As its name will probably show you, the Papillon or Continental Toy Spaniel is a small, sociable dog that is known for being docile and happy. The breed can be distinguished by its large ears that resemble butterfly wings (in French, Papillon).
You will surely fall under the spell of this dog with lots of love to give.
The origins of the Papillon
The first ancestor of the Papillon is the English Toy Spaniel, the latter being with floppy ears. They appear in many paintings dating from the Renaissance.
The Papillon was much appreciated by painters, and they can be found in the works of Fragonard, Rembrandt, Véronèse, Boucher, Vélasquez, Goya… to begin with.
This race was the result of a cross between a Toy Spaniel and Spitz.
Initially originating from Italy and Spain, the breed was then perfected by French and Belgian breeders.
The physical characteristics of a Papillon
The Papillon is a small dog, measuring between 20 cm and 28 cm.
They have a slim frame and their weight varies from 1.5kg and 5kg, the female often being much heavier than the male.
They move with rapidity and agility, all the while conserving their elegant air. Their coat is sometimes a bright white, but they can also sometimes be tricoloured.
Papillons are usually healthy despite their fragile appearance, though their eyes should be cleaned regularly in order to avoid any risk of conjunctivitis. In the summer, they need to stay out of the sun or they may catch a sunstroke.
A Papillon's personality
Very well known for their docility, their energy and their intelligence, the Papillon makes an excellent house pet. They always need cuddles, strokes and attention, so are ideal for old or isolated people.
It is impossible to get bored with a Papillon - they always want to play and go on walks, be it in the city or in the countryside.
You will see them follow you everywhere, bringing meaning to the phrase 'stuck like glue'!
Discreet but lively and easy to teach, the Papillon will rapidly and easily obey any commands. The breed is still, however, a hunting breed, so will leap off in pursuit of any small prey.
It is easy to love this dignified and joyous little dog, who barks little and knows how to behave.