The French Bulldog is a breed that began when some English bulldog fanciers wanted a similar breed which was not developed for dog fighting. This bulldog was small and became more popular as artisans escaping England’s Industrial Revolution moved to France. They became favorites of the street walkers as well as the Russian Royal Family and King Edward VII. The breed was recognized in the late 1800s and eventually imported to the United States.
The breed is muscular and compact, weighing 16 to 28 pounds and appearing very proportionate. It has bat-like ears which are rounded at the tip and wide at the base. It also has a snub nose and a naturally short tail. The coat of the French Bulldog is smooth and can come in a variety of colors such as brindle, fawn, or brindle and white, with various patterns and markings.
The breed is generally gentle and happy; like many companion breeds it requires close contact with its owners. The breed should live indoors, due to its breathing system, but still requires minimal exercise. The breed does need to be properly trained and socialized so that it will not be at all aggressive toward children or other dogs. Obedience training is important for the breed. The breed has been successful at several dog sports competitions, as well as at being a therapy dog. The French Bulldog may be anywhere from relaxed and laid back to hyperactive.
The French Bulldog, although considered one of the healthiest of the Bull Breeds still has several genetic problems. It can suffer from Von Willebrand’s disease, thyroid conditions, and Brachycephalic syndrome (which can lead to a cleft palate). The breed also may have several eye problems including: cherry eye, glaucoma, retinal fold dysplasia, corneal ulcers, and juvenile cataracts. The French Bulldog may also suffer from fold infections, megaesophagus, as well as several types of back problems.