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How to Groom a French Bulldog? 8 Step Expert Guide

Written by: Nicole Cosgrove

Last Updated on April 19, 2024 by Dogster Team

French Bulldog Bath

How to Groom a French Bulldog? 8 Step Expert Guide

One of the most popular small dog breeds in the world is the French Bulldog. Playful, friendly, and a great match for apartments or big houses, the Frenchie is an adorable companion for all sorts of families. They’re also one of the easiest breeds to look after, especially if you’re new to owning a dog.

To help out new dog owners or dog owners who are new to owning a French Bulldog, we put together this step-by-step guide to grooming your new puppy.

divider-pawDo You Need to Groom Your French Bulldog?

Many people assume that French Bulldogs don’t require much grooming due to their short, fine coats. However, this isn’t necessarily true. Frenchies can benefit from a dedicated grooming routine just like any other dog, and here are a few of the reasons.

To Bond

You shouldn’t think of a grooming routine as a chore. Sitting down for a grooming session is the perfect way to spend quality time with your Frenchie, especially after a long day at work when you just want to relax. It’s always nice when your four-legged best friend smells and looks nice too.

Not only will you be able to cuddle with your dog while you groom them, but they’ll also get the chance to enjoy being the sole focus of your attention.

To Minimize Shedding

French Bulldogs might only have a fine coat and don’t shed much, but loose fur can still find its way onto your furniture and carpet. Brushing them regularly removes all the dead hair before it ends up on the floor and clogs up your vacuum cleaner.

French Bulldog snuggling beside owner
Image Credit: Mylene2401, Pixabay

To Promote Hair Growth

Along with removing dead, loose fur, brushing helps encourage the growth of new hair and spreads natural oils throughout your dog’s coat. A dedicated routine will keep your French Bulldog’s coat looking sleek, shiny, and in perfect health.

To Remove Allergens

Many French Bulldogs suffer from sensitive skin, which can flare up if they get too many allergens stuck in their fur during their adventures. Brushing helps remove all the clogged dirt and keep your dog’s coat free from allergens that might irritate their skin.

female french bulldog sitting
Image Credit: Piqsels

divider-pawHow to Groom Your French Bulldog: Step by Step

1. Use the Right Tools

Grooming might be a routine for all dogs, but the tools that you use should change depending on your dog’s breed and personality. French Bulldogs have a short, single coat, so you won’t need a heavy dematter or pin brush to reach deeper into their coat.

A medium or soft bristle brush is the best tool to use. For more timid dogs, a grooming mitt is less bulky and just as effective.

If you bathe your French Bulldog, you should carefully consider which shampoo to use. Frenchies with skin sensitivities will do better with hypoallergenic shampoo, while others will be okay with regular dog shampoo. Steer clear of human shampoo, though, as the pH balance for human shampoo is slightly acidic to match our skin, which can cause skin issues for your dog.

Finally, you’ll need doggy nail clippers or a grinder along with a toothbrush and dog-safe toothpaste. French Bulldogs can also benefit from fragrance-free wipes to help you clean the dirt from their facial wrinkles.

Our Favorite Products

Selecting the right shampoo and conditioner makes the world of a difference when grooming your pup. Our favorite products are the duo by Hepper. The Oatmeal Pet Shampoo is formulated with aloe and oatmeal to soothe skin and hydrate the coat. The Pet Conditioner works at eliminating tangles and taming frizz and static. Both products are pH-balanced and formulated with pet-friendly ingredients, free of harsh soaps, chemicals, and dyes. Give this duo a try to heal and nourish your dog's coat, and leave them with an irresistible just-left-the-spa cucumber and aloe scent. 

Hepper Oatmeal Shampoo for Dogs, Cats and Other...
Hepper Pet Conditioner and Moisturiser - Scented...
Hepper Oatmeal Shampoo for Dogs, Cats and Other...
Hepper Pet Conditioner and Moisturiser - Scented...
pH balanced
Gently cleanses
Cucumber & aloe scent
Free of harmful additives
Combats tangles & static
Soothes & hydrates
Hepper Oatmeal Shampoo for Dogs, Cats and Other...
Hepper Oatmeal Shampoo for Dogs, Cats and Other...
pH balanced
Gently cleanses
Cucumber & aloe scent
Free of harmful additives
Combats tangles & static
Soothes & hydrates
Hepper Pet Conditioner and Moisturiser - Scented...
Hepper Pet Conditioner and Moisturiser - Scented...
pH balanced
Gently cleanses
Cucumber & aloe scent
Free of harmful additives
Combats tangles & static
Soothes & hydrates

At Dogster, we’ve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool pet company!


2. Introduce the Routine to Your Puppy

French Bulldogs are calm and friendly, but they can still be nervy when they’re placed in a situation that they’re unfamiliar with. In general, a puppy will be easier to introduce to the grooming tools and the new routine. While they might still be wary, they aren’t as likely to have past experiences that could make them fearful of certain tools.

You can still start a new routine with older dogs, though. Be careful to pay attention to your French Bulldog’s behavior, and don’t push them too fast before they’re ready. Keep grooming sessions short, fun, and positive, and slowly work up to handling all their grooming requirements in one go.

3. Brush Regularly

As a low-maintenance breed, your French Bulldog doesn’t need a daily grooming session unless they get into a muddy situation during the day. This minimal grooming requirement is the biggest reason that they’re such an easy breed to look after.

For the French Bulldog, a grooming session once a week is usually more than enough to keep their coat in good condition. It also makes them a breed that’s suitable for owners with less time on their hands.

french bulldog getting its hair brushed by a groomer
Image Credit: DuxX, Shutterstock

4. Bathe Them

How often you should bathe your dog is widely debated. Some people say that once a month is fine, while others prefer to bathe their dogs only when they get dirty or smelly enough to warrant it.

Something to bear in mind is that the more often you bathe your dog, the more the natural oils are stripped from their fur. These oils protect and moisturize their skin and coat, keeping them in good condition. Using the wrong shampoo or bathing your dog too often can dry out their skin and exacerbate existing skin issues.

Hypoallergenic shampoo can help, but you should pay attention to how your French Bulldog copes with the number of baths that you give them. If they start to look disheveled and suffer from dry skin, reduce the number of baths and rely on a brush instead.

5. Remember Their Wrinkles

The French Bulldog’s skin folds give them their iconic adorableness. However, the wrinkles are also places where the most dirt can get trapped. This can lead to irritated skin or infections if you forget to clean these areas.

Fortunately, it doesn’t take long to clean these folds of skin despite how difficult cleaning them can first appear. A quick once-over with a wet wipe — one that is fragrance free and safe for dogs — is a simple solution.

woman's hand cleans the wrinkles in a french bulldog's muzzle
Image Credit: Valdis Muiznieks, Shutterstock

6. Clip Their Nails

Similar to bath time, how often you clip your French Bulldog’s nails depends on you and your dog. If you live in an urban area and take many walks on concrete sidewalks, your French Bulldog’s claws will need cutting less often because the concrete will wear them down naturally.

However, you should still check your dog’s claws regularly to ensure that they don’t need clipping. Long claws that click on the floor might sound cute, but they can cause dogs pain as they walk.

You can use nail clippers designed for dogs or a grinder if they dislike clippers and don’t mind the noise. Whatever tool you use, remember to avoid the quick, the area of your dog’s claw that contains the blood vessels and will be painful if cut.

7. Check Their Ears

Another recognizable trait of the French Bulldog is their upright, bat-like ears.  They’re not as likely to suffer from ear infections as other Bulldogs, but they can still get dirt and debris trapped in their ears during their adventures.

While you’ve got your Frenchie close by for a grooming session, take a few seconds to check their ears for dirt. Make sure there aren’t any signs of discharge or odor from an underlying infection, and if necessary, carefully clean away any dirt with a clean cloth and dog-safe ear-cleansing solution.

If you are looking for the perfect product to clean your dog's sensitive areas or would benefit from an on-the-go option, Hepper's Wash Wipes are our recommendation. These premium wipes are thick and durable enough for the toughest of paw messes, while still being soft enough to use on your dog's ears or eyes. Formulated with pet-friendly, hypoallergenic ingredients they are the ideal product for all dogs of all ages, skin conditions, or sensitivities. 

Hepper Pet Wash Wipes - Soft Pet Cleaning Wipes...
  • Gentle Care For All Pets - Infused with moisturizing hypoallergenic ingredients & enriched with...
  • Deep Cleans From Head to Tail - Tackle the toughest dirt & messes with our extra strong pet wipes...
  • Freshness On The Go - Each dog grooming wipes pack contains 30 counts of premium dog wipes that...

At Dogster, we’ve admired Hepper for many years and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool pet company!


8. Brush Their Teeth

Crunchy treats designed to clean away tartar and plaque from your dog’s teeth are a nifty trick to help prevent dental decay. Nothing beats a good toothbrush, though. There are two types of canine-friendly brushes that you can use. The first is a smaller version of a human toothbrush, and the second is a silicone or rubber brush that you can wear on your finger.

Remember to use toothpaste formulated for dogs too. Human toothpaste can contain ingredients that are toxic to dogs and taste unpleasant. Dog-specific toothpaste is completely safe for dogs and will often taste like their favorite treats.


Final Thoughts

French Bulldogs are lovable companions that fit into a wide range of family dynamics. They’re a low-maintenance breed with short, fine fur that doesn’t require much attention. Keeping up with regular grooming sessions — at least once a week — will help you keep your Frenchie clean and improve the health of their coat.

Featured Image Credit: Margarita Mindebaeva, Shutterstock

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