The Broholmer, also known as the Danish Broholmer, is a large and powerful dog breed originating from Denmark. The breed has a long history in the country, dating back to the Middle Ages, when it was used as a hunting dog for large game and a guard dog for noble estates. In the 19th century, a resurgence in interest for the breed was sparked by Count Sehested of Broholm, leading to the breed's current name. However, the two World Wars and interwar periods significantly impacted the Broholmer population, nearly leading to its extinction. Dedicated breed enthusiasts initiated a recovery program in the 1970s using a surviving population. The breed has slowly regained its numbers, although it remains relatively rare outside of Denmark.
Broholmers are generally healthy, but can suffer from hip and elbow dysplasia, arthritis, degenerative myelopathy, and hyperuricosuria. The breed is also known to be sensitive to heat. Broholmers can also be affected by eye disorders such as progressive retinal atrophy, ectropion, entropion, and cataracts. As for all breeds, genetic screening is recommended to assist veterinarians with diagnosis and proactive care, as well as help breeders identify affected and carrier dogs.
Broholmers are known for their calm and friendly temperament. They are often described as good-natured, watchful, and serious. While they can be aloof with strangers, they are usually very affectionate with their families. Broholmers are also known to get along well with other pets and children, making them a good choice for families.
Despite their calm demeanor, Broholmers are protective and can be excellent guard dogs when needed. They require moderate exercise, but they aren't as active as some other large breeds. Mental stimulation is also important for this breed, as they are intelligent and like to be challenged. Owners should note that due to their large size, Broholmers require ample living space and aren't well suited to small apartments or homes without yards.
Overall, the Broholmer is a lovable, protective, and devoted breed that fits well with families or single owners who can provide the space and time this breed needs.
An old nickname of the Broholmer is "the butcher's dog", as they were frequently found lying on the doorsteps of butcher shops in Denmark.
Remarkably agile for their size, Broholmers enjoy agility training, frisbee catching, and other fetching activities.