Best Dog Food for French Bulldogs: When Is Pudgy Too Fat?
What is the best dog food for French Bulldogs? French Bulldogs are one of my favorite dog breeds, because they can be so entertaining and comical (I just love those silly bat ears they have!). Not to mention, they are generally a friendly and affectionate breed! But if you have a Frenchie, what is the best dog food to feed it?
French Bulldogs are a small dog breed, but they can vary in size from dog to dog. Frenchies can range from 16lbs to even 28lbs in weight, and 11 inches to one foot tall in height! This means you will need to give what you feed your French a little more thought. as well as how much and how often you feed your pup.
Besides varying in size, you also need to be very aware that Frenchies can often suffer from allergies. So you need to be vigilant about what they are allergic to and try to cut those out of your Frenchie's diet.
Carbs, Protein and Fat for French Bulldogs
These are the three big ingredients to look out for when you are searching for the best dog food for French bulldogs. Find a dog food brand with a selection of high-quality meat sources as the main ingredient. A general rule of thumb to follow is about 25% protein or more.
Frenchies are sensitive to the type of carbohydrates they take in, so stick to sweet potatoes and other complex plant sources. Stay away from soy and corn, as these are tough to digest.
Because of their short coat, the fat sources aren’t so vitally important. But too little fat will cause their coat to become dry and brittle. Fat content should be about 5%.
Potential Health Issues To Be Vigilant Of
Allergies. French Bulldogs are prone to allergies. This means that you should avoid foods that will make it worse such as corn, grain and soy. If your dog seems overly sensitive, try to cut out all grains from its diet.
Allergy Symptoms To Look Out For
- Hot Spots or "Moist Dermatitis" (flaming red pimples with puss coming out)
- Bumps and hives
- Constantly itching that’s not flea-related
- Watering and swollen eyes
- Chronic ear infection
- Constantly licking paws
- Butt scooting or twirling
- Face Rubbing on the carpet or against furniture
- Constantly stinks even after a bath
- Interdigital cysts located between toes
- Chronic wrinkle inflammation
- Abundance of yeast growth
Allergies can be caused by environmental factors, but low quality dog food will also cause allergic reactions to surface. This is because of the high content of filler products found in poor dog food brands. A new trend has surfaced called the BARF diet. The Biologically Appropriate Raw Food diet is the practice of switching over to a diet consisting mainly of raw foods. Read this article to learn more.
Farting. Another ailment most Frenchies suffer from! If your dog food brand contains lots of low-quality fillers, the flatulence problem will become even worse. Search for the best dog food for French bulldogs with more natural and high-quality ingredients to avoid this issue. You could even consider adding extra fiber to your dog’s diet. But first consult with your veterinarian before doing this.
Hypothyroidism. This is a condition that inhibits the thyroid from producing enough hormones. It can cause your Frenchie to excessively gain weight. The best diet to avoid this, is low in simple carbs and high in protein.
Special Considerations for French Bulldogs
Because of its stocky build, a French Bulldog can very easily become obese if the correct dietary steps are not followed. Once your dog moves into the obese weight zone, it will be very tricky to get them back to a healthy weight, plus other health issues might arise.
Frenchies do have fast metabolisms, but you need to maintain the correct feeding amounts to monitor the dog’s weight at all times. Make sure you follow the feeding recommendations found on your dog food brand. If you feed your dog too little, his energy levels will drop too low and the dog might start losing weight as well.
Find the best dog food for French bulldogs that has been specially formulated for small-breed dogs. This is especially important while your Frenchie is still a puppy, as they grow quicker than large-breed puppies. During the first few months of its life your dog requires a diet that will fuel its development and energy levels.
What Should You Feed Your French Bulldog?
The amount of food you feed your Frenchie depends on its age, activity level, metabolism as well as weight. A complete and balanced dog food brand is the best dog food for French bulldogs, ensuring your Frenchie’s nutritional needs are fulfilled.
Some French Bulldogs can be hyperactive, but in general this dog breed doesn’t need that much exercise. In the beginning it might take a bit of trial and error to figure out the correct amount to feed your Frenchie. You want to strike the balance between your dog being too underweight and too overweight.
It’s important to constantly monitor your Frenchie’s weight. To get it to a normal weight is much easier from being underweight than overweight. You don’t want your dog to suffer because of its diet.
Best Dog Food for French Bulldog Puppies
As mentioned above, make sure you buy a dog food brand specially developed for small-breed dogs. Selecting the best dog food for French Bulldogs while your dog is still a puppy means that you can find a dog food brand to stay loyal to throughout your Frenchie’s lifetime.
How Much Should You Feed a French Bulldog Puppy
When your puppy is 10 to 12 weeks old, you can feed it 1.5 cups of puppy food in total. Spread this out over three meals, about half a cup each feeding. This way your little Frenchie won’t experience any intense energy spikes and blood sugar drops between meals.
How Often Should You Feed a French Bulldog Puppy
It’s important to help your Frenchie puppy maintain a constant energy level throughout the day. You could even split the feedings into smaller portions throughout the day, but at least three meals a day is recommended.
Best Dog Food for French Bulldog Adults
You should switch to a small-breed adult formula once your Frenchie reaches about 80% of its adult size. This could be around 6 or 7 months of age. Switching over at the right time is crucial to reduce your Frenchie’s risk of becoming obese.
How Much Should You Feed an Adolescent French Bulldog
The basic formula to figure out how much to feed your Frenchie is roughly 25 to 30 calories per body weight pound, per day. Example: a 16 pound Frenchie who doesn’t exercise often should receive between 400 to 480 calories per day. A Frenchie weighing 28 pounds should get around 700 to 800 calories per day. Read this article for a French Bulldog weight guide.
How Often Should You Feed an Adolescent French Bulldog
You can decide if you want to stick to feeding your Frenchie three times a day or switch to just two feedings. Some people argue that three feedings a day is better for the dog’s digestive system and its energy levels. Keep an eye on your Frenchie’s reaction to switching to only two meals, it can lead to gastric dilatation volvulus.
Because French Bulldogs can become obese, a self-feeder is not recommended.
Tip: If your Frenchie is gaining too much weight, reduce its daily food intake by 5 to 10 calories per pound until it is down the ideal weight again.
Best Dog Food for Older French Bulldogs
Once your Frenchie starts to age, you should switch to a senior dog food brand. Check with your veterinarian when you should switch to the senior dog food. Older dogs have more specific nutritional needs to keep them in tiptop shape, so you shouldn’t just continue feeding your dog adult dog food.
How Much Should You Feed a Senior French Bulldog
Older dogs need less calories per day. Between 470 to 400 calories per day is sufficient to sustain them and maintain good energy levels. This means the calories count drop to between 20 to 25 calories per pound.
Play around with the amount of food until you find the ideal quantity for your dog, between 1 to 1.5 cups in the morning and evening. If your Frenchie leaves some food over after the morning feeding, leave the bowl out for it to snack on during the day.
How Often Should You Feed a Senior French Bulldog
You can decide if you want to split the total amount of food between two or three feedings. The older your Frenchie gets, the less active it will be, so you don’t have to be so concerned about its energy levels anymore.
Wrapping Up - The Best Dog Food for French Bulldogs
By finding the best dog food for French bulldogs while your Frenchie is still young, you can offer it a high quality life from puppy age to senior citizen. Search for a dog food brand that you can trust and become loyal to, one that has been approved by your veterinarian.
The two extremes of underweight and overweight need to be avoided. Frenchies are naturally pleasantly plump. Underweight means that you can see its bone structure too clearly. You need to also avoid your Frenchie becoming overweight, this happens when it becomes uncomfortable for the dog to move around.
Both extremes can lead to health issues, but especially overweight can be very dangerous. Issues can include difficulty breathing and heart disease. The best way to avoid these issues from occurring, is to constantly monitor your Frenchie’s weight. Consider regular veterinarian appointments to make sure your Frenchie remains at a healthy weight.
Do you have an active or docile Frenchie? Any tricks you’ve picked up over the years to maintain a healthy weight for your dog?