The Bichon Frise originated around the Mediterranean region and is believed to have descended from the water spaniel or Barbet hence the name Barbichon shortened to Bichon at a later date.

They become very popular with French monarchy in the 16thcentury especially during the reign of Henry 111 who always had one by his side.

They were officially recognised by the Societe Central Canine de France in 1934


  • Happy
  • Cuddly
  • Playful

Bichon Frise Temperament & Size

This small dog has a double layer curly coat that is always white. They suit owners with allergies as they shed little or no hair. However, as a result the coat is high maintenance and regular grooming or clipping is imperative to avoid matting.

They are sociable, charming and merry dogs and make terrific pets. They adore being in the company of their families. However, they should not be left alone for long periods of time as they are prone to separation anxiety.

It is important not to allow them to become dominant in the household as they may misbehave as a result.

Bichon Frise Life Span & Health Problems

Average lifespan is 12 – 14 years.

Common Illnesses include;

  • Hip Dysplasia – Genetic condition that cause abnormal development of the elbow and hip joints in young dogs. This can lead to early onset degenerative joint disease.
  • Patella Luxation – Partial to full dislocation of one or both kneecaps resulting in hind limb lameness. If sever enough this requires surgery.
  • Lacrimal Duct Atresia – Abnormally small tear duct results in tear overflow and staining on the face.
  • Epilepsy – Recurrent seizures.
  • Cushings (Overactive adrenal glands) – Resulting in skin problems, excessive drinking and pot-bellied appearance.
  • Legg Calves Perthes Disease – Altered blood supply to the head of the thigh bone causes disintegration of bone and lameness.
  • Atopic dermatitis – Hypersensitivity to environmental allergens causing intense pruritus and inflammation of the skin resulting in skin trauma and infection.
  • Shaker Dog Disease – Causes full body tremors and sometimes seizures and difficulty walking. The cause is unknown.
  • Diabetes – Abnormally high blood sugar, requires insulin treatment.
  • Cataracts – Abnormal opacity in the lens resulting in blurred vision and eventual blindness.
  • Corneal Dystrophy—An inherited disease where a fluid build-up causes the cornea to appear white. A very painful and difficult to treat ulcer will develop.

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