The Bichon Frise is a docile and playful companion dog. He loves to be on his owner’s lap. Its physical characteristics are similar to those of the Poodle, but the similarities end there, as they are quite different in terms of behavior.
If you are looking for a puppy with these characteristics, continue reading our article to learn more about the breed, such as:
- Origin of the Bichon Frisé breed
- Breed description
- Intelligence and obedience
- Life expectancy
- Specific care
- Bichon Frisé Health
- Bichon Frisé puppy
- Differences between Bichon Frisé and Poodle
- Puppy Price
Bichon Frisé and the origin of the breed
The origin of the Bichon Frisé breed goes back to the Water Dogs, as well as most of the furry dogs of European breed. Water Dogs is a family of dog breed created by former sailors.
Lion Dogs, as they were known to the Romans, picked up objects lost at sea, even sending messages from one vessel to another.
If we observe the hair of the modern Bichon Frisé (when it forms knots, it is almost impermeable), as well as its naked belly, they have similarities with their ancestors, characteristics developed to facilitate movement in water.
From the Barbet, one of the oldest breeds of Water Dogs, a variety of dogs emerged, among them our beloved Bichon Frisé, also known as Dog of Tenerife.
The name Tenerife comes from the island where sailors reportedly took dogs with characteristics similar to the Bichon Frize, the island Tenerife, the largest in the Spanish Canary Islands, off the coast of West Africa.
Around 1300, Tenerife sailors are believed to have used their dogs as a bargaining chip in Italy. In the 1400s, France invaded Italy, took its artists and pets with them.
After arriving in France, she won the court of Henry III (1574-1589) for her beauty, for her companionship and was often seen in the lap of French nobles. Several paintings by artists of the time portray Bichons together with their noble owners.
Subsequently, the nobility lost interest and the race ended up on the streets of European cities, until it was rediscovered by street artists and circuses, thanks to their skills in doing tricks and obedience.
The Great War arrived and again our brave Bichon was abandoned and almost disappeared.
Only in 1933 did Societe Central Canine de France adopt a standard for the breed.
Learn more about the breed’s history in the Bichon Frize Club of America article.
Breed description Bichon Frisé
It is very important to describe a Bichon of Frisé breed, mainly in the physical aspect, for you not to take home “cat in a poke” due to confusion with the Poodle, which we will see their differences later in this article.
According to the Brazilian Confederation of Cynophilia, the following is a summary of the description of the Bichon Frisé breed:
General appearance of the Bichon Frize
The Bichon Frisé is a small, cheerful dog, with lively movement and very loose. Curly white coat, curly type. Dark eyes alive and expressive. The tail is curved over the back.
Skull: Flat to the touch, although the coat gives the appearance of being rounded. The skull is longer than the muzzle. It is not as wide as it is long and makes up 3/5 of the length of the head.
Muzzle: Broad at the base, not tapering towards the nose, forming 2/5 of the length of the head.
Lips: They are thin, drooping enough to cover the lower lip, but never heavy or hanging; they are normally pigmented to the corner of the mouth. The lower lip should not be heavy, visible or loose.
Eyes: Very dark, of medium size, somewhat round, not showing
almond-shaped or protruding.
Ears: The ears are drooping and are well coated with abundant hair. They
are connected above the eye line. The ears are movable, especially when something attracts the dog’s attention.
Quite long, tall and proud. Round and thin close to the
skull, widening, gradually up to the shoulders. Its length is approximately one third of the length of the trunk. Without dewlap.
Topline in a straight line, approximately horizontal to the base of the tail.
The back line is horizontal, well muscled, the loin broad, well muscled and slightly arched.
Well developed chest, pronounced sternum, the false ribs are rounded
and do not end abruptly. The lower part of the chest rises slightly towards the
belly, which is moderately tucked up.
Implanted moderately high, it is gracefully curved in line with the spine, without being rolled up or fitted. The tail should not be carried overhanging when the dog is in motion.
Forelegs: seen from the front, the front legs are very straight, compact, round and well articulated, neither facing in nor out, the cushions must be black.
Hind limbs: the pelvis is wide. The hind legs are very muscular and, seen from behind, are parallel to each other. Well-groomed.
Well extended throughout the body; preferably dark pigmented, however, it does not influence the color of the coat. The scrotum is preferably black.
Abundant hair. The hair of the outer coat forms a ripple in loose spiral waves (this is the curly structure). The soft, dense undercoat must be present. The coat is neither flat, nor strung, nor woolly, nor
Pure white. However, before 12 months of age, the coat may tend to be slightly beige (champagne), but this color should not cover more than 10% of the dog.
Size and Weight
Ideal height at the withers: between 25 to 29 cm.
Weight: approximately 5 kg, in proportion to the size.
Bichon Frize temperament
The Bichon Frisé breed is docile, playful and companion. Very obedient, he learns easily at his owner’s commands. It adapts well to living with other pets. She loves children when they are well cared for. Dogs of this breed are great for helping people who are depressed, as I wrote in the article About.
It is unable to bite, at most a touch with an open mouth when provoked. If you bite, it is out of the breed’s standard. When scolded, he seems to be upset and retreats to a corner, looking at his owner.
His energy seems to have no end, so he can bark too much, but it is easy to teach him how to behave. She loves visiting strangers as long as they are introduced with conversation and affection.
He doesn’t like to be alone. You can cry all night if your owner doesn’t sleep at home. A T-shirt used with the owner’s scent will do, and if you have another dog to keep you company, even better.
Intelligence and Obedience of the Bichon Frise breed
Intelligence and obedience of the Bichon Frisé dogs, are strong characteristics of the breed. They are admired for the ease of learning and to like to obey to please their owner.
Their survival as a race is undoubtedly due to these characteristics. In the late 1800s, he became a street dog because the nobility lost interest in the breed.
Thanks to his resistance and intelligence, he survived the storms of the streets and his intelligence and obedience helped street artists, circuses and fairs in Europe to earn their livelihood.
Some mischief in the house when its owner is not, shows how smart they are. For example, opening cupboard doors, pulling the tablecloth to pick up food, understanding some words said among the residents of the house. But, do not worry, with the obedience of the Bichon Frisé breed it is easy to correct these home problems, as long as they are taught correctly.
Currently, we can see them on TV shows, doing tricks and entertaining the audience. They also excel in dressage competitions.
There is a ranking of the most intelligent breeds based on the “Intelligence of Obedience and Work”, prepared by Stanley Coren, from his book “The Intelligence of Dogs.” The Bichon Frisé breed is in the 45th position of 133 analyzed breeds. see, unfair and incorrect.
In the graduation that the Bichon Frisé breed was classified, according to the article on the website Tudo Sobre Cachorros, it received a graduation from 40 to 54, that is, for them to obey reasonably, 25 to 40 successful experiences will be necessary.
I trained my Bichon myself and I can say that, in three attempts, he learned and did not forget anymore.
Life expectancy of the Bichon Frise
Bichon Frisé puppies live from 12 to 13 years, but can live up to 18 years if treated well and with regular visits to the veterinarian.
I have noticed an increase in cases of diseases in dogs, such as diabetes and cancer. I believe that they are acquiring the habits of humans, such as a sedentary lifestyle and poor diet, not to mention the rations that use corn and soybeans.
Nowadays it is difficult to find any breed of dog with 18 years of age.
Hair care and grooming
Although they do not shed, Bichon Frisé puppies need special care. They should be brushed every two days, bathed once a month and sheared every two months, otherwise they will form knots and the skin may be irritated. They should not be raised loose in the yard because everything sticks and gets tangled in the fur, like leaves, sticks and earth.
The grooming does not have to be like the rounded head cut model. There are other cuts that are more natural, and honestly, even more modern, practical and beautiful that make them look like puppies. I do not recommend the Poodle style cut, which many Pet Shop commonly use, because there is nothing more annoying than having a Bichon mistaken for the Poodle.
The tear stains the white fur, so it is necessary to find a special ration. Some recommend the Hills ration, others antibiotic, some surgery treatments. In fact, it doesn’t cause any harm to your Bichon, it’s just canine aesthetics.
They grow a lot when dogs are raised in an apartment, especially the thumbnail that is hidden under the fur, bends and often sticks to your pet’s skin.
They must be trimmed when taking it to the grooming. I don’t recommend cutting at home, because it can bleed if you cut past the right spot.
Exercises with rides and games
The Bichon Frisé is a small dog, but it needs a lot of exercise. Daily strolls and ball games are recommended so that they keep their muscles strong, in a good mood and lessen their antics when they are alone at home.
Watch your eyes
The hairs fall on the eyes and can irritate them so they need to be trimmed. The excess tear, in addition to staining the hair, forms a brown crust in the corner of the eyes. If necessary, clean with saline and a gauze pad.
Later in this article, I will talk more about “The health of the Bichon Frisé”.
Bichon Frisé’s loneliness and sadness
If you don’t have time to dedicate a few hours a day to play and pet your Bichon Frisé, this breed is not for you. If you yell at your dog all the time, the Bichon Frize is not for you.
They need attention, they are sad when they are alone and they look hurt when we yell at them. It is a breed really very sensitive to the behavior of its owners.
Bichon Frisé Health
The Bichon Frisé breed is resistant, just reread the story I told here, at the beginning of this article. However, every race has peculiarities about their health, with an emphasis on some diseases that are more likely to acquire them.
Below, see the main diseases that the Bichon Frisé breed is prone to, but remember, this article is just a guide and does not replace periodic visits to your veterinarian.
Common in dogs with white hair and light skin, skin diseases are common in Bichon Frisé dogs.
Symptoms of skin diseases or allergies:
- Hair loss;
- Excessively licking the paws or a specific region of the body;
- Rub the body often on carpets or furniture;
- Reddish areas on the skin.
Causes of the Bichon Frisé skin problem:
- Autoimmune diseases;
- Thyroid problems;
- Chemical exposure.
Palette dislocation is quite common in small dogs. The dog’s palette is the equivalent of the human knee (kneecap). The causes of the dislocation can be genetic or trauma due to some fall. Bichon Frisé is very active, likes to jump on the couch and can hurt the palette. See the main signs of dislocation of your Bichon Frisé palette:
- Swollen-looking joints;
- Loss of ability to jump or jump normally;
- Lame a lot with one or both hind legs;
- Irregular pains that can get worse with the cold;
- Part of the lower limb turns towards the side where it is dislocated;
- Animal stretches his leg back while walking.
Small dogs like the Bichon Frisé breed are predisposed to suffer from a disease called urolithiasis.
Urolithiasis is caused by a supersaturated salt urine, such as magnesian ammonia phosphate and calcium oxalate, which can form stones and obstruct the dog’s urinary tract.
The best way to prevent these problems is to have preventive nutrition, preferably natural, and always have fresh, clean water available to the dog.
According to the website Cachorro Verde, which specializes in natural dog food,
most cases of kidney stones in dogs are caused by food. It turns out that dry food has only about 11% moisture, while natural food has 70%.
Observe the color of your dog’s urine daily. The lighter it is, the lower the saturation of the minerals that make up the urinary stones.
Cataract: it consists of an opacity in the dog’s eye that can occur in one eye or both. It is more common in elderly dogs, but young people are also affected by this disease. The only treatment is surgery.
Ectopic eyelash and dystichiasis:
when lashes grow into the eyes or hair, they can hurt the cornea and even cause blindness. It is more common in dogs like the Maltese and the Poodle, but your Bichon is not free due to its kinship with these breeds.
Learn more about the subject of common diseases of the Bichon Frise on the Animal Expert website.
Bichon Frisé puppy
It is very important to know the characteristics of the puppy of the Bichon Frisé breed so that you do not buy a puppy of another breed or with genetic problems.
Physical characteristics of the Bichon Frisé puppy
I already spoke here in the topic “Description of the Bichon Frisé Breed” about the color of the puppies. The hairs are white, but they can have a very light cream color and become white until 12 months of age.
They cannot have another color, otherwise they are out of the breed’s standard or they are not Bichons Frisé.
The snout is very short as pups, eyes like two black beads that give the appearance of a polar teddy bear.
Ears drooping and short, never long that go far beyond the line of the eyes.
Bichon Frisé puppies up to two months old are almost identical to white Poodle puppies.
After two months the differences become more evident: the Poodle’s muzzle and ears are longer, the Poodle’s fur is more curly.
The ideal is to meet the puppy’s parents and acquire him with a pedigree from a reliable kennel.
Bichon Frisé puppy health
When purchasing a puppy from a trusted kennel, ask for the pedigree and vaccination card.
Puppies must be weaned, dewormed and vaccinated with the first dose of vaccine before you acquire them.
Prefer puppy food for small breeds, do not give anything besides the feed, unless what is recommended by your veterinarian.
Attention with household utensils, it is very common to swallow pieces of plastic, papers, cloths and soaps. They even eat anti-flea soap, so be careful because some contain arsenic that can kill you.
Bichon Frisé puppy behavior
Very active, he plays all the time, except when he is sleeping. Take several naps, then get up to play until the next nap.
He likes to get up on things. It bites everything, but it is very obedient, so it is easy to correct. When scolded, he walks away and is quiet.
It is very fast, so be careful when walking without a collar or when leaving the door open because it will be difficult to catch it.
Sometimes, when he makes pasty poop, sticks to his hair, he hates it! She cries and asks for help to clean it.
It takes a little while to learn how to do the needs in the right place, but always learns if you have patience, after all he is almost a baby.
Bichon Frisé puppy that stays put all day is because something is wrong. Take it to the vet if that happens.
Differences between Bichon Frisé and Poodle
The Bichon Frisé breed and the Poodle have the same origin: the Water Dogs. Some say that crosses with Poodles originated the Bichon Frisé, so it is to be expected that they are very similar physically. However, they are distinct and very different in personality.
The main differences
Snout: the Bichon has a flatter snout. The Poodle’s muzzle is long, and tapers at the tip.
Tail: the Bichon Frisé has a tail curved towards the back. The Poodle’s tail does not curve towards the shore, however, many cut off its tail which makes comparison difficult;
Body: the shape of the Bichon’s body is more rectangular and always small, the Poodle has a more square body;
the Bichon is always pure white, sometimes it may have light beige patches, the hair is generally wavy with few curls, it has double hair that easily forms knots. The Poodle has specimens of various colors and the hair is curly and requires.
Temperament: the Bichon is playful for life, very affectionate, loves lap, sensitive, unable to hurt a child or attack with ferocity. They are less protective and tend to let strangers into the house. The Poodle plays less in adulthood, is more protective and barks more, so they help to protect the house accordingly.