The Barbet (pronounced bar-bay) is a French waterdog.
France is listed in FCI as the breed's country of origin but it is a very old breed with many different stories about origin. The most told story is that nomades brought it with them from North Africa to France in the years 700.
Barbet has in many centuries been a common name to describe all dogs with a long, curly, wooly coat and Barbet means beard in French (with a reference to the Barbet's beautiful beard).
For many years the Barbet has been a loyal companion for hunters used for flushing and retrieving fowls on land and water, but mostly in marshes. An old French saying "etre crotté comme un Barbet" refers to the muddy Barbet coat after a whole day working in the marshes.
Today the Barbet is not only used for hunting. It is a versatile working dog. Its great eager to work, independence and willingness to cooperate makes it succesfull in all kinds of dogsports; obedience, rally-o, agility, nosework, shows etc.
The Barbet's temperament should be well-balanced, neither aggressiv nor reluctant to people or other dogs. It is loyal, devoted and very attached to its owner, happy, playful and intelligent. A true Barbet should be calm and relaxed in its surroundings and ready to work when asked.
But be aware that it is a dog that needs lifelong training, mental and physical stimulation. If its need for activities is met, it will bring you so much joy!
The Barbet has different kinds of coat depending on its ancestors.
Some has loose curls, others small, tight curls. The coat is long and keeps growing. It needs grooming once a week to prevent the coat from matting. And a haircut once in a while.
It grows hair everywhere! Even in the ears. There are many discussions about whether you should remove the hair in the ears.Today the recommendation is to leave the hair if the ears are healthy and not smelly.
To sum up some facts about the Barbet
Good for novice owners
Tolerates being alone
Affectionate with the Family
Friendly towards Strangers
Amount of shedding
Easy to groom
Easy to train
Tendency to bark