The French Bulldog is one of the most unique dogs there is. Already his funny outlook amuses people, not to mention his temperament. So it is hard indeed to make a walk with the Frenchie without drawing attention. Few people can suppress a smile when seeing a French Bulldog and the bravest ones approach and try to guess which breed this peculiar little dog is.
THE LITTLE BULL
The French Bulldog weighs 8-14 kg. Regardless of his small size the French Bulldog is very masculine and sporty, like a miniature bull.
Usually the first thing that draws ones attention to this little Frenchman is his big square head with two big bat ears and big round wide set eyes. The nose is extremely broad and large, the skin around the head two sizes too big. The tail is innately very short, sometimes almost non-existing, although the tail is NOT docked. The same applies to the bat like ears, which very soon after birth stays upright.
The French Bulldog may seem very clumsy but he moves surprisingly gracefully. Few people can catch a running Frenchie not to mention being able to outrun him.
THE BIG BIG EGO OF THE TINY TINY DOG
Although the temperament of men as the temperament of dogs is different the Frenchman most often is a real source of joy in the life of his owner. The Frenchie is extremely fond of children feeling some kind of companionship with them. When seeing a child the French Bulldog is filled with enthusiasm, he wants at once to play with “this lovely two-legged creature”. The Frenchie also likes to be the centre of attention so one must quite sincerely admit that the Frenchman is not meant to be a watchdog.
The French Bulldog is astoundingly full of himself so they have no need to bark or fear other dogs. This is clearly a trait that baffles other dogs because it is not a customary behaviour of little dogs. So the Frenchie has to be a tiny tiny puppy of a big big dog…or a French Bulldog.
A WORLD CHAMPION ADJUSTER
One of the special traits of the Frenchie is the ability to adjust him to anything (at least almost anything). With a Frenchie you can do anything you like and live everywhere. The French Bulldog is always willing to make long walks or short romps or to play with you but on the other hand they are far too comfort-loving to do anything at all.
Naturally the French Bulldog likes to live in the countryside but they also fit nicely into suburban living. Usually most Frenchies never bark so the neighbours do not always even know there is a dog living on the other side of the wall. In addition the need of exercise for the French Bulldog is entirely dependant of the owner’s taste. The French Bulldog is quite happy just going out around the block or he might like really big long walks.
The French Bulldog is an ideal dog for every kind of activity, especially if you like challenges. Or you can take part in obedience competitions or agility not to mention more exotic sports like ruins etc. But to be quite honest by choosing any other breed you make things much easier for yourself. Not that the Frenchie is not capable of learning all those aforementioned things, but the Frenchie often wants to do things in his own way. But it is sensible of you not to dream of reaching higher levels than the elementary ones.
Vis-à-vis the company he keeps the French Bulldog is not very selective, if necessary he plays happily alone with himself. As the Frenchie is a born leader there might sometimes occur problems with big dogs if the bigger dogs do not give up voluntarily the leadership. But sometimes the big ones do not always comprehend that they have already given up the leadership because they have difficulties in dealing with this eternal child.
NOTHING SO GOOD THAT SOMETHING BAD
Absolutely the worst thing about the Frenchie is the dependency that he creates in his owner. After having experienced a life with a Frenchman you are liable to find other breeds a real bore.
One has to take in consideration that French bulldogs are prone to certain diseases and health conditions, mainly due to the structure of the dog. Typical health issues concerning frenchies are brachycephalic airway syndrome (breathing problems, BOAS) and abnormalities of the vertebrae, such as the hemivertebrae, spondylosis and calcification of the intervertebral discs (which can cause Intervertebral disk disease i.e. herniated disk). In addition, autoimmune diseases, such as allergies, are not uncommon among French bulldogs. In some cases also eyes and hips are the cause of health problems.
The French Bulldog club of Finland aims to maintain and improve on the health of the breed e.g. by giving guidance on breeding and supporting the breeders who perform official health tests for their dogs. The French Bulldog club also educates anyone planning of purchasing a French bulldog puppy.
In addition, The Frenchie is not a good swimmer, so falling into water may end fatally. Also the danger for heat strokes even in Finland’s summer is great so it is not recommended to take long walks on sunny days. You should also consider thoroughly before taking part in agility especially with a male, as the Frenchie is a rather heavily built dog. Generally speaking the breeds with a broad and large nose do not live long, and this applies also to the French Bulldog.
In our Finnish pages you will find more information on the health issues (try Google translate feature found in the footer of the page!). For information on BOAS, we recommend visiting the internet site hosted by Cambridge BOAS Research Group. An extensive package of information regarding the health of Frenchies, can also be found here.
WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND
Regardless of how critical you try to be towards the Frenchie you always end up with the same conclusion. It is no doubt the best breed in the world, at least worthwhile to make acquaintance with. So we can finish off by saying that the Frenchman is not just any breed but rather a concept.