Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

Other names: Basset Griffon Vendéen (Grand), GBGV

Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

This chirpy but business-like bearded lady is a rarity on British soil, but that could easily change since her appeal is clear to see. Her unique coat, friendly expression, and a passion for being with other living creatures make the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen an interesting choice for a family. Bred to be a hunter (particularly of hares, for which her size was carefully engineered), she is more athletic and with greater stamina than you might think to look at her. She is generally healthy and will fit as neatly into an apartment setting as she does into the countryside.

Key facts about the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

Life expectancy :





Temperament :

Affectionate Playful Hunter

Size :

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Origins and history

This bearded lady was first cultivated to catch hares in the Vendée region of France in the 16th century, and she became known as the Basset Griffon Francais. The Griffon divided into four distinct breeds over the years, of which the Vendeen is one.

FCI breed nomenclature

FCI Group

Group 6 - Scent hounds and related breeds


Section 1 : Scent hounds

Physical characteristics of the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

Adult size

Female : Between 15 and 17 in

Male : Between 16 and 17 in


Female : Between 40 and 44 lb

Male : Between 40 and 44 lb

Coat colour

Type of coat

Eye colour



This noble little tyke resembles several other types of dog while carving out her own unique look on the scene. Shortish, compared to her body that goes on and on, her fur has an effortlessly woolly look. Great flappy ears echo her hairy chops, a leitmotif that finds its expression also in her eyebrows. But despite these affectations, she has the strength and stamina of an athlete, as you can see from the taut tones of her trunk and legs. Never let her soulful eyes and geriatric facial hair convince you that she is frail or weak.

Good to know

 This dog can and has been trained to track humans such as missing persons and escaped convicts.


  • 100%


    She is among the warmest and most affectionate of dogs.

  • 100%


    She loves to play and is not nearly so serious as she looks.

  • 66%


    This dog is generally level-headed, although her hunting instincts can rock the boat.

  • 66%


    She is every bit as intelligent as she looks, but can also be a bit stubborn.

  • 100%


    She was bred to hunt rabbits and retains that instinct still.

  • 33%

    Fearful / wary of strangers

    She can be most enthusiastic towards unfamiliar company.

  • 66%


    One of the few challenges of the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is that she can get a little lost in her own plans and ideas, as is the case with many a hunting dog.

    Behaviour of the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

    • 66%

      Tolerates solitude

      She really isn’t too keen on being left alone, so should be acclimatized to solitude from a young age, if necessary.

    • 66%

      Easy to train / obedience

      She’s intelligent and driven, and wants to please her master. However, like so many promising students she can grow stubborn if she finds herself bored by repetitive exercises or meaningless routines.

    • 66%


      As long as her needs are met, she doesn’t really bark excessively, or without good reason.

    • 100%

      Tendency to run away

      She has a talent for concocting elegant escape plans, and can smell adventure a mile off, so an owner’s home must be a veritable fortress if the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen is to be restrained.

    • 66%


      This breed has a curious sense of humour and she will gladly set about deconstructing her surroundings if bored or left alone.

    • 100%

      Greedy / Gluttony

      Let it be said that many a Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen has expressed a healthy appetite. She needs to be monitored to avoid putting on too much weight.

    • 33%

      Guard dog

      She will greet any new arrivals, but rarely take matters into her own paws if the guest turns out to be a villain.

    • 66%

      First dog

      The Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen can make a splendid choice for a first dog as she is friendly, loving, and open-minded towards a range of human types. However, be aware that training her can be challenging and involves full human commitment.

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      • 66%

        Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen in a flat

        Her ideal environment is the countryside, but she adapts quite nicely to apartment life as long as she is given plenty of exercise.

      • 100%

        Need for exercise / Sporty

        This dog has high exercise needs (at least two hours of serious walking/running per day, plus constitutional strolls) and if she doesn’t meet those needs she can become unhappy and destructive or redouble her efforts to escape.

      • 66%

        Travelling / easy to transport

        Although on public transport she is a tad heavy to carry (at 20kg), this dog is generally quite straightforward in transportation terms. She will try to make friends with everyone – including those with reservations against dogs.


        • 66%

          Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen and cats

          Cats and other small furry creatures would do well to steer clear of this hunter unless the bearded pup grew up alongside them.

        • 100%

          Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen and dogs

          She loves canine company and it is actually a kind idea to keep a second dog alongside the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen, if possible. If not, she should be well socialised with plenty of dog time during puppyhood in order for her to behave appropriately during full doghood.

        • 100%

          Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen and children

          This delicious mop of a dog adores children and loves to play with them.

        • 66%

          Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen and the elderly

          She can make a fine companion for an older person, though her boisterousness and high exercise needs should be taken into account.



          Between £400 for Non KC Registered Dogs, and £1000 for KC Registered Dogs. Looking after a dog of this size typically costs between £80 to £130 a month, including food, medical/insurance, and incidental expenses.


          Weekly brushing and the occasional bath should keep that legendary coat looking top-notch.


          Not bad; she sheds more as the weather changes in autumn and spring.

          Nutrition of the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

          This dog has high energy needs and the appropriate levels of food should be provided. Be aware, though, that she does not gladly stop eating, so don’t overfeed her – particularly if she is missing out on exercise for some reason (age or injury).

          Health of the Grand Basset Griffon Vendeen

          Life expectancy

          This dog has been noted to suffer from a number of genetic conditions, but still has an average life expectancy of 13 years.

          Strong / robust

          A firm and resilient dog.

          Withstand heat

          Quite well, but be cautious during heat waves.

          Withstand cold

          Quite well, but she should sleep indoors in winter.

          Tendency to put on weight

          Higher than average.

          Common illnesses

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