French bulldog health conditions
Unfortunately, due to selective breeding, French Bulldogs can suffer from a number of genetic conditions.
They are a brachycephalic, or flat-faced, breed which can cause some breathing problems. Brachycephalic airway obstruction syndrome (BOAS) was the second most common claim we saw for French Bulldogs in 2021 and the average claim cost £1,656.35.
Brachycephalic dogs basically have too much soft tissue to fit on their small skeletons, meaning they have folds in places like their faces. This can mean their airways are blocked with this excess tissue, making breathing harder.
A common treatment is to have the soft palette and other airways tissue surgically trimmed. It can cost around £2,000.
The most common condition we saw in French Bulldogs was allergic skin disorders, with an average claim cost of £191.86. Again, it’s those skin folds that are to blame. The folds can cause skin yeast to breed, causing itching and soreness.
Eye problems are also common in French bulldogs and corneal ulcers were the fifth most common claim for the breed.
French bulldogs can also suffer with skeletal problems and be born with spinal deformities, causing issues with their shins, hind legs, and back.
Health tests for French Bulldogs
If you get a French Bulldog puppy, it’s worth asking the breeder if the parents have been health tested.
There are some recommended health tests for French Bulldogs to discourage those with breathing and other problems from being used for breeding.
The Kennel Club and University of Cambridge’s Respiratory Function Grading Scheme assesses flat-faced breeds for BOAS. Potential breeding dogs can be assessed from the age of 12 months and then every two years. All Kennel Club Assured Breeders must use the scheme.
The Kennel Club also recommends eye screening, a DNA test and participation in the French Bulldog Health Scheme.
The French Bulldog Club of England runs the French Bulldog Health Scheme. Dogs are assessed by a vet for things like ear, eye, heart, breathing and skin health. Depending on the results they will then be awarded a certification of bronze, silver or gold.
French Bulldog FAQS
Everything else you need to know about this clown of the canine world.
How much are French Bulldogs?
French Bulldogs have become a desirable breed in recent years, costing upwards of £3,000 for kennel club registered pups.
If you see litters of cheap French Bulldog puppies, be careful. Because of their high value, they have become the target of puppy farmers who will breed large number of unregistered and non-health checked pups. Read our advice on how to buy a puppy to make sure you find a reputable breeder.
Do French Bulldogs shed?
Although Frenchies have short, fine fur, they shed year round. weekly brushing should keep on top of the worst of it, as well as an occasional bath.
Can French Bulldogs swim?
French Bulldogs are really not good swimmers and you should supervise them very carefully around water. Their short, stocky bodies don’t stay afloat well and their flat faces can mean they inhale water, so swimming can be quite dangerous for them. Best to stick to paddling.
Do French Bulldogs have tails?
French Bulldogs do have tails and they’re not docked. They naturally have just a very small, short tail. Some have a straight one and others have a corkscrew tail like a pig.
How many puppies do French Bulldogs have?
French Bulldogs only have small litters. two or three pups is normal and anything above five is a very large litter for a Frenchie.
Are French Bulldogs hypoallergenic?
Although they obviously create a lot less hair than big, furry breeds, French Bulldogs aren’t hypoallergenic and will continuously shed hairs.