Phalene or Papillon
There is three different genetic ear varieties in the Papillon breed:
Papillon - Ears fully erect
Phalene - Ears dropped
Soft eared Papillon (Button ears) - Ears not fully erect nor fully dropped
Soft/button ears are not recognised for the show ring.
Here are some examples of each bellow.
Ears are fully erect when alert
When alert ears remain fully dropped.
Soft Eared Papillon
Soft Eared Papillons or Button Ears come at different levels. On this example notice how the very tips of the ears remain floppy when the dog is alert. This variety is any dog who when alert the ears are neither fully up nor fully down.
NOTE - This is a genetic variety not a breed standards variety and these dogs can't be shown.
All three varieties can be born in the same litter. All three genetic varieties can be Kennel Club registered and hold the exact same genetic testing standards. The only difference in the three genetic varieties is the ears all other breed standards remain the same. It comes down to personal preference of each individual as to what genetic variety of the papillon they favour as a pet.