Bichon Frise
Information Station

serving the worldwide Bichon Frise community


Please Refrain from a Christmas Puppy
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'There is no therapist in the world as effective as an adoring bichon.'
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: All information contained on these pages is offered as a helpful service.  It it not intended as medical counsel or taking the place of professional guidance. Please seek the services of  a competent veterinarian or professional dog trainer at the first indication of problems.


Bichons do best in adult homes in which someone is home a lot of the time, has the time/willingness & ability to brush out coat each day, can take for extended brisk daily walk/exercise, and securely fenced yard for potty breaks, and has sufficient financial resources to handle the high costs of coat maintenance.
Height: 10-15 inches at shoulder
Weight: 11-22 pounds as adults
(Sorry, bichons are just plain not tiny dogs. Yes, yes, you've read advertisements on the internet that say 7 - 12, but years of experience and hundreds of bichons from all facets of bichonhood represent the truth, and 11-22 lbs is a much more realistic representation of how much that puppy will weigh in adulthood.)
Maintenance rating One of the highest maintenance dogs known.
Intelligence: Very high,  but selective in cooperation level;
must be handled carefully. You must never hit a Bichon! They don't respond mentally like other breeds and can be ruined for life.
Trainability: Very high if proficient owner/trainer
Good With Children: Older children, okay, if gentle.  Younger, no, smaller dogs are too vulnerable to injury from small children, and thus get snappy.
Activity Level: High through 5 years, then medium
Avg. Life Span: 13-17 years


Professional trimming every 4-6 weeks, must either keep coat in short puppy clip, OR brush up to 1/2 hr/day to keep longer coat free of mats.  Must keep coat dry or risk nightmare of tangles/snarls.
Watch Dog: Yes, can be yappy
Protection: No
Behavior with Strangers: Can be reserved & barky
Home Environment: Apartment O.K., but barking may be a problem;   Need 30 min. daily brisk exercise
Best Owner: Patient leader
(BF's tend to want to be the Alpha)
Potential Problems: Bichons often fail to thrive when left alone all day while owners work or when in families with very young children or any non-gentle children.
Notoriously hard to housetrain,
plus barking, digging, can be nippy
Allergies/skin ailments, early onset cataracts, luxating patellas (bad knees), epilepsy, ear infections, Cushing's Disease/Addition's can easily be brought on if cortisone is used for allergies.

Country of Origin: Mediterranean area
(Canary Islands)
AKC Group: Non-Sporting
Function: Originally as companions to Spanish sailors and aristocrats
Appearance: Sturdy, moderately small in size, curly coat, tail curls up over back
Color: White with a little cream or apricot
Coat Type: Non-shedding, curly, soft, thick (requires much maintenance)
Good With
Other Pets:
Character: In the right environment, Bichon Frises are easygoing, lively, affectionate with own family

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