American vs. French Brittany Spaniel

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The American and French Brittany are both wonderful breeds that are ideal companions for hunters and for those who have large property to allow these animals to expend their energy. Up until last week I had not before seen a French Brittany in person, but after I did I knew I had to do a post describing the differences between the two.

Physical Appearance

The American Brittany is taller and weighs more than the French. The French Brittanys and lower to the ground and weigh less.

The most obvious differences besides the stature will be found in the color of their coat, eyes and pigmentation in their lips, eyelids and pads of their feet. Expression of the black gene is not allowed in the American while it is embraced in the French. The French range in color from liver and white, orange and white, tri-color and black and white. Because of the black expressed in the Frenches nose and coat they are not recognized by the American Brittany Club.

Home Life

The French or American Brittany are not recommended if you live in an apartment or condo. These two breeds tend to have high energy and would be best suited for a large yard. Some say they need at least an hour of vigorous exercise per day. My mom and aunt have an older American Brittany rescue in their home and he still displays high energy levels despite almost daily walks.

Hunting Style

Both the American and French Brittany are bird dogs, but it is said that the French Brittany has a stronger hunting instinct than the American. The French Brittany tends to hunt shorter distances and checks in more often with its human hunting partner than the American. The American is a longer running dog while the French works more closely with the guns.  I spoke with a man earlier in the month who has a French Brittany named Savannah and he agreed that the French hunts shorter distances. He said that was perfect for him because it meant he didn’t have to go out as far to retrieve the bird.

Brittanys both the American and French are fun to watch and are great companions for families with active lifestyles. Although my husband while growing up in Connecticut always had American Brittanys for hunting dogs we are not at the time in our life where owning one would gel with our lifestyle. At the moment we are a happy family with two small terriers!

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