According to the FCI, there are roughly 390 to 400 dog breeds that officially exist. Of all those breeds, French bulldogs are amongst the top 2 most popular dog breeds chosen by dog owners. This is because, amongst other reasons, they are a great choice for novice owners.
So, the answer is “Yes” you should get a French bulldog if you are a first-time dog owner. They are a loving, trainable, and adaptable dog breed that makes them a great choice. But obviously, it’s not that simple.
For that reason, I have written this article to give you a detailed viewpoint on the pros and cons that come with adopting a French bulldog.
Why Are French Bulldogs Great for First-Time Dog Owners?
French Bulldogs Are a Companion Dog
French bulldogs are an easygoing, relaxed, and friendly breed. They have a great temperament. These traits make them one of the most ideal companion breeds, especially if that is the type of thing you are looking for. While many other breeds are born for sports or are part of the working group, French bulldogs are at their happiest when they spend time with their owners.
They are okay with lying down by your side and joining you in whatever you may be doing at that moment. Frenchies are affectionate, loving and are always eager to please their owners. That is why if you ever find yourself looking for an irresistible companion dog, you need not look any further than a French bulldog.
Don’t Need Too Much Exercise
Exercise for any dog is a necessity. But, unlike other breeds, French bulldogs have low energy levels and so their exercise needs are minimal. For this reason, French bulldogs are an ideal choice for first-time owners who don’t necessarily have the time to entertain a highly energetic dog.
However, it remains important that French bulldogs receive daily exercise. You can achieve this through playtimes and short walks. As with many things that involve dogs, not all dogs will react the same way that others will. This is especially true as one French bulldog will have different energy levels to that of another, thus altering the number of exercise sessions they will need, so keep this in mind.
Grooming a Frenchie Is Easy
French bulldogs have a short and smooth coat and are not particularly heavy shedders. This means that grooming does not require nearly as much skill as that of a breed with a longer and thicker coat. An occasional brushing of a French bulldog’s coat should ensure that it remains healthy.
As with all dogs, Frenchies do need to bathe at least once a month. Along with their bath, you will also need to make sure that you clean their ears. French bulldogs have a unique facial appearance, in that they have facial wrinkles. It is important that these always remain clean to avoid bacteria from forming inside of them.
Frenchies Are Very Social
French bulldogs are a very social breed and usually find it very easy to interact with other pets of all shapes and sizes. Although it is true that French bulldogs are open to the idea of socializing, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they know how to do so. The best thing you can do as an owner is to teach your Frenchie how to socialize in an appropriate manner from a young age.
French bulldogs more so than other breeds do have a tendency of being possessive of their owner. This usually only happens when they feel that other pets in the household are receiving more attention than they are. It is important you show your French bulldog lots of love so that they do not feel neglected.
French Bulldogs Are Adaptable
French bulldogs are one of the most adaptable breeds you will find. They are an extremely popular breed because of their small and compact size, meaning they are able to be comfortable just about anywhere. They are just as happy to live in a flat in the city as they are in a high rise in New York.
French bulldogs are free-thinking intelligent dogs that love to spend lots of time with their humans, taking part in whatever activities they may be doing. For this reason, French bulldogs will find it very easy to adapt to your specific lifestyle whether you love staying at home or are always on the road.
Many breeds require that you make a lifestyle change from your side in order to accommodate them. However, French bulldogs go out of their way so that they can fit into your lifestyle. This quality puts them head and shoulders above many other breeds when it comes to adaptability.
They Are Great Family Dogs
French bulldogs are excellent family pets. Frenchies are not only good at socializing with other pets but with children as well. One of their best qualities is that they can be playful. This together with their typically non-aggressive nature makes a Frenchie the perfect playmate for children.
Their adaptable nature makes them perfect because they are able to join into any family dynamic and fit in with ease. Finally, their love and affection really encapsulate the true meaning of family which is based on love and happiness.
They Are Easy to Train
As I mentioned earlier, French bulldogs love to play, and this playfulness can often be very helpful when it comes to training. Frenchies are quite smart, meaning that as long as you are able to have quality and effective training sessions with them you won’t have to train them as much.
The one drawback regarding their training is that Frenchies can be very stubborn. You can solve this through the use of positive reinforcement by using treats or toys. Another method you can use to make French bulldogs more cooperative is to turn the training sessions into games.
Frenchies love to have fun and the more fun they have the more willing they will be to continue learning. Finally, something many dog owners often overlook is the need to be patient and consistent whenever you are trying to teach your dog something new.
They Are Generally Well Behaved
When I say that a French bulldog or any breed for that matter is well behaved, you need to take this with a pinch of salt. While French bulldogs are not explicitly associated with bad behaviors such as barking, digging, or even biting, all dogs regardless of breed, size or age can develop tendencies to show excessive behaviors. Bulldogs are no different.
French bulldogs require lots of attention from their humans but at the same time, they should not be overindulged as this can lead to undesirable behaviors. As long as you fulfill your duty as a dog owner by making sure that your Frenchie receives training, exercise and attention, you won’t have to worry too much about these types of behaviors
Why A French Bulldog Might Not Be Such a Good Idea
French Bulldogs Are Prone to Health Problems
French bulldogs are prone to many health conditions. Be that as it may, it is important that you are aware that any dog regardless of breed can suffer from health conditions. Even though French bulldogs do have issues that they are especially prone to, it does not mean that frenchies will suffer from all or even any of those health conditions. One of the issues that French bulldogs commonly suffer from is Brachycephalic Syndrome. This is a condition suffered by breeds with smaller nostrils and short heads.
This often means that their airways are partially obstructed thus they can easily suffer from breathing problems. Other medical conditions include but are not limited to Patellar Luxation and all kinds of allergies.
Because of these potential health conditions, it is important to adopt your Frenchie from a well-known and trusted breeder who will give you information on the health of the puppy and the health of the puppies parents. Just as important you need to make sure that you take your Frenchie to a vet immediately so that they can rule out and let you know about any health conditions your Frenchie might have.
French Bulldogs Are Stubborn
French bulldogs are a free-thinking breed, but this quality has unfortunately resulted in them gaining the reputation of being extremely stubborn. This type of behavior often results in training a Frenchie very difficult.
The good news is that there are certain strategies that you can use to combat your French bulldog’s stubbornness. One is that you remain patient and consistent with your dog. You want to avoid punishment as this will only make their behavior worse. If you can put in place these strategies within your Frenchies training process, you will be on course to get rid of their stubborn streak.
Cannot Be Left Alone
Although French bulldogs can be left alone for short periods of time, it is never advisable to leave them to their own devices for prolonged periods. In simple terms French bulldogs do not handle being alone very well. French bulldogs are known to be very clingy so if left alone for too long they can start to develop separation anxiety, which can lead to even more behavioral issues.
If you are considering adopting a French bulldog, you can’t be a person who has too many commitments. Your puppy will need your absolute and undivided attention and failure to provide this will leave you with a very unhappy Frenchie to deal with.
French Bulldogs are Expensive
It is vital that if you do choose to adopt a French bulldog, that you do so from a reputable French Bulldog breeder. Although this can be initially expensive, adopting from a good breeder will save you in the long run. The reason that Frenchies cost so much comes as a consequence of the fact they cannot reproduce naturally. This means that breeders have to pay lots of money for c-sections and artificial insemination. Lastly, as with all dogs no matter what breed, they can be expensive to take care of, so you need to make sure that this is a responsibility you are financially ready to take up.
They Can Become Problematic If Overindulged
While it is true that Frenchies are always looking to be the center of attention and never want to be left alone, it is important that you do not overindulge them.
Overindulgence may cause your efforts to help your dog’s separation anxiety backfire. You have to find the right balance between spending time with your Frenchie but also developing them to be able to be okay without your presence.
Things To Ask to Know If You Are Ready for A French Bulldog
There are many boxes you need to tick in order to determine if a French bulldog will be the perfect breed for you to adopt. As an owner, you need to make sure that you don’t have too many commitments that may decrease the amount of time you have to care for your Frenchie.
French bulldogs require absolute focus and attention in order to create an environment where they can thrive and live a very good life. You need to make sure that a French bulldog will fit perfectly into your lifestyle. For example, if you are into athletics and are looking for a running companion, then a French bulldog might not be your best bet.
Dogs are expensive, so before taking up this responsibility you need to ask yourself if you are financially ready for this next part of your life. As I have mentioned before Frenchies can be a very clingy breed, and you may be prepared for this but is everyone else in your home ready. I’m sure you get the point by now and realize that these are just a few of the many questions you need to ask yourself before truly knowing that a French bulldog is the right choice for you.
Final Thoughts – Should You Get a French Bulldog As A First Time Owner
It is always vital that before deciding to get a dog, you do extensive research on how you can get yourself to be as prepared as possible for this journey that lies ahead. Luckily enough for you, Frenchie Journey is a dedicated platform that will provide you with the information that you will need to make sure that you make informed decisions not just before you adopt a Frenchie, but throughout their entire life.
With that said go ahead and read the articles on Frenchie Journey where you can learn things such as what the costs of a French bulldog might be and what to prepare for when getting a French bulldog.
Robert Cain is one half of the content writing team on doggearcity.com. He hopes to share the experiences he has had with his dogs through his articles and hopes that they add value to the relationship that you share with your dog.