Meet the Breed: The French Bulldog



  • Height: 12”
  • Weight: 19-28 pounds
  • Historical function: Companion
  • Modern function: Companion
  • AKC classification: Non-Sporting

Physical Characteristics:

The French Bulldog is a compact, sturdy, muscular dog with a brachycephalic muzzle, round eyes, and bat-like ears. The chest is broad and tapers to narrow hips. The skin is loose and wrinkled. The coat is short and may be brindle, fawn, white, and brindle and white. "Designer" colors such as solid black with no brindling, black and tan, and Mouse (blue-gray) are a sales gimmick and are not endorsed by the parent breeder clubs. Because of their short muzzles, they often snore, sometimes drool, and have difficulty tolerating temperature extremes.

History of the Breed:

In spite of the name, the French Bulldog actually originated in England where bulldogs were bred down in size to be companions. They were particularly popular with the working class of lacemakers who migrated to France in the 1860s during the Industrial Revolution. They took their dogs with them where they became very popular with the French elite. Wealthy American tourists brought them back to the United States where the breed was further refined. They dwindled with the World Wars and became fairly rare.


The French Bulldog is easy to get along with, playful, and happiest with their people.

  • Best suited for: A moderate climate as they have difficulties breathing in hot weather. Excellent apartment-dwelling companions.
  • Preferred living conditions: These dogs were bred for companionship and will not thrive without an involved owner.

Care and Health:

  • Grooming requirements: Easy-care short, single coat require minimal brushing.
  • Exercise needs: Daily walk and play.
  • Life expectancy: 10-12 years.
  • Health concerns: May be prone to skin allergies, back, heart, thyroid, and breathing problems. Expect to pay more for this pet's dog bills. Sensitive to anesthesia. 

Breed Club Links: French Bull Dog Club of America Perfect Pairings: We recommend harnesses for this breed to protect their delicate backs and tracheas. We also offer a wide variety of cooling products to help this dog adjust to hot weather.

Have any stories about a French Bulldog? Please share!

Photo courtesy of Matthew Kenwrick.

This entry was posted by Mary.
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