A brief history of the Porcelaine breed
This medium sized French scent hound was developed for flushing, hunting and tracking hare and small game. It is thought that this is the oldest French scent hound in existence. The alternative name is Chien de Franche-Comte`, referring to a French region bordering Switzerland.
There are records showing this breed in France and Switzerland as far back as the 1700’s. It is known that the background of the Porcelaine may include English Harrier, Laufhounds, Montaimboeuf, and Talbot Hound. Most of the breeding took place in Vaud, Savoy and the Abbeys of Luxeuil and Cluny in particular with the family of Choiseul. During the French Revolution the breed was nearly lost but has since been reconstructed using French hounds such as Gray Harriers of Somerset, Gascon Saintongeois and the Billy. These outcrosses gave the Porcelaine vigor, size and strength to hunt wild boar and stag. Described as robust and tenacious, this is a hound capable of running long distances and working in steep rugged terrain.
The Club du Porcelaine in France was established in 1971 to safeguard the breed. Currently, there are moderate numbers of Porcelaines in France and Italy. There are smaller numbers of the breed found throughout Europe and the United Kingdom.
The breed may have arrived in the United States as a gift from the King of France to President George Washington. There are records showing the Porcelaines were imported in the late 1800s through the Port of New Orleans, but were lost in cross-breeding with local hounds. Porcelaines were again imported into the United States in 2009. Currently there is thought to be less than 500 in the U.S. and Canada.
The breed was recognized by the FCI in 1975
The Porcelaine was recognized by the United Kennel Club [UKC] in December 2016
The Porcelaine Club of America was re-established in December 2016
In January 2017 the breed was accepted into the AKC- Foundation Stock Services
The Porcelaine is remarkably free from common health conditions seen in most purebred dogs today. As with most medium to larger breeds of dogs, hip dysplasia, joint, eye and structural problems can be of concern.
By health testing prior to breeding, the Porcelaine will continue being a healthy multi-purpose hound for the future.
Living with a Porcelaine
The Porcelaine is a wonderful breed that is relatively unknown in the United States. As with any breed of dog, there are many great and no so great things about the breed to consider prior to purchase. Carefully consider some of these aspects listed below to make sure this is the best fit for you.
The Porcelaine is primarily a hunting dog breed, originating from a mixture of highly intelligent French and English scent hounds. That said, you must remember that any breed with a high prey drive will require careful consideration in housing and handling. The Porcelaine has a strong desire to follow its nose. Therefore, be sure you provide a 5 foot high fenced yard for the hound to run in. Always have your Porcelaine on a leash when going outside or use a GPS tracking collar if working off leash.
The Porcelaine was developed to hunt in a pack and should therefore be well mannered in a multiple dog household. They prefer to be in a single dog household and the sole object of your affection. If disagreements or possessive behavior develops you must correct your dog immediately and not allow this behavior to persist. Porcelaines are very fond of their owners, family, friends and children. It is their desire to take part in all family activities. They excel as house dogs and easily crate train and house break.
One charming aspect of the breed is that they tend to be quiet indoors or in their kennel. It is thought that they were bred to be quiet while under the care and protection in the Abbey of Cluny. The Porcelaine has a beautiful melodious baying call but are not nuisance barkers like some breeds.
Elegant, proud, graceful, cat-like and stunningly gorgeous are some of the remarks you will hear when your Porcelaine is seen in public. Never shy or timid, always eager for a pat on the head or a hug, the Porcelaine makes a perfect calm-natured dog for Medical Therapy / Alert / Service / Police Public Relations, Search and Rescue, Man trailing, Tracking Game, Hunting, Family Pet, Sport and Show Dog.
CHIC & Goal
The Canine Health Information Center (CHIC) is a centralized canine health database sponsored by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals (OFA). The Center, working with parent clubs such as PCA, provides a resource for breeders and owners of purebred dogs to research and maintain information on the health issues prevalent in certain breeds by establishing a recommended protocol for breed specific health screening tests and recognizing dogs tested in accordance with that protocol.
This valuable resource is available to breeders, owners and buyers of AKC and UKC registered Porcelaine hounds.
In order to receive a CHIC number the Porcelaine Club of America requires a Porcelaine to be tested for the following:
- Hip and Elbow Dysplasia (OFA Evaluation)
- Patella Luxation (OFA Evaluation)
- Eye examination by a Board Certified Opthamologist (OFA)
- Cardiac Ascultation examination (OFA)
Diseases known to affect this breed include but not limited to:
- Entropium and Ectropium
- Hip Dysplasia
- Food Allergies
A goal of the PCA is to fund both research and DNA collection for identifying disease prevalence and transmition. A future pedigree data base will aide in the collection of DNA sampling for health issues.
In an effort to further assist in the long term health and well being of this unique breed, the PCA encourages each breeder to abide by these testing guidelines prior to breeding. It is through testing and careful selection of breeding pairs that this breed will continue to flourish and maintain a low incident of disease transmission.
Check out our breed standards below :
As more information is made available for research, breed information and equipment purchasing we will put those links and contacts in this section below.