Under the name “griffon” we can find a wide range of different breeds, each one with its own varieties, characteristics, size and details. But above all, we can summarize a few points shared by all breeds.

Here we go!

The griffon is a lively and intelligent dog, independent and a little (quite!!) stubborn. He is very appreciated as a hunting dog as he has an extraordinary sense of smell. Although this is not the aspect we want to highlight in these pages. We prefer to focus on them as family pets. Yet, their noses make them what they are: hounds. This is something you must take in consideration when thinking about expanding your family with a griffon.

The griffon is a dog really interested in making people and other animals around him happy. Griffons in general are extremely sociable dogs, with people as well as with other dogs and, in general, also with any other pets. This makes them excellent animals to live in a family. They are affectionate, caring and friendly, especially with children. In some way, they share this childish spirit with kids, always happy, always smiling!

Emma and her cat

Bailie and her cat are the best of friends. Together with Emma, another griffon, and their other friends, they have their own website where you can follow their adventures: My GBGV Life

Griffons are easy and versatile dogs, they don’t usually present behavioural problems. There is no other type of dog that adapts faster to domestic life than a griffon. Even after many years of living in kennels and never been inside a house before, they usually will behave from day one as if they have always lived with a family in a home. Be warned though: they will claim your couch and bed – and socks. They love a nice soft bed to sleep on and they want to be accepted into your family on equal footing, and it will likely be impossible to explain then that your couch and bed are not part of that deal.

Griffons are calm, have a stable character, and are usually quite confident and love cuddling. They will stand still and read unfamiliar dogs and persons that approach them, which is often explained as “they are shy”. It is hard to find a griffon that is aggressive toward people or other dogs. They may bark at other dogs to tell them off, because their extremely loud and deep bark is usually enough to make another (usually less stable) dog aware that they really don’t want to get involved.

They are easy to house train even when they are a few years old already.  In general they pick up new tricks and commands pretty fast, like ‘sit’, ‘lay down’, and ‘come here’ – and this last command they do extremely well as long as they are inside the house. Outside it can be a whole different matter.

Yet it’s true that some habits need to be taught since birth as they can be very stubborn… when not interested in something it is as if they act it doesn’t exist.  And once they smell a rabbit, they become suddenly “deaf”. “Those ears are there merely for decoration!” you can hear many griffon owners exclaim. So on recall, they are not the best! And although it is not entirely impossible to teach them, this means that very few griffons can go off leash.

My nose is my world!

My nose is my world!

We could say griffons are selectively deaf! If we had to do a type of ranking on griffons skills, we could do something like this:

  • Patience 10/10
  • Friendliness 10/10
  • Good with kids 10/10
  • Good at home 10/10
  • Obedience 7/10
  • Recall 5/10

You can get more details about griffon’s characters on the page Breeds on this site.