Meet the breed: French Bulldog

Mar 22, 2014 at 9:46 a.m. ET
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Choosing to add a furry friend to your growing household is a long-term commitment, and picking a breed that fits your lifestyle presents the key to a happy home. With over 160 American Kennel Club-recognized breeds, that decision can seem overwhelming. We're here to help you meet the breed that's right for you. If you're looking for a fun-loving lap dog, learn all you need to know about the French Bulldog.


  • Athletic
  • Bright
  • Playful
  • Affectionate
  • Lap dog


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Originally bred in England as a means to create a smaller, companion version of the Bulldog, the breed later became popular in France. Once referred to as the Toy Bulldog, the name French Bulldog stuck even after returning to England and later the U.S. A playful companion dog, the breed is lovingly nicknamed the Frenchie. Kind, good-spirited and intelligent, the French Bulldog is a very popular breed.

Breed standards

  • AKC group: Non-sporting
  • UKC group: Companion
  • Average lifespan: 10 - 12 years
  • Average size: 19 - 28 pounds
  • Coat appearance: Short, smooth and glossy
  • Coloration: Brindle, white, fawn, brindle and white
  • Hypoallergenic: No
  • Other identifiers: Sturdy, compact and muscular body; black nose with a short muzzle; top lip hangs below the corners of the bottom lip; dark, rounded eyes; slight wrinkling around the neck and back; straight or corkscrew tail
  • Possible alterations: May have darker coloration

Is this breed right for you?

A breed that gets along well with children and animals, the French Bulldog not only makes an excellent companion but a great family dog too. Well-suited for apartment life, this breed will need regular exercise. Playful, he can romp in the yard for hours on end. In need of guidance with a strong leader, the French Bulldog requires a lot of human interaction, socialization and affection to avoid any aggressive behavior. A clean dog, he has an average shedding rate and requires low-maintenance grooming. Easily overheated, it's best that the Frenchie lives in a cooler climate.

Breed characteristics

A dream day in the life of a French Bulldog

Waking up in the arms of his owner, the French Bulldog will snooze until his master rises. Once up and at 'em, he'll want to be let out first in the morning to work off some of his high energy. Trotting back inside, he'll be ready for lunch and a bit of cuddle time on the couch. After receiving some affection, he'll greet the other members of the family while romping around the house and backyard. Once the day has ended, the French Bulldog will crawl into bed with his loving master.

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