belgian shepherd tervuren breed information

common health issues

Epilepsy is a neurologic disease that manifests as seizures. Often epilepsy is idiopathic (meaning there is no known cause) and generally we see the onset between the ages of 2 and 5 years old. Treatment for this life-long condition centers on controlling seizures with oral medication.
Cataracts describes the transparency of the lens in the eye.While cataracts are a common finding in older dogs, many breeds, including Cavaliers, have a genetic predisposition to juvenile cataracts, i.e., occurring in young animals. Hereditary cataracts can occur as early as six months of age and progress to complete loss of vision by two years old. The good news is that most affected lenses can be treated surgically. Cost of treatment: $1,500 to $3,000 per lens.
The retina is responsible for transmitting light to the brain where it is interpreted as an image. PRA causes deterioration of retinal cells and causes blindness. It can affect puppies as young as a few weeks old, or may appear later in life. There is no treatment or cure, but blind dogs usually can lead quite happy lives.
Pannus or chronic superficial keratitis is a progressive eye disease thought to be caused by an inappropriate immune response. It commonly affects both eyes. Medical treatment can often be successful in controlling it but the condition is life-long.
Hip dysplasia is an inherited condition in which the ball and socket of the hip joint do not fit well together, resulting in a hip with increased laxity. This laxity can lead to degenerative changes and depending on the severity, may require surgical correction.
Vitiligo is a condition in which patchy depigmentation of the skin occurs. It may also cause whitening of the fur in the areas where there is loss of skin pigment. It is thought to be immune-mediated, meaning that the immune system attacks the body's pigment-making cells. It is a purely cosmetic condition with no long term health implications.

The Tervuren is one of four varieties of sheepdogs that originated in Belgium. The varieties (Tervuren, Groenendael, Laekenois and Malinois) are considered to be one breed in other parts of the world, including Belgium, but here in the United States, they are recognized individually. Only the Groenendael, Tervuren and Malinois are allowed to show through the American Kennel Club, but the Laekenois is sure to follow suit soon. Tervurens differ from the other varieties in that they are long-haired, a color other than black and come specifically from the village of Tervuren.

The Belgian sheepdogs originated in the 1800s and were developed to be true shepherds. They were found to be very versatile, so in addition to their shepherding duties, they also served with the police and border patrol, and worked as message carriers and machine gun pullers during the World Wars.

Tervurens are great family dogs, and they are happiest when they have a job to do. Keeping them exercised (both mentally and physically) keeps them from being too mischievous. Their long coats need regular brushing to keep them free of mats.

Despite their hardworking heritage, Tervurens are still prone to a number of hereditary and congenital conditions that can adversely affect their health – and your family’s budget. Some of the conditions and illnesses Tervurens are prone to include eye conditions such as pannus, cataracts and progressive retinal atrophy; skin conditions such as vitiligo; and neurological problems such as epilepsy.

Thankfully, Petplan pet insurance covers all hereditary and chronic conditions as standard. Which means if your Belgian Tervuren inherits her mom’s bad eyes or her dad’s bad hips, you’re covered.

Use the condition checker tool to learn what common conditions your pet may have.

claim calculator

  • your share of the cost: $450
  • Petplan's reimbursement to you: $1,550
  • coverage remaining in policy period: Unlimited
    (full policy limits are reinstated upon renewal)