How to make your French Bulldog a Happy Dog

Posted by donna@pethangout 01/19/2017 1 Comment(s)

Blog post 10 lead slide of a cute frenchie bulldog


You will be hard pressed to find another dog that will make you smile and laugh as much as this breed.   

Of course each one has their own unique personality but as a general guideline to follow, be prepared to be amazed and entertained with their spunky little antics. 

Despite their playful demeanor,  the French bulldog does have some physical challenges due to their smashed in face, short legs, and top-heavy heads.   They may have a hard time breathing in certain environments and normally cannot mate left to their own ability. 

Before we learn how to keep one of these sweet dogs happy and healthy, let’s explore some history and facts about this intriguing breed.

The French Bulldog is affectionately known as “frenchies”.   During the Industrial Revolution, lace factory workers  wanted companions and first tried the dwarf version of the English Bulldog. Then, they  crossed it with the Pug and the Terrier.    The name, ‘French Bulldog’ rose from the fact that many of the workers migrated to France with their dogs to find work.

Do you already have a Frenchie? 

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The French Bulldogs heritage - pug, english bulldog and the boston terrier


The lowdown on the Frenchie:

Exercise: They are good at sitting around and being cute – does not require a lot of exercise because of their laborious breathing

French Bulldog relaxing and chilling

Colors: Brendle, fawn ,white, or black and a mix of these colors

Height: Stands between 11 – 13 inches tall

Weight:  Up to 28 lbs

Lifespan:  10 – 12 years

Hypoallergenic:  No

Temperature:  Can withstand the cold weather but doesn’t fair well in extended heat

Water:  They cannot swim because of being top heavy with their large head.

French Bulldogs cannot swim because of being top heavy

Face wrinkles:  They get from the bulldog (which purpose was to flow blood away from the head should the dog be injured in a fight)

Bat ears:  Perked up ears are a must – early breeders preferred floppy rose ears but not anymore

Reproductive challenges:  Because of being top heavy, narrow hips, and weak legs - they cannot naturally mate – they have to be artificially inseminated. 

Price:  Average cost between $1,400 and $8,500.   Because of challenges with breeding, cost is higher.  And you may have to be on a waiting list for this ultra popular pup. 

Puppy Birth:  Because of their large heads and small hips, the female may have to have a c-section instead of giving birth.   Breeding is a bit tricky.

Grooming:  Can be very easy – just a wash and nail clipping.   Be sure to use a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner to prevent flaky skin.

Health:   Their smashed in face causes them to be noisy and laborious breathers - not comfortable playing hours of fetch.  Also, they are prone to thyroid conditions, eye irritations, and spinal diseases.

Training:  Not huge on tricks but will learn a few basics – they are more interested in how you can please them... ha ha

Temperament:  Lively, playful, affectionate, bright, stubborn but never bite – great with kids/family;  Great companions, enjoying being with their humans

French Bulldog with his ownerFrench Bulldogs like to play with balls

Living space:  If you are tight on space, this breed is perfect for you!   They don’t require much exercise or large spaces to live.  They are happy and content just being near and dear to you!   Great for apartment living since less exercise required - one of the top breeds for big cities like New York.


How to keep them healthy and happy!

  • DO keep folds on face clean and dry.  Make sure to clean eyes periodically too to avoid eye irritations.
  • DO brush coat at least once a week to remove shedding hair
  • Do bathe them at least once a month.  Use a moisturizing conditioner to combat dry skin.
  • DO let them cohabitate with you – sleep close and interact with you
  • DO get them an animal brother or sister.  Doesn’t necessarily have to be another dog.  They love other animals.

French Bulldog playing with other dogs

  • Do give them structure and teach them with a loving “No”.   They are stubborn and want their way.  You will have to be persistent to win over this attitude.
  • Do pick your battles.   Let “frenchie” win sometimes.  If he wants one more treat, give in.

French Bulldog looking a bit subborn

  • Do let them live inside with you!  Never outside!
  • DON'T make them walk too far – about 15 minutes a day is sufficient.  Remember, it is hard for them to breath sometimes because of their shorten nasal passages.
  • DO  If you love to walk or run, buy them a stroller and take them with you!  Just don’t expect them to walk a lot.
  • DO let them go for car rides  
  • DON'T leave them outside in really hot temps.   However, they can fair the cold and snow just fine.

Black Frenchie dog in the snow.

  • DO feed twice / day – about ½ - ¾ cup each time to avoid overweight
  • DO remember to laugh with your frenchie and be patient when they get into trouble!
  • DO talk to them – they are incredibly bright and have been known to talk back to you.  They love communicating with their humans.
  • DO give them a small and safe cuddly place to sleep and did we mention a brother or sister?

Two French Bulldogs sleeping peacfully



This compilation video of Frenchies will give you a quick look at what it's like to have one as a pet:

And to see their playfulness at its finest, ya gotta watch these!


To sum it all up, French Bulldogs can add so much love and warmth to your home.    Although their stubborn and sneaky ways may get them into trouble, the amount of affection and laughs they bring to your life will far outweigh any negative moments with this purebred sweetie.    Remember: Give them a safe and warm environment indoors and keep their face clean so that infections cannot set in;   Don't expose them to prolonged periods of heat or require them to exercise too vigorously.

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1 Comment(s)

Debbie manier:
04/30/2021, 02:33:02 PM

How much water should a French ie driink

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