It is believed that the Brussels Griffon breed owes its appearance to two breeds – the pug and the Affen Pinscher. Although initially, the breed originated from the “smoothie” dog (Smousje), which lived in the vicinity of Brussels. From the pug, the Brussels Griffon dog received the shape of a head, adopted a smooth coat. The pug has endowed the dogs that are more like monkeys with funny faces that can make unforgettable faces. Thanks to the pug, the Griffons have a shortened muzzle. From them, dogs have inherited a specific bite.
Recognition of the independence of the breed took place only at the end of the 19th century when in 1880 the doggies appeared at an exhibition in Brussels. The Brussels Griffon breed is ideal for graceful ladies who want to look fashionable. The amusing creatures were recognized by the Queen of Belgium, after which the standard was approved in 1904.
Description of the Breed
- Other names: Small Belgian dog
- Brothers: Belgian Griffon, Petit Brabancon
- Life expectancy: 10-15 years
- Weight: 3.5-6 kg
- Height: not defined by the standard, on average 26-32 cm
- Wool: is hard, wiry, thick, medium length
- Color: black, black and tan, blue, brown, red
- Personality: smug, curious, outgoing, alert, sensitive
- Usage: decorative dog, companion
At the moment, the world knows about three beautiful Belgian Griffon dogs, the differences are only in the type of coat and color:
- Brussels Griffon;
- Belgian Griffon;
- Brabant dog (petit brabancon).
- The Brussels Griffon breed of dog has a medium-length coat, similar to that of the Belgian Griffon.
- The breed is able to learn quickly, the ancestors endowed the dog with a sharp mind, easily grasping knowledge on the fly. Love for the owner and desire to learn allows you to train without difficulties.
- The purchase of a Brussels Griffon will require an appointment with the breeder or nursery. The dog is rare, and there are many who want to buy it.
The breed belongs to the classification 9.3, Decorative and companion dogs, a subcategory – small Belgian dogs. Breed characteristics:
- 26-32 cm tall;
- 3-6 kg weight;
- Visible tongue and teeth;
- The presence of a tuft;
- Brown nails;
- Small eyes, light;
- Fused fingers;
- Dry physique;
- Roundhead, bulging forehead;
- The presence of a bite;
- Ears set high;
- Short torso;
- High set tail;
- Wide chest;
- Straight limbs;
- Rusty red color;
- Smooth coat, medium length.
Deviations from recognized standards are perceived as disadvantages. Dogs showing physical or mental abnormalities will be disqualified. Dogs with white spots and other colors that do not meet the standards will be disqualified.
No matter how small and cute the Brussels Griffon may seem, you have to remember that these are terriers. Genetics influences character formation. When describing dogs, proceed from the specified factor. Like all terriers, the Brussels Griffons are very attached to their owners. When purchasing a dog, get ready to purchase a “tail” that follows the owner everywhere.
- Vulnerability. Dogs have a vulnerable character. Affectionate and friendly, they love family without memory and are devoted to the end of their days. They adore children, they are always happy to play and have fun. Become loyal companions to the owner.
- Shyness. The amazingness of the dogs in their inherent shyness. A character trait manifests itself, more often than anything else, in the company of strangers. However, the life position of the creatures is cheerful.
- Intolerance. loneliness Doggie is not a domestic dog, but a constant companion. Brussels Griffon does not tolerate loneliness, needs the constant presence of the owner. If it is not possible to spend most of the time nearby, it is better to give up the desire to have a dog of this breed. The dependence of the Brussels Griffon is directly related to the sensitive character. Griffons are far from being cowards and not shy, they easily become spoiled if the owners mostly play with dogs, fulfilling whims, and not paying attention to education. Pets need stability and consistency around them – then they become happy. Change is not for these dogs!
- Activity. Fatigue and sleepless nights will not keep the baby in place, the dog wants to know the world. The quality is noticeably manifested during trips or hikes – the pet will gladly keep the owner company, even when conquering Elbrus. The cheerful disposition, the temperament of a sanguine person makes dogs favorites in the house. Brussels Griffons love to be the center of attention, and they are able to get along well with children. Brussels griffons are recognized as selfish natures, demanding, and capricious.
- Domination. The owners are supposed to pay no more attention to the dogs than is required. Griffons, despite their small size, show a tendency to dominate. Dogs do not matter, dominate the owner or a relative, significantly superior in size. The earlier Griffon is socialized, the calmer life will be in the future. The Brussels Griffon is considered to be an interesting dog that attracts the admiration of others. People try to pet or interact with the dog, which elicits an understandable reaction from the dog. Socializing early can help you avoid unpleasant behavior or minimize aggression towards strangers.
- Fearlessness. Description of the Brussels Griffon breed includes character traits: recklessness and fearlessness. The authority of the owner for Griffon is above all. However, loyalty requires a person’s response. The dog knows his worth, requires respect.
The Brussels Griffons are now considered favorites of dog shows and favorites of gentle ladies. The first representatives of the breed looked different – they had an elongated muzzle and looked as dirty as a rat-catcher could look, constantly roaming around in basements and hot places in search of prey. Modern Griffons have lost the skill of rat-catchers but retained their courage and an active life position.
The Brussels Griffon is an ornamental breed. It cannot be called a lap dog, meaning a pretty and docile pet. Griffons are known in Belgium as street shooters: rough and stocky, with a naughty hard coat and a “human” expression in the eyes.
The breed standard defines the following parameters: height at the withers – 27-32 cm (for males) and 25-30 cm (for bitches); body weight – from 3.5 to 6 kg. “Boys” look stronger and stronger: the sexual type is well expressed.
The head of the Brussels Griffon has a rounded shape, looks large in relation to the body. In comparison with the convex forehead, the brow ridges and the occipital protuberance are inconspicuous. The skull is round and large.
Brussels Griffons have a very short and upturned muzzle. Its length usually does not exceed 1.5-2 cm. The stop is deep: the frontal part abruptly passes into a small bridge of the nose. The short nose is notable for wide nostrils, divided by a furrow, pigmented in black. When viewed in profile, the tip of the nose and forehead form a line. When viewed from the front, it can be seen that the eyes and nose of the animal are at the same level. Dry and tight-fitting lips have a dark border. Despite the fact that the upper lip completely hides the lower jaw, there are no so-called pockets in the corners of the mouth. Teeth and tongue are not visible when the dog’s mouth is closed. The chin protrudes forward, slightly raised. On the coat of the muzzle, a “mask” stands out one or two-tone darker than the main color of the coat.
The ears of the Brussels Griffon are small in size, set high on the crown, and at a considerable distance from each other. They are located in a semi-standing position with a slight forward inclination. The standard allows the ears to be docked: they become pointed and slightly raised.
The eyes are set wide and in line. They are quite large in size; rounded but not prominent. Griffon’s gaze is inherent in “humanity”, which makes even puppies seem wise from life experience. The eyelids fit tightly, completely hiding the whites of the eyes and the so-called third eyelid. “Decorated” with long eyelashes, which creates a black edging effect. The preferred color of the iris is brown; the darker the shade, the better. The look is expressive and lively.
The lower jaw of the Brussels Griffon is U-shaped, slightly curved upwards, forming an undershot mouth. The incisors are on two parallel lines, the canines are fairly wide apart. A complete dental formula is required. When the mouth of the dog is closed, the tongue and teeth should be hidden.
The strong neck of the animal does not look heavy, despite the high set and “bulge”. Medium in length, with lean muscles.
The Brussels Griffons have a square body format: the height of the dog at the withers coincides with the length of the body. Due to the developed bone, it seems that the animal’s chest protrudes forward, like a hussar proudly wearing his uniform. Rounded ribs do not create a “barrel” effect. The withers of the dog are moderately expressed. The long shoulder blades are tightly pressed. The back of the Griffons is muscular and strong, passes into the lower back (its line is slightly raised up). The croup is sloping downward. The belly is tucked up, the groin is outlined.
The tail of the Brussels Griffon is characterized by a high set. It is carried raised, the tip “looks” at the back, but does not twist or touch it. Docking the tail by 2/3 of its original length is acceptable.
Front limbs. They are distinguished by relief muscles and strong, developed bones. “Carried out” under the body of the animal, placed parallel and at a considerable distance from each other. Elbows tucked tightly under the withers. The steep forearms merge into short pasterns. The limbs of the Griffon end in small, round paws with tied toes. Pads and nails pigmented black.
Hind limbs. Set in such a way that they protrude slightly beyond the ischial tubercles; the angles of the joints are moderately developed. The strong thighs are notable for their prominent musculature. The hock joint is set low above the ground and merges into a strong hock. Feet are rounded and arched, ending in hard pads and black nails.
The manner of movement. Brussels Griffon’s trot. The hind legs provide a powerful push, while the front legs are moderately thrown forward. When moving, the back remains straight and even.
Wool cover. The guard hair is medium in length, thick and wiry – the rougher it feels, the better. Around the eyes of the dog, near the nose, on the cheeks and chin, the hair is longer, forming “vegetation” on the face: eyebrows, sideburns, mustache, and beard. Needs manual trimming.
Taking care of the Brussels Griffon is simple, the dogs are clean and picky. You just need to adhere to the rules:
- Combing. Brush the coat thoroughly and gradually on a weekly basis. The procedure has a good effect on the regeneration of the coat, promotes skin regeneration through massage. With the purchase of the Brussels Griffon, buy a special grooming glove, avoiding difficulties with the coat during the period of intense shedding.
- Cleaning wool. It is done with a dirt brush if the dog lives in an urban area. Griffons are active, like to wallow in the grass. After walks, clean the wool wet either with a sponge soaked in water or by bathing. However, the use of hygiene products is not recommended.
- Trimming. Brussels Griffon puppies and adults require trimming during molt periods to remove dead hairs. After trimming, the coat becomes smooth and soft.
- Mustache and beard. On the muzzle, the wool is plucked, then the mustache and beard are shaped with scissors.
- Face folds. Brussels Griffons have wrinkles on their faces and will need to be regularly examined and cleaned to prevent debate, the cause of an unpleasant odor, or a focus of infection.
- Ear cleaning. Proper care includes regular cleaning of the ears, trimming the hair near the hearing organs.
- Dental health. You should carefully monitor your teeth, clean them in time and, at the slightest appearance of periodontal disease, lead you to the veterinarian. It is advisable to perform self-cleaning with a special brush and paste.
The Brussels Griffon resists at times during trimming, clipping, and ear cleaning. If you indulge in whims, the dogs will never allow the owner to bring the pets to the proper form. You will need to suppress the possibility of resistance, to show the dog who is the boss in the house, or to overrule the little cunning.
A tame dog requires constant and long walks to frolic and play. This practice is the prevention of obesity. As you know, small tame pets, sitting for hours in the hands of the owners, turn into barrels. The Brussels Griffon requires active walks.
What to Feed Your Dog
Griffons are active, love to eat well, dog handlers recommend feeding the animal with exceptionally balanced ready-to-eat foods, developed for small breeds with an active lifestyle. The choice of feed should be approached carefully, choose high quality, premium, super-premium feed.
Do not overfeed babies. Don’t be overwhelmed by the treats that dogs can absorb to an unprecedented amount. Similar advice is recommended when feeding Brussels Griffon puppies.
It is important to wash pets after eating, the shaggy face collects dirt and food debris, provoking the development of infections. It is supposed to lightly wipe the face with a damp cloth, then dry the wool with a dry towel. After eating, it is recommended to remove the bowl so that the dog does not poke his face in search of food – the action causes the pet to have a constant appetite.
Training the Brussels Griffon is fun and interesting, the little ones want to learn a lesson in a short time. Do not try to underestimate the mind and intelligence of dogs, they quickly grow up and understand what is possible and what not. You should not scold kids or raise your voice during training – the change in the owner’s mood is felt by the pets. As a result, the doggie starts to get nervous, ceases to obey. Try to show respect for creatures – dogs know their worth.
Curiosity and love of knowledge are able to master the common and necessary commands within a few days:
- “To me!”;
- “Lie down”;
- “to stand”;
- “Voice” and others.
A good trainer is able to teach a dog so that it instantly follows the basic set of commands, without delay. Each performance is supposed to be encouraged, non-performance suggests a change in the method of training. It is shown to communicate and demonstrate love with a dog. Pushed by reciprocal feelings, the pet will learn basic commands, funny tricks.
The breed is mobile, after tiring training, it is recommended to run, play an outdoor game. Being small dogs, Griffons do not need physical activity, the need for movement is satisfied by running around the house. But short walks and noisy games on the street will be a joy.
Brussels Griffons are perfectly adapted to living in an apartment, they bark at the doorbell, but do not bother with voice noise throughout the day. Dogs prefer calm and peaceful coexistence.
Diseases of the Breed
The unusual anatomy of the dog’s face makes them exotic, but it becomes the cause of the disease – atrophy of the retina of the eye, gradually progressive. Narrowed nostrils, the appearance of extra eyelashes, cataracts – an incomplete list of diseases of the breed. Like other dogs with bulging eyes, the Brussels Griffons are at high risk of falling out of the eyeball.
Overly small dogs are likely to have difficulty in childbirth, and cesarean sections are not uncommon for dogs.
An additional scourge of miniature dogs – hydrocephalus (dropsy of the brain), accompanies the Brussels Griffons.