The French Bulldog is, without doubt, one of the most lovable breeds out there. Known for their affectionate, gentle, and playful temperament, they are beloved by many. It would be difficult for anyone to deny just how adorable these dogs are!
For the most part, they are a reasonably low-maintenance breed. They do not require excessive grooming or maintenance, and they are usually more than happy to simply lounge around and give you a cuddle.
That being said, Frenchies are prone to a number of genetic conditions including hip dysplasia, intervertebral disc disease (IVDD), and respiratory issues – all of which can be worsened by carrying excess weight.
For these reasons, it is especially important for French Bulldogs to maintain a healthy weight, which comes down to their diets. Fortunately, there are many great options out there that will provide your dog with a good quality, well-balanced diet, and keep them happy and healthy for a long time.
In this article, we’ve compiled 11 of our favorite foods for French Bulldogs. We’ll also cover the nutritional needs of Frenchies, and how you can pick the best food for your dog specifically. Here, you can find everything you need to know about feeding your best friend!
A Guide To Frenchie Nutrition
Like any other dog, your French Bulldog will need a mixture of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Protein is what helps build tissue mass, specifically in the form of muscle, and should optimally come from natural, high-density animal sources such as fish, meat, or poultry.
Fats will make sure that their skin and coat stay healthy, as well as ensuring sure their brain and vision development is normal. Finally, carbohydrates provide a good, sustainable source of energy for your dog.
It is especially important that a dog’s needs of protein be met, given that French Bulldogs are a small but quite muscular breed. The Merck Veterinary Manual recommends that their diets be composed of a minimum of 18% protein and 5% fat.
The dogs will also need a variety of essential nutrients in the form of vitamins and minerals – all of which should be included in a high-quality dog food.
Nutritional needs for puppies are slightly different. Younger dogs will need to be fed more times per day than adults, and diets that are slightly richer in protein are often also beneficial.
It is essential that your puppy gets all the vitamins and minerals they need! To ensure that they are eating right, buy food that is marketed as a puppy formula.
Whilst French Bulldogs do have a reasonably fast metabolism in comparison to larger breeds of dogs, (meaning they will burn more calories per pound of mass), they also have a heightened risk of obesity.
Due to their underlying health concerns, obesity is especially problematic for the breed. In order to maintain a healthy weight, you should aim to feed them approximately 25-35 calories per day per pound of body weight. Regular vet check-ups and monitoring will also help your companion stay within a healthy weight range.
Keys To A Healthy Frenchie Diet
All this knowledge on French Bulldog nutrition, however, isn’t exactly useful unless you know what you should be looking for when you purchase food. The most key aspect to focus on is providing them with all the necessary nutrition, without providing too many calories and causing them to gain weight.
In order to do so, here are the specifics that you should be keeping an eye out for when you go food shopping for your dog:
- Food that is natural and wholesome – try to choose foods without fillers, artificial colors or flavors, or by-products
- Food that is rich in lean (lower fat) protein – this is great from animal sources such as poultry and fish, as well as some red meats
- Low to moderate fat content – fat is very calorie-dense, which means it can lead to weight gain. This does not mean, however, that it should be cut out some fats, especially omega-3 fatty acids, are essential to wellbeing
- Moderate calorie content so as not to cause weight gain (or lower calorie, if recommended by your vet for weight loss)
- Well balanced and nutritionally complete, according to AAFCO guidelines
Is Grain-Free A Good Option?
French Bulldogs are also known for their slightly sensitive stomachs, and occasionally gassy nature. Many owners decide to feed their dogs a grain-free diet in order to combat this issue, but it is not necessarily the best approach.
Most of the time, focusing on a diet rich in natural, whole-foods will solve the problem.
Whilst food allergies are not altogether uncommon in dogs, the Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University asserts that the most common root of such issues is not grains, but instead particular proteins such as beef or chicken.
Most of the debate regarding a grain-free diet for dogs arose due to a study by the FDA on links between dilated cardiomyopathy, or DCM, (a heart issue) and grain-free diets.
However, the results of the study have proved thus far inconclusive, and French Bulldogs remain less susceptible to DCM than many other larger breeds to begin with.
Overall, it is best not to jump to conclusions and cut out large parts of your dog’s diet without good reason. If your Frenchie is experiencing digestive or other dietary-related issues, it is best to simply speak to your vet and get a professional opinion.
The Top Food Picks For Your Frenchie
Even with all this knowledge on their specific nutritional requirements, caloric needs, and key aspects of a healthy diet, choosing the right food for your dog can be an almost overwhelming experience.
Today, there are hundreds of different products on the market, many of which are separated by nothing but minute differences. As a breed, French Bulldogs can be especially tricky as they may fall under both small or ‘medium’ categories, as well as have significantly varied dietary requirements.
In order to help you make these difficult decisions, we have compiled a list of the overall 11 best foods for your French Bulldog. They are listed below, each with a link for you to purchase them as well as why they are each a good choice.
This is a high protein mix perfect for a new puppy. It is rich in protein, from all-natural sources, as well as fatty acids similar to those found in a mother’s milk. It is also enhanced with all the necessary vitamins and minerals for a growing puppy, and contains no artificial flavors or preservatives.
Nutro Wholesome Essentials Small Breed Puppy Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe
This is another great pick for your French Bulldog puppy. This is an organic, natural mix, free from GMOs or artificial ingredients. It is also high in protein, as well as omega-3 fatty acids which promote growth and calcium which allows strong bone development. This is a great wholesome option.
This is a good choice if you have a slightly larger French Bulldog, as it is appropriate for both medium and small breeds. It also contains higher levels of protein and reduced carbohydrates, which can be beneficial if your pet faces issues with weight management.
This can be a great option if your dog has digestive issues. The small kibble sizes are perfect for small dogs, and the addition of a proprietary K9 strain probiotic blend aids digestion. It is also packed with natural sources of protein from a wide range of sources, as well as all the necessary vitamins and minerals.
This is another good pick for your small dog. It is high in protein and has a lowered glycemic index, which is important for weight management. It also has omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for a healthy coat and skin, as well as glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy hips and joints.
This is one of the best choices for a dog that has issues with obesity and weight management. Increased levels of protein, reduced caloric density, and increased fiber (which mean your dog is fuller for longer), will all help your pet make its way back to a healthy weight.
This is a perfect option for any dog that has dietary restrictions, or a sensitive stomach. It is composed of only 8 key ingredients, and is natural and wholesome. By sourcing its protein from salmon and being grain-free, it avoids all the most common food allergies in dogs, whilst still providing all the nutrients they will need.
A great option, especially for dogs on the smaller side, this formula provides all of the nutrition your Frenchie needs in its perfectly sized small kibble. It will also help them maintain a beautiful and shiny coat, thanks to its inclusion of Californian avocados. It also contains only all-natural ingredients, and is a good source of protein (from chicken).
This is another good option to consider if your dog struggles with obesity and weight management, as it is fat and calorie-reduced. It also contains good sources of protein, is all-natural, grain-free, and made with premium ingredients.
As your dog ages, their dietary needs will change as well. Fortunately, there are many options out there, like this one, that will allow your dog’s diet to adapt to exactly what they need. This is a great choice as it contains high levels of lean protein, as well as glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy joints. It also contains all the vitamins and minerals your pet needs.
Another option for aging French Bulldogs, this option is particularly good if your dog needs help with weight management. As dogs grow older, their caloric needs naturally decrease – which means rates of obesity tend to increase. This is a natural recipe featuring a great mix of different sources of vitamins and minerals, all whilst being calorically controlled in order to help them stay at a healthy weight.
Owning a French Bulldog is definitely not the most simple task in the world. But any owner will immediately tell you that it is completely worth it! Now, you will be fully equipped to choose a great, nutritious food for your dog.
For information on how to prepare everything else for your new French Bulldog puppy, check out this article!