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Spotlight On The French Bulldog 
January 1, 2024

January 13th is French Bulldog Day! These curious, lovable pooches definitely have lots to celebrate. They’re now America’s most popular dog! For the past three decades, the Labrador Retriever was happily sitting in that top spot, with a cheerful grin and a happy panting. These comical little dogs have knocked the Lab down to second place, which is really no mean feat. Fido was also the top dog in the AKC’s kennel events this year. A local East Indianapolis, IN vet puts the Frenchie in the spotlight in this article.

French Bulldogs: Breed Basics

The French Bulldog has a big heart and a huge personality, both of which are stuffed into a small, compact body. The typical Frenchie weighs under 30 pounds. These guys live about 10 to 12 years, on average. As for their coats, they have that short, sleek fur, which is easy to care for and requires only minimal grooming. There is also a fluffy variation of the breed. Those dogs can cost up to $30,000!

Why Are Frenchies So Popular?

There really is a lot to love about these dogs. They’re charming, easy to care for, and lots of fun. They also don’t need too much exercise, and want nothing more than to snuggle up with their humans. 

Why Are French Bulldogs Stolen So Often? 

Unfortunately, Fido’s charms sometimes backfire. French Bulldogs are also among the most frequently stolen dogs. Not only do they fetch top dollar, they’re also small enough to be snatched. In one recent case, a woman in Washington D.C. received a ransom demand after her Frenchie was stolen. (The pooch has since been located and is now safe at home.)

We would advise taking some basic precautions. Make sure that Fido is microchipped and wearing ID tags. Never leave your dog unattended, and be extra vigilant at places like parks and public areas, where someone could grab him. Spaying or neutering can also help, as this will at least discourage breeders. You may also want to equip your pup with a pet tracker, such as GPS tags. Last but not least, keep your adoption paperwork. Being able to prove ownership can make all the difference in a court case.

What Kind Of Temperament Do French Bulldogs Have?

It’s no wonder that Fido is now the most popular dog in America. French Bulldogs have wonderful personalities. They are playful and affectionate, and tend to make friends with everyone. However, that isn’t to say that these guys are perfect. They can be a bit stubborn, and are quite protective. Proper training is a must! They get very attached to their humans, and tend to get lonely and unhappy if left alone too long.

French Bulldog: Health Concerns

Like all other breeds, the Frenchie is prone to a few specific health issues. Respiratory problems are at the top of the list. Frenchies are brachycephalic, which means that they have short airways. That composition is responsible for their adorable, slightly smooshed-looking faces, but it can also cause a slew of health issues.

Fido is also susceptible to eye problems, such as cherry eye, as well as skin issues. Intervertebral disc disease is also not uncommon for them. Certain tests are recommended for this breed. These include patella, hip, and ophthalmologist evaluations, as well as cardiac exams. Ask your East Indianapolis, IN vet for specific advice.

What Dog Breeds Did The French Bulldog Come From?

The breed first became popular with French lacemakers. Fido appears to have originated as a cross between Paris’ ratter dogs and the toy Bulldogs that were imported from England. The breed was first developed in Normandy in the mid nineteenth century. Though the bulldogs in Fido’s family tree were historically used for bull-baiting and pit fighting, the French bulldog has always been a companion dog. In fact, when bull baiting was outlawed, back in the 1830’s, breeders focused on eliminating aggressive tendencies. (They also gave Fido the bat ears he’s now known for.) Mission accomplished! Frenchies are lovable and affectionate, and are happiest with their humans. Like most other companion dogs, these guys don’t have any specific roles or jobs that they are suited for: their whole purpose is centered around cuddling with and entertaining their humans.

Why Are French Bulldogs So Special?

These pups do have a way of melting hearts with their bat ears, stout bodies, and expressive faces. They’re also just great pets. They’re a wonderful choice for city dwellers, as they don’t need much exercise or room and usually don’t bark without reason.

What Food Should I Not Give A French Bulldog?

Because of their small stature, Frenchies are prone to obesity. They also really, really, really love food. You’ll need to avoid giving your dog anything that is high in fat. That includes fried foods, cheese, and fatty meats, like bacon and sausage. (Sorry, buddy!) Anything high in salt should also be avoided, as this can lead to health issues, such as dehydration.

It’s worth mentioning that Frenchies are very, very good at plying us with those sad expressions that are so effective at getting us to fork over tasty treats. Steel yourself!

What Do French Bulldogs Love?

If we could ask Fido what his favorite things are, we’re pretty sure that napping and eating would be at the top of the list. These pooches also love playing. Of course, they are extremely affectionate, and also crave attention and cuddles from their humans. (In other words, naps, treats, and belly rubs will get that little tail going.) 

How Do I Take Care Of A French Bulldog?

For the most part, Fido’s care needs are the same as that of any other pooch: he requires good food, suitable exercise, regular veterinary care, and, of course, lots of love and attention. However, there are a few caveats. You’ll need to be very, very careful around water: Frenchies absolutely cannot swim. And, because they’re so short, they can be in serious danger in just a few inches of water. 

Like other brachys, these guys are extremely susceptible to overheating, as their short airways aren’t very helpful at cooling them off. Never let your dog overexert himself, and take care to keep him cool on hot days. You may want to get your canine pal a cooling mat or vest for summer.

We would also recommend being mindful about what you have at Fido’s eye level. You don’t have to go too crazy, but we would advise against putting sharp, thorny plants in spots where your pooch could run into them.

Last but not least, it’s also important to know that Frenchies, like other flat-faced dogs, are more sensitive to anesthesia than other pooches. This is something to talk to your East Indianapolis, IN vet about. 

What Celebrities Have French Bulldogs?

Fido has made a few high-profile fans. Actor and rapper Snoop Dogg may be the most prolific. Snoop’s pup, Frank, actually went missing for a month back in 2022, but was later reunited with his owner. Megan Thee Stallion has six dogs, two of which are Frenchies. One of these, 4oe even has his own Instagram account, and made a guest appearance on The Tonight Show in 2022. Reese Witherspoon has had at least two Frenchies. Last but not least, we have Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and his canine buddies, Brutus and Hobbs. (Brutus, unfortunately, passed away after eating a poisoned mushroom.)

Why Do French Bulldogs Often Have Dental Problems?

It’s not unusual for small dogs to have dental issues. The Frenchie is no exception. Fido doesn’t have much room for 42 teeth, and is a bit prone to issues such as overcrowding and misalignments. You’ll also need to keep his choppers clean, to help ward off gum disease and other issues. Ask your East Indianapolis, IN vet for specific advice. 

Do you have questions about caring for a French Bulldog? Contact us, your local East Indianapolis, IN pet clinic, today!