Drentse Patrijshond

The Drentsche Patrijshond is a versatile spaniel-type hunting dog from the Netherlands province of Drenthe. Called the Dutch Partridge Dog (or "Drent" for Drenthe) in English, approximately 5,000 dogs are registered with the breed club in the Netherlands, and breed clubs operate in Belgium, Denmark, Scandinavia and North America. The Drentsche Patrijshond bears some resemblance to both spaniel and setter Dog types of dog. An excellent pointer and retriever, this dog is often used to hunt fowl and adapts equally well to the field or marshes.

History

The origins of the Drentsche Patrijshond are in the 16th century, from the Spioenen (or Spanjoelen) which came to the Netherlands through France from Spain, and is related to the Small Münsterländer of Germany and the Epagneul Français of France. In the Netherlands, these dogs were called partridge dogs. The presence of the partridge dogs had been visible for centuries, as in the 17th-century painting The Hunter's Present, c. 1658-60, by Gabriel Metsu. In the painting, the partridge dog leans against the hunter's knee, as the man is handing a woman a partridge, which was a double entendre at the time. The dog in The Hunter's Present is a very large, stocky dog that could possibly pull a Dogcart (dog-drawn); showing the range of the early Dog type, a much smaller, lighter dog of the same type is shown in another painting by the same artist, The Poultry seller, 1662. This painting also involves a woman being offered a bird, regarded with suspicion by her dog.Before formal recognition as a Dog breed in 1943, the type had been kept separate from other dogs as an undocumented breed for centuries in the rural province of Drenthe.

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