Billy Dog

The Billy dog is a beautiful and large breed of scenthound. It was originated from central western France. With a dwindling population at present, this dog was extensively used as a pack dog for hunting purposes.

The Billy was created by Monsieur Gaston Hublot de Rivault Taco in the 19th Century. And the breed was named after his home the Château de Billy, in Poitou.

The Billy dogs were created by combining the 3 original strains of the Poitevin, the Montemboeuf, Ceris and Larrye. Whereas the modern Poitevin more closely resembles and the original Tri-coloured Larrye line, Rivault was more drawn to the paler colors associated with the Montemboeuf and Ceris lines, and coloration was a major determinant when selecting foundation stock.

The pack was dispersed in 1927 and the breed almost faced extinction, only two hounds survived World War II, however de Rivault’s son, Anthony, set about reviving the breed by judicious use of the Poitevin, the Porcelaine and the Harrier.[1]

The Billy dog breed was one of the foundation breeds used in the development of the Grand Anglo-Français Blanc et Orange in the late 19th century. The breed remains rare, although there are several packs in it’s native area used to hunt roe deer, and two packs to hound wild boar.

Billy Dog Characteristics

The Billy dogs are large and beautiful animals. The breed is known to be an elegant scenthound with long ears, muscular legs, and smooth, short fur. They have a medium length snout with a nose that can either be brown, reddish brown or black.

They have a broad and tall structure with a large head, almond-shaped eyes, wide and floppy ears, broad chest, sturdy legs and a long and thick tail.

Unlike many other scent hounds, their top lip does not hang far below the bottom tip. Main color of the Billy dog’s fur is a shade of white. They can appear to be pure white, off white, or a more tan white. They can also have spots of a variety of colors including brown, orange, or a light yellow or tan.

The Billy dogs are large in size. Their average body height is between 23 and 24 inches at the withers for females, and between 24 and 28 inches for the males. And their average live body weight is between 23 and 32 kg.


The Billy dog has an elegant, loyal and obedient disposition. It would adhere to the service of it’s master and it’s family. Though they have a gentle and kind nature, owners have reported them to act contentious with its pack mates, and even with other non-canines if they get a chance. At times, it might get distracted on spotting a scent, and controlling it becomes extremely difficult if unleashed then.

The Billy dogs are generally good with children as well as other pets in the family, especially when raised together. They have friendly demeanor in general, and would quickly mingle with guests and strangers. This trait makes them poor as a guard dog. The breed is not suitable for apartment life, because they remain active all day naturally.


Average lifespan of the Billy dogs is between 12 and 15 years.


How much a mature dog eats depends on it’s size, age, build, metabolism and activity level. Dogs are individuals, just like people, and they don’t all need the same amount of food.

The Billy dogs are large in size. So, their diet should be formulated for a large breed with average to high exercise needs. You can also consult with a vet in your area for better recommendations.


As with other dog breeds, taking good care of the animals is very important for raising Billy dogs. Since Billy dogs are high energy and need space to run, so they do best in a house with backyard.

But they can also live in cities easily as long as they have an outdoor space to explore. They would not do well in an apartment as they would have less to run and exercise.

The Billy dog is a high energy dog and requires plenty of exercise, both mental and physical. So, be sure to take them on daily walks. And also let them to run free in a large area of land and teach them commands and tricks in order to stimulate their brain.


The Billy dogs are generally healthy. But like all other dog breeds, they are also prone to certain health conditions.

Their common health problems include hip dysplasia and ear infections. Always try to keep good contact with a vet in your area.

Breed NameBilly
Other NamesNone
Breed SizeLarge
HeightBetween 23 and 24 inches at the withers for females, and between 24 and 28 inches for the males
WeightBetween 23 and 32 kg
Good as petsYes
Climate ToleranceAll climates
ColorWhite or off-white, may have orange or lemon patches or mantle
LifespanBetween 12 and 15 years
Good for childrenYes
Country of OriginFrance

1 thought on “Billy Dog”

  1. Your article gave me a lot of inspiration about Billy dog, I hope you will list the unknown facts about this breed, thank you.

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