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The Basics You Should Know Before Owning A PBGV

The PBGV is an active, curious, busy, happy, alert, independent and highly intelligent hound. He's affectionate and willing to please. He's a dog that needs 'people attention' and will demand it if his owner neglects him. The PBGV is basically a pack animal and much of his behavior reflects this heritage.

The PBGV is intelligent and can be trained for many purposes. He also has a great desire to please. The problem for the owner is that the dog is so smart that he often has his own agenda (which may not be the same as the owners!)

The PBGV has a good voice which is freely used. Most PBGV's bark at something rather than just barking for no reason.

A bored or lonely PBGV will make his own 'entertainment'. Giving your dog a variety of toys and things to chew on, a safe environment and eliminating the opportunity to be destructive will control this potential problem. The use of a crate not only provides this safety, but it also becomes his own special place.

PBGV's generally love all people - size doesn't matter. Most dogs, including the PBGV, seem to have a natural affinity to children.

This is one breed that should not be allowed to be off lead. The hunting instinct is too strong. All that is needed is one small scent and your hunter will be off on the chase.

One PBGV is a marvelous experience. Two are a greater joy. They provide company and entertainment for each other. Any new animal being brought into your home, properly introduced, will usually make friends with the older dog. PBGV's ordinarily get along well with the rest of the family pets and with other dogs that come into their home.

His coat should be thick, wiry and somewhat casual looking. A weekly brushing will remove loose and dead hair and help to control shedding. A pin brush, comb and possibly a mat breaker are the only necessary tools. Bathe him as needed.

Nails need to be clipped regularly. Ear canals should be kept free of excess hair and wax. Teeth should have regular care to keep them clean and free of tarter. Trim long hair on the bottom of the feet and check between the pads for foreign material and mats.

In general this is a very healthy breed. They are subject to the usual 'doggy' health problems - most of which can be prevented by vaccination or prompt attention.
Any breed of dog can be subject to genetic and/or birth defects. Some of the conditions that have been reported are Neck Pain Syndrome, Hip Dysplasia, Patellar Luxation, Heart Murmurs, and some Eye Conditions. The occurrence of these diseases is under investigation by the PBGVCA Health and Genetics' Committee.
It is important to obtain a PBGV from a reputable breeder, to get a health certificate from that breeder and to have your dog examined by your veterinarian for any heart, eye, ear or other abnormalities. Anyone interested in purchasing a dog should discuss the prevalence of these problems in that kennel with the breeder.

Many breeders will not sell you a pet unless you agree to neuter the animal. Being a responsible owner is assuring that you are not a part of producing unwanted dogs which frequently end up in shelters.
If you think you want to "show" your dog in Conformation be sure to discuss this ahead of time with the breeder. Neutered animals can participate in all of the areas of competition except Conformation.
Remember: A neutered dog usually has fewer health problems.

The newest book available is The Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen : A Definitive Breed Study by Valerie Link and Linda Skerritt, Doral Publishing,1999. The authors have obtained previously unexamined kennel records, albums and archives. New information and photos are published here for the first time.
A good source of information about this breed is the book, Understanding the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen by Kitty Steidel, Orient Publications, 1987. This book gives the history, explains standards, discusses training and general care of the dog. It is an informative, interesting and easy to read book.
A second book is Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen by Jeffrey Pepper, T.F.H. Publications, 1993. This book gives recommendations about selecting and caring for a PBGV.

American Kennel Club Breed Standard
American Kennel Club Standard for the PBGV

General Appearance

The Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen is a scent hound developed to hunt small game over the rough and difficult terrain of the Vendeen region. To function efficiently, he must be equipped with certain characteristics. He is bold and vivacious in character; compact, tough and robust in construction. He has an alert outlook, lively bearing and a good voice freely used. The most distinguishing characteristics of this bold hunter are his rough, unrefined outline; his proudly carried head, displaying definitive long eyebrows, beard, and moustache; his strong, tapered tail carried like a sabre, alert and in readiness. Important to the breed type is the compact, casual, rather tousled appearance, with no feature exaggerated and his parts in balance. Any deviation from the ideal described in the standard should be penalized to the extent of the deviation. Structural faults common to all breeds are as undesirable in the PBGV as in any other breed, regardless of whether they are specifically mentioned.

Size, Proportion, Substance

Size-Both sexes should measure between 13 and 15 inches at the withers, with a 1/2 inch tolerance in either direction being acceptable. Height over 15-1/2 inches at the withers is a disqualification. Proportion-Somewhat longer than tall. A correctly proportioned dog will be approximately 50% longer than tall when the entire body is measured from sternum to buttocks as compared to withers to ground. Substance-Strong bone with substance in proportion to overall dog.


The head is carried proudly and, in size, must be in balance with the overall dog. It is longer than its width in a ratio of approximately two to one. A coarse or overly large head is to be penalized.

Expression alert, friendly and intelligent.

Eyes large and dark, showing no white. The red of the lower eyelid should not show. They are surmounted by long eyebrows, standing forward, but not obscuring the eyes.

Ears supple, narrow and fine, covered with long hair, folding inward and ending in an oval shape. The leathers reach almost to the end of the nose. They are set on low, not above the line of the eyes. An overly long or high-set ear should be penalized.

Skull domed, oval in shape when viewed from the front. It is well cut away under the eyes and has a well developed occipital protuberance. Stop clearly defined.

Muzzle The length of the muzzle is slightly shorter than the length from stop to occiput. The underjaw is strong and well developed.

Nose black and large, with wide nostrils. A somewhat lighter shading is acceptable in lighter colored dogs. Lips-The lips are covered by long hair forming a beard and moustache.

Bite It is preferable that the teeth meet in a scissors bite, but a level bite is acceptable.

Neck, Topline, Body

Neck The neck is long and strong, without throatiness, and flows smoothly into the shoulders.

Topline The back is level with a slight arch over a strong loin. Viewed in profile, the withers and the croup should be equidistant from the ground.

Body muscular, somewhat longer than tall. Chest deep, with prominent sternum. Ribs moderately rounded, extending well back. Loin strong; muscular and rounded about the lateral axis of the dog.

Tail of medium length, set on high, it is strong at the base and tapers regularly. It is well furnished with hair, has but a slight curve and is carried proudly like the blade of a sabre; normally about 20 degrees to the aft of vertical. In a curved downward position the tip of the tail bone should reach approximately to the hock joint.


Shoulders clean and well laid back. Upper arm approximately equal in length to the shoulder blade. Elbows close to the body.

Legs The length of leg from elbow to ground should be slightly less than 1/2 the length from withers to ground. Viewed from the front, it is desirable that the forelegs be straight, but a slight crook is acceptable. The leg is strong and well boned. Pasterns strong and slightly sloping. Any tendency to knuckle over is a serious fault. Dewclaws may, or may not, be removed.

Feet not too long, with hard, tight pads. Slight turnout of the feet is acceptable. The nails are strong and short.


Strong and muscular with good bend of stifle. A well-defined second thigh. Hocks are short and well angulated, perpendicular from hock to ground. Feet are as in front except that they must point straight ahead.


The coat is rough, long without exaggeration and harsh to the touch, with a thick shorter undercoat. It is never silky or woolly. The eyes are surmounted by long eyebrows, standing forward, but not obscuring the eyes. The ears are covered by long hair. The lips are covered by long hair forming a beard and moustache. The tail is well furnished with hair. The overall appearance is casual and tousled. Hounds are to be shown untrimmed. Indications of scissoring for the purposes of shaping or sculpturing are to be severely penalized.


White with any combination of lemon, orange, black, tricolor or grizzle markings.


The movement should be free at all speeds. Front action is straight and reaching well forward. Going away, the hind legs are parallel and have great drive. Convergence of the front and rear legs towards his center of gravity is proportional to the speed of his movement. Gives the appearance of an active hound, capable of a full day's hunting.


Happy, extroverted, independent, yet willing to please.


Height of more than 15-1/2 inches at the withers.

Approved August 14, 1990
Effective February 1, 1991