French Bulldogs are medium-sized dogs with a strong build, brachycephalic muzzle and erect ears. The constitution of their body is often a cause of some of the common diseases in French Bulldogs. With proper care and timely treatment, dogs of this breed can live 12 to 14 years and it’s important for the owner of the dog to know the main symptoms and to prevent them.
Common diseases of the French Bulldog breed
The most common diseases in French Bulldogs are:
- Skin disorders
- Spine problems
- Breathing problems
- Pregnancy and childbirth
- Food allergies, dermatitis.
- Conjunctivitis and other eye diseases
- Dysplasia of the hip joints.
- Heart failure
- Viral infections
- A number of diseases can be prevented through periodic care and monitoring and an appropriate diet.
One of the most common diseases in French Bulldogs is different types of allergic reactions such as allergy to food, dermatitis and allergy to external or internal parasites. The main signs of allergies are rashes or redness on the skin, frequent sneezing, difficulty breathing, hair loss, nausea, and stool problems.
When identifying such symptoms, the first step is to find out what exactly is the allergen. If such a reaction appeared following a change in the diet, it means that the dog is allergic to the new food and there is an urgent need to revise the diet. The main allergens include beef, dairy products, eggs, foods generally prohibited for dogs such as smoked meats sweets and chocolate.
Contact allergy (dermatitis) often manifests itself as a reaction to cosmetics and beauty products, dust and mold. Breeders recommend using hypoallergenic drugs, because in dogs of this breed, the skin is delicate and sensitive to various pathogens.
It is curcial to keep your French Bulldog clean as well as his surroundings, including his bed and linens. In addition, his environment should well ventilated and regular parasite control should be undertaken.
French Bulldog skin diseases
Typical problems for this breed are skin diseases, the main cause of which can be inadequate care of the folds on the face and croup of the dog.
It is necessary to clean the dust and dirt that gets under the folds daily, otherwise the skin begins to sore, irritations appear, and fungal diseases can develop. You can wipe the folds with a damp cloth, dry the area, then lubricate with baby cream.
In French Bulldogs, signs of a skin disease are redness and unpleasant odor of the affected area. The dog begins to strongly scratch his skin and in some cases, hair may even fall out. The symptoms of the fungus are similar to those of a dermatitis, so only a veterinarian can correctly diagnose and prescribe treatment after examination.
Spine problems in French Bulldogs
Because of the long back and a fairly large weight, French Bulldogs can have problems with the musculoskeletal system.
The most common problems related to a spine disorder are:
- Displacement of the vertebrae, which leads to pain, limb failure and uncoordinated movements.
- Dysplasia of the hip joints
- Incorrect position of the femoral head, inflammation of the connective tissue of the joints that cause lameness and pain on movement.
- A genetic disease in which there is a change in the length of the bones.
- The appearance of wedge-shaped vertebrae
This condition can be hereditary or acquired, causing problems with the spinal cord, convulsions and paralysis.
Large bulging eyes of this breed can cause the development of eye diseases. With conjunctivitis, the French Bulldog’s eyes fester and inflammation occurs. Treatment of conjunctivitis in a French Bulldog (medicines, rinsing agents) is prescribed by a veterinarian. Other common diseases in French Bulldogs include the eversion of the eyelids, which causes eye inflammation and watery eyes.
It is necessary to regularly clean the eyes of the dog, otherwise lacrimation and drips from the eyes can cause great inconvenience to the animal. If an eye or third eyelid falls out, this can only be treated through surgery.
Diseases in French Bulldogs: Breathing disorders
Due to the flattened shape of the muzzle, dogs of this breed often have problems with their respiratory system. The special structure of the nasopharynx also becomes the reason that the French Bulldog often breathes heavily and snores. In the hot season, the dog can get a heatstroke when being over exposed in the sun. In cold weather, the likelihood of colds is high, so you need to put on your dog a parka or jacket to keep him warm and appropriately gauge the duration of walks.
If your dog is breathing heavily and has a profuse nasal discharge, he likely developing a viral or bacterial infection.
Pregnancy and childbirth in French Bulldogs
The first mating can be carried out at the age of 18 months, after puberty. The first estrus in bitches can begin at the age of 6 to 8 months, but accidental mating should not be allowed. Should it happen, the puppies have a high risk of manifesting a number of genetic diseases. Pregnancy in French Bulldogs lasts 2 months, during which you need to choose an appropriate diet for your dog, walk her out in fresh air conditions (in cool but not too cold weather) and provide close care and attention.
In the second month of pregnancy, you need to exclude jumping and sudden movements, overfeeding, hypothermia or heat.
The following factors indicate the onset of labor: the dog starts scurrying from corner to corner, whining, trying to dig holes. Before giving birth, you need to cut the dog’s hair in the crotch and on the belly. You can handle delivery yourself or entrust this process to a vet.
To minimize the risk of developing diseases in French Bulldogs, you need to provide them with the necessary vaccination on a timely basis. The first vaccination is carried out at the age of 2 to 3 months, having previously performed deworming. Then they are vaccinated against rabies, plague, parainfluenza, adenovirus infection, parvovirus enteritis and other dangerous diseases.
Prevention measures are very important, yet very simple. You need to be disciplined and consistent by providing daily care, comfortable living conditions, and an appropriate diet with premium quality food.