Papillon Information, a Guide to a Lively and Adorable Dog What Makes This Breed So Unusual

Papillon photo
Small Breed X-Small Breed Patella Luxation Papillon


  • 1 The Papillon dog is an elegant breed with fine bone structure and trademark butterfly ears.
  • 2 Papillon dogs are not only small and beautiful but friendly and calm as well.
  • 3 Papillons are equally at home playing in an apartment or running in the country.


The Papillon, formerly known as the Epagneul Nain (or Dwarf Spaniel), is one of the oldest recorded breeds, dating back some 700 years. Originally bred with drooped ears, over time this breed made a shift to having large, erect ears with feathered fur around the edges. Their ears, which began to resemble the wings of a butterfly, is where the Papillon gets their name from ("papillon" is butterfly in French). The Papillon was recognized by the AKC in 1915.

Quick Facts

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    12 to 16 years

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    Hair Length


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    Male Height

    8 to 11 inches high at the shoulders

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    Male Weight

    7 to 10 pounds

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    Female Height

    8 to 11 inches high at the shoulders

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    Female Weight

    7 to 10 pounds

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    Litter Size

    1 to 3 puppies


A friendly, smart, outdoorsy, playful dog, the Papillon is frequently underestimated in terms of their unchecked bravery. Borderline aggressive at times, they are notorious for not getting along with other dogs, but strangely enough, tend to become fast friends with felines. They need to be socialized well to avoid problems like โ€œsmall dog syndrome.โ€ If they are made to think that they have the run of the house then problems will ensue, but if you hold down your role as pack leader and train them with a firm hand, you can end up with a very well trained, obedient dog. .


Papillons can be white, with patches of any color except liver.

Health Concerns

Papillons have an average life span of 16 years. The most common health issues affecting this breed are:

  • patella luxation
  • soft spot on the skull

The Papillon has a cute, short, pointed muzzle with an intelligent expression carried on their face. Their trademark large, furry ears are either erect (standard Papillon) or droop slightly (Phalene Papillon), and give the impression of a butterfly or moth wings. They have a long tail that they carry high above their body. They have a luscious, silky coat, with some extra fluff on their chest, ears, and on the back of their legs and tail.

Similar Breeds

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