Since Picardy was also a classic smuggling area because of its proximity to Calais and the Belgian-French border, the rough-haired dogs were often used by smugglers as smuggling dogs and by customs officers to fight the smuggling. Von Stephanitz (1932) writes: "... they ran at night, the goods to be smuggled wrapped around the body or otherwise attached, without companions, people carefully evading, safe from border village to border village, where they were safe at their customer because they expected good treatment and food. In order to combat this smuggling, the border guards also trained dogs to drive them to the smuggling dogs".
The smuggling dogs were usually given a blanket around their bodies containing the contraband. Such a blanket was often provided with sharp spikes on the outside, which would make it difficult to hold the dogs. From Belgium, for example, the dogs were often used to smuggle the famous Belgian tip.
The dogs were first shaved bare and then wrapped with tips. Then they were covered with a false coat. The smuggling dogs were astute and had learned to make a big bow around all the uniform wearers. Customs officials, for their part, also used dogs to combat this smuggling, which had the task of finding and placing smuggling dogs. A Belgian customs report from 1907 reported that such a customs dog had placed about 400 smuggling dogs in six years of service and had also tracked down a considerable amount of contraband. Several famous photos from around the turn of the century show such short-haired to short-haired high-legged customs dogs as they were used around 1900.
His innate curiosity, his lively spirit, his intelligence and his urge to work demand employment. His ability to learn is great and he will not forget what he has learned in the early years. Therefore, it is excellently suited for all kinds of dog sports and other areas of dog training.
Picards are trained and guided in France and other countries as protection dogs, tracking dogs, rescue and avalanche dogs. They take part in agility
competitions with good success and also prove themselves as "helping dogs" to support deaf people. In Addition, there are still some Picards in France who work as herd-use dogs, their work zeal, their ability knows no bounds. With imaginative guidance and a task that demands and lies with them, they always do their best, prove their hardness, stamina and intelligence and do not have to shy away from comparison with other, better known, races. In modern dog sports, he is capable of learning, but not always willing to learn and therefore presents a challenge for the passionate dog handler.
No dog should be able to educate in their sleep, but the Picard already has special requirements, because its self-will simply makes it more difficult.
With the necessary amount of patience, imagination, a strong shot of humour and enough time, you get an amiable companion dog, which you can take with you everywhere.
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