A French Bulldog Life

10 Most Common Health Problems for French Bulldogs

Due to the selective nature of the breeding, the French Bulldog is susceptible to many genetic and health issues, the most important of which are listed below:
10 problems you need to be aware of with frenchies
1. Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome (BAS)

One of the biggest health concerns for French Bulldogs is due to their flat faced structure, known as  Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome (BAS).

This structure causes respiratory issues for the breed, creating breathing issues to begin with due to narrow nostrils, but also sleep apnoea and snoring.  This can extend to vomiting and retching or regurgitation.
Often surgical intervention/correction is needed to alleviate issues caused by their flat faced breeding.  Widening the nostrils and shortening the soft palate is probably the best way of improving the quality of life for your Frenchie.

2. Ear Infections

Another issue caused by the French Bulldog flat faced breeding is that they have smaller/narrower ear canals than most breeds.  This narrowing of the ear canal inhibits the natural process of cleaning and drying of the ear canals.  
The result of this is an increase in ear infections due to the warm and wet conditions in the canal, aiding in the the growth of bacteria and yeast.
If your Frenchie is shaking its head or scratching its ears, or you notice excessive redness in its ears or scratches, then you may have an infection to deal with.
Your local vet will be able to educate you on how to keep your Frenchie’s ears dry and clean of wax, and provide the necessary products to aid you.

Ear infections in dogs
3. Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD)

A Frenchie’s stocky physique with short legs makes them genetically predisposed to IVDD.  IVDD is caused by bulging vertebrae impinging on the spinal cord.  This causes nerve damage, acute pain and even paralysis in extreme cases.
Jumping up onto, and down from your couch all day long will accelerate this issue, so training them to stay on the floor from a young age will help in slowing the disease.
If IVDD is becoming an issue, your Frenchie will be reluctant to move around and will whimper when picked up.  In more extreme cases they may suffer a loss of bowel control or even sudden paralysis.

4. Hip Dysplasia

Another genetic condition Frenchies are prone to is Hip Dysplasia.  This is caused by the hip joint not not developing properly and eventually leads to early joint deterioration.  Your French Bulldog will suffer from hip pain and be unable to jump or climb, and even struggle to stand up if they suffer from Hip Dysplasia.

5. Patella Luxation

Another genetic predisposition your Frenchie may suffer from is Patella Luxation, where the kneecap becomes dislocated from the knee joint.  As with (BAS), surgery is the recommended way of treating this condition to avoid the onset of osteoarthritis.  
If your French Bulldog is suffering from Patella Luxation they will show some awkwardness in movement or lameness in the rear limbs.

10 Most Common Health Issues
6. Conjunctivitis and Ulcers

Again, due to the breeding, your Frenchie’s flat face and prominent eyes can make them more susceptible to scratches, conjunctivitis and ulcers.Allergies, or any number of other irritants can cause conjunctivitis.  Dirt, sand, dust and grass seeds all have the potential to affect your pooches eyes and end up causing corneal ulcers or conjunctivitis.
If you see your Frenchie rubbing its eyes, squinting or with a discharge coming from the eye, then have them checked out. If you can keep a good eye on your Frenchie, you catch issues quickly before they become a problem.

7. Heat Stroke

Due to the aforementioned respiratory issues your French Bulldog their ability to cool themselves down naturally is significantly impaired.  Frenchies should be watched closely in warm and humid weather to ensure they don’t overheat and suffer from heatstroke.
Don’t exercise them excessively in warm weather and watch for heatstroke signs, including excessive panting, bright red or gums, or blue gums, and in extreme cases of heatstroke, vomiting, convulsions and diarrhoea.  In periods of extreme heat in the warmer months it is best to keep them in an air conditioned house.

whats wrong with my french bulldog?
8. Allergies

French Bulldogs are more susceptible to allergies than most breeds, again due to their genetics.  These can be caused by a number of factors including environmentally caused allergies, and also what they eat.A very good diet is essential for a Frenchie to be healthy, but the environmental side of things is sometimes a lot harder to control.  
Watch your French for signs of sneezing, licking or itching, watery eyes, ear and eye infections, raw skin, diarrhoea and vomiting.Diagnosing an allergy is best left to your vet, so speak with them about identifying what the problem is and how best to manage it.

9. Skin Infections

The last two issues are Skin Fold Dermatitis and what is known as Pyoderma.  Both are a result of the skin folds your Frenchie has, thanks to its breeding.
Signs of Dermatitis can include itching, biting and excessive scratching around the folds, which if left, will eventually develop sores.  
If further left untreated, your pooch may seriously scratch or cut themselves, causing an infection – Pyoderma.
Making sure your Frenchie is clean and dry in the skin folds will prevent both of these issues in the main, however your vet can supply products to treat these issues if they do become a problem.

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