Things to consider when purchasing a French Bulldog. Do you have time to spend with your new family pet? They love people and affection. They were bred to be entertaining lap dogs. If ignored, they can become destructive. They love to play with toys and chew on bones.
French Bulldogs may look tough on the outside, but inside they are lovably soft, caring and easygoing. These dogs spread the good vibes wherever they go. Outgoing and open, they love nothing more than to cuddle on the couch, romp on the carpet or play in the yard. Boasting unlimited energy (for about 20 minuts), they sometimes have no idea when (or how) to stop their motors. Then its time for a 2 hour nap. But, with a Frenchie, things never get out of hand. They rarely lose their cool, snap or bark. They simply want to roll around and play. Great for apartments and city life, French Bulldogs can deal with confined spaces and known how to turn on the charm with new people. Everyone is family unless they since someone is trying to harm their human family then, and only then, will they protest with furious barks. French Bulldogs are pleasant and sociable companions with few faults. The worst you could say about them is that they might snore—and you can quickly get used to that. They are people-oriented dogs that crave attention and interaction.
The History of French Bulldogs
The “bouldogge Francais,” as he is known in his adopted home country of France, actually originated in England, in the city of Nottingham. Small bulldogs were popular pets with the local laceworkers, keeping them company and ridding their workrooms of rats. After the industrial revolution, lacemaking became mechanized and many of the laceworkers lost their jobs. Some of them moved to France, where their skills were in demand, and of course they took their beloved dogs with them. The dogs were equally popular with French shopkeepers and eventually took on the name of their new country.
In the late 19 th and early 20 th centuries, the dogs became popular with members of the Paris bohemian class: ladies of the night, artists, writers such as the novelist Colette, and wealthy Americans doing the Grand Tour. Impressionist artist Toulouse Lautrec even put a Frenchie in one of his paintings, “Le Marchand des Marrons.”
The Frenchie has gained rapidly in popularity in the past decade. Today, the breed ranks 21st among the breeds registered by the American Kennel Club, up from 71 st in 2000, a testament to his qualities as a companion.
French Bulldog Temperament and Personality
People who love him say the French Bulldog’s best qualities are charm and adaptability. A Frenchie loves almost everyone he meets and will seek out anyone who is willing to provide a lap.
Frenchies are known for their quiet attentiveness. They follow their people around from room to room without making a nuisance of themselves. When they want your attention, they’ll tap you with a paw.
This is a highly alert breed who barks judiciously. If a Frenchie barks, you should check it out.
What’s not to like? Frenchies can be stubborn about any kind of training. Motivate them with gentle, positive techniques. When you find the right reward, they can learn quickly, although you will find that they like to put their own spin on tricks or commands, especially when they have an audience.
Frenchie play tends to be on the destructive side. The dogs enjoy mauling their toys, performing “squeakerectomies” and playing keep-away with each other’s toys. Avoid giving them toys on which they could choke, such as rawhides, pig ears, and dental chews. They’re also fond of hiding things and making their people search for them.
A word of advice: any dog, no matter how nice, can develop obnoxious levels of barking, digging, and other undesirable behaviors if he is bored, untrained or unsupervised. And any dog can be a trial to live with during adolescence. In the case of the Frenchie, the “teen” years can start at six months and continue until the dog is about two years old.
Start training your puppy the day you bring him home. Even at eight weeks old, he is capable of soaking up everything you can teach him. Don’t wait until he is 6 months old to begin training or you will have a more headstrong dog to deal with. If possible, get him into puppy kindergarten class by the time he is 10 to 12 weeks old, and socialize, socialize, socialize. However, be aware that many puppy training classes require certain vaccines (like kennel cough) to be up to date, and many veterinarians recommend limited exposure to other dogs and public places until puppy vaccines (including rabies, distemper and parvovirus) have been completed. In lieu of formal training, you can begin training your puppy at home and socializing him among family and friends until puppy vaccines are completed.
Talk to the breeder, describe exactly what you’re looking for in a dog, and ask for assistance in selecting a puppy. Breeders see the puppies daily and can make uncannily accurate recommendations once they know something about your lifestyle and personality.
The perfect French Bulldog doesn’t spring fully formed from the whelping box. He’s a product of his background and breeding.
The Basics of French Bulldog Grooming
The French Bulldog has a short, fine, smooth coat that is easy to groom. Brush him weekly with a rubber hound glove or a soft bristle brush. Bathe monthly or as needed to keep the coat clean.
Frenchies don’t shed much, but twice a year they lose their undercoat. During the spring and fall shedding seasons, use a stripping comb and grooming mitt to remove the excess hair.
The only other grooming required is routine nail trimming, ear cleaning, tooth brushing and wrinkle care. The deep skin folds may need to be cleaned only a couple of times a week or every day. Wipe out the crud from the wrinkles with a soft, damp cloth or a baby wipe, then dry them thoroughly. If moisture is left behind, wrinkles become the perfect petri dish for bacterial growth. Do the same for the indentation at the tail set and the outer vulval area.
The rest is basic care. Trim the toenails as needed, usually every few weeks. They should never get long enough that you hear them clacking on the floor. Brush the teeth frequently for good dental health and fresh breath.