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Breed Profiles
Dog Breeds

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Select the dog breed you are interested in from the list below.
Alphabetical Search: A - E F - J K - O P - T U - Z or Select A Breed

Bichon Frise

You can find the contact details for specific breed societies local to you by going to the Your Territory area.

You may want to post any specific questions that you have about this breed in our Pet Talk area to ask people with first hand experience.

Bichon Frise

General
OtherNames Bichon Tenerife, Tenerife Dog, Bichon a Poil Frise
Dog Group Kennel Club Toy
Breed Classification Bichons belong to the toy group and are used as companions and obedience dogs. With their extraordinary coats they also make excellent show dogs.
Cost of Ownership
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Average Food Cost
< £4
Feeding Requirements
Bichons are very inexpensive dogs to feed and normally eat very little. The main expenditure is their grooming requirements.
Other Expenses
The average price of a puppy is £500 - £600.
Average Puppy Price
£500-800
Lifespan
> 15 years
Average Litter Size
5
General Physical Description
Well-balanced dogs with smart appearances, Bichons are small, solid dogs. Their jet black eyes and noses contrast against their snow-white coats and their tails are like plumes which are curved and carried over their backs. Their silken coats which consist of spirally formed hair give them the appearance of powder puffs. Their bouncy stride gives them a happy, carefree presence.
Height Min Max
Bitch 23cm 30cm
Dog 23cm 30cm
Weight Min Max
Bitch 3kg 6kg
Dog 3kg 6kg
Size Category Small
Weight Height Range Both dogs and bitches measure between 23 to 30cms at the withers and weigh between 3 to 6kgs.
Ailments Bichons are very healthy little dogs and relatively free from hereditary and congenital problems. Dislocation of the kneecap and epilepsy have been recorded in the breed and bladder stones can occur in bitches. The most important factors are proper care of teeth, eyes and coat. Regular inspection of these must be done as a matter of course as well as preventative treatment to ward of pyorrhea and pemphigus.
Common Ailments
Susceptibility To Illness
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Other
History Centuries ago the Bichon Frise was popular in France and Spain. The Bichon has been depicted in portraits of the royal families of both countries. Bichon type dogs were developed on different islands in the Mediterranean and Tenerife is were the Bichon Frise is thought to have originated. The Bichon of Malta (known as the Maltese today) is a close relative. 14th century sailors are thought to have taken them over to Europe from Tenerife. In the 18th century the royal whims turned to other dogs and the Bichons became the dogs for commoners but their winsome ways and agility soon brought them fame as circus dogs and organ-grinders' dogs. After World War 1, the servicemen took a liking to these little dogs and, once again, the French breeders took notice of them. In 1934, a standard was drawn up and the breed was renamed by the president of the International Canine Federation, Madame Nizet de Leemans. Its proper plural is Bichons Frises.
Intelligence These are bright little dogs who quickly catch on to what you want them to do therefore there is no real problem training them.
Show Characteristics All pigmentation should be black. The head should be slightly rounded with a moderate but definite stop. The hair should be clipped to give a rounded appearance. The jaws should be strong with a complete scissor bite. The eyes should be round and dark and show an alert expression. The ears should hang closely to the head and be well-covered with flowing hair and set on slightly higher than eye level. The neck should be arched and fairly long, being carried high and proudly. The body should be square with well-sprung ribs; the front legs straight and not too fine-boned, the thighs being well-rounded with well-bent stifles. The feet should be tight, rounded and well-knuckled up. The tail should be raised and curved gracefully over the back, with only the hair touching the back, set on level with the top-line.
Country Of Origin Belgium/France
Famous Examples
Records Held
Characteristics
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Energy Low
Overall Exercise 0 - 20 minutes
Distress Caused if Left Alone Medium
Personal Protection Low
Suitability As Guard Dog Low
Risk of Sheep Worrying Medium
Tendency to Bark Low
Ease of Transportation High
Level of Aggression Low
Compatibility With Other Animals High
Suitable For Children
High
General Character And Temperament These are lively, happy little dogs who adore family life and, as such, make ideal children's pets. They love to accompany the family on all outings but can be left alone occasionally. They socialise well and are fine in the company of other dogs and pets in the household.
Grooming
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Coat Length Short/Medium
Grooming Requirement Every Day
Trimming Frequent
Requires Professional Groomer True
Grooming Owning a Bichon means spending a lot of time on grooming. The coat should be combed thoroughly every day to prevent matting and subsequent skin problems. Trimming is required occasionally to prevent it becoming too long. Check the hairs round the eyes regularly to ensure they are not causing irritation and clip excess hair between the pads of the feet. As this breed does not shed hair, it is important to remove dead hairs with a brush. To keep the show-ring appearance of a 'powderpuff', it is recommended to use a professional groomer every 5 or 6 weeks.
Colour Bichons are always snow-white.
Shedding None
Suffers From Allergies
Tendency to Cause Allergies

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