Even if you never heard about Phalene before, you probably the know the Papillon. And guess what. Those two are the same dogs with only one exception. The Papillon has erect ears and the Phalene has floppy ears. Interesting fact is, that both types can be born in the same litter. Some countries register these two as separate breeds, but for example AKC register both varieties as a single breed.
It is believed that the Phalene its pricked ears relative and that it is older than the Papillon. The first paintings of dogs similar to Phalene are from 15th century from Belgium, France, Spain and Italy. The Phalene quickly became popular by European nobility and it is believed that Marie Antionette owned one.
3) Almost extinct
In the 20th century, the Papillon became more popular than the Phalene, which almost dissappeared. But the Phalene did not became extinct and the 21st century has seen renewed interest in the Phalene and its popularity is raising again!
Back in the days, these little dogs were used as ratters, but today, they are almost always companion dogs. But they are not typical lap dogs, because the Phalene is quite lively and active dog who definitely need some daily exercise. This is also very intelligent dog breed who is capable of learning a lot of tricks and commands. The Phalene is known for their always happy, outgoing and playful personality. They are best suitable for more active families, because these dogs will always be ready for some action.
We are not sure, when exactly people start calling this dog Phalene, but it can be literally translated to english word moth. BTW, its relatives name, Papillons name can be translated as a butterfly. Those words should be describing the big fluffy ears.
The Phalene is a small dog breed with elegant and slight build and intelligent and curious expression. The average height should be between 8-11 inches, which is 20-28 cm and weight is typically between 7-10 pounds, which is 3-5 kg. There are no big size differences between males and females.
The Phalene always has multicolored coat and it can be white with patches of any color. The most common combinations are white and black, white and lemon, white and red, white and sable and tricolor. The coat is single layered, pretty long, straight and fine.
Phalene is not normally used as watchdog or guard, but they are very alert to its surroundings and they like to bark. Its very likely, that they will alert you by barking if they will see or hear something suspicious around them.
The Phalene is not the biggest shedder but they still do shed some hair and they do need regular brushing to prevent mats and tangles. This breed does not have much of the typical doggy odor and they do not need much bathing. Just like with all dogs, you should regularly check their eyes, ears, teeth and nails and clip them or clean them if needed.
This is relatively healthy dog breed with average lifespan around 14 or 15 years. Of course, just like all dogs, even the Phalene can suffer from some health issues and those include patellar luxation, seizures, periodontal problems, progressive retinal atrophy or allergies.