Other names: Frenchie
The French Bulldog is a small-statured, bold and loyal watchdog who is very attached to his social group. His devotion to his group can even sometimes make him a little possessive. A very pleasant pet, he isn’t sporty but very much enjoys playing with both the young and elderly, as long as it doesn’t tire him out too much. From the Brachycephalic race, his flat snout doesn’t allow him enough breathing capacity to endure the intensity of some activities. This dog will particularly appreciate owners who are able to be present frequently, as the breed hates nothing more than being alone. He suits a number of profiles and can adapt to a multitude of situations
Key facts about the French Bulldog
Origins and history
The history of this pet is rather mysterious. The French claim that he is a dog native to their country, but the English maintain that he descends from the Bulldog. It is likely that he was influenced by the latter, but nonetheless, it is undeniable that the selection and popularity of this breed began in France.
At the beginning, the Bulldog had two uses: as a rat hunter and guard dog. No wonder he was so popular among butchers and wine sellers, whose stables and wine houses he kept.
However, thanks to his lovely and intelligent personality, he quickly left the stables! At the beginning of the 20th century, you could find him in the houses of nobles, the rich and even in the royal courts, but also in poor areas, where he protected prostitutes and naughty boys.
Today, the French Bulldog is very popular in the United Kingdom
FCI breed nomenclature
Group 9 - Companion and Toy Dogs
Section 11 : Small Molossian type Dogs
Physical characteristics of the French Bulldog
Female : Between 9 and 13 in
Male : Between 11 and 14 in
Female : Between 18 and 29 lb
Male : Between 20 and 31 lb
His coat can be a variety of colours:
- Fawn (all shades are possible, from red to beige and lighter to darker)
- Brindle (fawn with stripe-like markings)
- Pied (brindle coat with strong or more subtle white patches)
- Fawn pied (fawn coat with strong or more subtle white patches)
French Bulldogs that are predominantly white are bred, but not so sought after due to their association with deafness. A black mask is particularly desired. However, blue French Bulldogs are not recognised.
Type of coat
This dog’s hair is short.
The hair is dense, shiny and soft. This pet does not have an undercoat.
His eyes are always dark, regardless of the colour of the coat.
Despite his small size, the French Bulldog is powerful. His frame is solid and his body muscular. Everything about him is short and stocky, his brevilineal look making him appear compact. His square head, pointy ears and flat muzzle make him look grumpy at times, which contrasts with his sweet personality.
Good to know
The writer Colette once laughed “I have four dog and a bulldog”, and for good reason, lovers of this little pup agree that he is far from being just a dog: he is without a doubt a mixture of dog, human and cat.
As a result, the attitudes of this dog are often disarming, especially when he sits on the sofa, sat on his bottom with his four paws close together.
Additionally, note that this Brachycephalic dog is a very loud snorer and his heavy breathing can be somewhat disturbing for some people. It is a quality that can often make you smile, but it’s only a consequence of an ever more choosy selection process of this poor dog.
Very attached to his social group, this small dog can be just as needy as he is discrete. Despite this ambivalence, he remains a very pleasant companion that loves being the centre of attention, whether to entertain his onlookers or to be cuddled.
His overflowing affection can drive him to be somewhat possessive towards his owner.
As an active and happy pup, the French Bulldog loves to play and as a result, can be very helpful in lightening the mood. He loves playing with children, but parental supervision will be necessary to initiate the beginning and end of the game especially. This little dog won’t always know when to stop - exhaustion is usually his only reason!
Naturally both joyful and peaceful, this pet can wear both hats. Which way he leans will mostly depend on his training, temperament and lineage.
In any case, whether he’s with children or seniors, he will be able to adapt to exert the appropriate level of energy.
This pup is indeed smart, but he is often not recognised for it. Often thought of as a simple pet that merely snores and sleeps on the sofa, his abilities are often forgotten about.
The French Bulldog will demonstrate his abilities if his owner takes the time to provide him with adapted training sessions and if he is rewarded for his good behaviour.
Far from being a hunter, the predator instinct is barely present in the French Bulldog. Around other species, he will sometimes by playful, other times ignorant.
Fearful / wary of strangers
The French Bulldog is not at all shy or aggressive towards strangers. He will happily greet guests or anyone else that offers him attention.
That said, as a rather possessive pet, he will always prioritise contact with his owner if he is present.
This dog can be very clingy with members of his social group. However, it is not uncommon for him to take more distance, particularly if it’s to lie down on the bed or sofa.
You might think this makes for a certain independence, but on the contrary: the French Bulldog may leave his owner’s side, but he will always choose a resting spot that smells strongly of him or her.
Behaviour of the French Bulldog
His sensitivity and attachment to his owner makes him a dog that does not allow for much solitude. To thrive, he has to be in company, so he shouldn’t be left alone for long days.
Easy to train / obedience
The French Bulldog’s stubbornness is a trait that his owners can find disconcerting. However, a patient, firm and coherent approach will manage to convince this hard-headed pup to cooperate.
Training should start early, and he must learn the basics quickly to allow him to properly integrate into his social group and society overall.
Despite what it may seem, the French Bulldog has a sensitive personality, with aggressive and coercive approaches only damaging his relationship with his owner.
The approach to training this dog will have to be softened so as not to harm him, both physically and emotionally. Fun training environments should be fostered, with games and/or treats given as rewards.
For this pet, the expression to use “an iron fist a velvet glove” could not be more appropriate.
Finally, his training shouldn’t be neglected on the pretext that he is a small dog. Regardless of the size of the dog we adopt, proper training is always necessary.
These little dogs are famous for "singing", and indeed, they do have an unusual way of conveying their excitement, discontent and impatience.
However, this little Bulldog never barks for no reason; if he barks, it is advisable to try to pinpoint the cause to solve the issue.