Can You Take French Bulldogs on Long Walks?

As dog owners, walking our dogs is a huge part of the joy of being a pet parent. It’s important to note some things about taking your French Bulldog on walks to ensure their safety, health, and happiness.

Exercise is unquestionably healthy for humans and dogs alike. However, before you grab the leash and your sneakers, it’s a good idea to learn some things about walking your French Bulldog.

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French Bulldogs and Health Issues

French Bulldogs are excellent pets. They are affectionate, small, and quality watchdogs. However, many french bulldogs can have health issues such as breathing problems and Canine Atopic Dermatitis (or atopy). These health difficulties need to be considered when questioning taking your French Bulldog on walks. Read on for more info on this very important topic!

Breathing Problems

A common characteristic of Frenchies is that they can suffer from breathing difficulties. There are a lot of French Bulldogs that have The Brachycephalic Obstructive Syndrome (BOS), an upper-airway abnormality, or other breathing problems.

Of course, if your Frenchie does have difficulty breathing, walking your French Bulldog for very long is not a safe idea. Start with very short walks, a few minutes long, to see how much they are able to do while breathing normally. If your Frenchie appears to be out of breath, carry them home and be sure to stay under that time for future walks.

Always consult with your vet to ensure you know all that you need to know about keeping your pup healthy.

Canine Atopic Dermatitis

Many French bulldogs suffer from Canine Atopic Dermatitis or atopy. This can cause inflammation between the toes which will likely result in discomfort, or possibly a more severe pain, when walking your french bulldog.

Again, consult with your vet for best treatments which include fatty acid supplements and moisturizing cream. As for walks, keep them very short or take a rest when your dog is experiencing a flare-up.

Taking Your French Bulldog on Long Walks During Summer

Taking your French Bulldog on walks when the weather is nice is a treat for you and your Frenchie! But, do keep in mind that dogs are much more sensitive to the summer heat than people, especially French bulldogs. 

Helpful Tips

If the weather isn’t too hot for walks, here are some helpful tips for taking your french bulldog on walks in the summer:

  1. Time of day: Walk your Frenchie in the morning or evening when the sun’s heat is not at its peak.
  2. Bring water: Just like people, dogs need to stay hydrated. Carry water and offer it to your Frenchie regularly.
  3. Check their paws: If you cannot place the back of your hand comfortably on the pavement for 10 seconds, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.
  4. Check their breathing: Remember, many french bulldogs have a hard time with their breathing. If you are walking your french bulldog and they are not breathing normally, carry them home.
  5. Keep it short: Especially when the weather is warm, keep walks short.

For winter tips and tricks, check this out.

Heat Strokes in Dogs

If a pet’s body temperature goes above 103 degrees, there’s a sure risk of a heat stroke. As we know, a heat stroke can be a serious issue and can cause death. While humans sweat to control body temperature, a dog pants. Since french bulldogs often have a restricted airway, they’re at a higher risk of heat strokes. Read more and consult your vet to learn more about this important topic.

Symptoms of Heat Stroke

How do you know if your Frenchie is having a heat stroke? A heat stroke can be recognized by the following symptoms:

  • Breathing is faster than normal and their heart rate is high.
  • The gums and their tongue change to a blush color.
  • Your Frenchie struggles to move, stumbles, and falls often.
  • Your Frenchie is experiencing muscle vibrations.
  • There’s a change in saliva.
  • Small bloodstains appear on the skin.

If you notice any symptoms of a heat stroke when taking your French Bulldog on walks or in any other situation, contact your vet immediately.

7 Must-Haves For Taking Your French Bulldog on Walks

Now that you are aware of some must-know information when it comes to taking your french bulldog on walks, here are some must-haves for your walks with your favorite furry family member.

  • Dog boots will keep your French Bulldog’s precious paws protected.
  • Reflective dog coats ensure that your French bulldog’s coat does not get wet during a sudden rain shower on your walk. The added benefit is that you and your Frenchie can be seen even in bad conditions.
  • Foldable food and drink bowls to take up little space are so handy! You can attach this food and drink bowl to a belt or bag.
  • A backpack for your dog can easily store your hiking accessories when taking your french bulldog on walks. This backpack is located on both sides of the harness, distributing the weight equally on both sides so that your dog does not have any problems walking. 
  • A label hanger is a useful idea for the unfortunate and possible chance that your dog runs off. This label hanger provides the name of your dog and your contact information. 
  • LED collars are crucial in order to be visible to others.
  • Hands-free walking lines gives you the convenience and freedom to use your hands when taking your french bulldog on walks. This no tangle, heavy-duty, hands-free leash is a dream. 

Stay Safe and Enjoy Taking Your French Bulldog on Walks

In conclusion, taking your french bulldog on walks is certainly a possibility. In fact, walks are great! While most French Bulldogs are not made for long walks, short walks are usually safe if you maintain awareness of possible health issues, consider the weather carefully, and use proper gear. Always contact your vet with concerns or questions.

Happy walking!