Centuries ago I used to travel on barges through the canals of The Netherlands. Today I’m mainly a house dog, though I still love to go out and explore. I’m very affectionate and always up for play but will be mellow and adaptable in the house. I have a spritely personality and will spin in circles when happy. I’m very social with a soft spot for children, and I dislike being left alone.

My quick mind makes me easy to train, though my quest for learning and discovery can make me mischievous. Use positive reinforcement because I can be quite sensitive. Although playful, I don’t have extreme exercise needs; a brisk walk and fun game every day should do the trick for me. I do have a tendency to bark, usually from joy, but am not a wanderer.

Beneath my thick coat is a solid frame—I weight 35 to 45 pounds and stand 16 to 19 inches tall. My coloring combines cream, black, and gray with a thick mane, plume tail, and facial marking that looks like glasses. Brush me twice weekly to avoid matting, more often during shedding seasons—which can be intense and last a few weeks. I have little dog odor and do fine with only a few baths per year.

Potential health issues include hip dysplasia, epilepsy, and skin problems, with only limited risk for renal cortical hypoplasia (progressive kidney failure) and heart defects. With good diet and exercise, I should be a favorite family friend for 12 to 14 years.