Let's talk Dutch Smoushonds

Brimming with character, the Dutch Smoushond has got to be one of the ultimate in shaggy dogs. With their appealing eyes and unkempt fur, they are often said to look almost like a teddy bear, and they have the temperament to match, too. Very affectionate and easy-going, there’s little that fazes the Dutch Smoushond. Originating in the Netherlands, they are still barely known outside of their native country. But it can’t be too long before these terrific terriers start to become more in-demand elsewhere as well. 

Official name: Dutch Smoushond

Other names: Dutch Ratter, Hollandse Smoushond

Origins: The Netherlands

 Drooling tendencies:


Warm weather? Low
 Shedding level: Low
Suited to apartment living?  High
 Energy level (high, low, medium) *: Medium to high Family pet? *
 Compatibility with other pets: Medium
Can stay alone? * Low

* We advise against leaving pets alone for long stretches. Companionship can prevent emotional distress and destructive behaviour. Speak to your veterinarian for recommendations.

Every pet is different, even within a breed; this snapshot of this breed’s specifics should be taken as an indication.

For a happy, healthy and well-behaved pet, we recommend educating and socialising your pet as well as covering their basic welfare, social and behavioural needs.

Pets should never be left unsupervised with a child.

All domestic pets are sociable and prefer company. However, they can be taught to cope with solitude from an early age. Seek the advice of your veterinarian or trainer to help you do this.

37 - 42 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
7 - 11 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight
36 - 41 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
7 - 11 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight


 Baby age:  Birth to 2 months
 Puppy age:  2 to 10 months
 Adult age:  10 months to 8 years
 Mature age:  8 to 12 years
 Senior age:  From 12 years


Origins of the breed

For many enthusiasts, the Labrador Retriever remains one of the most popular all-round dogs worldwide. It’s thought that Labrador Retrievers originated from the coast of Newfoundland, Canada, where fishermen used dogs of this appearance to retrieve fish. The breed as we know it today, however, was established by the British in the early 1800’s.

The Labrador Retriever Club was founded in 1916 and the first standard followed soon after, predominantly tailored to working Labrador Retrievers who found early fame, having been originally introduced to the U.K. in the late 1800’s by Col Peter Hawker and the Earl of Malmesbury.


2 facts about Dutch Smoushonds

1. 50 shades of yellow

The Dutch Smoushond is always yellow in colour, but this can vary from a pale gold to a deeper straw shade. The darker colour is preferred among competition judges, according to the United Kennel Club, but otherwise, they’re all as gorgeous as each other. The ears, beard, moustache and eyebrows can often be a darker shade than the rest of their body.

2. A social animal

As a gentle and respectful breed, Dutch Smoushonds can usually get along okay with other dogs and even cats—especially if they are introduced to each other from a young age. However, be very careful around any small pets, just in case your Dutch Smoushond still has any of their latent hunting instincts. Remember that their main job for several generations was chasing off unwanteds …


History of the breed

With us for at least 200 years, but probably for much longer, the precise origins of the Dutch Smoushond have been lost to the mists of time. However, it is generally agreed that they probably descend from the schnauzer group – most likely the Yellow Schnauzer – and possibly the pinscher family.

What is certain in their history is that the Dutch Smoushond became very popular among the upper-middle classes in the Netherlands in the late 19th century. Renowned for their prowess at catching rats in the stables, the Dutch Smoushond would also go on to become a popular domestic pet. The breed standard was first registered in Holland in 1905.

During World War Two, numbers declined dramatically—and, coupled with increasing competition from foreign breeds, the Dutch Smoushond nearly died out. In the 1970s, however, the breed was saved by the determined efforts of a Mrs. H.M. Barkman van der Weel who began a new breeding programme, probably with the help of the Border Terrier. Today, while still relatively rare, numbers are healthier. The Dutch Smoushond was recognised by the United Kennel Club in 2006.


From head to tail

Physical characteristics of Dutch Smoushonds

1. Head

Broad head, expressive dark eyes and high-set ears.

2. Tail

Short tail carried cheerfully but not curled over the back.

3. Coat

Course, shaggy coat can be any shade of yellow.


Things to look out for

From specific breed traits to a general health overview, here are some interesting facts about your Dutch Smoushond


Caring for your Dutch Smoushond

Grooming, training and exercise tips

With their naturally shaggy double-coat, the Dutch Smoushond has an unkempt look that no amount of grooming will change—and nor should it. However, they will still need a weekly tidy-up using a wide-tooth comb and the occasional trip to the grooming parlour. The good news, though, is that the Dutch Smoushond is a low-shedding breed. Teeth should be brushed daily, nails clipped as needed and ears checked weekly for any wax, debris or sign of infection. In terms of exercise, the Dutch Smoushond has quite a high requirement compared to other breeds of their size. Ideally, they should have between one and three hours of physical activity every day. As well as a good long walk or jog, they thrive on games in the garden and most will enjoy a swim. They also take well to canine sports—and, in fact, as Dutch Smoushonds are always eager to please, puppy-training is generally fairly straightforward. Just be sure to support this with early socialisation—especially given their potential shyness around strangers.


All about Dutch Smoushonds

If you’re wondering about the barking tendencies of the Dutch Smoushond, the answer is that most of them tend to do so only moderately. Essentially, this means that they don’t bark excessively, but they will sound the alarm for an approaching stranger or if they sense anything amiss. Dutch Smoushonds can also bark if they become bored – for example, if they don’t get enough exercise – but, generally, they should be fine.

Relatively small in size, the Dutch Smoushond has a squarish body. The height range for a male is 37-42cm (14.5-16.5in) and for a female it’s 35.5-40.5cm (14-16in). The average weight for the Dutch Smoushond, for both the males and the females, is 7-11kg (15.5-24.5lb). Despite their smallish size, the Dutch Smoushond has bags of personality with that typical terrier trait of a ‘large dog in a small body’.


1 - Veterinary Centers of America https://vcahospitals.com/ 

2 - Royal Canin Dog Encyclopaedia. Ed 2010 and 2020

3 - Banfield Pet Hospital https://www.banfield.com/

4 - Royal Canin BHN Product Book

5 - American Kennel Club https://www.akc.org/