Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen

"The Basset Hound's Tousled Cousin"

Photo of Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen


The Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen, or PBGV, as her friends call her (not only because it's shorter but because it's fun to say), may seem like the new kid on the block in terms of AKC recognition, but she's been around since the 18thcentury. She was created to hunt through thick brambles and over rocky terrain. Her thick coat protected her from thorns and burrs while her moderately short legs helped her find the path of his rabbit quarry by going under, rather than over, the heavy the brush. But PBGVs don't have the extremely short legs of Basset Hounds - their legs are long enough to let them nimbly scramble over rocks and run at a good speed. The Griffon Vendeen was considered one breed with two sizes (Grand and Petit) until the 1950s, and the two sizes were still interbred until the 1970s. The AKC recognized the PBGV in 1990. Although it's only ranked 119thout of 155 breeds, it's a breed bound to rise in popularity as more people discover this little dog's considerable charm.


This is no lazy old hound dog. The PBGV attracts attention wherever she goes because of her merry, energetic disposition. She's always on the lookout for fun and excitement, especially in the form of an outdoor adventure. She loves to latch on to a trail and follow her nose, and when she does, she can be oblivious to commands. Actually, she can be oblivious to commands in any situation--but only because she's so focused on the hunt. Generally well-mannered indoors, the PBGV is extremely demonstrative. Prepare to be nuzzled, kissed, and greeted with enthusiasm. She gets along well with everyone: new people, children, other dogs, even other pets like cats and birds. Well, maybe not so trustworthy with rabbits. A dog has her limits.


The PBGV is twice as long as she is tall. Some people describe her as a rough-coated Basset Hound, but her legs are longer, her ears shorter, and she lacks the loose, droopy skin of the Basset. Her coat is rough and tousled, even on her face, so she has a good beard and moustache and that informal, friendly look that says, "I'm no snob. Let's play." Her tail is medium in length, and carried proudly. Her trot is surprisingly fast and light, and she moves with head and tail high, as though she knows she's the center of attention (and she usually is).


Most people who have PBGVs aren't that concerned with having a snap-to-it obedience dog. Otherwise, they'd find the PBGV's I'll-get-back-to-you-on-that attitude maddening. But you can work with the PBGV to get her to obey fairly well. You have to make training challenging and fun, broken up with play. She's not a dog that does well with drilling the same thing over and over. But no matter how well she's doing at home, she still won't listen if she's off-leash and discovers the scent of a rabbit. Don't expect miracles.

Grooming & Care

The PBGV doesn't look fastidiously groomed because that rough wiry coat just doesn't lie flat. That makes grooming fairly easy for you--brush weekly, and pull or trim the occasional stubbornly unruly hair. A PBGV can't hang around the house all day and be content. She likes to get out for a walk with lots of sniffing and investigating. And while she may not need to run for miles, she still needs to stretch her legs in some sprints or energetic backyard games every day.

Health Concerns

The Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen has no major health concerns, but ear infections, hip dysplasia, and some eye problems occasionally crop up. Ask your breeder about these issues.

Famous Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen

Ch. Celestial CJ's Jolly Fairchild not only won the public's heart, but also the Hound group at the 2007 WKC show.

Ideal Owner
Activity Level 3
Schedule 6
Home 44
Children 48
Experience 11
Quick Facts
Grooming 110
Exercise 60
Challenges Needs to hunt things.
Height 12 to 15 inches
Weight 25 to 45 pounds
Life 10 to 14 years
Home Alone 83
With Kids 86
With Strangers 91
Availability 95

This client information sheet is based on material written by: LifeLearn

© Copyright 2014 LifeLearn Inc. Used and/or modified with permission under license.

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