What are Papillon dogs like as pets?

Star: What are Papillons like?
Are Papillons dogs good pets? What are they like? Thanks, any information would be great.
Answers and Views:

Answer by angel m.
that is a good question because I also want a Papillon. I love their cute butterfly ears.

Papillon dog photo

Photo Credit: PuppiesAreProzac/Flickr

Answer by abbyful
Papillons are great little dogs, I adore them. But they aren't for everyone.

*** If you want a calm lapdog or a cuddly dog, do NOT get a papillon. It will not be a good fit for you. ***

Top 10 reasons why NOT to get a papillon:

Papillons have very friendly, adventurous temperaments. From the AKC breed description, "Happy, alert and friendly. Neither shy nor aggressive."

Papillons are very intelligent (sometimes too much so for their own good!). They are in the top 10 most intelligent dogs breeds.

One of the "most trainable toy breeds".

They come in a rainbow of colors to choose from:

And they stay small. The breed standard calls for dogs 8-11 inches. (Over 12 inches is a disqualification from the show ring. Over 11 inches is a fault in the show ring.)

They are a very demanding and dependent dog. They may not like to cuddle, but they like to be around you and they LOVE to play. Paps will literally come up and launch one of their toys at your face to get you to play with them.

They are also tricksters and will find ways to try to manipulate their owners. If they aren't supposed to have something, they'll try to make it look like they have one of their toys and hide the "forbidden object" behind it.
My pap also tricked my parents poodle when I was dog-sitting for them a few months ago. She would run to the door and bark so the poodle would drop the toy it had to check out what the commotion was about, then my pap would run back and steal the dropped toy.

Papillons NEED to be stimulated. They are not dogs that can be left to their own means. They need training and thrive when they have a "job", such as obedience or agility. (If you want to get into agility, they are the top choice in their height category. They can even beat border collie times on some courses, but due to size difference, they will never be competing against border collies.)

Also be aware that they are athletic dogs and can achieve things you wouldn't normally think a dog that size can. For example, my papillon can jump high enough to steal things off the kitchen counter. She can jump at least 4 feet into the air.

Papillons do and will bark. They are a vocal breed and are alarm barkers so if they hear something, or if anything seems out of place, they see it as their job to alert you to it. (I have found the "thank" method works best for handling barking. When the dog barks, call it to you and say "thank you", then give the dog a treat or praise. It will eventually learn to only bark a couple times to alert you, then it will stop barking come to you for it's reward.)

Papillons come in 2 varieties, the "butterfly" (papillon) and the "moth" (phalene).

(Of course, every dog is different. You may find a papillon that is calmer than average, or one that is less vocal than average, etc.. This is just the 'general' information on them.)



Paps require regular grooming, but it's not extensive.

In addition to the regular dog stuff (clip nails, brush teeth, etc), they need brushed a couple times a week. Also, the hair between the pads on their feet gets long, so that needs trimmed, which I do monthly. I use a bristle-brush on the fur.

Here is some information about grooming papillons):
- http://www.papillonclub.org/Education/grooming_trimming_the_papillon.htm



If you are wanting to get a puppy from a breeder, check out the following link:
- http://www.papillonclub.org/pcabreederslist.htm

You can also find a reputable breeder by attending some dog shows and agility competitions. You will find papillons in both places and can get some good recommendations for quality breeders from there.

Papillons are starting to show up more commonly in puppymills, so be wary and make sure you are getting one from a reputable breeder.
Here are some helpful links for identifying good versus bad breeders.
- http://www.wonderpuppy.net/breeding.htm

If you are okay with getting an older dog (which can have it's benefits, like it's already housebroken, already done teething, likely has some training, etc.), then you may be able to get a dog from a papillon rescue group.



A papillon from a reputable breeder will be typically be no cheaper than $ 750. I've found prices are usually closer to $ 1000-$ 1600 for a pet. (Although I've seen pet-quality puppies as cheap as $ 450 and as expensive as over $ 2000.) Females tend to be pricier than males.


Papillon dog photo

Photo Credit: andreaarden/Flickr


"The Complete Papillon" by Carolyn and David Roe
(I highly recommend this book.)

"A New Owner's Guide to Papillons" by Deborah Wood

"Papillons" by Jacklyn E., Dr. Hungerland

Answer by Lauren ~
One day I WILL get to one of these before Abbyful, lol! ;)

Basically ditto Abby again. They are very good dogs and amazing animals to have as pets imo, but they are demanding and energetic and so unbelievably smart. They are snuggly, but not lap dogs. They descend from hunting dogs and do retain a lot of those traits. They're very versatile and make fantastic sports dogs. Their smarts make them really easy to train but at the same time, they get bored easy. They also bond so incredibly close to their people- unlike any other breed I've owned. They want to be with you 24/7 all the time. They don't do well in homes where they are alone for long periods of time.

My 6 have all varied a lot....

Our first male was a wild child, but has matured into a wonderfully sensitive guy. He's very active and sometimes hyperactive. He's also toy obsessive, loves everyone. He is very in tune with his people and has the biggest vocabulary of any dog I've owned. He understands many whole sentences and its even gotten to the point where you can't spell things out either because he understands.

Our puppy is very similar- just hyper all the time, but very sweet and wants to be in your lap all the time. He gets into a lot of trouble.

My younger girl is a sweet, kindly soul. she is timid and just gorgeous and pretty calm. She isn't too snuggly but she's just so sweet. However, she can be sneaky and can trick the other dogs out of their food and toys all the time.

My older girl though is just insane. she is by far the most drivey, active dog I've ever owned. Everyone is her long lost friend. she is bouncing off the walls if she gets no exercise, but is calm if she does. She learns things so fast. (We clicker train and do agility) She is very quirky, too and has a really unusually high prey drive in that she will kill small animals and 'bring them home'. I got her for sports, though, and she doesn't disappoint. She is my heart and soul, really.

Our two late dogs were both very calm and kind of timid. One was a big snuggler and the other was easily the most intelligent dog I've owned.

Fantastic dogs, though. I will always have papillons, I can assure you.

Read other answers in the comments.

Add your own answer!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *