The French have long been the experts in breeding and raising amazing pointers. Almost every region has an incredible gundog that’s uniquely equipped to manage the terrain, prey, and weather. The Braque d’Auvergne is from the region of Auvergne in central France.
Like other French pointing dogs, such as the Braque du Bourbonnais, these dogs are sensible, loyal, people-orientated, and keen hunters. They have an incredible sense of smell which can take them on long hunts through the French woodland in pursuit of small game and birds.
These dogs are incredibly lively and active and it can take a while for puppies to mature. They need a patient owner who will spend time entertaining and training them as well as taking them on long walks.
But is this hunting dog a possible breed for you? Let’s find out!
History and Origin of the Braque d'Auvergne
The Braque d’Auvergne (the French word ‘Braque’ means to point), was first bred by hunters in the 1700s. They wanted a gundog that could effortlessly point out prey but would also form strong bonds with humans.
The origins aren’t exact, but it’s thought that these dogs are descendants of the original French Pointer, the Braque Francais. These dogs were very popular during the 1600s and were used as breeding stock to develop lots of new pointing breeds in France. Some experts think that the Gascony Pointer and the Pyrenean Braque also played a role in the development of the Braque d’Auvergne.
Appearance-wise, the Braque d’Auvergne looks so much like the German Shorthaired Pointer that it’s thought they must have similar origins.
Today, the Braque d’Auvergne is a relatively popular dog breed in France for hunters but is still not very well-known as a family dog (even though they’re great companions). They’re rare in other countries.
The breed has not been recognized by the American Kennel Club but it was accepted by the United Kennel Club in 2006.
Personality and Character of the Braque d'Auvergne
The Braque d’Auvergne is a high-energy and intelligent breed that needs a lot of mental and physical exercise. They can be very bouncy, especially as puppies, and need firm training to keep their energetic tendencies under control.
They’re also a breed known for loving to have objects in their mouths (it’s a hunting dog thing). They need to be well-trained to ensure it’s their favorite rope toy rather than a pair of your shoes.
Braque d’Auvergne are loving, sweet, and very affectionate too. Because they’re gun dogs, they form strong bonds with their humans and don’t like to spend lots of time alone. They really need to be around people if they’re not to develop separation anxiety.
When well trained, they’re incredibly obedient and one of the most skilled pointing breeds there is. If you’re a hunter, you can’t get much better than the lovable Braque d’Auvergne. But even if you’re not looking for bird dogs, these pups are adorable family pets too.
Can the Braque d'Auvergne Live in an Apartment?
These hunting dogs are not meant to live in apartments. They’re very active and need lots of space to play and exercise their bodies. Ideally, they’ll have a fenced-in yard to run around in and space to chill inside too.
They’re also not typical hunting dogs that are happy staying in kennels. These dogs need human interaction and a loving home to bring out the best in them.
Can the Braque d'Auvergne Live with Children?
The Braque d’Auvergne gets on really well with children and loves having someone to play with. They’re an energetic breed and will adore chasing after frisbees, and balls, and sitting down for cuddles from their little humans.
But Braque d’Auvergne puppies are boisterous and often don’t realize just how big they are. They can easily get excitable and may unintentionally knock over children. It’s important they’re always supervised to stop accidents from happening.
An important part of a dog’s training is learning how to play and interact with children. Make sure both dogs and kids are aware of the best and safest way to play and that they can respect each other’s space.
Are They Aggressive Dogs?
Like other pointing breeds, the Braque d’Auvergne is not a naturally aggressive pooch. Quite the opposite! They’re friendly, even-tempered, and easy to get along with.
They are alert and can sometimes work as a guard dog, but they won’t confront an intruder.
They are loyal, and will likely protect their humans if they perceive there to be a threat. It’s also really important that these dogs are trained and socialized well so that they learn correct behavior and don’t grow up to be aggressive or anxious.
If you adopt an older pup and you don’t know 100% of its life story, it might be worth working with a canine specialist. Bad past experiences and anxiety can often lead to aggression.
Do They Get Along Well with Other Animals?
This working breed is not the best choice if you have smaller animals at home. They have strong-prey drives and are likely to chase bird and rodent-type animals. Even if they think it’s a game, it could have serious consequences.
Braque d’Auvergne that have grown up with cats may get on well with them. But this really depends on your pooch, past experiences, and how they are introduced.
Generally speaking, these pups get on really well with other dogs. They’re outgoing, sociable, and love having a furry friend to play with. Socializing is a very important part of any dog’s education and the Braque d’Auvergne is no exception.
Appearance of the Braque d'Auvergne
The d’Auvergne pup is a medium-sized and athletic dog that has a short, smooth coat. They have domed heads, long muzzles, and a defined body that’s well proportioned.
They’re similar in appearance to many other pointer breeds and have floppy ears, an alert expression, and a somewhat noble stance.
Size and Weight
These robust dogs can weigh anywhere between 49-62 pounds and grow to be 20-24 inches tall. There’s often quite a difference between male and female dogs, with males being stockier and taller.
How Long Does It Take for a Braque d'Auvergne to Reach Adult Size?
Each dog is different and they all grow at different speeds. Usually, however, a Braque d’Auvergne should reach its full size between 12 and 18 months.
According to the United Kennel Club breed standard, these dogs can be black with white markings. The markings can either be ticked or roan. The head should preferably be black with a white blaze (a white patch between the eyes) but ticking or roan markings on the head are also acceptable.
This versatile gundog has a short and smooth coat that’s easy to care for – it actually repels dirt! They don’t have a thick undercoat but still need to be brushed weekly to keep shedding to a minimum. Their coats should be shiny and the hairs shouldn’t be too fine.
The Braque d’Auvergne has a short, straight back that should not be wide. They have a well-proportioned yet square build and strong athletic-looking legs. They have a moderate tuck-up and their croup (the part of their back before the tail) should gently slope.
They have strong shoulders with a prominent shoulder blade that allows full movement.
These pups have hazel-colored eyes that are oval-shaped and set quite deeply. The eye rims should be fully pigmented and they should have a kind and inquisitive expression.
These dogs have long heads in comparison to the rest of the proportions of the body. The skull is oval-shaped and the same length as the muzzle. They have broad noses with large nostrils that should be rounded – a pointed muzzle is a serious fault.
They have typically floppy ears that are set far back on their head and should be rounded. They should not reach beyond the nose and should slightly fold inward.
Females often have much lighter and more delicate heads than males.
This pointing breed has a high-set tail that should be carried horizontally. In some countries, the tail is controversially docked but it can also be kept natural.
It’s medium thick with a strong base that gets steadily thinner.
Grooming and Hygiene of the Braque d'Auvergne
Grooming and maintaining a certain level of hygiene is a really important part of being a pup parent. This dog has a short coat that doesn’t need much care apart from the occasional bath and weekly brushes.
Cleaning your dog’s teeth will help minimize the risk of plaque buildup and tooth decay. It will also help to get rid of doggy breath. Some pooches wear down their nails naturally, but if not, you should clip them so they don’t split and become painful. It’s very important not to cut them too short, so ask a professional groomer if you’re not sure.
You should also regularly check your dog’s glossy coat for ticks and fleas. These dogs love running around in long grass and undergrowth, and this can be a problem in the summer months.
These dogs have floppy ears, and it’s always really important to keep them clean and dry. They can easily get infected, so remove wax and dirt and dry them thoroughly after swims or baths.
How to Brush a Braque d'Auvergne?
A reason why this dog is such a great family pet for many is because its coat is easy to care for. It’s short and sleek meaning it’s quick to brush and doesn’t get tangled or dirty – so they don’t have a lot of doggy odor.
Brushing them every week will help to remove dead hair, dirt, and dander and also spread important oils so that their coat stays healthy and shiny. Don’t forget to brush their ears, the hair around their toes, and their underbelly too.
What Brush for a Braque d'Auvergne?
It’s important to get the correct brush for your dog’s coat and skin. You don’t want something that’s too soft and won’t work or that’s too harsh and may scratch their skin.
For a Braque d’Auvergne, the best brush is a natural bristle brush or a slicker brush. These work well on short and sleek coats and help them to look their best.
How Do You Wash a Braque d'Auvergne?
You only need to wash your Braque d’Auvergne as and when necessary. These dogs have a dirt-repelling coat that’s short, which means it’s usually clean.
Of course, however, they are active pups and they love dog sports, which can mean they often get mucky when out and about.
You’ll probably also notice that your pooch sheds more twice a year as the seasons change. You may want to brush and wash them a little more often then, as an extra way to remove dead hair.
Start by getting a good quality shampoo for short hair that won’t irritate the skin. Wet your pup with warm water and lather all over their body, avoiding their ears and eyes. Rinse well and apply a conditioner if you want to use one. Once that’s rinsed off, make sure you thoroughly dry your dog to keep them comfortable.
Some d’Auvergne owners then wipe their dogs down using a soft cloth which can help to keep the coats shiny.
Is It a Hypoallergenic Dog?
Braque d’Auvergne are not hypoallergenic pooches. They don’t shed as much as many dogs, but they’re not a good option if you suffer from allergies. It’s actually the dander attached to dog hairs that causes all the sneezing, and these pups moderately lose hair and dander.
Check out this list of hypoallergenic dog breeds instead if you’re someone that has allergies.
Braque d'Auvergne Training and Education
Training and educating a dog is really important. It helps them to learn to respect you, stay safe, develop well, and make other canine friends.
Braque d’Auvergne are smart dogs that do well in training. They can behave quite immaturely for a longer time than other breeds, so they need a patient owner who can see the fun in it and who has the time to really spend training them.
They’ll naturally have excellent hunting skills and won’t need that much training. Of course, basic commands are essential and training can help them exercise their brains and stay stimulated.
These good-natured dogs can be sensitive and respond best to positive reinforcement. Praise, treats, toys, and extra playtime are all great ways to get the best out of your pooch and the training sessions.
What Is the Price of a Braque d'Auvergne?
This is quite a rare breed, so they usually go for between $900-$1500. But don’t forget, a cheaper puppy isn’t necessarily better. Carefully research your breeder to ensure they’re reliable and will provide you with all the correct health certificates you need.
Avoid unreliable breeders. They might be cheaper, but unethical breeding leads to unhealthy dogs.
Braque d'Auvergne Feeding
These dogs are very active and can cover long distances in a day, so they need enough calories to sustain them. Try to feed them high-quality dog food that’s specially made for medium-sized, energetic pooches.
Usually, these dogs will need 2.5 cups of nutritionally balanced food a day. It’s best to serve them in 2 meals spread out, rather than leave food out for your pooch. This can lead to them eating too much and them gaining weight.
Try to minimize the amount of treats you give them and always make sure they have plenty of fresh water to drink.
Braque d'Auvergne Health
This is generally a healthy breed but because they are not recognized by all the kennel clubs, there aren’t a lot of studies out there dedicated to researching the health of this breed.
Although healthy, there are a couple of common diseases that all owners should look out for. Keeping up with your vet visits and knowing the signs can help to get a diagnosis early on.
The common health problems are:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Patellar luxation
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy
- Ear infections
What Is the Life Expectancy of the Braque d'Auvergne?
This breed has an average life expectancy of 12-15 years.
What Is the Best Climate for a Braque d'Auvergne?
These dogs originated in central France, where it gets very hot in summer and cold in winter. They, therefore, do best in moderate climates that are not too extreme.
Although happy being on hunts and walks, these pups are not made to spend all their time outdoors or in kennels. They require a warm home and humans around them.
If you do live somewhere that gets particularly cold, try getting your dog a warm winter coat. Likewise in the warmer months, make sure they have lots of shade and water to cool down in.
Breeds Similar to the Braque d'Auvergne
These are beautiful dogs but they’re also rare, especially in the United States. There are a couple of breeds that are very similar in both personality and appearance that you may be able to find more easily.
Braque Saint-Germain. These dogs are a similar size to the Braque d’Auvergne and are affectionate too. But rather than black and white, they’re white and orange.
English Pointer. English Pointers are wonderful pups that are more common than d’Auvergne dogs. They come in many different colors including a beautiful lemon color!
Danish Pointing Dog. These wonderful hunters are a similar size and color to Braque d’Auvergne but they’re a little stockier.
The Braque d’Auvergne is an amazing hunting dog, full of personality and affection for those they love. They need lots of space to exercise their brains and body and get on really well with other dogs and kids.
Although a hunter, they love being a companion too and form tight bonds with their families. They’re not a very common pup in the US, but if you’re lucky enough to find one, you’ll be adopting a fun and sweet dog that’s both active and loving.
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