PBGV Sporting Activities

A PBGV is not just a pretty face…

Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen (PBGV) is a rugged, active, alert and exuberant small French hunting hound. They can be trained for many purposes and their compact, tough and robust construction lends itself to a number of sporting events. This can include testing their hunting instinct in an open field to events such as agility, obedience, rally, tracking, scent work and barn hunt. There are conformation events that measure how closely the PBGV conforms to its breed standard. The closer a dog’s appearance is to the standard, the better is its ability to produce puppies that will reliability perpetuate its basic form and function.

All of these sporting events showcase the abilities and versatility of our breed.

The Importance of Correct Conformation

Every AKC Parent Club is required to develop a breed standard unique to the form and function of their own breed. The PBGV is a very athletic and versatile scent hound developed to hunt the rough terrain in the Vendeen’ region of France. In order to hunt tirelessly in such demanding terrain the correct construction of this hound is imperative. Dedicated breeders strive to follow the breed standard for correctness of bone and musculature, coat quality and attitude in order to consistently produce a hound with sufficient drive to hunt efficiently. This correctness also translates to success in additional performance activities such as FAST CAT, the Conformation ring, Hunt, Obedience, Rally, Agility, and Scent Work. To review and study the Petit Basset Griffon Vendeen breed standard Click Here. Susan Nelson Smyth, oldyork2002@aol.com, PBGVCA member since 1988 and AKC Judge

SEE ALSO: AKC Conformation


The Hunting Instinct Test were approved by the PBGVCA Board of Directors in May of 2000. AKC Parent Club Performance Title Recognition is now available for Parent Club Junior, Senior, and Master Hunter titles. The PBGVCA hunt program has expanded to include venues in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.

Barn Hunt
Not everyone will understand the importance of “rat catchers,” but if you live in the countryside, you sure do! “Rat catchers” rid farms of destructive vermin – and the hunting and teamwork skills required to do so are the foundation of the sport of Barn Hunt. Dogs and their handlers work as a team to locate and mark rats (which are always safely held in aerated tubes) hidden in a maze of straw or hay bales.
SEE ALSO AKC Barn Hunt details


Agility is a timed event where dog and handler teams navigate jumps, tunnels, and other equipment off leash in a course that is different for every run. This fun and addictive sport takes advantage of a PBGV’s natural athletic ability and is for those PBGV owners who want to try a new sporting event and for handlers who are looking for a long-term training commitment.


AKC Agility: Get Started
AKC Agility Course Test (ACT) movie

The following is the AKC summary for Obedience & Rally competition.


Think your dog is an A+ student? Are your friends and family jealous with how well you’ve trained your dog? Then you might want to take things to a new level by participating in Obedience competitions (known as “trials”).

Developed in the 1930s, Obedience is one of the AKC’s oldest sporting events, and it’s open to all dogs. From walking on- and off-leash to retrieving and jumping, or demonstrating your dog’s ability to stay, Obedience trials feature dogs that are well-behaved at home, in public places, and in the presence of other dogs. It is essential that the obedience dog demonstrates willingness and enjoyment while it is working with the handler.

Whether or not you want to compete, every dog owner should consider some form of obedience training. It’s the best way to establish good communication skills between you and your dog – and to make sure that your dog is the most well-behaved one in your neighborhood!



AKC Rally® is one of the newest AKC sports and participation increases every year. Whether you just train or decide to compete, Rally develops better teamwork between you and your dog. Just as importantly, it will sharpen your dog’s obedience skills and behavior – at home and in public.

SEE ALSO Rally Basics

Calling all PBGVs…by Teri King

Nose work/scent work is a natural behavior for PBGVS.  Introducing a dog to use their nose is a rewarding and fun adventure. PBGVS can detect odors, be it, rabbits, rats, various scents (such as birch, cloves etc.) or people and their odors.  Truly, there is no limit with how many scents they can grasp.   I found that my scent is harder to find than certain odors; however, rabbits seem to be at the top of their list.

Very little equipment is utilized in your journey of scent work. Typically, a harness and long line will get you started.  I believe dressing a dog for the occasion alerts the dog to the situation. Instructing a dog in nose work or tracking is a great foundation for educating a dog to diverse levels.

AKC Scent Work (or Nose Work) is a sport that mimics the task of working detection dogs to locate a scent and communicate to the handler that the scent has been found. Real-life detection dogs are trained to search for a variety of things–drugs, explosives, human remains, currency, other contraband, living humans (such as for Search and Rescue), and much more. AKC Scent Work takes this amazing working relationship and turns it into a fun game that any dog can play.

SEE ALSO:  How Do I Get Started in Scent Work?

Farm Dog Certified (FDC) test. Dogs will work through a series of 12 exercises that represent situations they may come across in a farm environment, and must display trainability, self-control, confidence and trust in their owner throughout the experience.

SEE ALSO: The Farm Dog Certified Test is AKC’s Newest Program

AKC Tracking event where they can sniff and smell to their heart’s content, and demonstrate that natural ability to recognize and follow a scent. It’s the perfect way for you and your dog—whether purebred or mixed breed—to enjoy many hours together, outside in the fresh air, honing those natural abilities.

SEE ALSO: AKC Tracking

AKC Therapy Dog

Therapy Dog is an AKC program which recognizes the necessary therapy work performed by dogs through accepted organizations based on the number of visits. Therapy work involves volunteers who schedule visits to various facilities and locations such a nursing homes, classrooms, libraries, assisted living centers, hospices, funeral homes, schools, shelters even courtrooms.

SEE ALSO:AKC Therapy Dog