The Saarlooswolfhond   29 comments

The Saarlooswolfhond  (or Saarlooswolfdog)


The Saarlooswolfhond(Dutch for “Saarloos Wolf dog”) was originally bred in 1921, by Dutch breeder Leendert Saarloos who crossbred a male German Shepherd Dog “Gerhard van de Fransenum” with a female Eurasian Wolf “Fleur”. His aim was to produce a “super” German Shepherd Dog which was immune to distemper.  At that time it was known as the European Wolf-dog. He had full control over both the breeding program and the Wolf-dogs themselves until he died in 1969. The new breed was recognised by the Dutch Kennel Club in 1975 and was renamed Saarlooswolfhond (wolf dog) in honour of Leendert Saarloos. Saarlooswolfdogs were in the past trained as guide dogs for the blind. About 300 blind people have had Saarlooswolfdogs as guide dogs.


Attempts have been made to introduce them to rescue and police work, but the strong wolf traits, reserve, caution, flight and lack of ferocity particularly in regard to police work, made the majority of these wolf-dogs unsuitable candidates. Today’s Saarlooswolfdog is a strong imposing dog, and is also a very rare breed. Purebreds can cost up to $2,000.


The Saarlooswolfdog is a not a breed for novice dog owners, due to its size and strength. It is a bold and daring and powerful dog. It’s wolf-like appearance and typical wolf-gait make it a striking animal. This is not a dog for first time owners or anyone with little time to spare; It needs a lot of exercise, as it doesn’t tire easily.  Apartment and urban life are not appropriate for this breed. The animal needs a strong alpha leader; a dominant position that must be established by the owner from the start, and also a social atmosphere. Owners are well advised to have at least two of the breed because the animals are still pack-oriented. In this situation the alpha dog will soon become obvious and in leading its pack will also establish order. If isolated this will intensify any anti-social behaviour, and if locked in an enclosed space these dogs panic.


The breed is very intelligent. A great deal of patience is required for successful training because the breed doesn’t take well to obedience or schutzhund work and is extremely strong willed. But they are also very reliable dogs, with a tendency to become especially attached to one person, and are extremely loyal to their owner. It is possible to train them as Show Dogs as exemplified by the Saarloos male who won Group 1 at the Working Dog Show in Finland in 1998. They rarely bark, using a variety of alternative ways to alert their owner. It is recommended not to have a Saarlooswolfhond around children or other animals, because they still have a strong drive to kill prey.



29 responses to “The Saarlooswolfhond

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. A beautiful animal, were they good with younger family members or not?
    I am getting more use to corresponding here, vs. leaving comments on WL and need to now that I’m officially signed on. Just remembering to do so before I leave is the thing that and finding the comments button on your georgeous icey blue background sometimes in position just so makes it tricky to see it, post color too.
    Sometimes the outfit doesn’t use the color for text that I select what up wit dat?
    I will be back to visit your wonderful place soon, have a wonderful midweek – with smiles n hugs(“-“)

    • Hi Janae 🙂 You’re doing great with WordPress and your comment leaving! Very pleased you and your great comment found your way into my Icy world!! I am looking for a different background that is easier to read the writing on…but I can’t find one I like so far…
      Do you know how to use HTML code? If you change the code for the text colour that will usually give you the right colour. You can edit the HTML in WordPress for your blogs.

      There are other breeds of wolf-dog that are ok with younger children, though they should be always be supervised when together, and make good family dogs, but the Saarlooswolfdog is NOT one of them. They have a very strong prey drive and as young children tend to squeal and run around in play, this wolf-dog would see them as prey to be hunted!!! They need to be with an experienced adult who can act as Pack Leader 🙂 … Wolfie hugs!

      • I enjoyed the interesting and well written article anyway Wolfie and nonono now don’t ya go changin’ a thing now, I like the beautiful colors I just keep my ez readers handy anyway. I hope your week is going well(“-“)

  2. Fascinating Wolfie.

  3. Wow what a beautiful creature! Sounds like way too much work to actually keep one though!
    ( goes off chuckling about the children comment… maybe I could keep one… hehehehe )

    Hope all ok with you Wolfie and that you’ve managed to catch up a bit on sleep. xXx

    • Too much work? lol! … anyone would think you were busy!! 😉 Oh you are?!…Nevermind…Luckily for you I sent a whole pack of them along to keep you out of mischief!! There you see…I knew that would make your day!! Don’t want you having too much time on your hands now do we? lol x 🙂

  4. I want one!!!

    • Ask Eileen! lol…I sent a whole huge pack of them to her 😉 I’m sure she won’t mind letting you have ONE to keep your “little people” in check…lol…!! But she will probably need the rest of her newly aquired…and much appreciated (??!!!) pack to keep her slightly bigger people in check!!! 🙂

  5. Fascinating Wolfie, and one I haven’t heard of, but there are so many of these ‘Lupus’ type dogs it’s a job to keep up, personally I still prefer the true German Shepherd, or as it was in the 60’s and 70’s, [to-day’s models are a bit as though they have deformed spines] and at least this guy looks fairly untampered with, for nowI saw a post of yours that mentioned Crufts, i’ll have to hunt for it, but Ruby’s on the move.

  6. Yes…the true GSD is in a class of its own…but these wolf-dogs are beautiful animals in their own right…however like for you the GSD has and always will be my first love! 🙂

    Today’s European working line GSDs fare far better than their show line counterparts in terms of comformation and they’re a lot closer in type to the original GSDs. It seems to be largely the American and German lines that are bred for the show ring only that are suffering the “deformed spine” look. The seriously over-exaggerated look is not a pretty sight is it? Some of them look like they could do away with their hind legs altogether in preference for the extreme roached spine….

    Can’t do that to the working lines can they? They wouldn’t be able to work would they?!! 🙂

    • I am awfully late catching up with this Wolfie, sorry, but I’m still not very good at knowing where and with whom I have left comments, and I find it takes up a lot of time looking for them. I know I moan about not getting many comments, but it’s just as well eh? lol
      We alwasy say that the GSD looks as though it has been confined to a small cage for it’s firsst 6 months of life, pathetic and tragic, and very cruel. Nothing like the old Brittas, or Rozavel breeding.

  7. a beautiful dog indeed! sadly, it probably wouldnt be good choice for me, since i also have cats. but who knows … get one as a puppy and train it to see the cats as part of the pack. i certainly would like to have one or two!

    • That I would like to see! I have a feeling it would be the cats who came out top of the Pack…lol 😉 A few good sharp scratches to the Saarloos nose…ouch!!…and I reckon they’d have it tamed and “eating out of their paws” before you knew it! Likely it’d be the Saarlooswolfdog with the shortest-lived “prey-drive” in the history of the world! lol 😉

      • Oh! Welcome back! What can I say?…..”It’s about bloody time!!” lol! I don’t recall as the Alpha wolf round here being asked permission for you to go AWOL!! Naughty Vampire…lol 😉

        Oh yes…my Friday evenig was one of great great wickedness! Wicked beyond your wildest imaginings…!! Have a wild and wicked weekend Androgoth 😉

  8. well you can see the German Shepherd in this breed of Wolf that’s for sure, this is another well researched posting and definitely one of your most interesting one’s too, of course you always have a knack at offering us the readers of your Space the very best in postings…

    Well done Icywolfy of the Icy Realm, I like this one, as does everyone else that calls by… Have a wicked Friday now, but not too wicked okay? lol

    Androgoth XXx

    • Very kind of you to fly thru the Icy Realm with that wicked comment Androgoth…I left a glass of the red on the ice peak over there >>> but I think it might’ve frozen 😉 But nevermind…pop it thru hell’s door in the Gothic Realm for a few min’s on your return and it will be fine and rosy again in the flash of a Vampire’s fang 🙂

      Now about my not being too wicked…lol…I am an Icewolf! I am naturally disposed to the greatest of great wickedness…particularly on a Friday!! 😉

      • Soooooooo, was your Friday Evening a n extremely WICKED one then or what? lol Okay I only asked…

        BTW – I’m back now so expect to see a few more postings added in My Gothic Realm (How do you mean it’s about bloody time too? lol Well I guess you’re right on that one I have been taking it a tad slow into 2011 by the looks of my pages… However I have left your new polishing dusters by the lid so whenever you’re ready Icydraws… lol)

        Be good Icywolfy of the Icy Realm and have a lovely weekend too…

        Androgoth XXx

    • Yes, I would have to agree with the great white fanged one. I throughly enjoyed reading this one. Will be drifting through again sometime soon. 🙂 x

  9. A friend had one of these several years ago and he always complained about how difficult the animal was to control. Now I know why. He was never one to devote much time or energy to anything and the dog was just another show piece for him. Good article Wolfie; I learned a lot.

    BTW: Buddy has produced 2 more tennis balls today. I don’t know where he’s getting them from but he delights in loading my lap full……soaked in Lab slobber, of course.

    • You should have taken the unfortunate show piece dog with you. It would have a great home with you guys and it would have known exactly who was Alpha/Pack Leader…itself!! lol 😉 Oh ok…Buddy!!! Errm…is that Frankie I see with the cast iron skillet?? Ooops 😉 Never upset the true boss!!

      Is there something you haven’t been telling us about Buddy?…he doesn’t “lay” slobbery Lab tennis balls does he?!! And if so which came first…Buddy or the Lab slobber tennis balls 😉

  10. Not keen on the wishy washy colouration !!!
    and the apparent absence of a saber tail. Otherwise not bad.
    be well Timid one 🙂

  11. Very informative and interesting Blog Wolfie

    • Why hello Rosemary! So the Scout wolves I sent out to find you have finally tracked you down 🙂 Glad to see you’re still in the land of the living…hope all is well with you and Walter? I expect to see you at the usual spot for the Jan’ Full Wolf Moon howl on 19th! Do ensure you’re in good voice that night 😉

  12. great read icey my fritz had a bite at my daughter last night he sneaked onto her sofa she woke him but he nipped her so she told him off and ignored him for hrs hes so sorry now and keeps following her wanting to show hes sorry hes a lovely german shepherd but pushing his luck hope your well icey very watery this space scares me cos i cant swim lol xxjen

    • Typical grumpy male then! Heavy duty armour and riot shield needed when waking them up (both 2 and 4 legged varieties!) Good that your daughter’s making it quite clear who’s the boss out of the two of them tho, and Fritz is getting the message that he hasn’t exactly driven his popularity rating thru the roof with that nip! I bet he can’t wait to hug and make up! lol 😉

      Don’t worry about the water…it scares me too!!! I can’t swim either so you can share the rubber ring…the armbands…the float…the big floating rubber duck!!!! lol….oh and if you bring Fritz next time we can hang onto his tail for good measure! x 😉

  13. I am soooooo totally confused the only way I could find you was to google you! Well you should be pleased to know you are well represented I had plenty of sites to choose from but now you are locked into my favourites and I will never loose you again!

    This is a wonderful blog with such beautiful images of this hansom and beautiful breed of dog and so much information your art work is stunning and your site a pleasure to visit

    Take care my furry friend

    Suki x

    • Hi Suki 🙂 How kind of you to go to such trouble to find me! Thank you for this lovely comment and my apologies for such a late reply. Unfortunately the process of trying to sort out a few issues that have arisen in Wolfie life of late has left this battle-worn Wolfie not knowing what planet I’m on most of the time!

      It is great to know I am locked into your favourites! I wouldn’t like to be lost 😉 Furry Wolfie hugs x 🙂

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: