The Truth About Bichons (The Final Book in Richard Beauchamp's Bichon Frise Quartet)

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9780962351518: The Truth About Bichons (The Final Book in Richard Beauchamp's Bichon Frise Quartet)
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The Truth About Bichons covers topics of interest to the judge and fancier of the Bichon Frise. The complete story of this 'little street dog from France' is given complete with historic pictures of the original dogs as well as their closely related breeds. Articles from successful breeders offer tips on selecting breeding stock, choosing a show puppy, locating a stud dog and analyzing the breed standard. The book includes nearly 200 photographs and illustrations from around the world.

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About the Author:

Richard Beauchamp has written and published material about dogs since the early 1960s and was editor of the 100 year old Kennel Review for 30 years. He participated in writing the breed standard in America and has bred nearly seventy Bichon champions. He is currently approved to judge dogs internationally as well as by the American Kennel Club and the United Kennel Club and writes for several all breed dog magazines and book publishers.

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"A good deal of controversy surrounds the when and where of the name "Bichon Frise, but we do know that The Encyclopedia of Dogs (Thomas Y. Crowell Co., New York) produced under the direction of The Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI) gives the Bichon Frise's country of origin as France. The FCI is the organization that has given itself the responsibility of deciding upon all things canine throughout Europe.

During the 1500s the French were highly influenced by Italy's Renaissance and it was very fashionable in France to adopt everything Italian. Part of the fashion trend in the French Courts was Italy's little white Bichon Teneriffe. Francis 1, patron of the Renaissance (1515 - 1547 A.D.), was particularly fond of the breed during his reign. Little appears in French literature about the Teneriffe dog after that period until the rise of Napoleon III into power in the early years of the nineteenth century. The Bichon Teneriffe is frequently mentioned in French literature during that century and is frequently portrayed with members of the royal courts in the works of leading artists of the period.

By the end of the nineteenth century the breed was to be replaced in the favor of the court but hardy breed that it was the Bichon Teneriffe survived and would more often than not be found in the streets of Paris and other cities accompanying tradesmen and street musicians. The nimble Bichons were highly trainable and loved to perform for the crowds. The breed demonstrated a unique ability to walk on its hind legs for long distances and usually did so while pawing the air which passersby interpreted as begging for money and the people good humoredly responded.

Europe's great circuses and carnivals took advantage of the Bichon's extroverted personalities and uncanny ability to learn and perform tricks. The dogs were undoubtedly bred and the offspring selected with the ability to entertain foremost in mind. To this day the breed retains its entertaining capabilities and Bichon owners are amazed to find their dogs walking on their hind legs, performing somersaults and performing feats of dexterity with no training whatsoever.

Were it not for the indestructible constitution of the Bichon, however, the breed could well have been lost to us during the First and Second World Wars. Reduced to minimal numbers by the end of World War I the breed escaped extinction only through the efforts of a few valiant fanciers who gathered what remained of the breed from the streets of France and Belgium."

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