Breed Type: Spaniel
Country of Origin:  The Netherlands
Size: Medium-Large
Also known as: Dutch Partridge Dog, Drent
Males & Females: Height:  55-63 cm Weight:  19-24 kg
Exercise Requirements:  Moderately Intense and Frequent
Care Requirements: Average
Lifespan:  12-13 Years
Best Suited as: Bird Hunting Companion, Child/Family Companion

The Drentse-Patrijshond is a medium-large sized dog breed that is known for its hunting skills…specifically as a bird hunter.  Drentse-Patrijshonds are skilled at pointing and retrieving abilities that are required of a bird-hunting breed.  Not only does it point and retrieve well, the Drentse-Patrijshond also does great working through marshes or fields when hunting.

The coloring of a Drentse-Patrijshond’s coat is very distinctive with it being mostly white but with significant areas that are chocolate brown in color or occasionally orange colored.  They are similar in appearance with the setter and spaniel dog breeds.  Their coat is medium in length but appears longer since the hair on the chest and legs is significantly longer than the rest of the coat making it appear to be longer all over than it truly is.

An interesting fact to note about Drentse-Patrijshonds’ appearance shows up when they are hunting and begin to search and trail prey.  When a Drent initially begins looking for trail while hunting, you will notice its tail will be moving in a circular pattern that increases in speed and intensity once they hit on a scent and begin the hunt.  While they will wait for their human hunting companions before moving in close to their prey, they will let you know they think you are taking too long with quick backward glances clearly pointing out that you are way too slow in their book.

While their bone structure and build might appear to be light, they are very strong dogs with great muscles.  It especially carries great leg muscles which enable the Drentse-Patrijshond to move with considerable speed usually reserved for hunting however.

The Drentse-Patrijshond dogs have long been considered as a great breed with a temperament suitable for many services in addition to hunting birds such as all-around game hunter, guard dog, and can easily be trained to pull a cart.  In more recent years, Drents have proven to work well as a hunter gun dog.  They are clearly excellent hunters with a drive to work just as strong as their human companions when in the field.  But when “off-duty” so-to-speak, Drentse-Patrijshonds can be quite relaxed in the home environment – more so than most other hunting breeds.  They are fiercely loyal to their families and have a sweet nature that is especially gentle with children.  Because of their propensity to hunt, it is preferable not to have the Drentse-Patrijshonds around small animals…especially fowl whether domesticated or not.  But they generally get along great with other household dogs and larger animals outside the home.

The history of the breed is traced back to the 16th century where it descended from the Spioenen breed that originated in Spain and reached the Netherlands through France.  Their ancestry also includes the German breed known as Small Münsterländer.  Drentse-Patrijshonds were frequently included in paintings both alone or painted with various human companions.  They were an unofficial and undocumented breed for the most part until 1943 when the Netherlands developed official standards for this particular breed.

Care and Grooming:
In terms of exercise, Drentse-Patrijshond dogs need a lot of activity.  They love hunting with their human counterparts out in the great outdoors as frequently as possible but will make do with some vigorous walks around the neighborhood or in a park each day.  Drents relaxed attitude at home might cause some to mistakenly believe they don’t need a lot of exercise, but it is an active breed with a desire for exercise that needs to be understood and respected.

Grooming needs are moderate for the Drentse-Patrijshond breed – mostly because of the longer hair of their coats that needs to be brushed regularly both to take care of matting or tangling issues, but also to remove dead hair…especially when the weather turns warm in your region and the rate of shedding increases.

The Drents are a strong, healthy breed overall, but there are some genetic tendencies of progressive retinal atrophy and stomatocytosis.  Drentse-Patrijshond dogs need to have their ears monitored and cleaned frequently since the flopping over style of the ear can be problematic because of the lack of air movement within.  Eyes and nails need average care similar to all dogs in the same type of environment – nails need to be trimmed frequently if not able to wear them down naturally with enough outdoors exercise, and eyes are occasionally “weepy” necessitating cleaning with a wet cloth or similar.

Suitability as a Pet:
Drents work well as a household pet, particularly families with children.  Their patient and sweet disposition lends greatly to what causes them to be an excellent choice when concerned with child safety issues.  Consideration should be paid to what kind of other animals would be around if you own a Drentse-Patrijshond because if its instinctive hunting characteristics.  A Drent would most likely not do very well on a farm that is raising domesticated fowl and small game like rabbits.  Indoor pets like small dogs and cars are usually okay, but your Drentse-Patrijshond should be monitored for “hunting interest” in creatures around the home – prevention is always best.

The Drentse-Patrijshond dogs are some of the easiest to train because of their innate desire to please their owners.  Their sweet and adaptable personality works great with training issues so they are usually trained quite easily if treated firmly but gently.  Mean or harsh training methods are very destructive to this breed in particular and can do irreversible damage to their naturally sweet disposition.  Drents need to socialize as often as possible from puppy stage on both because their nature desires to, but also to train good habits and manners in terms of interaction with people.  Just socializing a Drentse-Patrijshond well from the beginning will take care of a significant portion of their training needs.

Drentse Patrijshond Organisations in Australia
No club information listed

Drentse Patrijshond Organisations in the UK
North American Versatile Hunting Dog Association

Drentse Patrijshond Organisations in the US
Drentsche Patrijshond – American Kennel Club
Drentse Patrijshond Dog Rescue

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