Many people have fallen in love with a French bulldog, and it's easy to see why. This charming little breed has a big heart and a terrific sense of humor. Although they are small dogs weighing under 28 pounds and standing only 12 inches tall at the shoulder, this stocky breed looks tough and will alert you to danger. She won't bark unnecessarily, however. Her quiet demeanor and minimal exercise needs make the Frenchie an ideal dog for apartment and condominium living, as does the breed's tendency to love everyone. For many people, the only thing better than one French bulldog is two. If you feel the same way about expanding your family, consider buying another dog rather than breeding your own pet and keeping one of her puppies. French bulldogs are notoriously difficult and expensive to breed.
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Strive to improve the breed
When people breed dogs, they often create creatures that nature never would. Though adorable and quite popular, these "man-made" dogs sometimes have health problems that natural selection would have eliminated. This holds true for Frenchies, which breeders created by crossing large English bulldogs with smaller terriers. French bulldogs often have breathing issues due to their short snouts. They also suffer from issues with their joints, bones, and eyes, and many have allergies.
If you want to breed your Frenchie, you must first make sure he is a healthy specimen. Ask your vet to provide you with a health screening and a genetic workup. Even if your dog is healthy, he could still carry and pass on undesirable genes. At a minimum, the Kennel Club recommends having your pup undergo two different DNA tests, eye testing, and an overall physical before breeding. Some breeders take testing even further. If testing reveals issues, breeding your dog would be irresponsible.
French bulldog mating issues are common
Breeding dogs sounds easy. Many people think it's as simple as getting two dogs together and letting nature take its course. It's a bit more complicated than that, however, especially with French bulldogs. One of the most basic problems with breeding this breed is their inability to travel well. Airplane cargo holds are far too hot for these heat-sensitive dogs, so you can't simply fly your pet to a breeding partner. You'll have to find local breeding mates for your pup or be willing to drive to the right match.
Even if you're willing to drive, it's unlikely that two French bulldogs will mate successfully when introduced to each other, even if there is mutual attraction and desire. Frenchies have large heads and wide shoulders, but they're quite narrow in the hips and have short legs. Although this makes for a charming gait when they walk or run, this design makes Frenchies quite top heavy when standing on their back legs to mate. Most males are too short to get the job done. Even those who get a strong start often topple over or fall off the female before the ride is over.
Admittedly, watching a Frenchie lose his balance and topple over is somewhat comical, but it's not a productive way to produce offspring. As a result, a successful French bulldog pregnancy usually requires the lengthy and expensive process of artificial insemination. Male dogs that can breed naturally are rare and are considered undesirable because they typically don't meet the breed standard. As such, you should always think twice before buying dogs from a breeder who brags that his Frenchies are conceived naturally.
Natural births are very unlikely
No matter what type of dog you breed, it's important to provide proper prenatal care and support throughout pregnancy. Frenchies require extra support when giving birth, however. Like their male counterparts, Frenchie females have narrow hips. Narrow hips mean a narrow birth canal, and most French bulldog mothers aren't able to push their big-headed puppies through it. If a puppy gets stuck in the birth canal, both puppy and mother could die. Because of this, over 80 percent of all French Bulldog puppies are born via caesarean section.
Frenchies are expensive to breed
The combination of artificial insemination and C-section deliveries make Frenchies an expensive dog to breed. Under normal circumstances, dog breeders recoup their costs when selling their new puppies. Even if the mating, pregnancy, and birth get expensive along the way, these costs are relatively low when spread across a large litter. The process is expensive, but the cost per puppy stays fairly low. This isn't always the case with Frenchies. It's possible for your girl to have anywhere from one to six puppies, but the average French bulldog litter size is three. If your girl delivers only one or two pups, the cost per puppy is quite high.
You're in for some sleepless nights
Perhaps because C-sections bypass parts of the normal birth process, Frenchie mothers sometimes don't kick into gear and start taking care of their babies right away. Most do after a few days, but you'll need to care for the newborns in the meantime. You'll have to help the little ones nurse, keep them warm, and rub them to stimulate bowel movements. Puppies struggling to nurse on their own need to be bottle fed with a special puppy milk supplement up to eight times a day, so prepare yourself to make a hefty commitment if you choose to breed your dog.