papillon-dogAt a glance
Alert and sunny, with a royal appearance and a gracious attitude to boot, the Papillon is a hardy little companion dog that seeks to be the best friend it possibly can. Its ideal lifestyle includes heavy human contact, and being able to please the people around it is what makes its day. It originated from the Continental Toy Spaniel, and it took its name from the French equivalent for “butterfly,” since its unique head markings and ear feathering seem to resemble the wings of those beautiful insects. The Phalene, a separate variety of the breed with drop ears, adopted the French word for “moth.” Phalenes and Papillons can be born in the same litter, but Phalenes do not seem to have the same popularity as that enjoyed by their upright-eared siblings.


  • Names – Continental Toy Spaniel, Phalene, Epagneul nain Continental, Pap, Butterfly Dog, Pap, Squirrel Dog (due to tail carriage)
  • Group – AKC: Toy Group; KC: Toy
  • Size – small
  • Life expectancy – an average of 14 years and a range of 9 to 15 years, but some dogs will live even longer
  • Cost of ownership – low to medium
  • Ease of ownership – medium
  • Aggressive tendency – low
  • Amount of Exercise – medium
  • Amount of Grooming – medium
  • Ease of Training – high
  • Obedience level – high
  • Suitable for Children – medium
  • Amount of Care Required – medium
  • Susceptibility to Health Problems – low Read more