Unfortunately, being overweight in the French Bulldog was diagnosed much more often than the owners of these funny dogs would like. Frenchie is firmly in the top five, easily gaining excess weight.
The danger of being overweight.
It is known over that 40% of domestic dogs (especially small/medium breeds) carry extra pounds. Overeating, physical inactivity, and a variety of stress factors are the catalysts for overweight. A couple of unnecessary pounds – and your Frenchie falls into the risk zone for many positions.
Diseases of the skeletal system
About a quarter of overweight dogs have serious problems. The health of the muscle corset and bone tissue is a guarantee of physical activity. A lot of weight puts pressure on the joints, at the same time contributing to the destruction of the ligaments. It is no wonder that the pet quickly develops joint ailments, including arthritis, which impede all its movements.
It is one of the most common diseases caused by overweight – when the body responds to a spike in glucose levels by releasing large amounts of insulin. Pancreatic cells cannot withstand constant overloads and die: insulin production stops, and diabetes begins to progress in the animal.
And in this area, dogs are not much different from humans: the heart muscle of overfed bulldogs is working flat out since it has to pump much more blood. The result is the rapid onset of heart diseases, flowing into chronic ones, as well as the appearance of arterial hypertension.
This important organ stores fat. As soon as the pet has an onerous mass, the liver begins to pull all the excess fat onto itself. The consequence is hepatic lipidosis, which interferes with the normal functioning of the organ.
The lungs of fat people do not function properly, since the fat on the abdomen significantly presses on the diaphragm, and the fatty layer in the thoracic region does not allow the lungs to expand to full volume. The situation is hampered by oxygen starvation of tissues, which also suffer from the proliferation of fat cells.
Disruptions indigestion and reproduction.
Overeating dogs often experience constipation and indigestion, accumulate gases leading to flatulence, from which both the dog and its owner suffer. It is more difficult for the grown-up Frenchie to become parents.
Reduced body resistance
Overweight Frenchie quickly consumes strength and natural energy. This can be explained simply – all canine organs, joints, and muscles work with an increased load, with the one for which they were not originally designed.
Fat animals, due to the reduced resistance of the body, hardly resist infections. Common diseases, such as salmonellosis or canine plague, are perceived by them more acutely and leave a mark for many years.
Surgery and anesthesia
The proliferation of adipose tissue complicates any surgical procedure. Fat prevents the doctor from reaching the operated organ, and the operation is delayed, which threatens cardiac arrest due to a large dose of anesthesia. Even after a successful operation, the fat dog will more slowly return to its normal state, since the fat that has absorbed the components of the anesthesia will be reluctant to release them. A skinny dog after anesthesia will come to his senses easily: a healthy liver can easily cope with the remnants of painkillers. The liver, overgrown with fat, poorly breaks down anesthetics, which leads to their accumulation in the body.
On top of that, chubby dogs are much more likely to have a variety of dermatitis than their lean counterparts. All ailments in the aggregate significantly complicate the dog’s existence. It is difficult for a heavy French Bulldog not only to play and jump, but even just walk, and sometimes breathe. Important! Pain and discomfort do not only affect physiology: they spoil the dog’s character, turning the pet into a grumpy and angry creature.
Summary – being overweight, like any disease, takes away from your Frenchie several years of life.
How to define overweight?
To understand if your French Bulldog is overweight, it is necessary to slightly squeeze the dog’s sides: if the ribs are felt, and the belly is tucked up, then there is nothing to worry about. A skinny French Bulldog jogging/walking moves easily and without shortness of breath. It is also believed that the last two ribs should be visible in an adult trotting dog. But not all breeds fall under this rule, and if in doubt, consult with the head of the breed, a veterinarian, or an intelligent dog handler. The fact that your pet has painfully grown up will be told by its heavy breathing, laziness, unwillingness to participate in fun games, refusal to run, and long walks.
There are not so few of them, but doctors give the first place to overeating. Often, love for a pet overshadows all the arguments of reason, which the tailed manipulator uses, begging for pieces in between feedings.
Other contributing factors to the unhealthy roundness of the French Bulldog (along with excess eating) are:
• erroneous layout of the daily ration;
• hormonal abnormalities, including slow metabolism;
• a sedentary lifestyle, including the lack of the necessary physical activity;
• breed predisposition;
• severe stress (loneliness, long stay in a confined space, change of owner and others);
• sterilization / castration.
Like a person, a dog grows heavier with the approach of old age: the metabolism becomes not as fast as in youth, and digestion and bowel movements begin to fail. It is not surprising that the aging Frenchie turns into a pillow with legs.
How much do French Bulldogs weigh?
French Bulldog average weight
The standard weight for the French Bulldog breed is considered to be an average body weight in the range of 8 – 15 kg. A slight excess of the norm by 300 – 400 g is allowed. Differences are observed depending on the sex of the dog. The male is slightly larger than the female and weighs in the range of 10 – 15 kg. The bitch has a norm: 8 – 12 kg. Height at the withers also varies male 30 – 35 cm, female 25 – 30 cm.
A newborn Frenchie weighs from 200 to 300 g. Further weight gain occurs approximately according to the following scheme:
|1 month||1-1,5||2,2 – 3,31|
All indicators given above may change under the influence of various factors.
Therefore, mainly specialists in pedigree breeding of dogs are sometumes wary and even skeptical about the strict observance of all norms and rules.
In the first place is the health of the dog, and not the averaged parameters in the table.
Diet for the French Bulldog: how much should a French Bulldog eat?
Nobody calls to starve the dog. Dramatic weight loss will not lead to anything good – the weight must be reduced slowly, reducing the amount of food. Those who sit on dry food are gradually (in 1-2 weeks) taught to eat 25-30% less than they are used to.
Another way is, without changing the daily dose, to change the content of the diet, reducing its calorie content. An emphasis on low-calorie foods (low-fat beef, millet, rolled oats, dairy products, cornmeal, vegetables) is also recommended with a natural type of diet. All fatty, sweet, and flour products are completely removed from the menu, including wheat/semolina and pasta. With natural food, the volume of food is reduced by a quarter, and sometimes by half.
The optimal ratio of products in the diet of those who are losing weight:
• 40% – carbohydrates (cereals);
• 30% – proteins (fermented milk and meat products);
• 30% – fiber (vegetables).
Boiled carrots, green beans, and cabbage are recommended. When developing a diet menu, take into account the age of the bulldog and his physical activity. Logically, energetic dogs need more nutritious food than inhibited hugs.
Also, stick to some simple rules:
• exclude any snacks and control all approaches to food during the day;
• prevent friends and family from trying to treat the dog;
• make sure that the pet does not take anything in its mouth while walking.
Important! Never put puppies on a diet: they should always have a supply of mass and skin that will be used up as they get older.
Diet optimization is complemented by a reasonable increase in physical activity, which should be consistent with the capabilities of the breed. The French Bulldog will not run like a hound or carry heavy things like an Alaskan Malamute. It is enough to increase the time of walks, diluting them with outdoor games with a rope, a ball, or other objects. Be guided by the weather – in severe frosts, pouring rain, or heat, transfer games to your apartment. With the right exercise, your pet will quickly return to good physical shape.