MY WIFE KNOWS ENOUGH FRENCH TO TEACH THE LANGUAGE.
She told me about this adorable little toy dog, the Bichon Frise. Once I saw it, I knew I had to write about it!
A cheerful, happy dog, the Bichon Frise is small and sturdy with a dark-eyed inquisitive expression and a plumed tail it carries merrily over the back. The breed is often compared to a cotton ball due to its curled double ..
A Bichon Frise (French, meaning curly white lap dog, pronounced /ˈbiʃɒn ˈfriz/ or /ˈbiʃɒn frɪˈzeɪ/), is a small breed of dog of the Bichon type. They are popular pets, similar in appearance to, but larger than, the Maltese.
The Bichon Frise, sometimes called as Tenerife Bichon, is a sturdy little dog that makes a delightful family companion and a glamorous show dog. He also has a strong, independent spirit with a robust tenacity. Bichons love children and enjoy socializing with other household pets. Bichons do not tend to have skin problems that some all-white breeds have and are free from any “doggy” odor. Responsible Bichon Frise breeders will screen their dogs for inherited eye problems.
How did it get the name?
The Bichon Frise descended from the Barbet or Water Spaniel and the Standard Poodle. The word bichon comes from Middle French bichon (“small long-haired dog”), a diminutive of Old French biche (“bitch, female dog”), from Old English bicce (“bitch, female dog”), related to Old Norse bikkja (“female dog”) and German Betze (“female dog”). Some speculate the origin of bichon is the result of the apheresis, or shortening, of the word barbichon (“small poodle”), a derivative of barbiche (“shaggy dog”); however, this is unlikely, if not impossible, since the word bichon (attested 1588) is older than barbichon (attested 1694). The Bichons were divided into four categories: the Bichon Maltese, the Bichon Bolognaise, the Bichon Havanese and the Bichon Tenerife. All originated in the Mediterranean area….
www.dogbreedinfo.com/bichonfrise.htm – Cached
The Tenerife, or Bichon, had success in France during the Renaissance under Francis I (1515–47), but its popularity skyrocketed in the court of Henry III (1574–89). The breed also enjoyed considerable success in Spain as a favorite of the Infantas, and painters of the Spanish school often included them in their works. For example, the famous artist, Francisco de Goya, included a Bichon in several of his works.
Interest in the breed was renewed during the rule of Napoleon III, but then waned until the late 19th century when it became the “common dog”, running the streets, accompanying the organ grinders of Barbary, leading the blind and doing tricks in circuses and fairs.