“A petit what?” and Other Questions People Ask About My Dog

My husband and I both have a type… type of dog, that is.

We’re not committed to a specific category, like terriers or sporting breeds. But we always seem to like dogs that have tousled or wiry hair. Thus, two years after our beloved Wheaton Terrier passed away and it seemed our miniature schnauzer might again like a sibling, we decided it was time to get another dog. We selected one that had been on my radar for over twenty-five years…

A Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen  (pronounced “Puh-TEE Bah-SAY Gree-FOHN VON-day-uhn”). Or a PBGV. Or a Peeb. Or simply, a petite.

Here’s how the PBGV Club of America describes the hound breed:

  • Petit: Small
  • Basset: Low to the Ground
  • Griffon: Rough Coated
  • Vendéen: Region in France Where Breed Originated

The picture above is our Milo, now two years old. The breed is one most people don’t recognize. Whenever we go out for a walk in the park, someone will inevitably ask us, “What kind of dog is he?”

“A Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen.”

Blank stare. “Oh, so he’s a mix?”

“No. It’s an AKC breed. They also call them PBGVs.”

“Heebie Jeebies?”

“PBGV. He’s in the hound family.” We launch into the meaning behind each word in his long name, then always add, “He’s like a basset hound with long, wiry hair.”


The entire time we are trying to avoid an identity crisis for our charming little fellow, Milo is eagerly wagging his tail and smiling at his new friend. Because everyone he sees is his newest and best friend. If they haven’t noticed him yet (nearly impossible because he “woooooooos” a rather loud, friendly greeting the second he sees anybody), most people lean over to pet him and he’s in doggy heaven for a few blissful moments.

I like to write dogs into my books. Dogs have always been a big part of my life and it feels natural to include them in the lives of my characters. In my April 2018 release, WILLOW’S WAY, I decided to include a lovable PBGV as sidekick to the caretaker’s daughter, a five-year old who has recently lost her mother.

It was fun to think about ways to include this particular breed into the story. They have such personality. They’re also known as the happy breed, with tails that never seem to stop wagging–even during a reprimand. You can imagine how that goes…

Warning: This dog is high energy and needs owners who “get” him/her. He’s big on shenanigans, and has even taught our miniature schnauzer the fine art of digging and eating dirt. But negatives aside, you will be duly rewarded by the laughter and love this breed brings to your household.

PBGV Henry is featured in WILLOW’S WAY,  my April 17th release.

It’s available in print and ebook, and can be ordered at the links below.

Happy National Pet Day!!  What’s your “go-to” dog type and what do you love about the breed?

The breathtaking promise of the English countryside can lift even the heaviest spirits . . . 
Willow Armstrong, the once-famous “Queen of Weight Loss” and president of Pound Busters, succumbed to stress eating after her divorce. Now the scandal of getting caught on camera binging on pizza, and the internet-wide mocking of her new curves, may destroy her career. Add in a business advisor who drained her finances, and Willow is out of options—until she learns she’s inherited a house in England’s most picturesque locale, The Cotswolds
Willow’s trip across the pond to sell the property and salvage her company soon becomes its own adventure: the house, once owned by grandparents she never met, needs major work. Plus, single dad Owen Hughes, the estate’s resident groundskeeper and owner of a local tour outfit, isn’t thrilled about the idea of leaving . . .
Yet as Willow proceeds with her plans, she’s sidetracked by surprising discoveries about her family’s history–and with Owen’s help, the area’s distinctive attractions. Soon, she’s even retracing her roots—and testing her endurance—amid the region’s natural beauty. And the more she delves into the past, the more clearly she sees herself, her future, and the way home . . .

BUY: Amazon | Barnes&Noble | iBooks | Google | Kobo

            Amazon UK | Amazon DE | Amazon CA

7 responses to ““A petit what?” and Other Questions People Ask About My Dog

  1. Congratulations on your sweet new baby and your upcoming release!

  2. I haven’t read the book yet, but I do own a PBGV and your description of the breed is spot on.

    • Thanks, Lee! I’m glad to know another owner thinks I caught the essence of a PBGV. They’re unlike any dog I’ve ever owned, including a basset and hound mix. Glad you stopped by!!

  3. Terri-Lynne DeFino

    Dog people… 🙂

    If I were to have a dog, it would be a standard poodle, or a German Shepherd. As long as they didn’t eat their own poop. 😉

    • Haha, no guarantee on the poop thing. 🙂 All breeds could potentially do it. And Milo only eats other dog’s poop (never his own), and only if he’s in the “mood.” Haha, gross no matter how slice it.

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