According to the American Kennel Club, the French Bulldog is currently the fourth most popular dog breed to own in the United States. There are many reasons why this is the case, but the French Bulldog likely has their good looks and good-hearted nature to thank for that.
The French Bulldog, often called Frenchie, has a cute face, a small frame, and a goofy personality, making them a great companion for many people. French Bulldogs make great apartment and city dogs due to their low exercise needs and quiet nature.
In this article, we will be explaining everything that dog lovers and prospective Frenchie owners need to know about the French Bulldog breed.
This includes how to properly care for a Frenchie, what their general characteristics are, and where they came from. Keep reading to learn more about this amazing dog.
History of the French Bulldog
The history of the French Bulldog begins during the industrial revolution when lace workers from England started preferring small-sized, English Bulldogs.
These little bulldogs made great companions that would accompany them on their long workdays.
Over time lace production in the United Kingdom slowed, and many of these lace makers relocated to France to find work.
Here their smaller bulldogs became toy bulldogs, and it is believed that some other small breeds like terriers and pugs were bred into the line to make the dogs smaller.
In France, these little dogs grew in popularity, and they were affectionately given the name Bouledogue Francais.
From here French Bulldogs quickly became popular dogs in the United States where the French Bulldog Club of America was founded in the late 1800s.
French Bulldog Appearance
The French Bulldog has a set breed standard that dictates what its appearance should be.
This breed standard was created and is regularly reviewed by the French French Bull Dog Club of America and is upheld by the AKC.
This breed standard covers everything from coat color to body structure, and it even includes things like ear shape and coat length.
The French Bulldog breed standard is essentially the rulebook for French Bulldog breeders as to what their dogs should look like.
Today all officially recognized purebred dogs have a breed standard that is set by their national breed club.
What Does a French Bulldog Look Like?
Trust me, once you see a Frenchie you will never forget what they look like! So cute and lovable!
French Bulldog Head and Body Structure
The French Bulldog should have a short nose, a large head, and a compact and muscular build. French Bulldogs are also famous for their large bat ears.
Although rose ears were common early in the Frenchies’ history, today the erect ear is the most desirable and accepted ear shape.
The Frenchie’s bat-like ears should be standing up at all times.
French Bulldog Coat Colors
The French Bulldog should have a short coat that is silky in texture.
This smooth coat can come in a large variety of colors. Brindle, cream, fawn, and white coat colors are all accepted.
A mixture of these coat colors is also officially accepted, as well as the pied coat coloration.
Although there are other possible coat colors within the French Bulldog breed such as blue, lilac, and merle, these are not officially recognized coat colors.
No reputable French Bulldog breeder should charge more for these coat colors, and doing so tends to be a sign that they are a backyard breeder.
How Big do French Bulldogs Get?
French Bulldogs should be between 11 and 13 inches at the shoulder, and they tend to weigh anywhere between 16 and 28 pounds.
According to the French Bulldog breed standard, no French Bulldog should weigh more than 28 pounds.
French Bulldog Temperament
If any dog has a “temperament” the Frenchie is one! But it is a great temperament!
Are French Bulldogs Good With Other Dogs?
Yes, French Bulldogs do tend to behave well around other dogs.
Of course, proper socialization with other dogs from a young age will be particularly beneficial when it comes to ensuring that your Frenchie will be good with other dogs.
Are French Bulldogs Good With Children?
Yes, French Bulldogs tend to do very well with children. This is especially true when the children understand how to properly handle dogs.
Additionally, early socialization with children is a good idea when owning a Frenchie.
Are French Bulldogs Hard To Train?
Although French Bulldogs are known to have a stubborn streak, they are actually not too difficult to train once you have found a good motivator for them.
Plenty of basic obedience training using positive reinforcement from an early age tends to set up Frenchies for success.
In addition to early training, providing your French Bulldog with plenty of socialization from a young age is a must.
This will set them up to behave well around children and other pets, and it will also allow your Frenchie to grow up to be a confident and healthy adult dog.
How to Take Care of a French Bulldog
French Bulldog Exercise Requirements
French Bulldogs are actually very low maintenance when it comes to their exercise needs, so they do not need much exercise.
When owning a Frenchie you will actually need to be more careful about over-exerting them than not exercising them enough.
Daily short walks or play sessions will give your French Bulldog all the exercise they need.
French Bulldog Dietary Needs
For many French Bulldogs, high-quality, professionally made dog food will meet their dietary needs just fine. However, there are some cases where French Bulldogs can have food allergies.
In these cases, the Frenchie will likely need to be placed on a diet that eliminates their allergens.
Similarly, Frenchies can also be prone to being overweight or obese. In these cases, a weight loss diet under the direction of a veterinarian may be necessary as well.
French Bulldog Grooming Requirements?
Due to their short coats, French Bulldogs are also relatively low maintenance grooming-wise.
The occasional brush will keep their coat smooth and sleek. You may need to brush your Frenchie more often during the shedding season though.
The most important aspect of grooming a French Bulldog is keeping its face folds clean and dry.
This will prevent skin irritation in these areas. Of course, you will also need to regularly trim a French Bulldog’s nails and clean its ears.
French Bulldog Health Concerns
Unfortunately, French Bulldogs are prone to many health issues.
This is because French Bulldogs are one of the Brachycephalic breeds, which means that they can have some breathing issues due to their short snouts.
In addition to respiratory problems, French Bulldogs are also prone to health conditions affecting the spinal cord and joints.
Some of the most common health concerns in French Bulldogs include:
- Ear infections
- Hip dysplasia
- Intervertebral disc disease
- Skin fold dermatitis and atopic dermatitis
- Brachycephalic airway syndrome (also called brachycephalic syndrome or brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome)
- Patellar luxation
- Heart disease
In addition to all of the above conditions, French Bulldogs are more prone to heat stroke than some other breeds are.
This is because of the short muzzle that the French Bulldog is known for. You will need to take extra care with a Frenchie in both hot and cold weather.
French Bulldog Eye Health Issues
Frenchies can also be affected by health conditions of the eyes including:
- Cherry eye
- Retinal dysplasia
- Corneal ulcers
Palate issues such as a cleft or soft palate are also a concern with French Bulldogs.
Some other less common medical conditions that can impact the French Bulldog breed include but are not limited to:
- Pulmonic stenosis
Due to the high amount of medical conditions that can occur in French Bulldogs, Frenchie owners are highly encouraged to get pet insurance for their dogs.
This will insure you for many medical conditions and complications that can lead to a large vet bill for French Bulldog owners.
How to Prevent Heat Stroke in French Bulldogs
The French Bulldog is more prone to heat stroke than many other dog breeds.
This is because their short face prevents these small bulldogs from panting properly, which is how dogs cool themselves down.
Because of this, it is important for French Bulldog owners to take some extra precautions during warm weather.
If you live in a warm climate then having air conditioning is a must when owning a French Bulldog. This will allow them to keep a stable body temperature in hot weather.
Additionally, Frenchie owners will also need to be careful about taking their dogs outside in hot temperatures.
French Bulldogs should not be outdoors for long periods in extreme weather.
French Bulldog Lifespan
The average lifespan for a French Bulldog is around 10 to 12 years.
Their life expectancy tends to be lower than other small dogs due to the fact that many Frenchies have health problems.
How Much Do French Bulldog Puppies Cost?
On average, French Bulldog puppies tend to cost anywhere between $2,000 to $5,000 in the US when bought from a reputable breeder.
There are times when a French Bulldog puppy can cost more than $5,000 but this is fairly rare and it would be a special case.
The price of a purebred French Bulldog from a breeder will differ depending on your location.
Of course, there are also French Bulldog rescues where you can adopt a French Bulldog in need of a home for a much lower price.
How to Find a Reputable French Bulldog Breeder
Considering that French Bulldogs are one the most popular dog breeds, it is particularly important that those looking for a French Bulldog puppy do their research to find a reputable breeder.
This is because there are many backyard breeders that will breed French Bulldogs without following the breed standard or health protocols.
Most reputable French Bulldog breeders are a member of the French Bulldog Club of America when they are located in the United States.
Every reputable French Bulldog breeder will also get their dogs the recommended health and genetic testing and breed their dogs according to the French Bulldog breed standard.
Some red flags for non-reputable French Bulldog breeders include:
- Having many litters of puppies a year.
- Charging more money for “rare” and unrecognized coat colors and patterns
- Breeding many other popular dog breeds alongside French Bulldogs
- Not health testing their dogs before breeding them
- Not allowing you to see where dogs are kept
Who is The French Bulldog Good For?
The French Bulldog is a good fit for anyone who is looking for a dog with low exercise needs that would also require a decent amount of training.
Due to their small size, these miniature Bulldogs are also great for those living in apartments.
Frenchies are often a good choice for families as well. This is because French Bulldogs tend to behave well around children, other pets, and the elderly.
French Bulldog Names
If you have a Frenchie you can’t simply call him Frenchie!
Well, I suppose you could but for a great dog like this, you need a great name. Here is a short list of popular French Bulldog names.
Related French Bulldog Questions
Is a French Bulldog Hypoallergenic?
No, if you have dog allergies a French Bulldog may cause you some trouble. The French Bulldog is not hypoallergenic.
In fact, there really is no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog. There are some dog breeds that shed less and may be more tolerable for allergy sufferers.
Are French Bulldogs Affectionate?
French Bulldogs are known to be fairly affectionate dogs, especially with the members of their family.
These dogs are known to enjoy cuddling with their owners and sitting near them whenever possible. French Bulldogs tend to love human contact.
Are French Bulldogs Aggressive?
French Bulldogs are not known to be inherently aggressive.
However, aggression can occur in any dog breed when a dog is not well-bred, trained, and/or cared for.
As a result, getting your Frenchie from a reputable breeder and working hard to train and socialize your Frenchie puppy well will help prevent aggression.
Are French Bulldogs Dumb?
French Bulldogs sometimes get called dumb, stubborn, and difficult to train. However, this is not actually the case.
When well-motivated, Frenchies can actually learn many tricks and commands.
Using high-value treats and keeping training sessions positive will help French Bulldogs to learn commands more quickly.
Are French Bulldogs Lazy?
French Bulldogs are also often called lazy, but there is some merit in this.
Frenchies have very low exercise needs, and they tend to spend a lot more time lazing around than some more active dog breeds do.
This means that even though French Bulldogs will still enjoy playtime and short walks, they do not have the endurance to go on a hike or run.
French Bulldogs are a great dog breed that is as full of character as it is with adorable good looks.
Having origins in the industrial revolution, the French Bulldog has a rich history. Frenchies tend to have great temperaments and make for a wonderful companion dogs.