If you’ve been thinking about getting a new dog then you’re not alone – Kennel Club figures show that the number of people looking for puppies has surged to record levels in the last few years.
But with 221 different breeds of pedigree dog to choose from, there’s plenty of thinking to do before you select your family’s latest four-legged addition – those with active lifestyles might want to consider a larger dog, while somebody with allergies will be looking for a hypoallergenic dog.
There’s even academic guidance to seek out, with Psychologist Stanley Coren’s book ‘The Intelligence of Dogs’ ranking breeds by instincts, obedience, and the ability to adapt.
One dog that often appears at the top of people’s canine wishlists is the French Bulldog – they were the UK’s second most popular pet in 2020 (just being pipped to the post by the Labrador Retriever) and have a range of positive attributes that make them a great family pet.
Here are 10 fun and interesting facts about the breed.
1. Not the brightest
French Bulldogs are ranked a lowly 109th in Stanley Coren's groundbreaking academic work 'The Intelligence of Dogs'. There have been dogs who have bucked this trend though - the owners of a French Bulldog named Princess Jacqueline in the 1930s claimed their pet could 'speak' 20 different words. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
2. Bred to be companions
The French Bulldog was bred in the 1800s to be a companion dog and is the result of a cross between toy English Bulldogs and French ratters (terriers used to hunt vermin). Photo: Canva/Getty Images
3. Popular pooch
The French Bulldog remains one one of the world's most popular breeds. In 2020 they were the second-most popular registered dog in the United Kingdom, the second-most popular dog breed in the United States and are the third-most popular dog in Australia. Photo: Canva/Getty Images
4. Lifejacket required
If you are looking for a breed of dog that'll enjoy splashing around in the water then the French Bulldog isn't for you. A combination of their disproportionately large head, short legs and short muzzle means they aren't able to swim. Photo: Canva/Getty Images