Epagneul Breton

Epagneul Breton Breed description: Character & Co


What is the origin of the Epagneul Breton?

The Breton Spaniel or Epagneul Breton comes from France, specifically from Brittany. Its history begins as early as the Middle Ages, where its ancestors were repeatedly depicted in paintings or tapestries. It is most likely a small, compact hunting dog called a "bird dog". It bore a strong resemblance to today's Breton and was very popular with the nobility and wealthy burghers as a hunting companion. In the early twentieth century, various Spaniel species were crossed with English Setters. The puppies from these first breeding attempts formed the foundation of the new dog breed. In its country of origin, France, the first standard for the Epagneul Breton breed was established in 1907.

What are the breed characteristics of the Breton Spaniel?

The Breton Spaniel is a dog breed recognized by the FCI. Assigned to group 7, it belongs to the pointing dogs, specifically to the continental pointing dogs with working test (section 1.2, standard no. 95). The Epagneul Breton is the smallest pointing dog in existence. As a passionate hunting dog, it has a pronounced urge to move and needs plenty of exercise every day. Overall, he is harmoniously built with a strong skeleton. The Breton Spaniel is stocky, compact and strong, yet without heaviness and very elegant in movement. The high set tail is carried short, some animals are born without a tail at all (anuria). The medium sized dog feels most comfortable when he is trained for hunting and can use his fine nose purposefully. It is also often called Brittany in English.

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Alternate Name Breton spaniel, Brittany, Brittany Spaniel
Origin France
Life expectancy 14 - 15 years
Care requirements low-maintenance
Activity level high
FCI group Continental Pointing Dogs
AKC group Sporting Group
KC group not recognised

What are typical character traits of the Breton Spaniel?

The Breton Spaniel is a hunting dog through and through: It has a strong urge to move and needs to be mentally exercised as well as physically occupied. The intelligent four-legged dog does not like to be left alone and is considered gentle, sensitive and people-oriented. Due to its strong hunting instinct, the Breton is not so easy to train and needs an owner with dog experience. As a family dog, the Brittany is only conditionally suitable, even if it generally gets along well with children.


What are typical diseases of the Breton Spaniel?

Basically, the Brittany is a very robust dog that enjoys good health. Nevertheless, there are diseases that occur more often typical of the breed.

These are

Spaniel breeding - where, how, what?

If you decide to buy an Epagneul Breton, inform yourself thoroughly about possible breeders. The best is to contact the VDH, there you can see a list of registered breeders. There is also the possibility to find out where puppies have just been born or who is waiting for a litter. Once you have established contact with a breeder, it should be possible to visit it at home and see the animals - both the parents and the puppies. Your questions should be answered patiently so that you go home with a good feeling. When the dog is handed over, it should be dewormed several times, vaccinated and chipped. It has pedigree papers, a health certificate and a vaccinationcertificate.

Bretan Spaniel, brown white dog with floppy ears and very short tail, no tail at birth, dog with stubby tail, French dog breed, Brittany dog

The fine, slightly wavy coat of the Breton comes in the following colors:

  • white and orange
  • white and black
  • white and brown
  • tricolor

How tall is a Brittany?

The height at the withers of a male dog is between 47 and 52 centimetres. Bitches remain slightly smaller at 46 to 51 centimetres.

How much does a Breton Spaniel weigh?

A Breton Spaniel weighs between 14 and 18 kilograms, with males generally being slightly heavier than females.

How old does an Epagneul Breton become?

The life expectancy of a Breton Spaniel is between 14 and 15 years.

Fur length medium
Fur wavy
Ear shape Floppy Ear
Tail short
Anatomy strong, sporty
Size ♀ 45 - 50 cm
Weight ♀ 13 - 15 kg
Size ♂ 47 - 52 cm
Weight ♂ 14 - 18 kg
Suitable For -


  • Hip dysplasia (HD)

    Hip dysplasia (HD) is a genetic condition in dogs where the hip joint is not shaped properly. This leads to pain, stiffness and restricted movement.

Sources and relevant links


Accessed on 25.05.2023

Club für Bretonische Vorstehhunde e.V.

Accessed on 25.05.2023

Club de l'Espagneul Breton of the United States

Accessed on 25.05.2023

Hans Räber (2014). Enzyklopädie der Rassehunde, Band 2. Franckh-Kosmos Verlags-Gmbh & Company KG.

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