The Barbet

The Barbet

Last update: 09 August, 2018

Today, we’ll discuss about the Barbet, which is a very special breed of water dogs. You probably have seen one without even noticing it. So, continue reading to find out all about this dog breed. You might even want one for your next pet!

Everything you need to know about the Barbet

History and origins

This breed is known for being one of oldest in Europe, and it’s probably a descendant of the poodle’s oldest ancestor. People initially used them as hunting dogs to retrieve not only aquatic birds, but also fallen arrows.

Its origins are still on debate, and there are several locations this breed could be from: Poland, Spain, or America. Some people claim that it comes from North Africa, and that Barbets came to Spain and Africa during the Arab invasions thousands of years ago, later extending throughout Europe.

Although this happened in the 14th century, they weren’t called “Barbets” until the 15th century. The sad thing is that when aquatic hunting went out of fashion, the majority of the Barbets disappeared.

Characteristics of the Barbet

This type of water dog stands out for its abundant, long, woolly, curly hair. Its coat has several layers that help protect him from the water, as well as from high or low temperatures.

This dog has a round and wide head and face. Even though its head is small, it has a black or chocolate colored nose. Its lips are wide and its snout is very short and square.

This dog has round eyes with very thick eyebrows and long hair that falls over its face. The Barbet’s ears hang lower than other dogs, and they are droopy and flat. They are also covered in locks of hair to provide them protection.


Its body is long and it has a short neck, and a wide, developed, chunky chest. Its limbs are straight and muscular, with strong bones, and they are always covered in a lot of fur. The Barbet’s spine has a sort of a convex shape, and the area that covers its kidneys is arched and very strong. Also, its tail hangs downward and points up like a hook.

barbet water dog


This breed’s fur is very thick, long, woolly, curly, and wavy. It’s difficult to comb, because it always sticks together in thick locks. The furs color can be gray, black, tan, beige, white and brown, and black and white.

Behavior and Personality of the Barbet

The Barbet is a very active, lively and docile dog. As a good water dog, water sports and exercise are his thing, because this breeds loves to swimming and splashing around. He will never run when you call him for his monthly bath.

This dog is stable, calm, and friendly orientated. It can create a very strong bond with its owners. Also, it is patient and loving towards children, because it loves to live in a family setting and hasn’t been known to show any aggressive tendencies. As a watchdog, he will do his part by warning you when he sees something strange.


You’ll need to socialize and train him with lotsof love as of puppy-hood. However, you’ll need to be stern because as this breed grows they can tend to be dominating. He’ll need good amounts of exercise, especially if you live in a small house in the city. Run with him, especially on the beach, which is the perfect place where he can unleash his instincts.

As for this breed’s fur, you’ll need to untangle it daily and even use a “stripping” technique, because if you don’t, he’ll probably accumulate clumps of hair that will have to be cut.

Because they love water, this dog breed may have respiratory diseases such as tracheitis and bronchopneumonia. Therefore, you should thoroughly dry your Barbet with a towel after each bath.

After reading all about the Barbet, would even consider getting once as a pet?


The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.