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Pedigree Dogs > French Bulldog

Breed Information

 

The French Bulldog is a small breed of domestic dog, related to the English Bulldog and American Bulldog.

The origin of the modern French Bulldog breed descends directly from the dogs of the Molossians, an ancient Greek tribe. The dogs were spread throughout the ancient world by Phoenician traders. British Molossian dogs were developed into the Mastiff. A sub-family of the Mastiff were the Bullenbeisser, a type of dog used for bull-baiting.

Blood sports such as bull-baiting were outlawed in England in 1835, leaving these "Bulldogs" unemployed. However, they had been bred for non-sporting reasons since at least 1800, and so their use changed from a sporting breed to a companion breed. Some Bulldogs were crossed with terriers, while others were bred for reduced size. By 1850 the Toy Bulldog had become common in England, and appeared in conformation shows when they began around 1860.

At the same time, lace workers from Nottingham, displaced by the industrial revolution, began to settle in Normandy, France. They brought a variety of dogs with them, including miniature Bulldogs. The dogs became popular in France and a trade in imported small Bulldogs was created, with breeders in England sending over Bulldogs that they considered to be too small, or with faults such as ears that stood up. By 1860, there were few miniature Bulldogs left in England, such was their popularity in France and due to the exploits of specialist dog exporters.

The small Bulldog type gradually became thought of as a breed, and received a name, the Bouledogue Francais. This Francization of the English name is also a contraction of the words "boule" (ball) and "dogue" (mastiff or molosser). Records were not kept of the breed's development as it diverged further away from its original Bulldog roots. As it changed, terrier and Pug stock may have been brought in to develop traits such as the breed's long straight ears, and the roundness of their eyes.

in 1905, the Kennel Club changed its policy on the breed and recognised them separate from the English variety, initially as the Bouledogue Francais, then later in 1912 the name changed to French Bulldog.

The French Bulldog should have the appearance of an active, intelligent, muscular dog, of heavy bone, smooth coat, compactly built, and of medium or small structure. The points should be well distributed and bear good relation one to the other, no feature being in such prominence from either excess or lack of quality that the animal appears deformed or poorly proportioned. In comparison to specimens of different sex, due allowance should be made in favour of the bitches, which do not bear the characteristics of the breed to the same marked degree as do the dogs.

The French Bulldog, like many other companion dog breeds, requires close contact with humans. They have fairly minimal exercise needs, but do require at least daily walks. As a flat-faced breed, it is essential that owners understand that French Bulldogs cannot live outdoors. Their bulk and their compromised breathing system makes it impossible for them to regulate their temperature efficiently. In addition, Frenchies are top heavy and therefore have a difficult time swimming. Precautions must be taken when exercising a Frenchie during hot or humid weather, as they are prone to heat strokes.

They are ranked 58th in Stanley Coren's The Intelligence of Dogs. There are certain exceptions to this average level of canine intelligence; a French Bulldog named Princess Jacqueline who died in 1934 was reported to have a vocabulary of twenty words, and used each word or phrase correctly.

 

 

       

 

 

 

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