Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen
Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen
The Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen (often shortened to PBGV) is a scenthound that originated in the Vendée region of France. It was developed to hunt small animals such as hare and rabbit on foot instead of horseback. They are one of four Vendéens, the other three being the Grand, Grand Basset, and Briquet.
Although the popular Basset Hound was created in England, there are actually six recognized breeds of basset, the other five are from France. They Include the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen and its “cousins” the Basset Artésien Normand, Basset Bleu de Gascogne, Grand Basset Griffon Vendéen, and Basset Fauve de Bretagne.
Of all the French bassets the two Griffon Vendéens are the most common outside of its homeland, and the Petit is seen even more than the Grand. These dogs work less in the field and are kept more often as companions.
Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen Standards
History of the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen
Bassets have been known throughout France for centuries, with written records dating back to 1585. It is unknown how this type of dog was created, some have suggested they descend from other short-legged breeds such as Dachshunds or Corgis. Other experts believe that dwarfed scenthounds (possibly from the Saint Hubert Hound) were the first bassets. The latter is the more preferred theory, however, their origin is further debated as to whether or not this occurred multiple times or if different breeds were simply crossed with existing bassets.
However they came into existence, eventually, nearly every type of French hound had a basset variety. It is believed that some of the oldest of these breeds are the Basset Bleu de Gascogne and the now extinct Basset Saintongeois.
The Basset Griffon Vendéens have existed since at least the 1700s, and both breeds were once interbred and treated as two varieties. Separate standards were not written until the 1950s and the interbreeding continued until 1975.
By the late 1900s, the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen had become known outside of France. It is still considered a rare breed, but unlike many French hounds is recognized by all major kennel clubs, including the American Kennel Club.