Before You Buy the Love of Your Life


As some of you may know...I kind of...LOVE all things Frenchie. It's an obsession. An addiction. It's JUSTIFIED. They're the best dogs on Earth and I make it a point to flaunt that I'm a Frenchie mom more than any other thing about myself. I have Frenchie sweatshirts, hankerchiefs, dish towels, picture frames, car magnets, stickers, ornaments, statues, paintings, nail decals...Ok I'll stop. You get it. Louis is obviously my main squeeze and he is the best decision Charley and I ever made. That being said, there are a lot of things that you need to know before investing in the new love of your life.




1. FRENCHIES ARE EXPENSIVE


They are unable to mount properly and breed themselves so they're very labor intensive to breed. They range in price, typically based on color. Black/brindles start usually around $1800, White/cream are anywhere from $2000-$2800, Fawns ~$3000, and Blues (the gray color) are typically around ~$5,000. 


Most reputable breeders don't try to breed blues because it's a genetic deformity of sorts that actually leads to deafness/blindness oftentimes. I love all Frenchies equally. 


Find a good breeder, do your research, consider your lifestyle/budget! If thinking of rescuing, that last part is vital. All of the health issues that come up with Frenchies, particularly rescues, can get extremely pricey. Charley and I would love to get another baby (we got Louis from a breeder that we'd never recommend even though we love Lou) but we're not financially set up to do that right now. To start your rescue search, google French Bulldog Rescue Network or start following me and all my Frenchie mama friends on Instagram (@saltwatercuresall) and start asking for recommendations/questions.



Because Frenchies are so expensive, and have been voted the most popular dog of 2013/2014, they are stolen a LOT! I follow over a thousand on instagram and keep up with almost all of them on a daily basis. Make sure you microchip your dog, have them wear tags, have an alarm system in place, and NEVER leave them anywhere by themselves. You tie your dog up outside of anywhere, I might even be the person to steal it because I could give it a better life-I will NEVER tie my dog up outside because it's cruel and b. because it'll "walk" off. Treat your Frenchie BETTER than you'd treat your child.



2. FRENCHIES REQUIRE ATTENTION. 

And lots of it. Whether you're tired, sick, hungover, whatever- you need to be prepared to give them love, hugs, kisses, rubs, and walk them. That's what they like and that's what they need. You're going to be so obsessed with your baby anyway that this will typically never be an issue unless you're feeling under the weather. In which case, shut your face, pop a Pepto, get your ass out of bed and love on your little bat pig.

Keep in mind they're little and have little bladders, they need to be taken out at lunch or taken to doggy day care. Louis loves his daycare and freaks outttt every time he gets to go which is about once or twice a week to get some energy out and play with his friends. Dog walkers are about $15-$30/day depending on where you live and day care is similar. Keep that in mind when budgeting.


3. FRENCHIES ARE HIGH MAINTENANCE. 

We have health insurance for Louis through PetSmart that runs us about $30 a month but it also means that his vet visits are free except for his meds which can get pretty pricey. Because we got it as soon as we got him in the first year, the puppy insurance covers the cost of his neutering and all of his vaccinations. Since we take him to the vet about once a month, this saves us a bundle. 

He's prone to ear infections and skin allergies among other things. Most Frenchies are. A lot of them are allergic to poultry and environmental allergens which means get used to vet bills and expensive bags of kibble. A relatively small bag of the stuff we have Lou baby on is about $70. Yikes, right? He's worth it. 

He's just over a year old and has had two surgeries related to his nose/breathing already. Some of our other Frenchie friends have had to go through back and hip surgeries because they are prone to problems with those and jumping on/off furniture doesn't help. We bought stairs for Louis to get in/out of our bed to help avoid injury and long term damage.

Lately, Louis has also had little infections between his toes, almost like athlete's foot. It seems that they're just hot spots that he licks until they get infected. Spray some non-stinging Bactine on those bad boys as often as you need to and on their weiners if they get infections from squatting while they pee (the dribble irritates their skin because the majority of Frenchies don't/can't hike their legs).



4. FRENCHIES ARE THE BEST DOGS EVER

They're great with kids. Our nephew sat on the floor messing with his ears and poking his jowls and Louis was like well...you're little so I'll let it slide, bro. I could have watched that go on for days, Frenchies love babies. We have made sure to socialize him with kids, adults, other dogs, so that he doesn't become one of those annoying dogs that can't interact with anybody. We take him to restaurants with patios all the time and he sits at the table and watches everybody...and begs. And sometimes takes sips of my beer. But that's poor training on my part. #badmama 

They're also pretty energetic but huge on cuddling and naps. They were originally bred (a pug and English bulldog) for lap dogs. #perfectforme They really originated in England but were popular among French...women of the night. Ohhhh Frenchies. How I love everything about you, even your history.



TUPAC FRENCHIE.



5. FRENCHIES GET COLD. 

Be prepared to pack them sweatshirts and blankets on road trips in the car because of the AC or if it's just generally cold outside. Clothes for Frenchies have to be cut differently because their chests are so broad. Louis is usually a medium which shocks most people but hey, he takes after mama and has got a big chest. Suck it, haters.




6. FRENCHIES ARE LIKE GREMLINS

As much as Louis is an angel, he can get pretty demonic. Mostly with Charley which I find to be hysterical, they know who they're dealing with and who can handle the crazy. He can go from Carrie Underwood to Miranda Lambert pretty fast. Hide yo' crazy Louis! 

Mostly he just let's out gutteral grunts and tries to chew on his face. No biggie. He's the size of my purse, what harm can he really do, right? They also are like little piggies, love to eat and are prone to get really fat. We keep Louis Frenchie Fit by walking him all the time and playing hedgies (we toss little stuffed hedgies for him to fetch) in the house when it's raining. 

FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, if you have a Frenchie, or any strong dog for that matter, DO NOT put your dog on a collar, get them a harness. It prevents them from damaging any of their throat stuff (larnyx, trachea, etc.) and their eyes. Constant strain against a collar can cause serious issues including, but not limited to, cataracts. We have a harness from a company called Puppia that we love. Louis is super strong and constantly pulls me even though he's only 19 lbs.


7. FRENCHIES HAVE FACIAL EXPRESSIONS AND SIT LIKE HUMANS

I've got a math problem for you: FRENCHIES > EVERYTHING. 






8. FRENCHIES CAN HAVE SLEEP APNEA.

Sometimes they stop breathing when they're asleep, not often and not all that common, but it does happen and I've caught Louis a few times and had to give him a good shake.








9. FRENCHIES NEED DENTAL WORK AND A NOSE JOB.

Not really. Overbites, underbites, Frenchies get it all. As long as it's not harmful to them, they're fine. Lou's little tongue sticks out all the time, especially when he sleeps but there's nothing wrong with it. I tuck it back in for him sometimes so it doesn't get dried out but it doesn't bother him at all. We did have a surgery on his extended palate (removes excess tissue in the back of the throat which comes from being a smooshie face) so that he can breath better and we also had his nostrils widened (nares surgery) because most Frenchies have little nostrils that are just pinched almost entirely shut. 


Some Frenchies get really dry noses (Louis doesn't) but they make something called Snout Soother that you can order and that seems to help tremendously.







10. FRENCHIES ARE CLINGY

Like really annoying exes. Louis always pops up right at the wrong time when I really don't need him to be in that ONE spot. Like my tank top while I'm trying to do yoga. Get used to exercising in a different room from your fur baby. And having Frenchie tan lines...














11. FRENCHIES OVERHEAT

Dogs with smooshy faces can't breathe all that well and therefore can't pant enough to cool themselves down. If a Frenchie gets overheated, they can die within a matter of minutes. We have a cooling vest for Louis that we soak in cold water and make him wear when he's going to be outside. We also carry at least 2 Nalgene bottles of water with us when we walk him, year around, and make him drink constantly. If he doesn't want to drink we pour it on him to cool him down, including his paws and underbelly where they get super warm. I'm not above water-boarding my dog if it saves his life. BE PREPARED! Keep them in the shade and keep them inside when it's too hot!






12. FRENCHIES TOOT

And it is the worst stank on earth. Supposedly they get gas more than other fur babies because their smooshy faces in their bowls cause them to snort around more than most and gasp more air. I've heard if you feed them off a plate instead of a bowl, it helps. 



Hope you enjoyed learning about Frenchies and all the maintenance and attention they require and deserve. I think that part of being a Frenchie owner is telling other people the truth about what it takes to be a GOOD Frenchie mama or daddy. Message me or comment if you have any questions. I love to talk about Louis...obviously. Also, check out my Instagram: @saltwatercuresall or Louis' @louislouisbaird for more pictures.










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