Grooming considerations

The next important issue is the owner's commitment to take the time and money that this beautiful little prince or princess requires to maintain them.   These dogs do not magically stay white and fluffy.  The bichon frise is a high maintenance breed that needs to be professionally groomed( bathed, dried and scissored ) on average every 4 weeks.

A slicker brush and wide-toothed comb are a must and should be kept close at hand, as close as the remote control of your television. I may be exaggerating a bit, but my point is that the bichon should be brushed at least every other day for a few minutes to avoid matts forming and to keep them looking nice. Learning how to brush down to the dogs skin is imperative and your breeder or groomer will be happy to teach you how this is done. 

Matts are painful to remove and can even become unhealthy by irritating the delicate skin underneath the matt. Groomers hate matts and often charge a surcharge for dematting your dogs.

It is best to strive to make grooming time pleasant for your bichon, because if it becomes a painful experience for them, it will become difficult for you as they will squirm and try to get away from being brushed. 

To maintain that gorgeous white appearance and keep skin and coat healthy, regular bathing every week or two is also recommended. 

Where I live on the Pacific Coast, rain is a part of life and can make a pristine white dog, a soggy black mess in a quick walk outside.

So get used to washing your dogs paws and belly off in inclement weather after walking them.

Grooming cost considerations

So the other issue associated with this breed is the cost associated with grooming them. This monthly fee is prohibitive for some people and should be figured into your overall budget when considering purchasing a bichon. Grooming is as important a consideration as the food, vet and dental care you give your dog.

Prices vary for  grooming, starting at $45 at the big box pet stores to as high as $100  for upscale salons or mobile groomers that come to your home. Tipping is also expected. 

There is however, nothing better in the world than a freshly washed and fluffed bichon frise!

For the individual who wants to learn to groom their dog themselves, there are some great "How to groom" videos available. There is a significant cost associated with the proper grooming equipment however, as a table, good scissors and stand dryer are required.

Cardinal Rule #  2:

The perspective bichon owner must be committed to grooming their dog, from both a financial and time perspective.