The Barbado da Terceira has a very descriptive name. Barbado means bearded and Terceira is a geographical location where the dog breed was developed – the Terceira island, which is part of the Portuguese Azores. So the breeds name can be literally translated as a Bearded dog from Terceira island.
Azore Islands were colonized in 15th century by Portugals. The colonists needed to control their livestock on these islands, so they brought various herding and livestock guardian dogs on the island. And the Barbado da Terceira is a result of crossing these various medium sized long haired herding and guarding dogs. Sadly, there is no evidence about exact ancestry of the breed, so we do not know which breeds played a role in the development of Barbado da Terceira. For a long time the breed lived and evolved in isolation of the islands. That changed in 20th century, when the breed was brought to Portugal and later to other countries all around the world.
The Barbado da Terceira has a perfect traits for being good herding and livestock guarding dog. They most often worked with cattle and they had to be very courageous, assertive and tenacious. It is a dangerous work to herd cattle. It has a strong body, great endurance and they can work all day long. It is a very agile and dynamic dog, but also very intelligent problem solver with alert and loyal temperament. It moves with a slight roll of the back and a fluid trot that is useful in herding cattle. The Barbado da Terceira also has a dense and abundant coat, which is protecting it from nature elements and bad weather and it can work all day long even in bad conditions. Overall, it is a natural and very good worker.
But of course, this is not only a working breed, because this easy to train, intelligent and playful breed also makes amazing companion pet, especially for active owners. It is absolutely loyal dog breed that will create very strong bond with its owner. It does not only show affection, this breed also loves receiving a lot of affection and attention from its owners. They will be happiest in busy and active family, as this is rather energetic dog breed. They can live with other dogs or even other pets in the household, as they usually do not have high prey drive and chasing instinct. They can also make good playful partners for kids, but of course, you should never leave any dog breed with a very young child unsupervised.
I mentioned that this breed will love to live with active owners and family. And it is absolutely essential to provide Barbado da Terceira with a lot of exercise, not only physical, but also mental. This breed was used for hard work for centuries and they want some kind of a job, some kind of a purpose in their life, even if they are companion pets. You can go on regular long walks, hikes, jogs, play different games, solve puzzle dog toys, and you should make regular fun training sessions with you dog. You can also try some dog sport, the Barbado da Terceira would be great for almost any kind of sport, such as agility, flyball or obedience. Without enough exercise, this breed might develop some unwanted behaviour, such as exessive barking or destruction. The exercise truly is absolutely essential with Barbado da Terceira.
This is a medium sized, strong and well muscled dog breed with average height between 48-58 cm which is 19-23 inch and weight between 21-30 kg, which is 46-66 lbs. Females are naturally slightly smaller than males.
7) Coat and color
The Barbado da Terceira comes with a coat that's usually some mix of black, fawn, yellow, and grey. White spots are acceptable on feet, chest, belly and tip of the tail. The coat is a pretty dense and abundant all over the body, especially on the head and jaws, forming the famous beard. The coat is strong, slightly thick but not harsh.
8) Hypoallergenic dog
Great fact about this breed is, that it is almost completely non shedding and thus, it has much lower chance to trigger the allergies. It is important to say, that no dog breed in the world is 100% hypoallergenic as they all produce dander and salive, but dogs like Barbado da Terceira have much much higher chance to not trigger the allergies.
Because the Barbado da Terceira does not shed, its coat should be trimmed when it gets too long. There is no need to shave the dog, the coat can regulate hot temperature very good on its own and it is better to keep their coat longer. But the coat should be trimmed and brushed to avoid matting and tangling. You should also trim hair that grows too long over the eyes and take proper care about the tangles between the toes. Just like with any other dog breed, you should also regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clean them or clip them if need it.
There are no scientific studies about the breeds health, but it should usually be rather healthy and hardy dog breed with average lifespan between 12-14 years. The AKC mentiones hip dysplasia as the only notable health issue related with this breed and all the pups should be x-rayed for possible joint problems. There are no other serious health issues associated with this breed.