Canis lupus

Last updated: August 11, 2023
Verified by: AZ Animals Staff
© Max Jongkoen/

It is a versatile, all-around working breed and pet.


Stabyhoun Scientific Classification

Scientific Name
Canis lupus

Read our Complete Guide to Classification of Animals.

Stabyhoun Locations

Stabyhoun Locations

Stabyhoun Facts

Fun Fact
It is a versatile, all-around working breed and pet.
Other Name(s)
Stabij, Stabijhoun, Fryske Stabij, Beike, Dutch Stabyhoun, Stabij, Frisian Pointer
Gentle, sensitive, and active
Common Name

Stabyhoun Physical Characteristics

  • Black
  • White
  • Orange
  • Chocolate
Skin Type
12 to 15 years
55 lbs

Stabyhoun as a Pet:

General Health
Energy Level
Tendency to Chew
Family and kid friendliness
Yappiness / Barking
Separation Anxiety
Preferred Temperature
Cold climate
Exercise Needs
Friendly With Other Dogs
Pure bred cost to own
Dog group
Male weight
50-55 lbs
Female weight
45-50 lbs

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The Stabyhoun’s name means “stand-by-me dog” or “stand-by-me hound,” from the Frisian words stabij and houn.

The Stabyhoun is a sporting dog breed from the Netherlands and among the top five rarest breeds in the world. Although it is excellent as a tracker, pointer, retriever, cart dog, and watchdog, these days it is popular as a companion animal or family pet. Its other names in Dutch are Stabij, Stabijhoun, Fryske Stabij, and Beike, while in English it’s also known as the Dutch Stabyhoun, Stabij, or Frisian Pointer.

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Infographic of Stabyhoun
If you’re looking for a watchdog to protect your property or family, the Stabyhoun is a great choice.

Different Types of Stabyhoun and Stabyhoun Mixes

There is one standard for the breed, although there are a few different colors. The coat can have a slight wave but should never be curly, which would indicate crossbreeding, nor should it be tricolor. Spotting and roan are acceptable. The most common coat color is black and white, while less common colors are brown and white and orange and white.

The breeding of purebred Stabyhouns is tightly regulated. Some examples of Stabyhoun mixes are crossbreeds of the breed with a Kooikerhondje, Wetterhoun, Flat-Coated Retriever, Golden Retriever, Border Collie, Kai Ken, Sealyham Terrier, or Braque du Bourbonnais.

Stabyhoun isolated on a grey background.

The Stabyhoun’s most common coat color is black and white. Other colors are brown and white and orange and white.

©Ysbrand Cosijn/

3 Pros and Cons of Owning Stabyhouns

Beauty: There’s no denying that the Stabyhoun is good-looking with its solid color and white coat and well-built body.Stubborn: This breed is described as being as stubborn as its countrymen, so it can be willful.
It’s protective: If you’re looking for a watchdog to protect your property or family, this breed is a great choice.Needs lots of physical activity: As with any other sporting breed, this breed is active. In order to burn off excess energy and stay healthy and calm, its owner must give it enough exercise every day.
It’s loving and clever: Personality-wise, this breed is loyal, loving, and intelligent all at the same time. It’s an ideal pet and all-around working dog.High shedding: Although it only sheds very heavily twice a year to change its coat, its shedding is described as creating bales of fur during spring. You can control shedding with regular grooming, but it’s not hypoallergenic and will shed the rest of the time.

Evolution and Origins

The Stabyhoun hails from the forested province of Friesland and was first mentioned in Dutch literature in the early 1800s. With its name meaning “stand-by-me dog” or “stand-by-me hound” from the Frisian words stabij and houn, it was originally the dog of small landowners, day laborer farmers, and dairy farmers and used for hunting foxes, birds, rats, moles, European polecats, and small game.

Health and Entertainment for your Stabyhoun

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The Stabyhoun is related to the Drentsche Patrijshond and Heidewachtel breeds. In the early 20th century, the Stabyhoun was often crossbred with Wetterhoun dogs until 1938 when breeders began to develop them separately to ensure the uniqueness of each breed, with both breeds officially recognized in 1942.

The first record of Stabyhouns being born in the United States was in 1994. While its popularity has grown across North America and Europe, the breed still remains rare, with the worldwide population estimated in 2017 to be around 7,000 dogs.

Stabyhoun playing at the lake.

The Stabyhoun is excellent as a tracker, pointer, retriever, cart dog, and watchdog.

©Max Jongkoen/

Stabyhoun Size and Weight

The Stabyhoun is a medium size semi-long hair dog with an average withers height of 21″ for males and 23″ for females, or about 19-20″ at the shoulder. Males weigh about 50-55 pounds fully grown, while females weigh about 45 pounds fully grown. Stabyhoun puppies weigh 7-8 pounds on average at 8 weeks of age and are typically fully grown between 12 and 15 months.

Height (male) 21″ tall
Height (female) 20″ tall
Weight (male) 50-55 lbs, fully grown
Weight (female) 45 lbs, fully grown

Common Health Issues

Like other dog breeds, the Stabyhoun has unique health issues for prospective owners to consider. The breed does not have common health problems and lives 12 to 15 years, which is more than average. It is a generally very healthy breed, with many owners adhering to the careful breeding rules according to breed associations.

Some congenital conditions may occur, such as joint dysplasia, patent ductus arteriosus (PDA), epilepsy, and Type 1 von Willebrand Disease (vWB). Epilepsy was an issue in the past, but not anymore. Some documented conditions are hereditary cataracts, radius curvus, cancer, and steroid-responsive meningitis-arteritis (SRMA), with most having uncertain heritability. In short, the most common possible health issues with the breed are:

  • Joint dysplasia
  • Patent ductus arteriosus
  • Epilepsy
  • Type 1 von Willebrand disease (VWB)
  • Cataracts.
Adult Stabyhoun dog wearing a protective collar

Some congenital conditions such as joint dysplasia and patent ductus arteriosus may occur in Stabyhouns.

©Jessica Loijens/iStock via Getty Images


The Stabyhoun is a sporting breed used for hunting, or as a cart dog, watchdog, and family pet. As such, it has traits of protectiveness, loyalty, obedience, willingness to please, and intelligence. It has a sensitive and calm temperament with a patient, peaceful, tolerant, gentle, and friendly personality that makes it great around people, strangers, children, other dogs, and other animals.

Among its working traits is the ability to be a soft-mouth retriever, meaning it gently carries the game in its mouth. It’s also great at tracking, pointing, guarding, and pulling carts, although its versatility means it doesn’t have a specialized skill.

An adult female Stabyhoun dog running over a path with leaves in a forest at fall.

The Stabyhoun has traits of protectiveness, loyalty, obedience, and willingness to please.

© Loijens

How to Take Care of Stabyhouns

All dogs have unique needs for their care, especially puppies, and the Stabyhoun is no exception. Diet, care, environment, and exercise are very important for prolonging its health and lifespan. Prospective owners should be prepared with knowledge about the breed.

The Best Dog Food for Stabyhouns

Stabyhouns, especially puppies, have certain health considerations and nutritional needs other dog breeds might not. Hence, new owners should consider these factors when choosing the food they will feed their pets.

Stabyhoun puppy food: Puppyhood is a crucial time for the dog’s development, and the Sttabyhoun is a medium-sized breed. Although it is active, the wrong food or overfeeding can cause it to gain weight. Therefore, the food should be specifically formulated for puppies as well as AAFCO-compliant. It should also focus on animal protein as its first and predominant ingredient, plus whole grains and vegetables. This will provide the fiber and the variety of vitamins and minerals it needs.

You can supplement their diet with fish oil for skin, coat, eye, and brain health. Look out for calcium and phosphorus levels, too, because too much can cause rapid growth and lead to joint dysplasia later in life. A raw diet with the aforementioned nutrients is a possible option.

Stabyhoun adult dog food: Stabyhoun adult dogs need food that is formulated not only for their medium size but is for active dogs. This will keep them healthy and fit through the years as they age. Adult dogs one year of age or older usually need one large meal or two smaller meals a day.

Also, realize that Stabyhouns are vulnerable to the heart condition patent ductus arteriosis. So you should know about the link between legumes in dog food and heart failure in dogs, and think about going for legume-free dog food.

With this in mind, A-Z Animals chooses Wellness CORE RawRev Wholesome Grains Ocean Recipe as the best dog food for Stabyhouns.

The real fish ingredients here include whitefish, herring, and menhaden for natural glucosamine and chondroitin. These nutrients lend themselves to the maintenance of stable joints. The taurine promotes a healthy heart and eyes, while carrots add another level of eye support.

Check out Wellness CORE RawRev Wholesome Grains Ocean Recipe dog food on Chewy or Amazon.

Best Raw High Protein
Wellness CORE RawRev Wholesome Grains High Protein Dry Dog Food
  • Does not contain any fillers, wheat, corn or soy.
  • Fortified with omega fatty acids, antioxidants, glucosamine, probiotics and taurine.
  • Features 100% freeze-dried turkey bites for a boost of savory flavor that dogs love.
  • Thoughtfully balanced with high-protein kibble, wholesome grains and nutrient-rich superfoods.
  • Crafted using advanced natural nutrition to support lean body mass, muscle tone and a healthy coat and skin.

Check Chewy Check Amazon

Maintenance and Grooming

A semi-long, silky coat is characteristic of the Stabyhoun. However, its fur is self-cleaning, although it does shed. It needs bathing on the rare occasion it is very dirty or smelly thanks to its skin oils and needs regular grooming to remove tangles, control shedding, and fur trimming according to the breed standards.

Beautiful Frisian Stabyhoun sitting in a field of flowers.

Stabyhouns have a semi-long, silky coat that is self-cleaning.

©Max Jongkoen/


The Stabyhoun is intelligent and emotionally intuitive. It takes well to early training and enjoys having jobs to do. Although it can be stubborn, gentle, and consistent, steady training reflects well on the dog. Harsh training or yelling will stress it out and make it shut down, and not addressing its tendency to be a “velcro” dog will lead to separation anxiety.

Training it for good recall is important so it doesn’t stray too far. Also, it can have a high prey drive. This breed is a natural watchdog and so will be on alert to bark and let you know about noises and anything strange. On the other hand, it has a low tendency to chew, nip, and herd.

Frisian Stabyhoun having fun at the dogpark.

The Stabyhoun takes well to early training and is a natural watchdog.

©Max Jongkoen/


A small dwelling such as an apartment is not a suitable environment for the Stabyhoun, which needs a lot of room to move around and play. Some amount of physical activity every day is necessary. At a minimum, it needs long walks a few times a week in addition to daily stimulation and movement. Swimming is ideal, and its favorite activity. It likes to dig trenches in yards and will become destructive without proper enrichment. If you have an uncovered pool, it could be difficult to avoid it swimming at every opportunity.

A cute 7 weeks old female Stabyhoun puppy ('Friese Stabij in Dutch') walking in a meadow with a tennis ball in her mouth

The Stabyhoun needs a lot of room to move around and play.

©Jessica Loijens/iStock via Getty Images


People usually get Stabyhoun puppies at 8 weeks of age. The breed’s socialization window starts to close at 12 weeks, so socialization should begin right away. This means allowing the puppy to see, hear, and experience as many different things as possible in order to associate them with pleasure.

As for purchasing, a Stabyhoun puppy is hard to find and can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $3,200 depending on the breeder, less common coat colors, and whether you are importing it from overseas. The average set price by the American Stabyhoun Association is $2,000 to $3,200.

Stabyhoun puppy playing with a colored string.

Stabyhouns’ socialization window starts to close at 12 weeks, so socialization should begin right away.

© Loijens

Stabyhoun and Children

The Stabyhoun is excellent with children, being very friendly, tolerant, and loving to play. Like many other breeds, it is initially reserved with strangers, including child strangers.

Dogs Similar to Stabyhouns

Some dogs that are similar to Stabyhouns include Border Collies, Golden Retrievers, Bourbonnaise Pointers, Schapendoes, Wetterhouns, and Kooikerhondjes.

  • Schapendoes: Also called the Dutch Sheepdog, the Schapendoes is likewise from the Netherlands, but specifically from the province of Drenthe. The herding and farm dog also shares its medium size and black and white coat.
  • Wetterhoun: Wetterhoun is from the Friesland province of the Netherlands and is also called the Frisian Water Dog. It also has in common with the Stabyhoun a similar color, build, and appearance, medium size, and use as a hunting dog. Differences include larger size, curly fur, and skill in hunting otters.
  • Kooikerhondje: The Kooikerhondje, also called the Dutch Spaniel or Dutch Decay Spaniel, is another Dutch breed and a working dog. It is small, used for luring ducks, has an orange and white coat, and is common in paintings by old Dutch masters Rembrandt and Jan Steen.

Stabyhouns and Schapendoes are both medium-sized dogs from the Netherlands.

©Edwin Butter/

Famous Stabyhouns

Being such a rare breed of dog, you wouldn’t expect to hear about a famous Stabyhoun, let alone one outside the Netherlands. Suffie is a dog owned by Judy Wiltsek of Mill Spring, North Carolina. Wiltsek became an advocate for the breed, stating that it’s one of the most emotionally intelligent breeds she’s ever experienced, thanks to Suffie. She joined the ASA and hopes to breed Suffie.

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Dogs are our best friends but which breed is your perfect match?


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About the Author

Catherine Gin has more than 15 years of experience working as an editor for digital, print and social media. She grew up in Australia with an alphabet of interesting animals, from echidnas and funnel-web spiders to kookaburras and quokkas, as well as beautiful native plants including bottlebrushes and gum trees. Being based in the U.S. for a decade has expanded Catherine's knowledge of flora and fauna, and she and her husband hope to have a hobby farm and vegetable garden in future.

Stabyhoun FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

How much does a Stabyhoun cost?

The price for a Stabyhoun puppy ranges from $1,000 to $3,200. Its price depends on several factors. Although it’s not as expensive as some other breeds, it’s rare.

Are Stabyhouns good dogs?

Yes, Stabyhouns are excellent pets, as long as they have proper diet, care, environment, and exercise.

How do you pronounce Stabyhoun?

Stabyhoun is pronounced “Stah-BEE-how-n.”

Do Stabyhoun dogs shed?

Stabyhouns do shed, but only twice a year when they shed their undercoats.

How much do Stabyhoun weigh?

Stabyhouns weigh 45-55 lbs.

How long do Stabyhouns live?

Stabyhouns live 12 to 15 years.

Where were Stabyhouns originally bred?

Stabyhouns were originally bred in The Netherlands, in the province of Friesland.

What is a Stabyhoun dog?

A Stabyhoun is a Dutch sporting dog originally used for hunting.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.

  1. Wikipedia, Available here:
  2. Dog Care Knowledge, Available here:
  3. Pet MD, Available here:
  4. Ameri-Can Stabyhoun Association, Available here:
  5. UK Stabyhoun Association, Available here:
  6. Dog Breeds List, Available here:
  7. Next Day Pets, Available here:
  8. Paws N Pups, Available here:
  9. Puppy Toob, Available here:
  10. Shop For Your Cause, Available here:
  11. Global Dog Breeds, Available here:

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