A brief history :
Sometime in the eighteen hundreds, a small bulldog was gaining popularity in some cities in England and especially Nottingham which was then a centre for lacemaking amongst other things it became so popular with lacemakers that they took it to their hearts and the bulldog became their mascot. At about this time England was in the midst of an industrial revolution and many cottage industries were under pressure from much larger corporations and were starting to decline, this eventually saw a large number of lacemakers take the trip across the channel to relocate in France, and of course, their dogs went with them.
Over many years the bulldogs were cross-bred and became the breed that we know today with the big ears and pug-like face, and in the nineteenth century, it was a big hit in Paris and was so popular it became a national symbol. Now the french bulldog breed is known all over Europe.
The french bulldog is an active, muscular, and intelligent dog with quite a dense bone structure and a compact body, its classed as a small dog with adult dogs weighing between ten and fourteen kilos and typically have a smooth coat, their lifespan averages between ten to thirteen years which is dependable on their diet, exercise, and care.
Have you bought a French bulldog into your life, or do you think about it? Well, here we will share with you some fascinating pictures as well as some unique facts and a useful care guide which includes grooming and training.
French bulldogs were popular in the past, and they continue to be very popular to this very day and can command high prices, especially for the latest in vogue colours. These are a small dog with huge personalities and quickly become part of the family. Usually, these little dogs are very good with children. Still, as with all breeds of dogs, I suggest that you always keep a careful eye on them with younger children, the french bulldog, also known as a Frenchie can be quite stubborn so early training is a must before any bad habits have time to take hold.
Frenchies are the brachycephalic type which means they have a very short muzzle, in some dogs, this has proved to be problematic with regards to breathing difficulties, but we will examine that later on in our care guide part of this blog.
Searching for your puppy or older dog.
There is a variety of media to consider when starting your searches such as newspaper Ads and notice boards in your nearest pet superstores and veterinary practice, as well as using online search engines. You will find classified advertisement websites specialising in providing a platform for pet breeders as well as re-homing and rescue centres, and I will include a couple of links here for rescue/rehoming centres.
This is where your search starts to get exciting, and where the utmost caution must be used, in all forms of advertising you will get the selfish as well as the downright criminal element, that’s just a fact that we have to remember no matter what we are buying or selling.
But along with the bad news and warnings, there is also good news, one piece of good news, for instance, was the tightening up of the Uk’s animal welfare regulations recently I will include a handy link for you here:
Many reputable and responsible pet breeders in the Uk have their animals welfare at heart and practice good, if not excellent animal welfare requirements, many of these people have dedicated years of study and have the heart and experience as well as the expert knowledge that they have learnt. And there is also some superb Uk pet classified Ad’s websites on the internet which are also doing their bit for animal welfare with advertising moderators as well as useful and interesting blog posts. Online buying and selling is becoming more and more popular these days, one such website I can recommend is our one which is still family-run https://www.pets4uk.co.uk
Choosing a French bulldog:
When you have decided to go and view a puppy that you have seen for sale you must look out for any existing health issues, watch how the puppy is moving about there should be no limping or clicking noises from joints as well as looking into their eyes feel their bones and body as you handle them, is it bright-eyed and bushy-tailed? Watery or cloudy eyes is not what you want to see, is the puppy excited to see you or is it sullen and withdrawn?
Because of this breed, i.e. brachycephalic type ( short muzzle ), it could be prone to breathing difficulties later in life, so listen out for any rasping or laboured breathing. A puppy at rest should be breathing easily without any such noise, by the same token if you have decided to get a dog from a rescue centre. The same things apply as well, along with listening if possible to the dog sleeping as snoring could be a sign of problems.
Along with viewing the puppy that is for sale your also looking out for how the breeder is handling and treating the litter of puppies in question are they gentle with compassion? Can you tell if they love their puppies? is the puppies mum there? ( this is an absolute must ) if the mum is not there for any reason whatsoever, walk away. You need to satisfy yourself that this litter was born here at this address with this mum and not bred at a puppy mill farm! When you view Youtube videos of these places its enough to make you sick so be on your guard at all times.
Personality and Behaviour:
Whether or not you have children doesn’t matter, French bulldogs are suitable for almost everyone young or old, and they also do well with other pets in the home once properly introduced, this breed doesn’t often bark but are alert and make good watchdogs, so will be good with the neighbours as well! As with all dogs, these also need daily exercise such as a walk to the local park or green open space, but they don’t require too much exercise which makes them a popular breed for apartments etc.
Frenchies are playful, smart, adaptable, and a charmer, just at home in an apartment as they are in a country cottage, and they don’t like to be left for long extended periods on their own and (let’s be honest, it’s not a good idea anyway. ) to prevent any chance of separation anxiety and the bad habits that are typically associated with it.
French bulldogs don’t shed quite as much as some other breeds, and even though their coat is short they are not classed as hypoallergenic, and there aren’t many breeds that are, here is a useful and informative link to a blog regarding hypoallergenic and pets.
Weekly brushing with the occasional bath is required, use pet-friendly shampoo products making sure that your careful not to get any in the Frenchies eyes and so avoid any possible irritation, follow this with a vigorous drying making sure to get into all the wrinkles and folds of the skin carefully, this is the time while your bathing to do an excellent job of cleaning the ears, (which should be done regularly to avoid infection ) and trimming the nails, as always at these times when you’re in close contact just run your hands over joints and bones to feel for anything untoward.
Early awareness of anything out of the ordinary or something that doesn’t feel right is a bonus if a veterinary practitioner needs to carry out further investigation.
When you’re at your local pet store searching for dog food it can be confusing at times as today there is so much choice and so many different branding headlines on the packaging such as ( scientifically proven ) or ( covers all your dog’s needs ) etc., it can almost make you feel like a bad person if you don’t pick one of them!
My advice is to buy the best pet food that you can reasonably afford, read the ingredients list and see just what proteins, nutrients and calories that are included making sure that it’s appropriate for the age of the pet involved, all dogs can be prone to obesity. You will want to avoid this at all costs as obesity can lead to many other problems, including heart, hips, and spine. You can always check with your veterinary practice to find out what they suggest they will be only too willing, remembering that the dearest is not necessarily the best.
When it comes to table scraps treats we can’t help but offer our furry friends what we think is a little treat but in reality, some foods that we eat are not safe for dogs, I believe that some sliced vegetables that your particular pet enjoys are a far better treat than some fatty bit of pork chop rind is undoubtedly much more healthy. if anything is troubling you regarding your dog’s weight or anything else that might be bothering you, I would suggest a checkup with your vet ( safe is far better than sorry )
Training your french bulldog:
Crate training has become very popular here in the Uk. It is used to take advantage of the animal’s den instinct, as with many types of animals in the wild their den is their home and refuge, and the crate once furnished with a clean, soft blanket is your Frenchies den where they can retire to a bit of peace and solitude. The crate is most useful when you want to transport your pet to either the vets for a checkup or to the park, its a good idea if you find where luggage anchor points are in your car and possibly use these with some straps to secure the cage in the car while travelling.
The crate is so useful for training puppies because they don’t like to toilet in the area that they sleep in, the crate also limits the access that the Frenchie has to the rest of the house, so you’re coming home to find that your sofa has been shredded or that there are nice piles of poo on your Turkish rug. One word of caution here and that is, never use the crate to punish your dog for a mistake they have made, ( mistakes happen its a fact ) if you do, then you will find that getting them into the crate is going to be hard work for you as they will fear the crate.
Never leave the dog in the crate for extended periods, when training little and often is far better because young puppies can’t control their bladder or bowels for three or more hours at a time! And although older dogs can and do, they don’t know that they have to. So although the crate is a great aid, it’s not the be-all and end-all of things, but it is a useful tool. The crate has to be large enough for your Frenchie to be able to turn around in comfortably, also remember that your puppy is going to grow so what looks spacious today could look cramped in six months.
Every french bulldog is different in how they take to crate training, some master it in a few days while some others can take weeks, (patience is a virtue ) as you will find out, so we want to start with associating the cage with something pleasant, make sure it’s comfortable and perhaps has a couple of the puppies favourite toys in, you should also incorporate the cage into its feeding regime by placing the food and water bowls in the crate at mealtimes, then remove them after the appropriate times.
Keep in mind that training is best done in small steps, teach the puppy to do something well before moving on to the next level, first of all, place the crate in the part of the house that the whole family spends most of their time, like the living or front room, Leave the door open for the puppy to go in and out as they want.
Some dogs are more than happy to explore the crate and flop down for a rest. If your Frenchie isn’t one of those, then sit next to the crate and talk in a pleasant, quiet voice. At the same time, you put a treat into the cage making sure the puppy has had a good look at it, I’ve never known a dog to ignore a treat, we have twenty Shih Tzu’s and every single one of them would walk to the moon and back for a treat.
This procedure could take a while as your puppy gains confidence to enter the cage, but once he has done it once, then it will become easier for him,
Once this step is achieved, you can move on to the next. Now that he enters the crate quickly and without fuss close the door behind him while still sitting there and talking calmly and offering up a healthy treat. Then after a short while let him out with plenty of praise and cuddles, each time you do this make the time spent in the cage longer and gradually move out of sight, once you’ve achieved forty minutes with no fuss you know that you are well on your way and can leave them for short periods and possibly they may sleep during the night as well.
As I said earlier, everyone is different, and yours may be one of the easier ones to train, a saying that springs to my mind right now is ( where there’s a will there’s a way )
When it comes to night time crate training, then repeat the procedure for putting the puppy in the crate then see if he will sleep with no fuss, if not then it may be a good idea to start with the cage near your bedroom then move it further and further away each day until the cage is in the area that you want it to remain.
I hope you have enjoyed this blog, and here are a few more links below.