French bulldogs have become increasingly popular due to their many advantages and their overall cuteness. Let’s have a look at some of the most frequently ask questions to clear up some misconceptions and replace them with French Bulldog Facts!
French Bulldog Fact 1: Life expectancy
With an average life expectancy of 8 – 12 years, French Bulldogs fall in the lower end of lifespan when compared to other dog breeds. Veterinarians attribute this to the numerous health problems that can plague this breed such as
- Skin, eye and ear infections,
- Upper respiratory tract infections,
- Genetic disorders
Apparently, cuteness in the form of a short snout, bat ears and skin folds have a downside and any prospective owner should be aware of the many potential problem areas. However, good health maintenance, a balanced diet and an appropriate amount exercise can go a long way to avoid many of the health issues.
It draws on the experience and knowledge of a whole community of French Bulldog experts and includes topics on:
- General French Bulldog care (skin folds, face and ear cleaning, nails)
- Training from day one,
- Essentials for puppy owners,
- Nutritional secrets for best coat,
- Which foods are best and what should to avoided,
- Proper exercise regimen,
- How to select the right Frenchie for you.
French Bulldogs Fact 2: Cost of French Bulldogs
Frenchies do not come cheap! Because of their unusual delivery (C-section) and extensive prenatal care, fixed costs for breeders are high. Expect to spend $2,500 and up for a French Bulldog puppy. Rare fur coloring and patterns will drive the price up even more!
Other significant factors that will add to the overall cost of a French Bulldog lie within their care and maintenance. Due to their physical features (short snout, skin folds), Frenchies are prone to visit the vet more often than other breeds.
After the initial cost to buy the puppy, expect to pay around $100 – 200 per month for quality food, and health related services. If you own a Frenchie with lots of health problems, costs can be significantly higher.
As mentioned above, many health problems of French Bulldogs originate from breeders selecting for “cuteness” and rare fur coloring instead of healthy traits. If your dog’s well-being is more important to you than exclusivity, check the breeders’ reputation and track record in regards to health problems. Not only will this save you money in the long run, but your Frenchie will have a much happier life.
French Bulldog Fact 3: Shedding – Do French Bulldogs Shed ?
The short answer is yes, French bulldogs do shed. However, because of their compact size and short coat, French Bulldogs shed less fur when compared to most other breeds.
Typically, most of the shedding is concentrated around Spring and Fall when the undercoat changes to provide more ventilation or insulation, depending on the upcoming season. This is completely normal and should be expected.
Sometimes, increased shedding can occur when you Frenchie has Food allergies or when certain nutritional deficiencies exist. If you notice unusual shedding, pay close attention to what your dog eats and try to narrow down the offending food. Helpful tips can be found in this French Bulldog eBook, which has an excellent section on dietary advice.
French Bulldog Fact 4: French Bulldog Coats are very Diverse
French Bulldogs come in a wide variety of colors, which has contributed greatly to their appeal. Officially, the American Kennel Club distinguishes between the following French Bulldog Colors:
- Brindle & White
- Fawn & White
- Fawn Brindle
- White & Brindle
- White & Fawn
However, unless you plan on taking your Frenchie to dog show competitions, the official designations won’t matter much. Instead, the following French Bulldog Colors are more commonly known:
Blue Fawn French Bulldog
The Blue Fawn French Bulldog has one of the rarest coat colors. However, just like with most things in life, this exceptional trait comes with a downside: The blue fawn French Bulldog gets its appearance through a skin condition called CDA (Color Dilution Alopecia).
Along with a bluish tint, dogs with CDA (other breeds are affected as well) will often suffer from premature hair loss resulting in a patchy appearance. CDA is also responsible for other skin conditions, including recurring skin infections, which will get exacerbated by your Frenchie’s general tendency to get skin infections.
Overall, although pretty and rare, it is not a good idea to get a Blue Fawn French Bulldog. There are just too many heath issues and your dog will be the one who has to live with them. Even if you have the financial resources, you might not want to because you would be driving up the demand for these vulnerable creatures.
Fawn French Bulldog
The coat of Fawn French Bulldogs does not have any patches, spots or stripes and usually appears light brown. If you are aiming for a more rare coat but don’t want to have all the health problems associated with Blue Fawn Frenchies, this is a great choice.
Brindle French Bulldog
This is one of the most common coats for Frenchies. It’s characteristics are stripes and spots that are similar in shade to the base color of the coat. These patterns are very characteristic for Brindle colored French Bulldogs and make for a good identifier – kind of like a fingerprint for people.
French Bulldog Fact 5: Allergies – Are French Bulldogs Hypoallergenic?
In short: No. Although Frenchies do shed less than say a Beagle or a German Shepard, they do loose a fair amount of coat, especially during Spring and Fall.
That being said, if you are allergic to dog hair and still want to own a French Bulldog, you can do the following to reduce the amount of allergens you are exposed to:
- Keep your Frenchie well groomed: Removing the dander from their skin through regular grooming will prevent the allergy-causing skin particles from accumulating in your home.
- Wash your linen and vacuum regularly: If allergens get on furniture and bed linen, it’s important to vacuum them away regularly.
- Consider getting an HEPA air purifier: Most allergens enter your body through the air you breath. If you live with a French bulldog (or any other dog for that matter), you can limit the amount of allergens you breath in by purifying the air with a HEPA filter. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy. The one below is getting good reviews and cost less than $100. That’s well worth it!
- Have your dog wear a T-shirt: This prevents allergens from freely falling off your dog. However, keep in mind that you have to wash the T-shirt regularly, and, it being a loose T-shirt, it’s probably not very effective.
French Bulldog Fact 6: Origins of French Bulldogs
Curiously, their origins trace back to lace makers in England who began selectively breeding smaller bulldogs as low maintenance lab pets to keep them company during their long work day.
Later on, they became a sensation in Paris from where their reputation as low maintenance companion dogs spread across the world. If you’d like to read more about French Bulldog history, click here.
Swimming – Do French Bulldogs Swim?
Sadly, French Bulldogs are terrible swimmers. Which is to say, they will most likely drown when they fall into water deep enough to where their short feet cannot reach the floor. Their bodies are just too compact for any effective swimming motions. That’s why French Bulldog owners must take great care to keep their companions away from any body of water other than shallow puddles. Alternatively, a life jacket for French bulldogs can be used to keep them floating in case of an accident.