The Breton Epagnol is a French breed, although, unknowingly, some people define them as English, as the name is consonant with the word Britannia. In fact, the breed got its name from the name of one of the regions in the north-west of France.
The first evidence of the existence of the Breton Epagnole breed in France dates back to the 17th century – the artists depicted hunting with these dogs. Hunting is the main specialization of this breed and these dogs for several hundred years. Historically, for other purposes they were practically not used (except as a companion), simply because it is ineffective to use a specialized hunting dog in a different capacity.
Moreover, the nobility hunted with the Breton, and the aristocrats, as we understand, rarely had problems with keeping several dogs or even a whole pack of dogs. Moreover, all performed certain functions, and it rarely happened that a sleek, hunting noble dog sat on a chain and sadly guarded his bowl, along with the castle gates.
That is how the Reverend Davis described them as hunting and very valuable dogs. He indicated that the nobility hunted with small, cheerful and playful dogs, which showed excellent results in finding and pointing out the downed game, while being retrievers. There are opinions that the English setter was involved in the formation of the breed, although there is no exact confirmation of this fact. However, according to other sources, the spaniel was also involved in this process.
The Breton Epagnol breed has existed for several centuries as a separate breed, and these dogs were bred with a clear understanding of the preservation of characteristics, however, they received official status only in 1907. Also, in 1907, the first written breed standard appeared. The first registered dog was a red & white male named Boy. By the way, at first the word “spaniel” was present in the name and it disappeared only in 1982.
These are small dogs with a strong constitution, medium limbs and ears hanging on the sides of the head. The head is round, the skull is of medium length, the muzzle is rather sharp, with a large, brown or pink nose. The tail is short, the hair is short. Red & white, brown & white, liver & white, black & white, tricolor (white, red and black)
The Breton Epagnol breed of dogs is very affectionate and loving animals. It would seem that this is a hunting dog that carries primitive instincts, which is why it is capable of being ruthless in relation to its prey. But, in fact, these qualities are manifested only in the process of hunting, and in the circle of his beloved people, and indeed in ordinary life, this is an incredibly harmonious creature.
They are always happy to help the owner, open and cheerful. Kindness, affection, responsiveness – all these qualities are inherent in every Breton, without exception. However, there is one subtle point. These animals can be very shy by nature, and in order to get rid of such a character trait, they need to socialize in the right way. To do this, you need to go with your dog to visit, introduce it to other people, adults and children, acquaint it with other animals, not only with dogs, but, preferably, with cats. This is all the more necessary if you plan to have a cat at home in the future.
Your dog should expand his horizons as much as possible due to new acquaintances, sounds, smells and situations that cannot be artificially created only at home. By the way, these pets have never been used and are not used in the modern world as watchdogs, precisely because of their good nature and love for people. This is a very adaptive breed, it can live comfortably both in the private sector and in a city apartment, even if the apartment is small.
However, what should be considered is the high energy level of the animals. They need to realize their energy potential through daily walks, games and exercise. At least an hour a day, and if possible, more is a prerequisite. If you cannot provide the animal with this level of physical activity, it is better to choose another breed, otherwise you will simply make the dog unhappy. She will develop hyperactivity, she may excessively try to get your attention, and she may become very sensitive emotionally. In terms of parenting, problems almost never arise.
The Breton Epagnol breed is great for children, and will always become a good friend and an interesting partner for a child for games and just for everyday pastime. However, since these dogs are very kind and patient, and also small in size, the child must learn how to properly handle the animal.
The breed has excellent natural hunting instincts that you can use if you are into hunting. In addition, these are very smart pets, they understand not only words and hints, including behavioral ones, but also, thanks to their sensitivity, perfectly recognize the emotional state of the owners.
The Breton Epagnol dog understands the training process well, and is always happy to learn. Of course, if you raised your dog properly and engaged in socialization. You can train your pet in a variety of commands, although you can limit yourself to basic ones. Usually, there are no problems in training. The only problems that can still appear are usually created by the owner himself, if he is not restrained, behaves nervously and generally does not control his emotions well.
After all, the learning process takes a lot of time, and not everyone has enough patience. But it is patience, kindness, a positive attitude and a sense of humor, combined with a lot of encouragement, that can give a good result. In no case should you behave rudely, beat the dog, as this will make it withdrawn, shy and fearful. And all the beautiful, positive aspects of this breed will never be revealed.
A Breton Epagnole dog needs weekly brushing and weekly bathing (this is the minimum). Alternatively, you can do this after walking in the park or outdoors, paying special attention to your ears. Hanging, floppy ears often retain moisture in the ear canal and must be cleaned regularly, in addition, the dog often collects various litter, fallen leaves, etc. with its ears. Eyes are cleaned daily or as needed, claws are cut 3 times a month.
The Breton Epagnol dog breed is generally in good health, but some diseases still occur:
- dysplasia of the hip joint;
- lupus erythematosus;