Weight: 55-60 pounds (25-27 kg)
Height: male- 22-24 inches (56-64 cm) / female- 22-24 inches (56-64 cm)
Coat Type: Short, smooth, fine, close hairs
Ariegeois dog comes from the French region of Areige and can hunt marvelously in difficult terrain. It is the smallest breed amongst dogs with a fine built; is quite enterprising and shows much initiative. It has an astonishingly powerful voice that can easily scare other animals. At home, the dog can be found performing another role, that of a devoted and loyal home companion.Like any other scenthound, Ariegeois is a very reserved dog, especially in front of strangers and is known only to interact with the family. Thus, it is necessary to socialize the dog while it is still a puppy. It would not be unusual to see Ariegeois sprinting after a prey. Consistent, enthusiastic training sessions will make this dog a happy and willing worker, with a penchant for charming creativity. Read on to know more about the Areigeois dog breed.
Also known as the ‘Briquet du Midi’, Ariegeois dog is a small to medium-sized French hunting dog, primarily used to hunt hare and other small creatures. It is a recently developed breed that was bred by a series of cross-breeding between the Grand Blue de Gascon, Grand Gascon Saintongeois and Briquet houndsin Ariege, a province in the south of France. The result was a dog of hunting qualities, superior to its three predecessors. However, the breed is quite unknown outside France. Ariegeois dog is generally referred to as the Bastard Hound by the Ariege locals, as it is not a purebred.
Due to the mix ancestry of Ariegeois breed, in spite of the fact that two of the progenitors - Bleu Gascon and Gascon Saintongeois are of noble blood, its existence was not disseminated to dog lovers all over the world.The breed remained virtually nonexistent until 1908, when the Club Gascon Phoebus was formed and its breeding was encouraged. Pack trials were organized at the Ceron Villa that demonstrated exceptional qualities of the breed. The breed almost vanished after the Second World War, but was revived by French hunters and dog enthusiasts who valued it for its qualities of patience, staying power and firmness. The breed was recognized by the United Kennel Club on January 1, 1998.
Ariegeois is a small, unusual dog that has a noble expression. The dog has a long and lean wrinkle free head, dark colored eyes that are gentle, and a black nose with well developed nostrils. It has thin, soft and cone-shape long ears that can easily reach the nose, when drawn along the jaw line. The dog has chestnut brown eyes that have a gentle and trusting expression. The well-rooted tail tapers to a point. The oval shaped chest of Ariegeois dogs is wide, deep and well developed and almost reaches the point of the elbows.
The well-built appearance of Ariegeois dogs is credited to their healthy sprung ribs and muscled loins. The muscular thighs give them a superior propelling power and the well-knit feet enable them to scale rocky outcroppings while hunting. These dogs have a short, smooth and fine coat that is predominantly white in color, with irregularly-shaped black patches or markings. While some dogs are simply white, without marking, others are ticked or mottled. The preferred marking includes black head and ears or white blaze between the eyes.
Ariegeois is a talented scenthound, with low to moderate energy. It is even tempered, hard working, energetic, and free-spirited and gets along well with other dogs. It is easy to train and forms a deep attachment and loyalty with the master. It will eagerly carry out commands to please its master. Ariegeois has a very docile character and is very good with the children. The dog is not very suited to the city life and might turn aggressive and destructive if confined in the apartment. Hence, it needs an active owner, who will involve it in athletic activities.
Ariegeois is a rustic and robust dog that hardly attracts any disease. However the dog’s eyes and ears needs to be examined after hunting, especially if it has journeyed through the zones of leafy vegetation, to check for any irritation.
The coat of Areigeois dog is easy to maintain and can be combed once every few weeks. The dog has pendulous ears that can have ear infections, as the ear canals are covered by hanging ears that often stay moist and become the breeding place for bacteria.Frequent bathing will not be necessary, twice or thrice a year will suffice.