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The Bichon Frise fell
out of favour towards
the end of the 19th
century and the breed
would have died out
had they not found
another job. The
breed’s happy-go-lucky
nature, trainability,
and agility (along with
their portable size)
made them ideal circus
dogs and they could be
found all over Europe,
performing tricks
and entertaining the
fairground visitors.


SIZE: Small (23cm – 28cm)

COLOUR: White with dark eyes.

DESCRIPTION: There is something about the Bichon
Frise that typii es the word ‘jaunty’. This small companion
dog comes from Tenerife, although he may originally have
been a cross between an older breed from the island, who
had already found favour with the ladies of the Spanish
courts, and other small dogs owned by Spanish explorers.
The name Bichon is a short form of Barbichon, which means
‘little Barbet’. The Barbet was an ancient type of water
spaniel, and so this may account for the intelligence and
activity levels of the Bichon.
The Bichon has a profuse, l uf y coat, which is i ne, silky, and has soft corkscrew curls,
so although this is a small, non-shedding dog, he demands a fair bit of grooming and
coat care.

GOOD HOUSEMATE OR NIGHTMARE LODGER? There is very little you can
complain about with a Bichon Frise. They are happy, lively, outgoing, friendly dogs who
love to get involved with everything that is going on in the household, are always up for
an outing, or are just as happy to hang out at home. They aren’t noisy, but some can get
overly attached to their owners and become rather protective of them, suf ering from
serious separation issues.

Last month

Carolyn Menteith

introduced us to

breeds from the far

north of Europe;

this month it’s time

to head south to

warmer climes.

http://www.yourdog.co.uk 17


he southern parts of Europe have
warm — sometimes exceptionally
warm — summers and fairly mild
winters, and so, unlike the north, where
the dogs have huge coats, luxurious ruf s,
and heavy undercoats, the priority here
is about keeping cool. This calls for a smaller
dog with less insulation. Most southern
European dogs tend to be less active
than their northern counterparts, as well.
They have adapted to long siestas in the
sun, rather than needing to work hard to
keep warm!



16-19 YD Breeds CS(SW)ok.indd 17 01/04/2019 16: