By

Avatar photoShiloh Nevada
Last updated: 18th October 2022

French Brittany

By

Avatar photo Shiloh Nevada
Last updated: 18th October 2022

The French Brittany is an AKC-recognized purebred gun dog that developed in South-western France. The Brittany dog has a medium size body with a stout chest, robust legs, and a docked tail. The large head, including the floppy ears, is relatively hairier than the rest of the body. Brittanies have overlapped lips, with a broad muzzle, wide nostrils, and almond-shaped eyes. Interestingly, though most Brittanies are born with naturally docked tails, a few rare specimens are born with long ones, which are later docked to a length of 3-10 cm.

French Brittany Pictures

Quick Description

Other Names French Brittany Spaniel, Le Fougueux, Epagneul Breton
Coat Fine, dense, medium, flowing
Colors Orange and white, liver and white, black and white, tricolor, orange roan, liver roan, black roan
Type Sporting Dog, Spaniel
Group (of Breed) Purebred 
Lifespan 12-13 years
Weight 30–45 pounds (14–20 kg) (full grown male/female)
Height (Size) Medium; 18-21 inches
Personality Traits Brave, loyal, playful, alert, intelligent, social, responsive
Good with Children Yes
Good with Pets Yes (including cats; if socialized)
Good for New/First-time Owners Yes
Climatic Conditions Resistant to damp and cold temperatures
Shedding Minimal
Drooling Yes (high)
Barking Less
Litter Size 5-8 puppies
Hypoallergenic No
Country of Origin Brittany, France
Competitive Registration/ Qualification Information DRA

Video: French Brittany Puppy Training

History & Development

The Brittany breed developed from the English Setters and the small local Spaniel breeds back in the 1800s, in France’s Brittany province (from which it gets its name).

They excelled as a highly obedient pointer, retriever, and a gundog, which made them a favorite to the local hunter. In the 1920s, this breed began to be imported to North America.

In 1934, they were recognized by the AKC in the name Brittany Spaniel, which was further shortened to Brittany in 1982. Since then, many breeders took the name ‘Brittany’ as a short form for American Brittany, while the French Brittany, which was bred solely in France, became more famous as the ‘Epagneul Breton’ in its country. These dogs were out and out gun dogs in comparison to the American Brittany breeds which were large-sized running dogs.

In 1990, the dog was first exhibited at the Paris Dog Show. Soon after, a male Brittany named ‘Boy’ was recognized by the kennel club of France. At present, the Brittany is one of the most popular pointer dogs in field trials.

Temperament and Behavior

This dog does not merely cherish spending time with its family members but enjoys human company in general. They are always ready to welcome people at home, hence not excelling as watchdogs.

The French Brittany do not like solitude, and if forced to stay alone regularly, they might end up indulging in destructive activities like chewing garments and furniture or, digging up the garden.

They have an inborn hunting instinct which might provoke them to chase small mammals, birds, or chipmunks. This dog loves to wander and might walk out of your premises if your entrance is open.

Care

Exercise

French Brittanies do not do well indoors. They want some open space to run and play off-leash to satisfy their hunting instinct. Take your dog out for a one-hour walk or jogging, both in the morning and evening. But make sure, their play area is securely fenced.

Grooming

Brittanies have a dense, fine coat. Brush your dog with a hard-bristled comb, two to three times a week, to prevent the hair from matting as well as to keep it clean.

Health Problems

Cases of hip and elbow dysplasia (though common to most retriever breeds), canine discoid lupus erythematosus and epilepsy have been reported.

Training

  • Train your dog not to chase smaller animals, as well as to accept the leash, at the same time. If your pup runs after a cat, take a piece of chicken in your hand and stand close to it. As it gets the scent and wags its tail, put the leash and offer the chicken, talking to it affectionately. Keep repeating the process, and it will understand that the treat was for being obedient (leaving the cat alone and accepting the leash).
  • Make use of its retrieving skills through exciting and interactive games like Frisbee, throwing the ball in the air and catching it, and so on. Such activities will not merely satisfy the retrieving instinct of your pet, but also keep it active by good daily exercises.

Diet/Feeding

A total of 1½ to 2½ cups of dry dog food is recommended for the French Brittany. Divide this quantity into two daily meals.

Interesting Facts

  • On April 1, 2017, a female Brittany named Remnar died in a tragic accident after falling into a geothermal hot spring boiling from the Earth, while its owner’s brother Brent Torchio jumped in, trying to save it. Brent got second- and third-degree burns on more than 20% of his body, but later recovered and was released on April 18.
  • Back in 2016, a 2-year-old Brittany from Port Charlotte, USA, got a chance to compete at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, UK.

5 responses to “French Brittany”

  1. paul gamache says:

    Cassie, my 8 year French Brit is my hunting & fishing buddy. In the fall she is a woodcock pointing machine, Needs work on grouse though.
    Still high energy and gets out of her mind excited when we head for the woods or lakes. Loves to swim and retrieves ducks and retrieving dummies in the off season. I would buy another in a heartbeat, if anything were to happen to her

  2. jane wiley says:

    My French Brit is my Christmas card this year. Stelly is my 4th French Brit and all of them have been great dogs. Stelly not only gets and retrieves balls in the air, she always returns it to whomever threw it and will hold it and gently give it back gently when the thrower asks for it. If another dog gets the ball, she’ll run over and then just wait for the next ball that is tossed. She will be 9 in March and still going strong, so am I and I’m 83 and Stelly is part of the reason!

  3. Kelly Stinson says:

    I have 2 french brittanies and they do just fine in the house. Training is a must from day 1, lots of exercises and structured playtime. We do toy retrieval, have lots of toys, dog chews, bully sticks, walks, playtime and a ton of attention and love from us. My dogs are well behaved in the house and they do not wander off of our property. They need consistent training and reinforcement in order to have a well behaved EB.We also have a cat that they have been raised with and they don’t chase the cat. The cat taunts them and then they play with him. Their interaction is normal and they are very gentle with our cat. We also crate our dogs when we are not home. It’s not cruel; it’s for their safety and well being.

  4. anika says:

    i noticed that you have a picture of my dog (french brittany puppy) on here. i was wondering if you wanted a picture of him all grown up now.

    • Laura Lobaton says:

      I had many Brittany Spaniels back in the States years ago. Daisy, Michael, Cooler, Snicker, Rebecca, Brawny…. They are all in heaven now. I miss them so much. God bless them.

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