The Stabyhoun or Stabij is a rare dog breed, that just like the Wetterhoun, originates from Friesland which is a province in the north of the Netherlands. The first part of the name is probably from the Dutch: “sta me bij” (stand by me). The last part is simply Frisian, meaning dog, which is pronounced “hoon”. There are only approximately 6000 Stabyhouns in existence today.
A sturdily built long-coated breed, the Stabyhoun is greater in length than height. It should be neither too coarse nor too refined in build. The head should show more length than width, with the skull and foreface equally long. The hair on the head is short. The skull should be slightly domed, but not narrow, and may never give the impression of being wide.
A Stabyhoun’s body should be powerful with well-rounded ribs. Its back is straight with the croup sloping slightly. The loin is powerful, and the belly is only moderately tucked up. The tail is long, reaching to the hock. It is set low and carried downwards with a gentle bend upwards toward the tip of the tail. In action, the tail is lifted, but never so as to curl. Like the hair behind a Stabyhoun’s front and rear quarters, the tail hair should be long, full, and bushy. However, the tail hair should not feather.
The Stabyhoun’s coat is long and sleek. Although a slight wave over the croup is permissible, it should never be curly. The hair behind a Stabyhoun’s front and rear quarters is longer and fuller, but should never feather. Most Stabyhouns have a black and white colored coat. Brown and white Stabyhouns are less common, but may be seen in the Netherlands, while the orange and white coated Stabyhouns are becoming increasingly rare.
The Stabyhoun has a gentle disposition. This breed is friendly, sensitive, intelligent, peaceful, patient, and willing to please, but has a reputation for being stubborn and very vigilant. The Stabyhoun exhibits great tolerance of children and other animals. With steady yet gentle training, this breed will be obedient and devoted to its owner. Stabyhouns should never be vicious or snappy.
The breed needs regular exercise, which makes the Stabyhoun best suited for active owners who spend ample time outdoors. Although a Stabyhoun can be very calm indoors, like all sporting breeds, it requires plenty of physical activity. Due to its strong retrieving instinct, a Stabyhoun is happy to spend the whole day playing fetch with its owner.
The Stabyhoun is a healthy dog. In the past the breed experienced some congenital issues, but with careful breeding, most of these problems were eliminated. Epilepsy occurred in the past, but is no longer a common genetic inheritance.