The Basset Fauve de Bretagne was developed in Brittany, France originally as a hunting dog similar to the larger but extinct Grand Fauve de Bretagne. At some point in time, the Basset also came close to extinction, particularly during the post-war era in the middle of the 1940s just like other breeds in Europe at the time. The breed was recreated by crossing the remaining dogs with the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen and the wirehaired Dachshunds. It was finally removed from the rare breed registry of the Kennel Club in 2007. Today, the Basset Fauve is mainly a show dog and family pet although it still retains its hunting instinct.
The Basset Fauve is a sweet little hound, friendly, gentle and lively at the same time. It is a devoted companion dog and is very affectionate with its owner and the entire family. It can be a little stubborn but that depends on whether it was trained well and socialised properly at an early age. It has a distinctive deep sounding bark. It has a keen sense of smell and will typically follow any interesting scent wherever it may lead him so it is advisable to always keep the dog under supervision and never leave it alone in an unsecured yard. The leading cause of death of the Basset Fauve is road traffic accident because of stray dogs following a scent that tingled their noses. It learns very quick and can dig its way out of a fence with little effort.
Patient, gentle training is what gives this breed the most result. It is an adaptable breed and can be trained easily with different tricks and excels very well in obedience training because of its intelligence. Training must be done by a firm but gentle owner with positive reinforcement. Harsh training will only make the dog stubborn. As a scent hound with an impeccable sense of smell, the Basset Fauve can’t help but let its nose takes over sometimes and has a tendency to follow interesting smells so it needs to be well-kept in a secured environment. For this reason, training the dog to come on command is highly imperative.
The coat is relatively easy to care for. Regular brushing and combing on a weekly basis will keep it looking good and healthy. It may require some occasional stripping a couple of times a year by a professional groomer. The long ears require special attention which needs constant inspection and cleaning to keep it free from ear infection.
It is one of the healthiest hound dogs that you can find. The Kennel Club conducted a health survey of the breed in 2004 and found out that the lifespan of the Basset Fauve de Bretagne is between 10 to 14 years which is typical for purebred dogs, although a little low compared to the other dogs of similar size. The survey also found out that the leading causes of death are vehicular accidents, cancer, heart failure and kidney diseases.
This is an adaptable breed and will do well in either an urban/suburban apartment home or in a countryside house as long as it gets a dose of daily long walks on leash. Do not let this breed on its own or it will follow any interesting smell it might encounter along the way, even ignoring your call in the process. An ideal daily exercise is for the dog to run freely in a yard under supervision from its owner.
The friendly, mild and easy going temperament of the Basset Fauve de Bretagne makes it an ideal household pet and fitting playmate and companion of children. It has a natural prey drive and it may occasionally give chase to small animals such as rabbits, hares, and guinea pigs but early socialisation is the key to have a dog that will behave well with other small pets around the house. It is a natural pack animal and can get along quite well with other dogs.