Feeding Your French Bulldog
Before deciding to add Patches to our family, I decided to research what would be best to feed him. Getting a new pup meant understanding what diet to feed him to ensure good health. I wanted to guarantee that my pup would be getting all of the needed nutrients and the right quantity of food. Here is the information I found on French Bulldog nutrition and which factors should be taken into account when compiling a menu for them:.
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Special Physical Attributes
Frenchies are part of the brachiocephalic group of dogs. These types of dogs have flat faces and require diets specific to their breed. In the case of French Bulldogs, their muzzles are as if pressed inward and their jaws are shortened. These physical features mean that it is important to give them food that is not too hard, as they could have difficulties chewing on hard pieces of food.
Frenchies also have a more bent esophagus, hence it is essential to make sure that your dog is not eating too fast. If your French Bulldog is not pacing themselves while eating, then the passage of the food into the stomach could become harder for them.
Eating fast is not uncommon for Frenchies, even my pup did so quite often. To help your French Bulldog eat slower, I would recommend buying a slow-feed food bowl. These special bowls usually are not flat on the inside and make it harder for dogs to swallow too much food at once.
Due to the pathology of the respiratory system, French Bulldogs should not be overtired. This does not mean that your Frenchie should be sitting at home and not be getting any exercise. A sedentary lifestyle automatically places your pouch at a risk for developing obesity.
Natural Foods and Ingredients
Frenchies may be sensitive to allergens. To prevent any allergies from forming, it is highly recommended to provide your dog with natural and raw ingredients. Natural dog food aficionados need to prepare for the fact that French Bulldogs will always have to be handled like small children. You will need to be preparing fresh food with the right ingredients, hand-picking fruit, fish, and many other ingredients.
Typically, a Frenchie’s menu would include:
- At least 50% lean meat in the diet;
- Well-cooked semi-liquid cereals;
- About 20% of the diet consists of fresh and boiled vegetables (carrots, zucchini, pumpkin);
- Berries and fruits: apple, cherry, banana.
Do not forget that even healthy foods can provoke an allergic reaction if the diet is unbalanced. In addition to the composition of the food, the quantity of the food matters as well. French Bulldogs burn few calories, making it important to make sure they do not overeat.
Natural food is well-liked by Frenchie puppies and their respective owners, but when compiling a menu, remember that puppies must maintain a balance in nutrition:
- 70% - meat products (suppliers of animal protein, and fats);
- 30% - vegetable food, which provides the animal's body with fiber, carbohydrates, and vitamins (cereals, boiled vegetables).
- For the development of the musculoskeletal system, French Bulldog puppies should receive daily calcium, which is present in fermented milk products, with food. It is better to give milk to a Frenchie puppy in the morning.
Once your Frenchie reaches the age of 6 years old, it is essential to pay extra attention to what they eat. Your dog will start needing vitamins containing chondroprotectors. In its natural form, it can be boiled pork ears. It is also necessary to control calcium intake since its excess can lead to the development of kidney stones.
Be careful! There are some foods and ingredients that Frenchies should not eat, as they could lead to health problems. Some of the foods include:
- Raw and boiled potatoes;
- Fish meat;
- Food from the table (soups, sausage, cheese, and other foods meant for people);
- Vegetable oils;
- Citrus (oranges, clementines, lemons);
- Bread and pastries;
- Sweets and candy.
Diet Based On Age
Frenchie puppies have specific dietary needs according to their age, specifically:
- Up to 1 month: mother's milk.
- 2 months: a two-month-old French Bulldog puppy is introduced to complementary foods. They should be fed 6 times a day. At 1-2 months, you can feed liquid cereals with low-fat or diluted milk.
- At 3 months old, the number of feedings is reduced to 5. Milk and cereals can now be excluded from the menu since they become less digestible starting from the age of 3 months.
- At 4 months, French Bulldog babies are fed 4 meals a day.
- From 6 months, the puppy should eat 3 times a day.
When your Frenchie turns one year old, it is enough to feed them in the morning and the evening.
If it is not possible to prepare fresh meals for your four-legged buddy every day, consider feeding your Frenchie the best quality dry food. Choosing the right dry food is very important in ensuring a proper and healthy diet for your French Bulldog.
Your puppy's dry food can only be a premium product that uses the highest quality raw materials, and the balance of ingredients in the composition is strictly observed. The ideal choice should be kibble which has a special shape that is easy to grasp by your Frenchie’s short jaws, prevents fermentation in the intestines, normalizes digestion, and contains components that are beneficial for the pet's skin.
What To Keep In Mind
When feeding your Frenchie, they are some general rules to be followed: cheap feed is not nutritious and dangerous to health; when feeding dry food, you must ensure that the Frenchie always has fresh water in the bowl; do not feed your French Bulldog natural food if they are already eating dry food, as it could lead to disturbances in their digestive system.
Diet is very personal and individual to every pup. The fact that my Frenchie Patches loves apples does not mean that your Frenchie will as well. Your pet will have their own health needs, and your responsibility as a Frenchie parent is to feed your pet the best and most delicious meals. Trust me, you can never go wrong when feeding your puppy the yummiest food, especially when it is made with love!