One of the top five breeds in the U.S., the French Bulldog is a popular family pet and companion. Affectionately nicknamed The Frenchie, this descendant of the English Bulldog shares many characteristics with its ancestor, including a short, wrinkled snout. In the 21st-century, the French Bulldog has grown in popularity because of several celebrities choosing them as pets for themselves and their families.
A History in England
The origins of the French Bulldog lie in England, not France. Members of the lacemaking industry would use English Bulldog puppies and small bulldogs to warm their laps as they worked. The use of bulldogs as lap warmers continued in the lacemaking industry, with English bulldogs traveling to France when the industry moved there. The breed was born in France when the English Bulldogs used by lacemakers were bred with local terriers to create the unique French Bulldog we love today.
Rose or Bat Ears
It is hard to believe today, but a battle raged between the U.S. and European breeders over the shape of the ears of the French Bulldog. In the late-19th-century, the French Bulldog had become a beloved part of society in the Northeast, with American breeders and owners favoring a bat-like shape for their ears. In Europe, the traditional rose-shaped ears were popular, leading to a scandal at the Westminster Kennel Club in 1897. The entry of a French Bulldog with rose-shaped ears at Westminster scandalized New York society and led to the establishment of the French Bull Dog Club of America. The club refused entry to all French BUlldogs with rose-shaped ears.
The Breed Standard
The standard for the French Bulldog sees them stand between 11 and 13 inches in height and weighing less than 28 pounds. The majority of French Bulldogs are born with bat-like ears and can have one of nine colors recognized by the American Kennel Club.
Difficult to Breed
The French Bulldog has problems with pregnancy and childbirth, with the dogs struggling to breed naturally. This problem has led to the breed becoming more expensive, with artificial insemination used to create the majority of litters. The use of artificial insemination has led to the health problems of the breed being eliminated. A healthier French Bulldog breed has led to the popularity of the dogs increasing in the early-21st-century.
A Popular Celebrity Companion
The French Bulldog has become popular with families because of the excellent companionship offered by these dogs. The companionship offered by a French Bulldog has made them popular with people from all walks of life. Among the celebrities who own French Bulldogs are Lady Gaga and Hugh Jackman. One of the most famous French Bulldog breeders of the early-20th-century was Samuel Goldenberg. The breeder found great fame after his trip to New York to judge a French Bulldog show was interrupted by the sinking of the Titanic. Goldenberg and his wife survived the sinking and judged the French Bulldog show when he arrived in New York.