Veterinary nutrition is one of the most important aspects regarding the health of your dog. We have the ability as pet owners to provide a good, well-balanced, healthy diet for our pets every meal of the day. From a veterinary perspective, we certainly see the health effects from feeding your dog a good quality food. Some of these benefits include a healthier skin and hair coat, higher energy and activity level, and a healthier dog overall.

As you know, French bulldogs are lean dogs who’s characteristics are nothing short of energetic, playful and cheerful. With that being said, a diet to balance the needs of the breed would include a high energy – high protein diet, joint support and an easily digestible kibble.
Diets including protein levels around 25% should be adequate for most Frenchies as this amount of protein will be sufficient to meet the metabolic demands of the breed. As some French Bulldogs have a genetic predisposition for developing joint conditions such as hip dysplasia, a diet with supplemental levels of glucosamine and chondroitin may be beneficial, especially in older Frenchies. Also, finding a diet with supplemental levels of L-carnitine will help promote a lean muscle mass by breaking down fats and converting them to energy . Another important aspect in finding the proper diet for your Frenchie, is acknowledging their facial anatomy. French bulldogs have narrowed snouts and often a thick, elongated soft palate making the size of the oral cavity much smaller than compared to other breeds. It would therefore be favorable in finding a diet that has smaller kibble size and kibble that is relatively easy to breakdown. I am also a big supporter of supplementing with omega 3 fatty acids, particularly from a fish based source. The list of benefits seems to be endless and have clinically seen big improvements in the overall health of dogs being fed omega fatty acids. Just be careful to read the ingredient label because lower quality pet foods that claim they have supplemented with omega fatty acids are actually just adding vegetable oil, which is not healthy for your dog and therefore not recommended.

In summary, my ideal diet for a French Bulldog would include:
Adequate levels of protein (at least 25%)
Smaller, easily digestible kibble sizes
Added supplements: Glucosamine/chondroitin, L-carnitine, Omega-3 fatty acids

Please consult your veterinary team for further advice in finding a proper diet for the lifestyle and life stage of your French Bulldog.

Dr. Brad Hinsperger, DVM



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