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French Bulldogs are the absolute best; they are loving, caring and loyal. But they are at a high risk of many infections and diseases that threaten their longevity. This makes them relatively high maintenance, and parents have to be extra careful to ensure they’re helping their Frenchie live their best life possible.
The French bulldog really isn’t for everyone, which is why it is recommended that you conduct thorough and adequate research before getting a French bulldog. This is so that you can truly understand what it means to be a Frenchie parent.
If like every other parent, you have wondered how you can help them live longer, this is for you. Of course, our Frenchies will not remain with us forever. But there are ways to help them live to the fullest and even extend their lifespan by an extra few years.
Having a healthy French Bulldog starts with buying or adopting from reputable and licensed Frenchie breeders. Breeding parents should always be tested for any avoidable genetic health problems. Make sure that your French Bulldog breeder gives you comprehensive and detailed facts about the parents of your Frenchie. Procure a history of their health problems so you can quickly spot any hereditary issues, and make sure that “white” Frenchie you love so much isn’t suffering from albinism or leucism.
It is also a good idea to consult with a vet before getting your Frenchie. This way your vet would be familiar with the pup right from infancy. Always choose a vet that is close by and is an expert at treating French bulldogs. Getting a healthy French bulldog is the foundation upon which a healthy lifestyle is built. Building on this, the following are some ways to keep your French bulldog healthy:
French bulldogs are prone to obesity which is a trigger for several health problems. So it’s important to put this in black and white here – do not overfeed your Frenchie. Search for dog food brands that are formulated with only a small percentage of fat, and always feed your Frenchie dog food specially formulated for them. French bulldogs also have food allergies you need to be mindful of. Whenever you want to introduce a new food type, give them only a little portion and observe any reactions for the next 48 hours.
When giving your Frenchie treats, try to avoid any treats that can potentially become a choking hazard. If you have kids, explain to them that chocolate is bad for the dog and they should avoid sharing their snacks. If you want to give your Frenchie fruits, only do this in moderate amounts and make sure all seeds or pits are removed. Also make sure you don't give anything that is toxic for French Bulldogs.
A healthy diet will go a long way towards improving the quality of your Frenchie’s life. They are perfectly fine with eating only the things they need and when they need it. It may be difficult, but ignore their whining for the unhealthy things they want.
Keep your French Bulldog active. Although they cannot tolerate too much exercise, they need to be active. A 15 – 20 minute walk split between morning and evening will do them a world of good. Don’t let a day pass without giving your dog the sufficient amount of physical and mental stimulation. Allowing your dog to laze around will result in obesity and general poor health. They need to exercise (but not too much to avoid overheating them).
Regular visits to the vet will go a long way in ensuring that your French bulldog stays healthy. These visits will keep you abreast of any health concerns so you can address these as soon as possible. Make sure you are aware of the common health issues French bulldogs are prone to so that you can identify the symptoms promptly and easily.
Keep your Frenchie up to date on shots. Vaccinations start from about a few weeks old and continue for several months. Constantly driving to the vet might feel like an inconvenience but these shots help to prevent against a range of nasty ailments including Bordetella Bronchiseptica, Canine Distemper, Canine Hepatitis, Canine Parainfluenza, Coronavirus, Heartworm, Kennel Cough, Leptospirosis, Lyme Disease, Parvovirus, Rabies etc.
Training is a whole lot more than teaching your Frenchie to stay or sit. Proper and adequate training has a lot of benefits that could extend your Frenchie’s life. Training helps your French bulldog to become well-rounded, sociable and friendly. Your Frenchie will be more relaxed, less anxious and happy. A properly trained Frenchie will not get into fights or brawls where injuries can be sustained.
Training your French Bulldog properly can save their lives. Frenchies have no road-awareness, imagine your Frenchie runs into the road and refuses to obey you to stop – horrifying right? An adequately trained Frenchie will listen to commands anytime anywhere.
Brush your Frenchie’s Teeth and keep them clean. There is a high possibility of gum disease in dogs. Bacteria builds up and this can cause diseases in the oral cavity. Harmful bacteria and toxins will then enter the body via infected gums and affect vital organs. Therefore, brushing is crucial.
Buy a toothbrush and toothpaste that is formulated specially for your Frenchie. Begin the process of brushing your dog’s teeth at an early stage and frequently so that you both will be accustomed to it. It may be uncomfortable at first but this will be very beneficial in the long run.
Avoid anything that could trigger health problems, an example is stairs and IVDD. French bulldogs are prone to Intervertebral Disk Disease (IVDD). This is a syndrome of the pain and neurological problems that accompany any degeneration of one or more intervertebral disks.
Simply put, a dog with IVDD will likely suffer from severe pain, nerve damage and paralysis. Train your Frenchie to use doggy stairs rather than jumping on and off of beds, furniture or stairs.
You should bathe your Frenchie once or twice a month. This is because of their deep wrinkles that collect debris, as well dead and matted hair. A monthly bath will help to remove the build up of dirt, dry skin flakes and drive away fleas. Regular brushing of their coats is also needed.
Due to their large chests, Frenchies cannot swim. Please do not leave them near, around or in any body of water unsupervised. While bathing them, remember that they are nervous around water and don’t leave them unaided. A doggy-life jacket is a great idea but it is not a substitute for supervision. A Frenchie can drown within a few seconds. Perhaps staying away from large bodies of water is best.
Keeping your Frenchie cool is essential to prolonging their life span. French bulldogs tend to get overheated easily, so they must be kept in cool environments. You can use an air conditioner in your home or have circulating fans available. Always keep fresh water available and when your Frenchie goes out, make sure they are places with sufficient shades.
Separation anxiety can reduce a dog’s lifespan, especially if they experience it frequently. The stress and mental trauma they go through can have adverse effects on their health. We know you can’t take them everywhere all the time. However, what you can do is get a dog sitter your Frenchie likes and is comfortable around. If this is not an option, consider getting another French bulldog so they can keep each other company.
In addition to all that has been mentioned, do not forget to trim your Frenchie’s nails and if need be, filter their drinking water. These health tips will help in extending the life span of your Frenchie, they may seem simple but they are effective.
If you’d like to know more about your Frenchie or how to improve his or her quality of life, we are only a click away. Please, feel free to reach out to us via our website or you can sign up to our Frenchie Blog for more tips.
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In most cases, you can easily tell if your dog has fleas by watching his behavior. French bulldogs do not tolerate fleas very well, this is because they have very sensitive fur lines which would be irritated by the constant itching caused by fleas. Scroll down to find out how to know if your French bulldog has fleas.
Helpful information on the French Bulldog dog breed.
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Informational posts about French Bulldogs. Tips and helpful advice on the Frenchie breed and other breeds.
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