French Dog Breeds

French Dog Breeds with Lifestyle and Habit

Dogs are pleasant animals when it comes to their loyalty, which can be unending regardless of their breed. But sometimes, an owner would certainly like to prefer getting a different dog breed from other people. Dog breeds can come from any countries including France or Spain.

French dog breeds are one of those which are often praised as being regal in appearance and with great attributes. In fact, many other breeds can also derive their breed specialty from French dog breeds, although vice-versa is also a fact.

If you are looking for some of the well-known dog breeds, then you have stumbled upon the right place. For this article will be dealing with the top 12 French dog breeds along with how they came to be and some of their attributes. Keep reading below to more about these French breeds of dogs which may just make you exclaim “mon dieu!” in surprise.

French Dog Breeds

Top 12 French Dog Breeds

French dog breeds can be plentiful in variety and varied in terms of appearance, this list will be dealing with some of them:

1. Berger Picard

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Herding
  • Height: 21.5-25.5 inches
  • Weight: 50-70 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Wiry yet thick medium-length coat.  Colors include Brindle and Fawn.
  • Life Span: 12-13 years
  • Origin: France

Berger Picard

Getting its name from a region in France from where it was originally bred, called ‘Picardy’. The Berger Picards are both agile and highly intelligent due to their herding capabilities, this also makes them responsive to training.

For these dog breeds, slight neglect in exercising may just make them bored and even slightly destructive. Hence it is needed to make sure that you give them exercise every day.

Read more: Types of Spaniel Dog Breeds

2. Briard

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Herding
  • Height: 22-27 inches
  • Weight: 55-100 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Long-length wavy double coat. Colors may mainly come in: Black, Gray and Tawny.
  • Life Span: 12 years
  • Origin: France


Said to have been owned by Napoleon himself and taken on his military campaigns, the Briard dog breeds are some of the most intelligent dogs to behold. Also used to both herd sheep and protect them, the Briard species wavy coat makes them a perfect cuddle companion. Although the Briard can be wary to strangers, they won’t instantly attack them.

Read More: Dog Breeds Like Pit Bulls

3. Barbet

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Sporting
  • Height: 19-24.5 inches
  • Weight: 35-65 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Curly and wavy Medium-long length coat. Colors may include Black, Fawn, Brown, Gray, and White.
  • Life Span: 12-14 years
  • Origin: France


A water dog bred in France, the barbet is a beauty to spectacle upon as they are some of the best swimmers thanks to their capabilities as a water dog. Used for retrieving games from water or to flush them out, the barbets are highly receptive to learning and are loyal to the end.
if you want an intelligent dog, then this one is it!

4. Papillion

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Toy
  • Height: 8-11 inches
  • Weight: 5-10 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Silky and medium-length coat. Colors may include White & Black, White & Lemon, White & Red, Sable, or White Black & tan.
  • Life Span: 14-16 years
  • Origin: France


Papillion is a French word for “butterfly”. A tiny but curious and alert dog, the Papillion is mainly characterized by their distinctive ‘butterfly’ shaped ears which give them an adorable appearance. Normally happy and quick to give into cuddles, this furry bundle of joy can be great for family members.

The Papillion is also very athletic and can be trained to perform even gymnastic stunts just for the sake of some good and fun time.

5. Basset Hound

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Hound
  • Height: Can go up to 15 inches
  • Weight: 40-65 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Short-length and smooth coat. Colors may include Black & White,  Lemon & White or Mahogany & White, etc.
  • Life Span: 12-13 years
  • Origin: France

Basset Hound

The basset hound normally thrives on its very ability as a scent hound, which means that it is able to smell something from a far-off distance that normally can’t be smelled by a human. Placid yet rigid, the Basset can be objective when it comes to duty and friendly when playing with family members.

While slightly wary of strangers, the basset hounds are not great watchers as they may just become friends with even strangers after a bark.

6. Beauceron

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Herding
  • Height: 24-27.5 inches
  • Weight: 70-110 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Smooth and short-length double coat. Colors include: Black & Rust, Black & Tan, Gray Black & Tan, or Harlequin
  • Life Span: 10-12 years
  • Origin: France


The Beauceron is strong and intimidating yet regal and calm in most situations. Due to their high intelligence, an owner may find themselves getting the short end of the stick in trying to train their Beauceron to be obedient. This is especially the case if the said owner happens to be a new owner rather than an experienced one.

Therefore, while Beauceron are truly protective of those they love, they can be very hard to train at times.

7. Great Pyrenees

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Working
  • Height: 25-32 inches
  • Weight: 85-100 pounds and above
  • Coat and Color: Medium-length with smooth topcoat and undercoat. The color is mainly White.
  • Life Span: 10-12 years
  • Origin: France, Spain

Great Pyrenees

The Great Pyrenees gets its name from being bred in the Pyrenees mountain, which lies between France and Spain as a border. Gentle and Affectionate, these dog breeds functioned to protect sheep from wolves along with fighting off any other sort of predators.

Due to their rather thick double coat, these dog breeds will need a strict grooming schedule to keep them from shedding too much.

8. Poodle

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Non-Sporting
  • Height: under or over 15 inches
  • Weight: 40-70 pounds
  • Coat and Color: Long Length curly coat. Colors may include Blue, Black, Apricot Cafe Au Lait, etc.
  • Life Span: 10-18 years
  • Origin: France, Germany


While the Poodle is an official national dog of France, many are confused about its origins as some believe that it originated from Germany. This doesn’t deter from the fact that Poodles are intelligent, loyal, and friendly as a companion dogs in France.

Poodles mainly come in three types: Standard which is 15 inches, Miniatures that may be under 15, and Toys that won’t go above 10 inches. It will depend on you as to which type you will be getting!

9. Brittany

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Sporting
  • Height: 17.5-20.5 inches
  • Weight: 30-40 pounds and above
  • Coat and Color: Short-length wavy double coat. Colors include Liver Roan, White & Orange, White & liver, etc.
  • Life Span: 12-14 years
  • Origin: France, Britanny


Originally bred to be a gundog for hunting of game such as birds, Britannys can both be a fearsome hunter or an energetic family dog. It depends on how you train them and show them love along with making sure to put strict restrictions on their hyperactivity.

Brittany’s breed of dogs is often in need of constant activity and will require a lot of exercise along with keeping them engaged in other tasks such as agility training or making them catch something.

10. Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Hound
  • Height: 13-15 inches
  • Weight: 25-40 pounds and above
  • Coat and Color: Rough and shagged, long-length topcoat and undercoat. Colors are: White & Black, White & Gray, White & Grizzle, etc.
  • Life Span: 14-16 years
  • Origin: France

Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen

The Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen dog breeds, despite their lengthy names, are normally happy dogs who prefer company. Originally bred to hunt rabbits, these dogs have a strong body structure built for rough terrains.

Do note that due to being bred for hunting, these dogs will naturally take off once they smell something interesting and it would be important to keep them otherwise engaged. Especially so since they are high-energy dog breeds.

11. Bichon Frise

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Non-Sporting
  • Height: 9.5-11.5 inches
  • Weight: 12-18 pounds and above
  • Coat and Color: Curly long-length double coat. Colors include: White, White & Apricot, White & Cream or White & Buff
  • Life Span: 14-15 years
  • Origin: France

Bichon Frise

The Bichon Frise dog breeds are some of the fluffiest dogs you may just encounter which are of French origins. These beauties by themselves are enough to keep one company and happy throughout their stay. Slightly wary yet curious, these dog breeds can get along well with both children and other dogs.

While not exactly the greatest watchdogs, they may still treat strangers as someone they haven’t met and remain wary of them. One may get these if they are looking for an extremely fluffy friend!

12. Dogue de Bordeaux

Breed Overview:

  • Group: Working
  • Height: 23-27 inches
  • Weight: 99-100 pounds and above
  • Coat and Color: Short-length yet smooth coat. Colors normally include: Isabella, Red, Fawn, and Mahogany
  • Life Span: 5-8 years
  • Origin: France

Dogue de Bordeaux

The Intimidating appearance of a Dogue de Bordeaux (also called Mastiff of Bordeaux ) can be off-putting for some. But underneath the exterior, these dog breeds have a heart of gold along with having a sense of being protective to those they guard.

While these dogs will remain eternally loyal, it is important to make sure that they are properly trained, else they will prove to be highly stubborn and lead you into all sorts of troubles.

Final Thought

While some dog breeds certainly do have confusing origins and may even make one wonder as to where they originally came from, they are a testament to France’s long history of dog breeding. Although some French dog breeds can cause trouble if not handled in a proper way, they can be dealt with by finding a good and responsible breeder.

Else, the dog breeds listed above are some of the best and most adorable dog breeds you could get who may either protect you, love you, or do both. Although it is important to mainly get dogs according to your environment rather than just preference.

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