The AKC only recognize the Brussels Griffon in both – short and long haired version, but in their homeland, Belgium, there are three types. The Petit Brabancon, which is the smooth coated type, the Brussels Griffon, which has rough red coat and the Belgian Griffon, which has rough coat in any other color then red. The situation is the same as with Belgian Shepherds – in some countries and by some kennel clubs they are separate dog breeds, while other kennel clubs view them as varieties of the same breed.
The Brussels Griffon is a descendant of a dog named Smousje. They were later crossbred with some other dog breeds, most likely with Affenpinschers, Pugs, English Toy Spaniels. They were first bred as vermin hunters and they were mostly used by farmers and horse drawn cab drivers. Later, these cute dogs became popular household companions for both – nobelman and ordinary people.
The monkey like face of the Brussels Griffon is the reason why they are so unique and easily recognizable. They do reminds us some fictional characters like Ewoks or Chewbaca. They have very distinctive extremely large eyes with long black lashes. I think it is because of these eyes they have the monkey or i would say almost human like look. The head is large with small ears and short nose.
Brussels Griffons are enthusiastic barkers, which actually makes them good watchdogs. They will most likely alert you when something suspicious is going on around your house. Of course, because of their small size, they are not the best guards. It is recomended to teach them quiet command, sometimes they can be very noisy.
Griffs are extremely loyal and loving social animals. They are also extremely protective over their family when necessary. On the other hand, most of them are not enjoying companionship of younger children. They do not like unwanted hugs, pinching or being chased and if they are for example unable to escape from someones grasp, they might growl or snap. That is why they are much better companions for adults than young children.
6) Living with
If you are looking for a small, but active and social companion, the Brussels Griffon might be the best choice for you. This dog needs regular daily exercise to stay healthy and happy, they enjoy longer walks or playing fetch. They are also very social and they want to be part of the family and do everything with you. Brussels Griffon do not like to be left alone for long periods of time and they tend to bark excessively if that happens.
This is intelligent, but stubborn dog, which makes it quiet hard to train them. Of course, they can be trained all the basic commands like stay, come or heel, but they requiere very patient and consistent trainer. The housetraining can be little bit challanging as well. Brussels Griffon do not respond well to harsh and rough handling, they are pretty sensitive dogs.
The Brussels Griffon is a small, but sturdy dog breed with squared body and average height between 9-11 inches which is 23-28 cm and weight between 8-10 pounds, which is 4-5 kg.
If you have the rough coated Brussels Griffon, than it is important to clip and strip the coat. They require brushing and combing twice a week. The smooth coated version is easier to maintain, only ocassional brush is needed. Other than that, you should regularly check their large eyes, ears and nails and clean them or clip them if needed.
Griffons are generally healthy dogs with average lifespan between 10-15 years. Just like all dogs, they do suffer from some health issues, most commonly from hip dysplasia, bone and joint problems, heart problems and allergies.
1) Not from Denmark
The name of the Great Dane can be little bit confusing, since it can makes you think, that it is a Danish dog breed. This breed was developed in Germany from mastiff like dogs and they were probably around since the 17th century.
The original purpose of the Great Dane was to hunt wild boars and protect the German nobility and its property. They were used to catch and hold the boar until the hunter arrived and killed it. When the hunting style changed, because of the firearms, they started loosing their purpose and today, they are mostly kept as companion dogs.
3) Tallest dog
The tallest dog who hold guinnes world record is a Great Dane named Zeus with height of 43 inches, which is 110 cms. But on average, there is one breed that tends to be little bit taller than a typical Great Dane. You probably know what breed i am talking about, yes, the Irish Wolfhound. The average Great Danes height is between 28-34 inches which is 70-86 cms and weight between 100-200 pounds which is 45 – 90 kgs.
Great Danes are popular so its no wonder some states and organizations chose them as their mascots. The Great Dane is the official state dog of Pennsylvania, since it was a dog of the Pennsylvania founder, mr. William Penn. The University of Iowa and University of Albany have Great Danes as their mascots and McGruff the Crime Dog is a mascot of the US National Crime Prevention Council.
The Great Dane does shed quite a lot, but it is pretty to keep their coat in top condition. Only regular brushing is needed. You can find the Great Dane in 6 colors and color combinations, which are fawn, blue, black, brindle, harlequin and mantle.
6) Fast growth
If you decide to bring a Great Dane puppy to your home, prepare, that they will be very large very fast. The newborn Great Dane weighs only something around 1 pound, but when they 6 month old, they can weigh up to 100 pounds. Prepare to have a giant dog with puppy like mentality for at least 2 years in your home.
It is funny, but this really is the largest lap dog you can get. A lot of Great Danes love to climb on your lap and stay there. Other than that, this is extremely gentle, affectionate, eager to please and trainable breed. But dont forget about their origin, they are still hunters, so they will try to follow every interesting scent outdoors and you should have good fence around your property, so they can not escape when they smell something interesting.
Many people all around the world fall in love with the beautiful Great Dane and celebrities are no exception. The list of famous people who owned or still own a Great Dane includes Amy Winehouse, Jim Carrey, Bon Jovi, Wilt Chamberlain, Bruce Lee or Olivia Newton John.
Great Danes requires daily longer walks, but they are pretty calm and quiet indoors. It is important to not over do it with the walks and exercise, when the Great Dane is young and growing, since it puts them at risk of joint and bone problems.
Just like all the giant dog breeds, even the Great Dane has pretty short lifespan, between 7-10 years. This is pretty healthy breed, but of course, they are prone to some health issues, most commonly to hip dysplasia, cardiomyopathy, gastric torsion, entropion and myotonia.
Pug and Chihuahua crosses could be there for centuries, but it was not until the first decade of this century, when the breeders started intentionally breed them together. There is no clear documentation about when or where the first intentionally planned litter was born.
2) Designer dog breed
The Chug is a so called designer dog breed, and just like all of them, they have pretty unpredictable temperament and appearance. You can never be sure if the Chug will inherit more Chihuahua or more Pug genes. They can be both – confident, alert and courageous as Chihuahau or affectionate, charming and mischevious as Pug. Most of the time, they will combine all these temperament traits together.
The Chugs face is probably one of the most unique and easiest to recognize. They have large cute eyes, round dark nose and short muzzle. They also tend to have pretty wrinkly face, and you should keep the wrinkles dry and clean, otherwise, they might cause irritation and smelly odor.
Chugs are normally pretty laid back dogs, who does not need tons of exercise. But they will definitely like to go out on a walk with you whenever you suggest it. It is important to exercise them regularly and stick to proper feeding plan, since Chugs are pretty prone to become obese, which is always bad for the dog and it is shortening their lives.
Chugs are smart little dogs, but the training is not the easiest. It is because they have pretty short attention span and they are kinda stubborn. That is why you should keep the training session short and fun and reward them everytime they are doing good job. Chugs are definitely capable of learning all the basic commands like stay, come, sit or lie down.
Typically, the Chug is small, but sturdy dog breed with comical and cute face expresssion. The average height is between 7-13 inches, which is 17-33 cm and weight between 10-20 pounds, which is 4-9 kgs.
7) Short Snout
Chug is a brachycephalic dog – which means they are short snouted. It might be cute, but it can cause some troubles. You should not over do it with exercise and walks in hot weather, since they are prone to heat stroke easily. They also commonly suffer from respiratory problems.
Most of the time, the Chug has short coat, but there can be some exceptions, if the long haired chihuahua was used for the breeding. Both parent breeds do shed, especially the Pug is a heavy shedder, which means, regular brushing is needed to minimize the shedding. And what about the colors? Most of the time you can find Chugs in brown, cream, brindle, black or white.
9) Big dog personality
Even though this is very tiny dog, they think they are much bigger. And they act accordingly to it. Chugs are able to try to protect them or you from much bigger dogs, especially if they have more Chihuahua blood in them. This is also pretty independent dog.
10) Living with
As you would probably expect, Chugs will prefer to live indoors. If they have access to a yard, than it is even better. Chugs are great family companions, but since they are pretty fragile and can be injured easily, they are better companions for older kids who know how to play gently. They can also live with other dogs and animals, if they are socialized with them from the puppyhood.
We can not be sure who are the direct ancestors of Kooikerhondje, but is believed, that they share similar ancestry with the Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers, often times they are marked as one of the Nova Scotia ancestors, and indeed, they serve similar purpose and their appearance is quite similar as well. What we know for sure is, that Kooikerhondje was developed in Netherlands in 16th century to lure ducks into traps.
2) Decoy dogs
The Kooikerhondje was used to lure ducks into cages that were built along wetlands and canals where the hunter could easily catch them. The hunter was called a Kooiker and the dogs that helped the hunter was called Kooikers hondjes, literally dog of the kooiker. They were also used to hunt small vermin around the home and of course, as great companions.
One of the reasons why they are so good at luring the ducks is actually their well feathered big tail. The ducks are following the white plummed wagging tail to the trap. Their playful movement is probably also helping them to lure the ducks.
Next to the tail, another very distinctive part of the Kooikerhondjes body are definitely its ears. The interesting part of their ears are the black tips, which are often times called as earrings. Not all the Kooikerhondjes have these black tips, but its very common.
The Kooikerhondje is pretty small dog with proud appearance and average height between 14-16 inches which is 35-40 cms and weight between 20-25 pounds, which is 9-12 kgs. The females are naturally little bit smaller than males.
Kooikerhondje is highly energetic dog who needs regular daily physical and mental exercise, but if you will provide it, they will be pretty calm and quiet indoors. They will love long walks jogs or swims. They really love water and you should let them swim from time to time. They are also big fetch lovers.
Kooikerhondjes are highly intelligent and trainable. They do not respond to harsh training methods, it is important to be gentle, but still firm and consistent when training them. Kooikers can be trained for many dog sports in which they excell, for example agility, obedience trials or flyball.
8) Other pets
If you have some small household pets in your home, for example guinea pigs or rabbits, the Kooikerhondje might not be the best choice for you. They have high chasing instinct and i would definitely not leave them alone with small pets. On the other hand, they can live with other dogs, especially if they are socialized with them from the puppyhood.
This is relatively healthy dog breed with good lifespan between 12-14 years. Of course, just like all dog breeds they do suffer from some health issues, most commonly from von Willebrands disease, patellar luxation, cataracts, Distichiasis, epilepsy and kidney diseases.
10) Social animal
Kooikers want to be with their family all the time. They will probably follow you from one room to another. It might be little bit problematic to leave them for long periods of time alone, especially if they are not exhausted by previous exercise. If they get bored, they can become pretty vocal and destructive. You should buy them A LOT of toys they can play with, if you are going to leave them alone for longer periods of time.
1) Little Captain
The Schipperke is a Belgian dog breed with its origin dating back several centuries. These little dogs became quite popular on the barges and they were used to guard canal barges in Belgium in 17 and 18th century. Actually, their name can be translated as a little captain.
But guarding barges was not the original purpose of this breed. Their name can be also translated, and this is the official translation of the FCI, as a little shepherd and it is believed that they were developed from the Black Sheepdog, also known as Leauvenaar, which is also the ancestor of the famous Belgian Shepherds. So they were originally bred as herders.
3) Show dog
The Schipperkes history is very interesting and believe it or not, they were one of the first showdogs. In the 1690s, a group of shoemakers in Brussel regularly arranged competition for Schipperkes, where they decorated them with beautiful brass collars.
Most often, you will see Schipperke without a tail, and you can read online that this is a tailless breed, but they can be born with the tail. But even than, the tail is typical docked when the puppy is born. If you would like to see the long and curly tail of the Schipperke, your best bet will be to visit one of the countries where the tail docking is illegal.
The Schipperke is very energetic dog who needs daily walks, exercise, training sessions or playtime. They are very curious, so different games where they can search for treats are great. It is important to burn off their energy otherwise they might be descructive and excessive barkers.
6) Big dog temperament
Schipperke is a small dog that thinks it is a big dog. They are great family protectors, home guardians and they are very fearless. You can see an alert and little bit mischevious expression in their dark oval eyes. They are very loving towards their family and they are good companion for older kids, but they can be little bit wary of strangers, which is why they need early and proper socialization.
This is not the best choice for a household with other small pets, like mice or hamsters. They are known for their big chasing instinct and they will probably try to hunt them. Afterall, another of their purposes in the past, was hunting vermin. But are doing okay around other dogs and they can be socialized to live with cats.
The Schipperke has a fox like appearance, prick ears, oval eyes and deep chest. The average height is between 10-13 inches, which is 25-33 cm and weight between 12-16 pounds, which is 5-7 kgs. The females are naturally little bit smaller than males.
The Schipperkes are very intelligent, but definitely not pushovers to train. It is because of their independent nature and stubborn streaks. They are not the best choice for novice and unexperienced dog owners since they need firm and patient leader.
Great fact about the Schipperke is, that it is a low maintenance dog with very low doggy odor. They do shed, so regular weekly brushing is recommended to remove the dead hair and minimize the shedding. Just like with all dogs, you should regularly check their eyes, ears and nails and clip them or clean them when needed.