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Breed of the Month: Why We Love French Bulldogs

While we here at PetPlace genuinely adore all canines (mutts included), we recognize that many dog owners are breed loyal. Our “Breed of the Month” series celebrates those iconic dog breeds that have amassed widespread popularity and/or developed a cult following. For March 2016, we feature the French bulldog.

When you encounter a French bulldog, you can’t help but smile. After all, what’s not to like?

Small in stature yet mighty in personality, this breed features trademark bat-like ears and a distinctive face and forehead that make for unique visual appeal. At first glance “Frenchies” appear to be miniature, pointy-eared versions of English bulldogs – and that’s not far from the truth.

The French bulldog originated in Great Britain as a toy-sized version of the English bulldog. When members of the British workforce began relocating to France in search of better opportunities during the Industrial Revolution in the mid-1800s, their diminutive bulldogs accompanied them across the international border.

As these amiable bulldogs achieved popularity in France, British breeders began exporting bulldogs they considered too small or flawed by ears that stood up – much to the delight of eager French recipients. Soon, this thriving breed crossed the Atlantic and began gaining prominence within the United States, first appearing at the Westminster Kennel Club show in 1896.

The rest, as they say, is history. Here are six reasons we adore French bulldogs:

1. Easygoing Personality

It’s no surprise that ownership of French bulldogs has increased steadily in recent years, with this canine currently ranking sixth in popularity among all dog breeds in America. This laid-back breed offers a relaxed attitude that’s contagious and makes “Frenchies” irresistible for many dog owners. When you own a French bulldog, you have a dog sporting an even-keeled temperament and undeniable charm.

2. Fun Nicknames

Likable, fun-loving breeds often lend themselves to nicknames, and the French bulldog is no exception. The “Frenchie” nickname has stuck as an affectionate nod to this breed’s heritage ever since French bulldogs arrived in America near the end of the 19th century. Additional nicknames bestowed upon this unique breed include “Frog Dog” (in reference to the distinctive manner in which these canines sit with their hind legs spread apart) and “Clown Dog” (due to French bulldogs’ propensity for humor and fun).

3. Habitat Adaptability

Like a college student or world traveler, French bulldogs excel at adapting to most any living situation. Their small-to-medium size and lack of excessive barking makes this breed ideal for apartments, as they don’t need a great deal of space. They don’t require a lot of exercise, though short walks help keep this breed trim. Most French bulldogs also adapt well to small children and other pets. So long as your Frenchie receives plenty of loving attention, he’ll likely be happy with whatever environment he encounters for day-to-day living.

4. Distinctive Appearance

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but many canine enthusiasts consider the French bulldog to be a uniquely attractive dog. His ever-popular erect ears are complemented by accentuated brown eyes, a short muzzle, and a slightly-rounded forehead. It’s often said that a French bulldog’s expression exudes a sense of alertness and curiosity. Though not a large dog, the Frenchie has a sturdy, muscular frame with graceful curves that’s covered by a smooth coat. By many interpretations, this breed is downright handsome.

5. Comical Nature

Don’t be deceived by the French bulldog’s seemingly glum expression – this breed is anything but sad. In fact, Frenchies typically demonstrate a fun-loving nature reflective of the canine clowns they truly are. They love to play and can exhibit behavior that’s both mischievous and humorous at the same time. As such, it’s hard to ever really get mad at a French bulldog. By simply being the usual “goofball” most owners know and love, the French bulldog provides a constant source of entertainment.

6. Tremendous Companionship

In perhaps the most sad aspect of this breed’s legacy, it’s rumored that the only French bulldog aboard the Titanic was seen swimming in the ocean in search of his owner after the ship sank. Tragic though this particular pooch’s fate may have been, it’s a proper reflection of the breed’s loyalty and devotion. Above all, Frenchies represent loving companions who thrive on being around their human family members. They amuse owners with their antics and delight them with their affection. If you’re seeking the perfect dog for easy companionship around the house, then look no further than the French bulldog.