become quite independent. However, once they learn the rules and can respect their owners, they become very trustworthy and faithful. These dogs enjoy thinking for themselves and can become disruptive if they are not paid enough attention. The best way to train these dogs is with a firm, fair, and consistent tone and manner; they adapt very easily and it can be simple to train them in logical steps.
These dogs are sensitive to commands and will learn by imitation; it can be helpful to show them different skills and techniques and spend time reviewing various activities to help them improve.
These are generally healthy dogs. A few health issues to look out for with the Polish Lowland Sheepdog are PDA, HD, allergies, and thyroid problems. The parents of the Polish Lowland Sheepdog puppy should have OFA and CERF certificates.