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The Barbet Temperament Traits and More (Puppies, Grooming, etc.)

Some people consider the Barbet temperament to be one of the most pleasant among all types of dogs. They are calm, love learning new tricks, and definitely “play well with others”.

Since the 14th century, the Barbet has been used mostly for hunting. But the very friendly, amiable Barbet temperament now makes it a popular family dog.

The Barbet — pronounced “bar-bay” — is a French dog that is also known as the French Water Dog or the Barbet Water Spaniel.

Because of their love of water and hunting, the Barbet is unable to sit still for long periods of time. So if you have an active and large family, they will fit right in.

The Barbet Temperament and Personality

When you research Barbet behaviors, it won’t take you long to realize that this is the perfect dog for you. They have amazing personalities and very sweet dispositions, making them the perfect family dog for any family out there.

There are many reasons to love this dog but the Barbet temperament is perhaps one of the biggest. 

Active but obedient, friendly and loyal. This is one dog you’ll be happy to welcome as a member of the family

They are energetic and love to play with children but they also keep children safe. 

They are also not aggressive, making them the perfect pet for homes with children or elderly people living there.

Friendly and Very Active

The Barbet is a very active dog that likes to have something to do and they have very friendly personalities that include the love of snuggling.

They are great with both kids and adults and they have even been known to understand what type of mood their owners are in!

When it comes to other Barbet traits, you can count on getting a pet that shows little aggression and one that shows a lot of loyalty to its owners.

They are excellent companions, love to play, and are happy as long as they get a lot of play time and other activities.

Obedient and Dedicated

Would you like a dog that follows you around and shows you incredible attention? The Barbet is the perfect pet for you.

These dogs are especially dedicated to their owners to the point where they are sometimes a little goofy and exuberant. But that's their way of showing their love for their pet parents.

The Barbet temperament is easy to understand because these dogs are playful, attentive, friendly, and devoted. This, coupled with their adaptability around kids and other pets, makes them an especially popular pet for many families.

They Even Like Strangers

The friendly Barbet temperament makes them is even friendly towards strangers.

This makes it very convenient when you’re taking them for a walk. That's because they do not have the aggression that many other dogs do.

The Barbet puppy is especially friendly and pet parents will always enjoy raising them.

Taking Care of Your Family

The Barbet also makes a great watchdog. Your family will be safer if one of these dogs is in your home. However, they bark less often than other dogs so they won’t be barking excessively and keeping you awake at night.

A Few Barbet Disadvantages

The Barbet is popular among its owners. However, you should also be aware of some of the challenges of owning one. Some of these are described below.

  • The Barbet gets bored easily and it can be very destructive when bored.
  • They are prone to separation anxiety because of their loyalty.
  • Barbet love to get wet and muddy as often as possible.
  • They are hard to find and relatively expensive to purchase.
  • Their grooming needs can be extensive.

Of course, this shouldn’t deter you from owning one of these dogs because these traits are not insurmountable.

They are still very loving, fun-to-have-around animals and their few challenges don’t have to outweigh this.

Barbet Appearance and Physical Characteristics

The Barbet Size Is Just Perfect

As a pet parent, you’ll find the Barbet size and Barbet height to be just perfect for an indoor dog.

They get to no more than 25 inches in height, which is the perfect size for many pet owners. But they still do great keeping up outdoors for their size.

Barbet Colors

The Barbet is a handsome dog and Barbet colors usually include either black or dark brown. They can also occasionally be a grey color. They are truly adorable dogs that you will find easy to fall in love with.

The Barbet Origin May Surprise You

The dog was first mentioned in a 14th-century novel. They were thought to be in the same category as Poodles from the 18th to the 19th century.

The exact origins of the Barbet dog are unknown. What is known is that they are dogs that favor hunting and fetching water as well as the capability to be an overall work dog.

And in case you’re wondering, the French word for Barbet means “beard”. This is very appropriate considering how this dog looks!

Water Lover

Some French dog-lovers even describe the breed as “ệtre crotté comme un Barbet”. This translates as “very, very muddy”, which is appropriate since they love to get into the water and get dirty!

Barbets love of water, even very cold water. If you want them to fetch something out of a cold lake or pond, they will do it every time!

Therefore, the more they’re around water, the happier they’ll be!

They Almost Went Extinct

Despite how long they existed, the Barbet was practically extinct after the two world wars. Thanks to breeding, they are making a comeback but are still relatively rare throughout most of the world. Of course, that is also what makes them so special.

Not Common in the U.S.

The Barbet history includes increasing popularity in the U.S. and the Scandinavian countries; however, there are still relatively few of them in the States.

The Barbet is now recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). As a result their popularity in the US is likely to rise.

Barbet Training

The Barbet personality is conducive to training.

This is in part because of their intelligence. This sets them apart from many other breeds.

But regardless of how intelligent the breed the earlier you start training the easier it will be. So adopt a Barbet puppy or maybe look for a Barbet puppy for sale.

The Barbet temperament is also perfect for training purposes because they are extremely eager to please their owners.

This is one of the many reasons why they can be used as therapy dogs for people who are blind or disabled.

Barbet training is easier than you think!

Helpful Dog Training Resource:

For help with training your Barbet dog take a look at The Online Dog Trainer by Doggy Dan. Doggy Dan is an expert Dog Trainer based in New Zealand. His online resource contains Hundreds of Excellent Dog Training Videos that will take you step-by-step through the process of developing a healthy, happy well-behaved dog.

Their Health Needs Can Be Challenging

It’s not that the Barbet is always sick but are some health issues that you should be aware of before you purchase one a Barbet.

Barbet health issues include the following all of which you should be able to keep most of these under control with the right veterinarian.

Although these health problems are not insurmountable you need to be aware of them. Also one of their most common afflictions seems to be ear infections, undoubtedly because of the amount of time the Barbet likes to spend in the water.

Nonetheless the Barbet is still relatively healthy overall. In fact, the Barbet lifespan stretches approximately 15 years, enabling you to enjoy them for quite a while.

The average Barbet weight is 35 to 60 pounds so they are not so large that you need to be concerned about health problems that only affect bigger dogs.

Note: if you agree that your health and your dog's health should be a top priority then get a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Dog Health. Your Barbet friend will love you for it. This guide will help save you money, time and most of all help you keep your dog healthy.

Barbet Care is Relatively Care-Free

The Barbet is easy to care for because of their average size and their overall personality.

In fact, when it comes to Barbet exercise, remember that they like a lot of it!

You’re likely to find that as long as you let him stay active and run around, he should be perfectly content. The Barbet is also a very strong breed so they are not prone to needing any specialized treatment.

A Little More Grooming Time

When it comes to Barbet grooming they do have rather extensive needs.

Particularly because they have a coat that is wooly and thick.

Given that the Barbet loves to play in mud and dirt, you’re likely to be cleaning them regularly.

But keep in mind that since they love water, baths will never be a problem.

Pay Attention to Their Hair

Long, curly locks can be difficult to tend to for both humans and dogs. Because the Barbet has this type of hair, it is recommended that you brush their coats daily. As long as you do this, the matting and tangles that often result should be kept to a minimum.

Short versus Long

You can even clip their coats occasionally to keep them short and manageable. Although if you plan to show your Barbet, it might be better to leave the coat as it is.

Barbet shed very little, but their coat still needs to be tended to daily. However, it is easier than you think to get into this habit.

Finding the Right Barbet for You

Are you curious about finding a Barbet for adoption or even in a Barbet rescue?

It should be easy to do as long as you do your due diligence. Make sure you get the dog from a reputable breeder.

Remember that the dog is rare in most parts of the world. This may well be reflected in the Barbet price.

The Barbet price is likely to be a little more expensive than purchasing other breeds of dogs.

Deal with Reputable Breeders – Do Your Research First

There are Barbet breeders but they are not all alike.

Here is where it can be a little cumbersome because you will have to do your research before deciding to buy one of these lovable dogs.

As with most other decisions nowadays, this research is much easier when you start online.


You can also check with reputable rescue organizations. They should be able to point you in the right direction so that you can find the perfect Barbet for your family.

Are You Ready to Be a Barbet Parent?

If you’re ready to adopt one of these precious animals, it is easy to get started. Check out the breeders you’re working with carefully and visit them in person whenever possible. The more you know about them, the better.

Never buy your puppy or dog from puppy mills but only from a reputable dealer. Barbets are rare but they are worth finding because of their lovable disposition. In fact, once you own one, you’re likely to want more than one. That’s how wonderful this breed is!