Most French bulldogs have a soft, short coat and the most enormous ears you've ever laid your eyes on. Is there a long-hair Frenchie? It turns out there is! Learn more about the fluffy French Bulldog and how they're bred below.
While we see the typical French Bulldog puppy with a short, dense coat, selective breeding helped a new type of Frenchie dog emerge over the last ten years - the fluffy French Bulldog.
This special Frenchie has medium-length, wavy fur that gives them a sweet new look. While many breeders claim these pups are still purebred, others are a little skeptical of the claim, assuming these dogs cross with long-haired litter runts.
Are fluffy white French Bulldogs purebred, or is it all a lie? Read more on the debate below.
Why do some dogs have long hair?
The reason why we see dogs with such an extensive range of physical characteristics all comes down to genes. Certain breeds possess and express genes differently than others.
The long-haired gene in dogs is called the Fibroblast Growth Factor 5, or FGF. Dogs with this gene often have long-haired coats.
Can Frenchies have long hair?
With genetic analysis more advanced than ever, canine genetic researchers have determined that the French Bulldog breed possesses the FGF gene. This means that seeing some Frenchies with long hair makes perfect sense from a biological standpoint. And while they're not going to be one of the fluffiest dog breeds, you can certainly see some furrier Frenchies around.
This gene is autosomal recessive, which is why it's far rarer to see a French Bulldog puppy with a long coat rather than a short one.
There are a few types of fluffy, long-haired Frenchies we most often see, including:
- Lilac and Tan
- Blue and Tan
How does gene expression work?
Let's look at gene expression before continuing and why you can possess a gene for something without expressing it.
Genes in our dogs' bodies always come in pairs, as each dog, or human, if you want to break it down further, inherits a complete set from both of their parents.
Dominant genes tend to express themselves more often than recessive ones because if there is a case of "conflict" between the two, it always wins out.
With hair lengths in Frenchies, long hair is the recessive gene, and short hair is the dominant gene. This means that:
- If a dog possesses two dominant short-hair genes, it will have short hair.
- If a dog possesses two recessive long-hair genes, it will have long hair.
- If a dog possesses one short-hair and one long-hair gene, the dominant short-hair gene wins out, and the dog will have short hair.
Recessive genes tend to be rare, as the chances of having and passing on a dominant gene to their offspring are pretty high.
Why do Frenchies have the long-haired gene?
Though we've established that Frenchies possess the long-haired gene, some argue that it's only possible due to inter-breed mixing. The common theory is that a French Bulldog mix contains some Pekingese genetics, or perhaps from a long-haired Chihuahua.
It's impossible to tell if any breed is precisely pure, as we're only as accurate as the given records are. In 1800s France, the English Bulldog crossed with local ratter dogs to create the French Bulldog gene. These local ratter dogs may have carried the long-coated FGF gene.
Is the fluffy French Bulldog purebred?
Today, gene testing has become an advanced technology, and we can use breed identification tests to determine the ancestors of a dog with reasonably good accuracy.
The science says that long-haired French Bulldogs are 100% purebred. Though we're sure the critics will keep on criticizing, scientifically, these pups are the real deal.
What Is the French Bulldog breed standard?
Though a long-haired French Bulldog is just as much Frenchie as its short-haired pals, the breed standard is for its most common genetic expression, the short-haired coat.
And while regular people love the way this little floofster looks, many professional breeders see it as a detriment. Without the "ideal" appearance, the long-haired Frenchie won't win any shows or make them any cash.
It's not all about looks; breed standards also protect a breed's overall health. Some non-standard coat colors correlate with specific health issues, meaning it's probably best not to breed them. Fluffiness, however, doesn't make your French Bulldog any more likely.
Adopting a Fluffy Frenchie
The fluffy Frenchie is identical to a short-haired Frenchie in almost every way, except for the coat differentiation.
Usually, a fluffy Frenchie is up to 13 inches tall and weighs from 16 to 28 pounds. The average French Bulldog lifespan ranges from 10 to 12 years, barring any significant health conditions.
These sweet pups love to please their owners and train very well, especially with the use of some extra motivation in the form of treats. The Frenchie is sweet, affectionate, and lives well, even in small spaces, like an apartment.
It's not all bright and sunny living with a Frenchie. Like any other dog, they have a few downsides.
French Bullies are prone to experience separation anxiety, so they're best-suited for an owner that will be home often. Otherwise, a Frenchie is bound to get destructive out of pure boredom.
Long-haired pups also require a bit more grooming than short-haired Frenchies, with a thorough weekly brushing to prevent shedding and to keep their coat clean. You'll also want to clean their facial folds, which are prone to bacterial growth, and trim their nails often.
How much do fluffy French Bulldogs cost?
Any purebreds are pretty expensive, especially when it comes to the rare long-haired variety.
A fluffy Frenchie will cost anywhere between $13,000 to $16,000, while a short-haired one is only $1,500 to $3,000. That's a hefty price tag!
Final Notes & Where to Find a Fluffy French Bulldog
Though the long-haired Frenchie is rare, it's not impossible to find a good breeder, especially if you're able to look in France, where you see them more often.
Because of some trendy social media exposure, the demand for fluffy Frenchies is multiplying, which means if the option isn't available near you, it likely will be soon!
If you plan to adopt this small breed, you may want to invest in a bed ramp for dogs to help them get onto your bed or couch without the risk of joint issues.
Whether you adopt one or just enjoy looking at them, these fluffy Frenchies are 100% purebred!