What’s not to love about a French Bulldog? They have large bat like ears, big googly eyes, and thoroughly enjoy a good snuggle. That’s what makes this breed one of the most popular companion dogs in the world today. The French Bulldog is small (less than 30lbs) but substantial in build with a powerful muscular body. They have a short, easy to care for coat that accompanies and easy going personality, which makes them ideal for first time pet parents. These compact dogs do not need a lot of space, so they are also good candidates for apartment living.
The Origin of the French Bulldog:
The French Bulldog originated in England and was created to be a toy-size version of the Bulldog. The breed was quite popular among lace workers in the city of Nottingham and when many lace workers emigrated to France for better opportunities, they naturally brought their little bulldogs with them! The French Bulldog thrived in France and Europe, and their charm was soon discovered by Americans as well. The United States saw its first French Bulldog at the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1896. The breed was quickly nicknamed “Frenchie” and that moniker has stuck with them until present day!
Care & Grooming:
A high quality dog food appropriate to the dog’s age will provide all the nutrients the breed requires. Frenchies are prone to obesity, which can damage their physical structure and puts them at higher risk for some of the breed’s health issues making it vital to watch their calorie intake and weight. If you choose to give your dog treats, do so in moderation and check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or health.
French Bulldogs are easy to groom and need only an occasional brushing (weekly) to keep their coat healthy. They do shed, but regular brushing will help to reduce the mess around the house. When bathing, be sure to clean and properly dry the facial folds and wrinkles. They can be prone to bacterial infection, so ensuring they are clean and dry will minimize that. It’s recommended to use a mild shampoo like oatmeal or hypoallergenic on this breed as they are prone to sensitive skin and allergies. The ears should be cleaned regularly, as well as regular nail clipping. Be sure to start when the dog is young to ease them into the process.
Common Health Issues:
Poor Frenchie with 'Cherry Eye'
Because of their front-heavy structure, Frenchies cannot swim and should never be left unattended near a tub, pool, or body of water. Like all flat faced breeds, Frenchies are prone to breathing problems and do poorly in hot or humid weather. Flat faced breeds are also more sensitive to anesthesia. Frenchies occasionally have eye conditions such as cherry eye, juvenile cataracts, or entropion. Skin allergies and autoimmune skin disorders are also known to occur. A responsible breeder will take advantage of available tests to screen breeding stock for conditions that can affect the breed. Recommended health tests include:
These small but sturdy dogs with a large personality are ideal for companion pets on many levels. They are great for apartments, easy for first time pet parents, and good with children. They are low maintenance for grooming and exercise but do come with some genetic health issues to consider. They have an average life expectancy of approximately 11-14 years. When socialized at a young age, they tend do get along well with other dogs and cats. Overly spoiled Frenchies, however, may be jealous toward other dogs, especially if those other dogs are getting attention from the Frenchies very own person. Frenchies are so versatile, its no wonder they have a very long history as beloved companion animals.
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