Bichon Frise illustration
Toy

Bichon Frise

Little white Mediterranean dog with soft corkscrew curls

Breed characteristics

Size
Small
Exercise
Up to 30 minutes per day
Size of home
Flat/ Apartment
Grooming
Every day
Coat length
Medium
Sheds
No
Lifespan
Over 12 years
Vulnerable native breed
No
Town or country
Either
Size of garden
No garden

About this breed

The Bichon family is a group of white breeds found originally in the Mediterranean Countries. The word Bichon means white dog and the Bichon breeds are predominately white with the exception of the Havanese which can be found in a wide variety of colours. The word ‘frise’ describes the soft corkscrew curls of the coat. Although the Standard suggests that the coat on feet and muzzle may be tidied up, the presentation of the Bichon for the show ring has become much more stylised.

Although France was the country of development for the breed, the Bichon Frise is thought to have existed on the island of Tenerife as far back as the 14th century and was taken to mainland Europe by traders where he gained popularity, especially in the Royal Courts and in the homes of nobility, where he was often pampered and carried around in an ornamental basket.

Read the breed standard

Images for this breed

The Toy breed group

The Toy breeds are small companion or lap dogs. Many of the Toy breeds were bred for this capacity although some have been placed into this category simply due to their size. They should have friendly personalities and love attention. They do not need a large amount of exercise and some can be finicky eaters.

Breed standard colours

Breed standard colour means that the colour is accepted within the breed standard and is a traditional and well-known colour in this breed.

Breed standard colours in this breed include:

  • White

Other colour/s

'Other' means you consider your puppy to be a colour not currently known within the breed and one that does not appear on either the breed standard or non-breed standard list. In this instance you would be directed through our registrations process to contact a breed club and/or council to support you on identifying and correctly listing the new colour.

Non-breed-standard colours

Non-breed-standard colour means that the colour is not accepted within the breed standard and whilst some dogs within the breed may be this colour it is advised to only select a dog that fits within the breed standards for all points.

Colour is only one consideration when picking a breed or individual dog, health and temperament should always be a priority over colour.

Health

Whether you’re thinking of buying a puppy, or breeding from your dog, it’s essential that you know what health issues may be found in your breed. To tackle these issues we advise that breeders use DNA tests, screening schemes and inbreeding coefficient calculators to help breed the healthiest dogs possible.

More about health

Priority health schemes and tests

The Kennel Club's Assured Breeders must use the following schemes, tests and advice. All other breeders are strongly advised to also use these.

Important health schemes and tests

We strongly recommend that all breeders, both assured breeders (ABs) and non ABs, use the following schemes, tests and advice.

Find out about a particular dog's results

Please visit our Health Test Results Finder to discover the DNA or screening scheme test results for any dog on The Kennel Club's Breed Register.

You can also view the inbreeding coefficient calculation for a puppy's parents, or for a dog you're thinking of breeding from.

Have any questions about health in your breed?

If you have any concerns about a particular health condition in your breed then you may wish to speak to your vet or you could contact your breed health co-ordinator.

Breed health co-ordinators are individuals working on behalf of breed clubs and councils who are advocates for the health and welfare of their chosen breed. They acts as a spokesperson on matters of health and will collaborate with The Kennel Club on any health concerns the breed may have.

Contact the breed health co-ordinator for the Bichon Frise.

Breed watch

Category 1        

Currently no points of concern specific to this breed have been identified for special attention by judges, other than those covered routinely by The Kennel Club's breed standard.

Read more about Breed Watch

Breeding restrictions

There are a number of The Kennel Club's rules and regulations that may prevent a litter from being registered, find out about our general and breed specific breeding restrictions below.

More about breeding

There are not currently any additional breed specific restrictions in place for this breed.

More information

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