How often you should bathe your French Bulldog is a controversial topic. Depending who you talk to, it can range from weekly to monthly. We believe in the latter. Bathing too often can irritate skin, damage hair follicles, and increase the risk of bacterial or fungal infections. Let’s face it, Frenchies are a bit smellier than other dogs due to their facial skin folds, ears, and tail pocket (sort of a hidden area between the tail and the skin). Although frequent bathing won’t make any of that better, frequent localized hygiene will help. Here at Bully Brand we bathe once a month and use bath wipes along with bath mists in between baths to keep our frenchies smelling fresh and clean.
- Make sure water is warm but not too hot. 70-80 degrees is ideal.
- Wet your dog well and avoid spraying or pouring water directly in their faces or ears.
- We like mixing the shampoo with water in a bottle before putting it on the dog. This way we can liberally put it all over the dog without overdoing it and make rinsing easier.
- We suggest a damp washcloth for the face. No shampoo necessary. You can use the same cloth to clean inside the ears by wrapping it around your pinky finger.
- Rinse thoroughly!
- Towel dry
Here at Bully Brand we use Pawtree ALL natural ear wash & ear dry which controls smelly and itchy ears. The soothing duo is Alcohol-free, chemical-free. The ear wash contains yucca, aloe vera, chamomille, tea tree oil, clove oil & echinace while the ear dry contains calendula, aloe vera, chamomille, tea tree oil, clove oil & echinace
Look for Infection
Before you start cleaning your dog’s ears, make sure they are just dirty and not infected. Signs of an ear infection are: ears are hotter than other skin, bad odor, sometimes discharge, ear interior may be red and/or crusty, and sometimes pain when the ear is touched. If you see any of these signs, take your dog to the veterinarian for medication.
Ear cleaning supplies
Pawtree ear cleaning solution, cotton balls, perhaps gauze, a thin rag, or ear wipes. DO NOT use cotton tip applicators (like Q-tips or similar brands) due to the risk of perforating an eardrum or causing other trauma to the ear canal. While it is important to clean your dog’s ears when needed, over-cleaning may cause irritation in the ear canal, and this can lead to infection. In fact, some dogs that have healthy, clean ears may never need to have their ears cleaned at all.
How to Clean the ear
Now that you have all your supplies you are ready: Pour some ear solution on the gauze, cotton ball or rag, or grab the ear wipe. With your other hand, grasp one ear and hold the earflap up vertically to expose and straighten the ear canal and begin wiping debris from the inner part or the ear flap and the upper ear canal. You can wrap the gauze or rag on your pinky finger and clean the ear that way. Then of course repeat the process with the other ear.
Face, Eyes & Nose cleaning
All dog breeds with wrinkled skin may have different kinds of issues with their facial folds. That happens because their wrinkles are moist and dark, so they produce the perfect environment for bacteria to grow. if you regularly clean your French Bulldog’s folds, you’ll also keep his eyes free from debris and bacteria. By checking often, you’ll also avoid some serious skin issues and infection
Brachycephalic (flat faced) dogs tend to have shallow eye sockets, which can cause their eyes to bulge, so sometimes the eyelids can’t fully close, leaving eyes susceptible to irritants and dryness. They can also have ingrown eyelashes, or Entropion (a medical condition in which the eyelids fall inward), which can cause “tear stains” — dark brown or reddish marks beneath the eyes. Such stains can be accompanied by discharge, but not always. They are typically more visible in dogs that have white or light colored fur. The reddish stains appear when porphyrins, a pigment found in tears, accumulate under the eye. Stains that are brownish or rust colored may be the result of a yeast infection on the skin under the eyes that is able to thrive because of the constant moisture from tars building up on the skin.
How to Clean the face
You can use a tear stain remover or a simple alcohol-free baby wipe or moist rag. After cleaning your dog’s face, always make sure that you have removed all the moisture, since that may lead to an infection. On the other hand, if you left your Frenchie’s folds too dry, it may cause serious irritation and rashes. In that case, you can put some natural dog company skin soother inside those folds after you previously washed them well.
Caring for the Nose
Nasal hyperkeratosis is one of the most common problems that affect French Bulldogs. That is an idiopathic condition where a Frenchie’s body produces too much keratin, creating a crusty, dry-looking nose. The best way to deal with your Frenchie’s dry nose it to apply moisturizer whenever needed. We love Snout Soother.
The first consequence of long toenails are painful feet. When dog’s toenails contact hard ground, the hard surface pushes the nail back up into the nail bed. This either puts pressure on all the toe joints or forces the toe to twist to the side. Either way, those toes become very sore, even arthritic. Here at Bully Brand we train our puppies by giving them weekly nail trims using scissors and a baby nail drimmel.
We’ve discovered that, due to their body structures, French Bulldogs wear down their nails unevenly when walking, so you might have to trim some of their nails and not others. You will need to purchase nail clippers. There are two types: guillotine type and scissor type. We prefer the scissor type since we find guillotine clippers can crack and squeeze nails. You will also need styptic powder in case you cut the quick (the vein that runs through the nail).
Handle your dog’s paw often and introduce the clippers (without cutting).
Hold your dog’s paw firmly but gently. While holding the clipper at a 45 degree angle, place the nail in always making sure you clip a little bit of the nail at the time. Better having to cut the same nail several times than cut the quick.
Trim only until you see the white inside the nail with a small dot of black in the center. If you don’t see the white, you can cut a little bit closer. If you accidentally cut the quick do not panic. Apply pressure with a cloth or a paper towel and then use the styptic powder. Be aware that the styptic powder causes an initial sting and your dog might react a bit.
If you do not feel comfortable trimming your dogs nails, make sure you make regular appointments with a groomer or ask your vet to trim them.