Both the frise and the bolognese are types of bichon dogs. The original three types of bichon dogs came from the Mediterranean around the 15th century. Since then, one type fell into extinction, the bichon tenerife, which has largely been replaced by the frise. Other types, often crossed with other breeds, have sprang up around the world, however.
The bolognese is generally considered the youngest of the original three bichon types, while the Maltese is usually considered the oldest. Named after Bologne, Italy, it was originally called the bichon Bolognais. These dogs were often given to rulers and people of importance as gifts. The frise is currently the best known of the bichon types. It was originally a cross between the now extinct bichon tenerife and a poodle.
The physical appearance of the bolognese and frise and very similar. Both are small dogs with short legs and floppy ears. Both usually have completely white coats of hair, not fur. The hair texture is different, however. The bolognese has shaggy hair that falls in clumps or turfs, resembling an old English sheepdog. True to its poodle heritage, the bichon frise is fluffy, with stiff but soft, hair. The frise are also allowed to have apricot or buff colours in small amounts on their coats.
Bolognese are generally easily trained and intelligent. Although they are distrustful of strangers, they quickly develop a loyalty toward their owners. They are usually good with children and other animals, and they like to please. The bichon frise is also intelligent and likes to please, though they are more energetic than the reserved bolognese. Both types are very affectionate, but the frise generally needs more attention than the bolognese.
Both types of dogs need to be exercised regularly. Their small stature, however, makes exercise a fairly simple process, a short daily walk combined with some play should be sufficient to meet these dogs' daily exercise requirements. Although both types do not shed much, they do need their coats brushed daily because they are prone to tangle and mat. Both types also benefit from visits to professional groomers at least once a month.