A small, brown dog with floppy ears wearing a black harness is standing on a path.

Brussels Griffon

15 September 2023

Let’s talk about… Brussels Griffons: what are they?

  • Brussels Griffons, also known as Griffon Bruxellois, are small toy dogs that originated in Belgium.
  • They were developed by crossing various breeds such as the Affenpinscher and the Pug.
  • They are known for their distinctive and expressive faces, featuring a short, pushed-in nose, large round eyes, and a prominent beard and moustache.
  • They have a sturdy and compact build, with males reaching an average height of 25 cm and females measuring around 23 cm.
  • In terms of weight, Brussels Griffons typically range between 3.5 kg and 6 kg.
  • They have an average life expectancy of 12 to 15 years.
Brussels Griffon  Exercise Needs 2/5 Grooming Ease 2/5 Trainability 3/5

What is the temperament of Brussels Griffons like?

  • Brussels Griffons have charming and affectionate personalities.
  • They are loyal and devoted to their families, often forming strong bonds with their owners.
  • Despite their small size, they possess a confident and fearless nature.
  • These little dogs are known to be alert and make excellent watchdogs, as they will bark to alert their families of any potential intruders.
  • Brussels Griffons are generally good with children and can adapt well to apartment living, making them suitable companions for various types of households.
Dotty, the Brussels Griffon

How much exercise do Brussels Griffons need?

  • Brussels Griffons have moderate exercise needs.
  • They require daily walks and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy.
  • Aim for around 30 minutes to 1 hour of exercise per day.
  • Remember to monitor their activity levels, as excessive exercise can strain their small bodies.
  • It's important to note that Brussels Griffon puppies have delicate bones and joints, so their exercise should be limited and carefully monitored until they are fully developed, usually around 12 months of age.
  • Your vet can advise on the best exercise routine for your Brussels Griffons.
Drako, the Brussels Griffon

Do Brussels Griffons need a lot of grooming?

  • Yes, Brussels Griffons have relatively high grooming requirements.
  • Their wiry or smooth coats, depending on the variety, require regular brushing to prevent matting and to keep their fur clean and healthy.
  • A thorough brushing at least two to three times a week is required.
  • Additionally, they may need occasional trimming to maintain a neat appearance.
  • Like any dog, regular tooth brushing with a dog-specific toothpaste twice daily is ideal. If you can’t manage that often, just do it as often as you can.
Frank, the Brussels Griffon

Are Brussels Griffons easy to train?

  • Brussels Griffons are intelligent dogs that can be responsive to training.
  • However, they can also have a stubborn streak, so consistent and patient training methods are essential.
  • Start their training from a young age, using positive reinforcement techniques such as treats and praise.
  • Keep the training sessions short and engaging to hold their attention.
  • Early socialisation is also crucial to ensure they are comfortable around other animals and unfamiliar situations.
  • While they may not excel in certain areas of training, such as advanced obedience or agility, Brussels Griffons can learn basic commands and manners with dedication and consistency.
Jack, the Brussels Griffon

What do Brussels Griffons eat?

  • Providing a well-balanced and appropriate diet is essential for the health of Brussels Griffons.
  • Feed them high-quality dog food formulated for small breeds, ensuring it meets their specific nutritional needs twice daily as adults.
  • Puppies require a puppy-specific, small breed diet to support their growth and development.
  • Puppies should be fed 3-4 times a day until they are 6 months old, then twice daily.
  • Follow the feeding guidelines provided by the food manufacturer and consult with your vet to determine the appropriate food and portion sizes for your dog based on their age, weight, and activity level.
  • Avoid overfeeding, as Brussels Griffons can be prone to weight gain.

Are Brussels Griffons healthy?

Brussels Griffons, like many dog breeds, may be susceptible to certain health conditions. While not all individuals will experience these issues, it's important to be aware of them. Some common health concerns for Brussels Griffons include:

Bones and Joints

  • Hip Dysplasia - a condition where the thigh bone and pelvis do not sit together properly at the hip joint, which can lead to discomfort and arthritis
  • Luxating patella - this is when a dog’s kneecap moves out of where it should normally be


  • Periodontal Disease - a buildup of plaque and tartar on a dog’s teeth leading to  inflammation, infection and tooth loss


  • Cataracts - a common cause of blindness due to a clouding of the lens of the eye
  • Corneal Ulcers - open sores on the cornea of the eye


  • Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS) - narrow airways which can make breathing and temperature regulation difficult.

This list is by no means comprehensive, so if you have any concerns about the health of your Brussels Griffon or if you want to discuss further whether this breed is right for you, consult with your vet.

BorrowMyDoggy loves Brussels Griffons

BorrowMyDoggy has 185 Brussels Griffon members

Information on this page should never replace advice given by your veterinarian. Potential health issues presented are given as a guide only and are not meant to be comprehensive. If you ever have any concerns about your dog’s health, contact your local vet.

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