French bulldogs are no longer “typical dogs” for health reasons, scientists say

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People are advised against buying French bulldogs after new research shows they are at a much higher risk of developing health problems – including narrowed nostrils and obstructive airway syndrome.

According to a study of over 2,000 French Bulldogs at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC), the brachycephalic breeds can unfortunately no longer be considered “typical dogs” from a medical point of view due to years of overbreeding.

While owners have previously been cautioned to “stop and think” before buying flat-faced breeds, this new study underscores the need to shift French Bulldogs to more common traits in order to reduce the risk of breathing disorders.

As part of the study, scientists analyzed the medical histories of 2,781 French Bulldogs and 21,850 other breed canines and compared the rates of diagnosis of 43 specific diseases between the Bulldogs and other breeds. Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, French Bulldogs were at higher risk for conditions such as obstructive airway syndrome, ear discharge, skin fold dermatitis, labor difficulties, and breathing difficulties.

Portrait of a cute brindle French Bulldog standing in a park during the day?

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“There is no doubt that many people love the feeling of having their special French Bulldog. But unfortunately this study helps us to understand the full extent of the serious health problems these dogs have, ”Dr. Dan O’Neill, Senior Lecturer in Companion Animal Epidemiology at the Royal Veterinary College, tells us Email online.

“In order to change the typical appearance of French Bulldogs in a meaningful way over time, breeders and kennel clubs that publish breeding standards have to act on themselves. But the greatest responsibility rests with the owners, who can ultimately ask for dogs with more moderate characteristics.”

Despite the shocking health issues exposed, the study found that French Bulldogs were less likely to develop lameness, obesity, and undesirable behavior.

Bill Lambert of the Kennel Club added, “We continue to work with veterinarians, charities and breed clubs to educate the general public, many of whom are simply unaware of the potential health and welfare issues some of these dogs face.”

You can find the full study in the journal Canine Medicine and Genetics.

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