|Country of origin
|Classification and breed standards
||Group 9 Section 3 #80,81,82
||Group 1 (Toy)
||Group 5 (Toy)
|Not recognized by any major kennel club
|This breed of dog is
|The Griffon Bruxellois covers three unified breed
standards, except in the
FCI, where they remain separate types with the same standard
except for coat and colour.
The Griffon Bruxellois or Brussels Griffon is a
dog, named for the
city of their origin,
of the toy dog
category, the breed is generally small, with a flat face, prominent chin, and
large wide-set eyes that gives the Griffon an almost human expression—and they
are often compared to an
The Griffon Bruxellois is really three dogs rolled into one, the Griffon
Bruxellois, the Griffon Belge and the Petit Brabançon.
Identical in standard except for coat and colour differences, in most standards
they are considered varieties of the same breed, much like
A sturdy toy dog with a thick set, well balanced body, that should give a
squared appearance in proportion when viewed from the side. A proper Griffon
should be muscular, compact and well-boned, and should not seem delicate, racy
or overly cobby. The Griffon will often feel heavier than it is for such a small
size. Because they are judged by weight rather than shoulder height, proper
proportioning is essential to determine if a dog is too fat, too slim or too
tall for their size.
Weight standards, especially upper range disqualification, vary from
standards, but the ideal weight is 3.6–4.5 kg (8–10 lb) for both sexes.
The neck is medium length and arched slightly. The chest is deep, and the
back level. The tail, either cropped to one-third it's length or natural in
standards than allow for that, should be set high, and when showing, should
express the alert, keen demeanor of the breed. Kinked tails are not uncommon in
the breed, and cannot be shown unless they can be cropped below the kink to
The head is the most important characteristic of this breed, and the most
well defined aspect of the standard.
The rounded head should be large to the body, but should not appear to
unbalance the dog. Depending on the standard, the forehead will be referred to
as "rounded" or "domed". In either case, the appearance or the skull should be
of a circle (minus the features of the muzzle) rather than an oval, and the
forehead should not bulge or protrude.
The ears should be high set but well apart, small, and carried semi-erect if
natural. They can be cropped; no preference is given.
The dark, wide set, black rimmed eyes are very large and expressive, giving
the face its essential human-like qualities. They should be prominent but not
The nose is broad with wide nostrils, black, and set at the same level as the
eyes. There should be a very pronounced stop, and the muzzle between the nose
and forehead should not be more than 1.5 cm in length. Many standards prefer the
stop to be so strong as to leave no visible distance between the nose and
forehead. The nose should angle upwards. The muzzle from nose to chin should not
be in line with the face, instead, it should slope towards the skull, giving a
turned up or layback look. The broad chin should be undershot and prominent,
sweeping up to the lips.
The lips should be black, and close fitting. The top lip is short under the
nose, and should not overlap the bottom lip, nor should teeth or tongue should
be visible. The upper lips should not be pendulous in any way. The teeth should
be strong and straight, with none missing or askew.
In the Griffon Bruxellois and the Griffon Belge, the coat is wiry and harsh.
It should be dense, short enough not to disrupt the form of the dog over the
body, and long enough to distinguish the texture and type from the Petit
Brabançon. Furnishings around the face form a fringe around the eyes, cheeks and
chin, but should not be allowed to grow into a long, flowing beard. Rather, they
accentuate the natural form of the chin and cheeks. The eyebrow, moustache and
beard look is essential to the human-like expression sought after in the breed.
There may be some furnishings around the legs as well, though shorter than the
In the Petit Brabançon, the coat is short, smooth, glossy, and flat, rather
like a Pug or
Griffon Bruxellois: Red or reddish-brown; black allowed on muzzle.
Griffon Belge: Black, Black and tan (a black and tan pattern with emphasis on
a rich red shade), Black and red (black mixed evenly with reddish-brown hairs).
Black and red may have a black face mask.
Petit Brabançon: All colours allowed for the other standards. Until recently,
black short may have been a fault, but it is now allowed in all standards. A
black mask is expected on the red or reddish brown coat. Grey hair from age is
The Griffon Bruxellois is known to be a bit sensitive, to have a huge heart,
and to have a strong desire to snuggle and be with his or her master. They have
an air of self-importance that can be especially charming. A Griffon should not
be overly shy or aggressive, however, they are very emotionally sensitive.
Because of this, they should be socialized carefully at a young age. They will
be alert and interested in their surroundings.
Griffons tend to bond with one human more than others, and because of this,
along with their small size, may not be suitable as a family pet, especially one
with very small children. They tend to get along well with other animals in the
house, such as cats, dogs and ferrets, but can get into trouble because they
have no concept of size, and will attempt to boss around dogs much larger than
Having a Griffon means having a true constant companion. They need their
favorite person all the time, and will be very unhappy if left outdoors or alone
most of the day. A Griffon Bruxellois will want to follow you about the house,
on your errands, and to bed.
For centuries, rough coated, short nosed toy dog breeds have been found in
the true history of the Griffon Bruxellois started in the
1800s, not in royal
palaces, but in coach houses.
To help keep rats
coachmen used to keep small terriers called Griffons d’Ecurie in their stables.
Affenpinscher-like dogs were friendly and popular At some point in the
1800s, these coachmen bred their Griffons with imported toy dogs, such as the
King Charles Spaniel, bringing about the change in coat types that lead to
the Petits Brabançon, which was originally a fault of the breed. The
spaniels also brought the rich red and black and tan colour of the modern
Griffon Bruxellois and Griffon Belge.
The Griffon Bruxellois grew popularity in the late 1800's with both workers
and noblemen in Belgium.
Queen Marie Henriette was a dog enthusiast who visited the annual dog shows
in Belgium religiously, often with her daughter, and became a breeder and
booster of Griffon Bruxellois, giving them international fame and popularity and
indirectly leading to two Griffon Bruxellois clubs starting in
First World War and
War II proved to be a disastrous time for the breed. War time is difficult
on any dog breed, and the recovering numbers after the First World War were set
back by increased vigilance in breeding faults such as webbed toes. By the end
of the Second World War, Belgium had almost no native Griffon Bruxellois left,
and only through the vigilance of dedicated breeders, in
particularly, that the breed survived at all.
The breed has never been numerous or popular, but had a brief vogue in the
late 1950's, but now is generally an uncommon breed. There has been a recent
increase in interest in the
United States due to appearance of a Griffon in the movie,
As Good as It Gets, and also because of a general increase in interest
in toy dogs.
A Griffon Bruxellois can be seen in the film
As Good as It Gets (1997).
Home | Up | Galgo Español | German Shepherd Dog | German Shorthaired Pointer | German Spitz | German Wirehaired Pointer | Giant Schnauzer | Glen of Imaal Terrier | Golden Retriever | Goldendoodle | Gordon Setter | Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen | Grand Bleu de Gascogne | Grand Griffon Vendéen | Great Dane | Greater Swiss Mountain Dog | Greenland_Dog | Greyhound | Griffon Bruxellois
Dogs, made by MultiMedia | Free content and software
This guide is licensed under the GNU
Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.
Recommend This Page To A Friend!