French Bulldog pros and cons.
When you look at that cute wee face it’s hard to imagine there are any cons to owning a French Bulldog but for all the happiness these little guys can bring into your life, there are some things to weigh up. In this post we’re going to look at the French Bulldog pros and cons in depth. We’ll be going through the serious things that you need to think about before getting a Frenchie and also, the slightly more light hearted and humorous issues.
So let’s start off with the pros.
French Bulldog pro and cons (the pros).
1: These guys will make you smile!
There isn’t a day goes by where our Frenchie doesn’t make us laugh in some way. Her protective nature as she picks a fight with something on the tv, her refusal to get out of bed in the mornings or her celebration lap of the park she does after every single toilet break. The list goes on. The French Bulldog is packed with character and each one has their own selection of hilarious traits. Keep in mind that what makes some people smile and laugh makes others turn their nose up (I’m referring to snoring and farts mainly.)
2: They’re very intelligent.
We’ve found Frenchie’s to be quick learners. Of the two that we’ve owned and several other’s we’ve looked after we haven’t really had to use a lead much. We live in a low traffic area by the sea so I wouldn’t recommend letting your Frenchie run free if you’re in the middle of a busy city but there is a side of them that’s easy to train. Especially when motivated by food! The problem with intelligence is that with it comes stubbornness. We’ll cover that in the cons section. Our Frenchie Kikka will wait at the kerb before crossing the road on command and picked up on all other commands pretty quick.
3: They’re strong.
I mean, it’s unlikely that you’re going to need your Frenchie to plough a field when your Ox isn’t feeling too well but they’re very sturdy little dogs. We’ve been amazed time and time again at some of the terrain or dog tackles with ease when we’re climbing hills in Scotland.
4: They’re super chilled.
French Bulldogs absolutely love to relax. If you’re planning a lazy Sunday in front of the TV then it’s highly likely that your Frenchie will be more than happy to snuggle up beside you and catch up on some extra Z’s. The great thing is that they’re not at all lazy. Take them out to climb a mountain and they’ll do it with no fuss but they will sleep a lot the next day. Our dog doesn’t do early mornings and she definitely does early nights. They need exercise just like any other dog but they’re not exactly hyper.
5: French Bulldogs are very affectionate.
Don’t be surprised to find that your curious little pooch follows you all around the home regardless of what you’re doing. They’re a very curious breed and like to be close by. We often compare our’s to a cat in the sense that she will sit next to whoever scratches her. If you don’t like to be licked you may not want one. They will lick you, they will rub their nose on you and they will leave hair all over you.
6: Smaller dogs require less food……kind of.
Our Frenchie is only 10kg and quite small for her age but in general, Frenchie’s weigh from 8/9kg – 15kg (around 20-30 pounds approx.) Although Kikka has an appetite like a Bear just out of hibernation, we feed her the recommended amount for her weight. Small dog, small stomach, less food. We feed our dog a mix of Veggiedog and Beco dog food topped with sardines. and a 12kg bag of food will last us around 6 weeks.
7: They’re not loud.
Frenchies are quite protective and will bark at any perceived threats (and the doorbell and the postman) but they’re typically not barky dogs. There are obviously exceptions to the rule but for the most part they are quiet dogs and of a mellow nature.
French Bulldog pros and cons (the cons.)
Sadly, it’s not all plain sailing when it comes to owning a French Bulldog and they are definitely a major life commitment. Let’s look at the financial implications of owning a Frenchie and also the time you need to give to one in order to give them a good life.
1: French Bulldogs are expensive.
French Bulldogs don’t come cheap. Puppies are well into the thousands and even older dogs come at a cost. In one of my previous posts ‘French Bulldog Cost (it’s not just financial)’ I talk more about the initial cost of buying a French Bulldog and the option of adopting a dog that needs rehoming. The post talks also talks about the ongoing financial costs of owning a French Bulldog.
3: Insurance can be more expensive than other dogs.
As the French Bulldog can be associated with various health issues, this is often reflected in insurance costs and it is recommended that you get insurance. It’s worth getting some insurance quote before you take the plunge and keep in mind that many insurers will not insure against pre existing conditions.
3: They can be very stubborn.
With the French Bulldog intelligence comes the stubbornness. If they don’t want to go somewhere they will simply park up and refuse to move, often looking the other way when you call their name like a huffy child. Although this can be quite comical at times their stubborn nature can pose a few difficulties when it comes to training them. It’s not impossible to overcome though, they just require a little patience.
4: They fart!
Of course they fart. Everyone farts but these little guys must be the absolute pound for pound champions when it comes down to clearing a room. They may be small but don’t let that fool you as they can pack a powerful punch that rivals any skunk.
6: They can shed.
I cover this in more detail in another post ‘Do French Bulldogs shed? How to deal with French Bulldog shedding.’ If you’re looking for a dog that doesn’t shed and is hypoallergenic then the French Bulldog is not the right choice. Our previous Frenchie shed much less than our current one but she still shed a bit. There are things you can do to keep on top of this, like regular brushing. Check out the linked post for more info on this.
7: They don’t like to be left alone.
Most dogs don’t like to be left alone but French Bulldogs in particular can be known to suffer from separation anxiety. They love to have someone around and like to have company, even if they’re just having a nap. Our dog will make a point of following you about the home just so she can settle down beside you and have a nap while you go about your business. We’re in the fortunate position that one of us works from home and the other works shifts so there almost always someone in the house. If we go out she mostly comes with us.
If your home is likely to be unoccupied through the day and taking a dog with you isn’t an option, getting a French Bulldog probably isn’t a good choice for you. Separation anxiety can be very stressful for a dog and although it’s acceptable to leave your dog for an hour here and there, going out to work for 5-6 hours whilst your Frenchie is left at home isn’t fair.
French Bulldog pros and cons (potential health issues.)
In this final section we’ll look at some of the potential health issues that can be associated with French Bulldogs. Note that I said can be associated. This is not to say that all Frenchies come with an expensive health condition but it’s certainly not uncommon.
Both of our French Bulldogs have had grain allergies which requires a certain type of food. Our previous Frenchie had severe epilepsy. Our current Frenchie has a heart condition and there are a few conditions which are commonly associated with this particular breed. I’ve listed a handful below but this is by no means an extensive list:
BOAS (short for Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome.)
In short, this relates to breathing issues which can be common in dogs with short noses. French Bulldogs fall into this bracket, as do Pugs and a few other breeds. Most Frenchies will make a few noises or snore to some extent but for some the problem can be severe and lead to real problems. Often these problems require expensive surgery to correct.
Back problems/disc problems.
French Bulldogs can also be susceptible to issues with their lowers spine, near the back legs. Spinal problems can be very painful for the dog and distressing for both the dogs and their owners. You might see the term ‘IVDD’ when researching French Bulldog back and disc problems. This stands for ‘Intervertebral Disc Disease’ and there are entire forums online dedicated to this. The good news about these about these forums is that you can often find help and advice from others who have been through this. Southeast Vet Neurology talks about it here.
Soft palate issues.
This relates to the BOAS. If your Frenchie has an elongated soft palate it can cause difficulty when breathing. You can read about this in further detail at Wag Walking here.
Allergies are not just for French Bulldogs, many breeds can suffer from them but some of the more common ones can be grass, grains and even hay fever. Our pooch has a grain allergy, as did our last one and both required grain free food. This isn’t really any expense but just something to be aware of. Our last dog also had a slight grass allergy which would cause her to lick her paws. If we washed them after each walk she was fine but some dogs require washing and regular medication. Regular medication needs to be paid for and isn’t usually covered by insurance.
French Bulldog pros and cons (roundup.)
Hopefully this post has helped you understand a little about French Bulldog pros and cons. Getting any dog is a big decision and it’s certainly no small commitment. Please think carefully before going for a French Bulldog. It’s important to make sure that you can not only afford them financially but can afford them your time.
Feel free to check out some of the relevant posts linked below for more info on owning a French Bulldog.