People seem to be obsessed with miniature dogs, so it’s no surprise that mini French Bulldogs have also entered the scene in recent years. What are they exactly and is it worth adopting one of these cute-looking dogs? We’ve gathered the most important information in this article.
What is a mini French Bulldog?
Miniature dog breeds are quite popular these days and it’s easy to see why. In today’s fast-paced world, people are looking for a dog that is easy to keep in small apartments, one they can take anywhere they go. So, the smaller the dog the better. It was only a matter of time for this trend to reach our favorite French Bulldog as well, which is already considered a small dog breed and currently sits second on the AKC’s list of most popular dog breeds.
A Mini French Bulldog, also known as a Teacup French Bulldog, is exactly what the name suggests: a miniature version of the French Bulldog that was bred to be smaller than the standard size. So, while a normal Frenchie will grow up to 11-13 inches tall and weigh 28-30 lbs as an adult, a mini Frenchie will be less than 11 inches tall and weigh considerably less than 28 pounds. The exact size may vary a lot depending on the breeding practice, more about that in the next section.
Even though we at TomKings currently don’t breed mini French Bulldogs, we couldn’t ignore the trend and wanted to gather the most important information for those who are fascinated by them. It is indeed tempting to fall for a cute miniature dog like a mini French Bulldog, but before adopting one it’s worth doing some research and see behind the curtain.
How do breeders create Teacup French Bulldogs?
At this point it’s important to mention that officially there is no such breed as a mini French Bulldog. There are dog breeds that have toy versions like the Poodle or the Havanese, but Frenchies don’t belong to this group. Breeders use three methods to achieve the miniature size and unfortunately all of them are quite controversial and some even have their fair share of risks as well. Let’s see what these are.
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Crossing a French Bulldog with a smaller dog breed
The first and most obvious way of creating mini French Bulldogs is by crossbreeding a standard Frenchie with another small dog breed like a Yorkie or a Toy Poodle. Naturally, the pups will be mixes of the two breeds, so the breeding needs to be repeated across several generations until the puppies have all the physical traits of a Frenchie and retain only the small size of the other breed. Breeders usually achieve this around the third generation.
Crossbreeding is not a new practice although it is quite a controversial one. However, it is still considered to be the safest method to produce a mini French Bulldog, and the simple reason for that is the health of the puppies. A crossbreed mini Frenchie is less likely to suffer from any of the health issues that their parents may be predisposed to.
Breeding the runts of the litter
Another method that some breeders use to create mini Frenchies is breeding runts. If you’re not familiar with the term “runt”, it refers to the smallest animal in a litter. That doesn’t necessarily mean that they are the weakest and suffer from health issues but they do have a higher tendency. Constantly breeding such puppies with the aim to pass down the small-size trait not only involves possible health risks but it also takes multiple generations to achieve the desired miniature size.
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Breeding Frenchies with dwarfism
The last and by far the worst method is purposefully breeding Frenchies with the dwarfism mutation gene to create puppies with shorter bodies and legs. Canine dwarfism is a condition where the growth hormone’s production is decreased. Unfortunately it comes with a number of health issues for Frenchies who already have a delicate bone structure: it may not only cause a lot of pain for them in the legs, back, and hips but also significantly reduce their lifespan.
The pros and cons of having a Mini French Bulldog
You have already seen that there’s a lot to consider when buying a mini French Bulldog, especially how they are bred. Now let’s see what are some of the pros and cons of having one of these cute miniature dogs.
- Mini Frenchies are a great choice for city dwellers who live in small apartments with little space.
- Due to their small size mini Frenchies require less food and exercise. They of course still need a high quality dog food as well as daily playtime and walks.
- Mini Frenchies have all the best personality traits that we adore in French Bulldogs: they are funny, affectionate and extremely friendly.
- As they stay small forever, you’ll always feel like you have a pup even if they get older.
- Their adorable look is hard to resist!
to Adopting a Frenchie
- Lots of mini French Bulldogs are bred unethically resulting in serious health issues and having a shorter lifespan.
- Healthy mini Frenchies are mostly crossbreeds so they are not purebred.
- Since it is very hard to produce healthy mini Frenchies they are not only hard to come by, but are also very expensive compared to the average French Bulldog price, especially if they have a rare color.
- Due to their delicate bone structure mini Frenchies are more prone to fractures and injuries.
- Because of the previous reason, they are not ideal for families with small children who may play with them too roughly and accidentally injure them.
- Having a smaller bladder means they may need more work when it comes to potty training.
- Even though they don’t require as much exercise they still need a lot of attention from their owners: they cannot be left alone for an extended period of time to avoid separation anxiety.
Should you buy a mini French Bulldog and what can you choose instead?
When looking at the long list of cons for buying a mini French Bulldog, we think that they largely outweigh the fact that they look cute and take up less space than a standard French Bulldog. You can still get a smaller sized Frenchie even if they are not described as a “mini”, for example we have a couple of puppies every 1-2 months who are considerably smaller than their littermates. We do the strictest health screenings on them to make sure they are just as healthy as any of their brothers or sisters.
If you still have your heart set on a miniature Frenchie despite all the risks and high costs, we urge you to do some diligent research beforehand and only consider reputable French Bulldog breeders. We suggest you read our Ultimate Guide to Adopting a French Bulldog Puppy as well. Don’t forget to ask plenty of questions about their breeding practices and make sure to expect satisfying answers! At the end of the day, you are looking for a healthy family member so we warn you to be extra careful and consider everything we have shared in this article.
If you’d like to learn more about Frenchies, join our Facebook group called TomKings Frenchie Family to read our Frenchie parents’ experiences!
The article is based on the expert knowledge of the TomKings Puppies team who have been breeding French Bulldogs for 10 years on their farm. All the pictures in the post belong to them and their customers, and show puppies from their breed. Check their available French Bulldog puppies, or if you have any questions or comments let us know below the article.