The French bulldog has overtaken the labrador retriever as the most popular dog in the US, according to the American Kennel Club. The gentle and playful French bulldog has steadily risen over the past decade, from 14th place in 2012 to claim the top spot this year. The judges praised the breed for its adaptability, loyalty, and affectionate nature. Many other breeds also moved up the rankings, including the Gordon Setter, Italian Greyhound, and Anatolian Shepherd. The increased demand for the French bulldog has led to concerns about its health, primarily related to breeding dogs with flat faces, which can lead to respiratory issues, among other problems.
Brachycephalic breeds, including French bulldogs, pugs, and bulldogs, may suffer from many health issues, such as breathing difficulties, eye disease, skin infections, and dental problems, among others. In 2017, the British Veterinary Association issued a statement that advised potential owners to avoid purchasing these breeds and to discuss the best breeds with their veterinarian. The AKC agrees that it is crucial to research and understand the needs of individual breeds before purchasing. The animal welfare organization urges aspiring dog owners to consider purchasing dogs from responsible breeders who focus on the health and well-being of the animals rather than from puppy mills or pet stores that offer poor-quality dogs.
Despite these concerns, the French bulldog is favoured for many reasons, including its companionship qualities. According to VioVet, Frenchies display loyalty and devotion to their owners, as well as fearlessness in protecting them when threatened. The breed also has a playful nature that makes it an ideal companion for families and individuals. The AKC also praised the breed for its adaptability, noting that it can thrive in many settings, including small apartments or large homes.
In conclusion, the French bulldog has overtaken the labrador retriever to become the most popular dog breed in the US. While the breed’s gentle nature and affectionate personality make it a desirable pet, there are concerns about its well-being due to breeding practices that create the flat face and breathing difficulties that can lead to health problems. However, responsible ownership and careful breeding can help to mitigate these issues, and potential dog owners should consider these factors before committing to a breed. Overall, the AKC believes that, with proper research and preparation, the French bulldog can make a loving and loyal companion for the right family.