The Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen is a proud member of some 28 hound breeds which are bred in France even today to serve their original purpose. They are used to hunt small game, especially hare and rabbit, in France, other European countries, the U.S. and Canada. Most French hound breeds came in large and small versions and were used for different prey. The Grand Basset Griffon Vendéen was used for such large game as roedeer and wolf, while the Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen was used to trail and drive smaller quarry, such as rabbit, hare and sometimes even feathered game.
A BASIC HISTORY
The Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen, one of many small varieties of the French hounds, is of ancient descent. His origin can be traced to the sixteenth century, to the Griffon Vendéen, his larger, more powerful ancestor. His name reveals much about him: Petit - small; Basset - low to the ground; Griffon - wire coated; and Vendéen - the area of France in which he originated. In the United States, the breed is referred to as "Petit" or "PBGV", in England, "Roughie", and in Denmark, "Griffon" or "Petit".
This small hunting dog has an intriguing and charming appearance and personality. But it is important to remember that the PBGV is, first and foremost, a hound developed to hunt game by scent. Furthermore, his physical evolution is directly related to the environment and terrain of the western coast of France, the Vendée, characterized by thick underbrush, rocks, thorns and brambles. This difficult terrain demanded a hardy, alert, bold, determined, intelligent hunter with both mental and physical stamina.