The Barbet is an archetypal water dog of France, a rustic breed of medium size and balanced proportions that appears in artwork as early as the 16th century. The Barbet is slightly rectangular in shape, with a large head and a long, sweeping tail. He has long, dense curls on his head and a striking beard. The Barbet, an agile athlete, has mostly been employed to locate, flush, and retrieve birds. He has a positive attitude and is very gregarious and loyal. The rich curly coat that covers this rustic, medium-sized bird dog from the top of his wide, broad head to the tip of his curved tail is his distinguishing feature.
The coat comes in black, gray, brown, or fawn colors, with white markings on occasion. The Barbet’s charmingly shaggy coat and friendly demeanor give the appearance of a Muppet come to life, but the Barbet is a robust, solidly built dog that has been bred for ages to be a sharp hunter and tireless swimmer. Barbets are extremely bright and quickly pick up new skills. They have a peaceful demeanor and are pleasant to live with as long as their activity requirements are met.