BRUSSELS GRIFFON DOG

Griffon means “wire haired”, as this pretty Brussels Griffon shows. The attractive show specimens should be proud of their alley ancestors. 
 
Saying that Brussels Griffon is not a pretty dog infringes our understanding of beauty, since beauty only exists in the eyes of the owner, and the small Brussels Griffon has a lot to offer its owner. There are two varieties: rough and smooth, which are identical, except for the hair. The most characteristic trait of the Brussels Griffon is its head, whose expression is described as “almost human”, although of course it is very peculiar. A large and round head, with an arched forehead; small ears, high inserted, cropped or dropping; long black eyelashes; in the hard hair variety, abundant eyebrows, a moustache under the nose, beard and strands at the cheeks. The body is short and plump; the back, straight; the ribcage, wide; with a short complexion; tail high inserted and docked to a third. The rough coat should be coarse, never woolly or silky, nor unkempt. The short coat is smooth, shiny and not rough. There are four colors: light red, beige, black and tan, and solid black; no white anywhere in any color. For the KC the weigh is between 2.2 and 4.9 kg and desirable of 2.7 to 4.5 kg. The FCI establishes two sizes with the following weight, small size to 3 kg; large size, the weigh should not go over 3.5 kg for males and 5 kg for females. For the ACK, the weigh is between 4 and 5 kg.
 
WHO IS IT RIGHT FOR
A dog with an authentic Hollywood style attractive, the Brussels Griffon is a peculiar star with a natural ability to manipulate, be affectionate and bold. If not well educated, it can develop bad habits. It is a lively and demanding dog, always trying to convince its loving owners to pamper it in excess. It is very sensitive, charming at home and so smart it seems human (perhaps it was in a past life).
 
DEVELOPMENT
The Brussels Griffon puppy weighs between 140 and 200 g at birth. Dewclaws should be removed and the tail docked after five days. Ear cropping is optional and should be done after three years. The post-op is not very demanding, since the ears have enough cartilage to keep erect. As in other breeds, different standards point out this ear and tail amputation, but UE member countries in appliance to several Guidelines should prevent this manipulation. Color can vary at birth. Sometimes there are chocolate colored specimens, which stand for a complete lack of black pigmentation, and rarely blue. These puppies have pink pads, as well as the stomach and nose, which also can be liver colored. These colors are unacceptable flaws, of course. The Brussels Griffon adult hair grows at six months. Correct diet, with a snack limitation, as well as enough exercise and a good early education will make your Brussels Griffon a healthy and polite little dog.
 
In Belgium and the rest of Europe, the short hair variety is known as the Petit Barban. 
 
The Brussels Griffon puppy is small and delicate, and requires a soft hand. However, the adult is robust and resistant.
 
HEALTH
The soft puppy hair will be replaced by a harder hair at around six months. The color is variable and lightens with age. 
One of the strongest breeds amongst the toys, the Brussels Griffon is quite free of diseases typical in this group. Shoulder and short skull problems have been informed, so we must insist in good structure and bones in the parents. Sometimes incontinent puppies emerge. These puppies can’t retain urine and lose continually, for which it is better to put them down, since when growing, problems are inevitable. In perfectly normal litters there can be cleft palate or lip cases. Eyes should be taken care of, since they are prone to injuries. As for diet and exercise, it is not demanding and can be satisfied with good quality commercial feed and daily walks. Hair care depends on variety; hard hair requires “stripping”, a simple but technical procedure. Due to the typical inferior prognathism in the breed, regular dental care is essential to avoid gum disease and premature loss of pieces. Puppies many times lose their baby teeth slowly and it may even be necessary to remove them if they interfere with permanent teeth. The Brussels Griffon can live 15 years, even 18.
 
Many breeders wait until the third month for the ear cropping. Many times, those with good ears are left natural.