Brussels Griffon Information

Overview

The Brussels Griffon breed was developed in Belgium primarily from the Belgian street dog and the Affenpinscher. The Belgian street dog is very similar to the Fox Terrier and the Affenpinscher is a toy breed with a monkey-like face. The Brussels Griffon has a terrier-like personality and almost human-like expression. Affectionate and intelligent, this breed was first used as a ratter and often kept in stables. As time went on, they became companion dogs in Belgian households. During this period, old tales and folk songs mentioned "bearded dogs." The Brussels Griffon was the bearded dog they referred to.

Brussels Griffon
Basic Info
NameBrussels Griffon
Other Name Griffon Bruxellois, Belgium Griffon, Petit Brabançon, Griffon, Griff, Bruss
OriginBelgium
Size Type Small Dog Breeds
Breed Group Toy Dog Breeds
Life Span 12 -15 years
TemperamentSensitive, Watchful, Inquisitive, Self-important, Alert, Companionable
Heightnot specified in breed standard
Weight8 to 12 lbs
ColorsBlue, Brown, Black & Tan, Black, Red, Belge
Puppy Price$600 - $800 USD

Brussels Griffon

Physical description

Body Type

The Brussels Griffon stands 6 to 8 inches tall and weights 8 to 10 pounds. The skull is rather large and round with a domed forehead. Eyes are set well apart, large and prominent. Ears are either cropped or natural and are set high. The natural ears are carried semi-erect. The nose is very short with a tip set deeply between the eyes. Jaws are usually undershot with the lower jaw being prominent.

The neck is of medium length and arches gracefully. The back is short and level and the body is short and thick-set. The chest is broad and deep with well-sprung ribs. The tail is docked and held high.

The forelegs are of medium length and well-muscled. They are set rather wide apart and appear straight as viewed from the front. The pasterns are strong and short, feet small and round with well-arched toes.

The hind legs are straight-boned with strong thighs. The stifles are bent and hocks are let down, turning neither out nor in.

Color

The Brussels Griffon has two coat types, rough and smooth. The rough coat is dense and wiry. By AKC standards, it should not feel wooly or have a shaggy appearance and with no silky hair anywhere. The hair on the head is wiry, slightly longer and fringed around the eyes, cheeks, nose and chin. The smooth coat is free of wiry hair and is short and glossy.

Coat colors are reddish brown , belge ( black mixed with reddish brown), black and tan and solid black. Reddish colored dogs may have a little black at the whiskers and chin. Belge colored dogs have a black mask and whiskers. Black and tan dogs have reddish brown markings under the chin, on legs, above the eyes and on the edges of the ears.

Coat

The Brussels Griffon has two coat types, rough and smooth. The rough coat is dense and wiry. By AKC standards, it should not feel wooly or have a shaggy appearance and with no silky hair anywhere. The hair on the head is wiry, slightly longer and fringed around the eyes, cheeks, nose and chin. The smooth coat is free of wiry hair and is short and glossy.

Coat colors are reddish brown , belge ( black mixed with reddish brown), black and tan and solid black. Reddish colored dogs may have a little black at the whiskers and chin. Belge colored dogs have a black mask and whiskers. Black and tan dogs have reddish brown markings under the chin, on legs, above the eyes and on the edges of the ears.

Characteristics
Good with Kids
 
Cat Friendly
 
Dog Friendly
 
Trainability
 
Shedding
 
Watchdog
 
Intelligence
 
Grooming
 
Popularity
 
Adaptability
 
Hypoallergenic  Yes

Grooming

Both coat types need brushing two times a week and shaping every three months. The rough coat requires much attention and may be clipped. This breed sheds little to none. Bathe only occasionally with a mild dog shampoo. Rinse thoroughly with warm water. While the dog is still damp, use a pin brush to remove snarls and mats. The pin brush will untangle both coat types quite well.

If trimming the dog for show purposes, hand stripping is best for removing dead hair. Hold a small section of the coat between your thumb and index finger, then pull in the direction the hair grows.

If trimming the coat with scissors, brush fur against the direction the hair grow and snip the excess hair. Use blunt-end scissors or thinning shears. Trimming the feet will give the Brussels Griffon a tidy appearance.

History

An early image of the Brussels Griffon appears in a painting by Van Eyck, a Flemish artist. The breed was kept by cab drivers in stables in 17th century Brussels to keep the stables free of vermin.

Because of it's appealing character and human-like expression, the Brussels Griffon grew to be a companion breed. Other breeds such as the Affenpinscher, Yorkshire Terrier, Irish Terrier, English Toy Spaniel and the Belgian street dog likely contributed to the modern Brussels Griffon.

This breed was first shown at the Brussels Exhibition in 1880. The Brussels Griffon was recognized by the AKC in 1910.

Temperament

The Brussels Griffon is cheerful and affectionate, much like the terriers. It gets along well with cats and other dogs. It is loving, lively, curious and a people-lover. This is an intelligent breed and can be easily trained and taught to do tricks. They also make good watchdogs.

Because of their human-like expression, some people may tend to treat them like little humans. However, this may cause what is known as "small dog syndrome." The dog will begin to feel that it is the leader of the pack. It will try to be the boss of the household. This causes behavior problems such as growling and snapping.

Although the BrusselsGriffon is active indoors, a daily walk or romp in a fenced-in area will keep this dog calm and better behaved. Without enough exercise, they may become moody and high-strung.

 


Interesting Brussels Griffon Facts

  • A Brussels Griffon starred along with Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt in the 1997 film As Good as it Gets.
  • Other names for this breed are griffon Belge, griffon Bruxellois and the Belgian griffon.
  • The Brussels Griffon is considered to be rare and may be hard to find.