The Griffon Fauve de Bretagne is an old French hunting dog breed, that originated hundreads of years ago. We do not know the exact date of origin, but the breed was already well established in 14th century in France, especially in the Brittany region, where it was mainly used to hunt wolves. It is closely related to other hunting dogs of Brittany region, like Grand Fauve de Bretagne and Basset Fauve de Bretagne. The breed was owned by royalty and even the French king Francois I owned a pack of these hunters.
2) Almost extinct
During the 19th century, wolves dissapearred in France, which caused a massive decline in the dog breeds that were used for hunting wolves. And one of these dogs was Griffon Fauve de Bretagne. Luckily, the breed survived. One of the man credited for saving the breed is Marcel Pambrun, who founded the Club de Fauve de Bretagne in 1949 with the goal of preserving and saving the remains of the breed. Today, the breed is not on the verge of extinction, even though it is still considered as rather rare breed.
This breed has a very descriptive name. The word Griffon is describing all the wiry coated hunting dog breeds of France. Fauve means fawn, or tan, which is describing the color. And de Bretagne means from Brittany, which is describing the geographical location where the breed was developed. So the breeds name can be literally translated as fawn colored and wiry coated hunting dog breed from Brittany.
As you already know, this breed is a hunter. It is the only real working utilization of this breed. It should be a tenacious and adaptable hunter, they can hunt in all kinds of terrain and in any weather. They are very resilient dogs with high endurance and stamina. They typically hunt in large packs and they can hunt big and dangerous prey without a problem. They are absolutely passionate about the hunt, they have high prey drive and chasing instinct, excellent senses, especially sense of smell and they are absolutely determined on the hunt. But today, many of these dogs are not hunters, but companion pets.
And they make amazing lively companions. They are perfect fit for active families who like outdoor activities. The breed standard describes this breed as good natured with people, sociable, affectionate and equable. They can make good playful partners for kids and they will enjoy living in pack with other dogs, especially if they live together from the puppyhood. Other household pets might be problematic due to the dogs hunting heritage. It is truly very social animal that wants to be part of your daily activities. Great advantage is, that they are very adaptable and pretty easily trainable. Some people describe this dog as mischievous and goofy and i can guarantee you that you would never be bored with the Griffon Fauve de Bretagne.
As i mentioned in the previous point, this breed is lively companion that is best suited for active families. And it is absolutely true. This breed needs a lot of exercise. Without daily longer walks, hikes or jogs they will become bored and restless, which can lead to some unwanted behaviour, like excessive barking. This is not a coach potatoe that will be satisfied with few short walks around the block. You should also occupy their mind by some fun training sessions or some kind of a playtime, puzzle toys or dog sport. If they are provided with plenty of mental and physical stimulation, they tend to be very docile, calm and relaxed at home.
This is medium sized dog breed with athletic body and average height between 48-56 cm, which is 19-22 inch and weight between 18-22 kg, which is 40-50 lbs. There are no extreme size differences between males and females.
Well, the breeds name says all you need to know about the coat. It is a fauv Griffon, or fawn colored wiry coated dog. The wiry and rough coat gives the dog its unique unkpet like appearance. Their fawn color can be in a range from golden wheaten to red brick. Some black hair on the back and ears are not uncommon. There can also be some white spots on the chest.
The Griffon Fauve de Bretagne is relatively easy to take care of dog breed. The breed should be regularly brushed, which will remove the loose hair, but their wiry coat usually repels dirt and the coat does not mat, so it is not a hard work. Some longer coated individuals will need hand stripping in spring and fall. Other than that, you should also regularly check their eyes, ears, nails and teeth and clip them or clean them if needed.
There are no scientific studies about the breeds health, but the breed is not linked with any genetic health issues. Of course, they still can suffer from health problems like ear infections, hip and elbow dysplasia, some eye problems or allergies, but it should not be extremely common in this breed. The average lifespan of this breed is between 12-13 years.