Despite their somewhat menacing appearance, French Bulldogs are lovable creatures that thrive on constant love and attention. They're known for their playful attitudes and loyalty to their families. They're one of the most popular breeds in the world.
One unique thing about these dogs is their unusual build. They have a somewhat stocky body, short neck, and a flat face that's begging to be played with. Unfortunately, their distinct features can be a huge hindrance to their overall health.
French Bulldogs suffer from a condition known as brachycephalic syndrome. They can have a difficult time breathing because of the way their body is built.
With their narrow windpipes, small nostrils, large tonsils, and soft palate, there's a lot of elements that prevent them from getting an adequate air supply to their lungs. This issue gets worse if they run out of breath during a walk or heavy exercise.
Standard collars can prove to be dangerous for this breed. The constriction around their small necks can lead to choking and heatstroke. It doesn't help that French Bulldogs are notorious pullers.
To combat this issue, owners should invest in a high-quality harness. Harnesses provide control and restraint without affecting their ability to breathe.
So What's the Best Dog Harness for French Bulldogs?
1. Chai's Choice Best Outdoor Adventure Dog Harness
From Chai's Choice is this highly-visible harness. It's available in a range of neon colors and utilizes reflective trim throughout. For durability, the harness utilizes a few different materials.
The outer layer is made from a scratch-resistant Oxford material that has a high tensile strength rating. Nylon webbing is also used for the straps and chest portion.
To keep your pup cool, the inner layer is made from a breathable nylon mesh. It's accompanied by light sponge padding.
It's fully adjustable and has a zinc alloy rings. There's even a handle strap that can be used as a seatbelt loop for car rides.
2. Puppia Soft Black Trim Dog Harness
This harness from Puppia has a simple design that's perfect for French Bulldogs. It's a no-pull option that doesn't have any uncomfortable neck straps.
Instead, it features a wide chest piece that's made from Oxford cloth. There's also a mesh lining to prevent chaffing and overheating. The straps are all made from strong nylon webbing and have reinforced seams throughout.
The harness is designed for easy attachment. The four separate straps connect to a single top piece so that you can slip it on with no issues. It's available in numerous colors and has reflective webbing for visibility.
3. The Original EcoBark Maximum Comfort & Control Dog Harness 4-65 lbs
This simple and affordable option from EcoBark has a unique design. It comes as a single piece and includes only one clasp. This quick-release buckle is reinforced to prevent accidental damage.
There's also a reinforced D-ring for attaching your leash. The body of the harness is made of lightweight polyester. It has some subtle padding to prevent discomfort during the walk and a breathable mesh liner to keep your dog cool.
The straps are made from an innovative material that's crafted out of recycled plastic bottles. It's durable and has a reinforced cross stitch for security. The straps can be adjusted to accommodate the size of a French Bulldog.
4. Ruffwear Front Range All-Day Adventure Harness for Dogs
This harness from Ruffwear can help you throughout the training process. It features two leash connection points. One is on the front to accommodate dogs that are still learning. The other is on top of the harness and can be used for relaxed dogs that know their boundaries.
The rings are made from durable aluminum to keep your dog secure. The harness is available in a range of vibrant colors and features heavy padding throughout.
It has four different adjustment points to get the perfect fit and includes a quick-release buckle on both sides. To get it on your pup, simply slip it over their head and secure the buckles.
5. EzyDog Quick Fit Custom Fit Adjustable Dog Harness
Get the perfect fit with this harness from EzyDog. It has a one-click fitting system that makes it easy to achieve a snug fit without any issues. The chest strap is also adjustable for even more customization.
The harness is made of soft webbing that doesn't snag fur. There's also padding on the strap that goes around your dog's body. If your dog needs even more protection, the harness comes with a waterproof neoprene sleeve that wraps around the chest strap.
With a stainless steel D-ring and robust quick-clip buckle, your dog will remain secure. It's available in a spectrum of colors to suit your dog's style and has thick reflective stitching throughout.
Why Use a Harness?
Harnesses are designed to be safer and more comfortable for dogs. Rather than creating pressure at the neck, harnesses wrap around the chest. Typically, they wrap under the front legs and connect at a single point on top of the pup.
This strategic placement provides more control and less discomfort. Owners will quickly find that their canine companions respond much better to a tug on the chest. They make it possible to move most of the dog's body mass with less work.
For French Bull Dogs, harnesses are a must-have. They can help dogs avoid breathing complications by putting no restrictions on their neck. With that being said, it's important to choose a harness that's catered to your dog's body and needs.
Things to Consider
To be effective, you must find a healthy balance between snug and comfortable. Too large of a harness will result in your eager pup slipping out and getting into trouble.
With a harness that's too tight, you'll run the risk of injuring your dog on your daily walk. It's important to invest in a harness that can be custom fit to your Bulldog.
French Bulldogs can be difficult to size due to their short and chubby statures. Before selecting a product, it's a good idea that you take some crucial measurements.
The first thing you need to measure is their girth. Girth refers to the width of their chest around the ribcage. Find the widest part of their chest. This is typically located one to two inches behind their front legs.
Wrap the measuring tape under their chest and over the top of their body to find the circumference. To make things easier, mark where you made this measurement on your dog's body.
Then, you need to check their chest width. This measurement is a bit trickier to get and can vary dramatically based on the design of the harness. To get a basic idea of what size your dog will need, measure from one side of their body to the other side.
This measurement should be perpendicular to the previous girth measurement. Use the mark you made earlier to find the girth spot and wrap the measuring tape over their chest to the other side of their body.
This information can give you a general idea of the size you're after. While you may not find a harness that fits these exact measurements, most will come with adjustable straps that help you get that perfect fit.
No Neck Straps
Neck straps can be very dangerous for French Bulldogs. Many harnesses include a neck strap for extra security, but you'll want to avoid these options. Instead, go with a no-pull design. These types of harnesses are free of neck straps and focus on the chest instead.
They're expertly designed to give you more control of your dog's weight. Instead of tugging at the neck and choking them, you'll be tugging at their chest. Not only is this safer, but it's also more effective for training.
Material and Build
French Bulldogs are determined animals that will do all they can to get to where they want to go. It's important to go with an option that's made from high-quality materials. Cheaper products will only deteriorate over time, making it easier for Fido to escape.
Look out for durable materials like leather, Oxford cloth, or nylon webbing. They are resistant to abrasive damage and hold up pretty well in inclement weather. Also, pay attention to how the harness is put together.
Thick plastic buckles and metal rings will make sure that the harness stays on. Reinforced stitching around the seams is also a good idea as they help to prevent fraying.
Comfort is important for French Bulldogs. You want to take extra precautions to make sure that your dog's airways aren't being obstructed by the harness.
If the product includes a lateral strap, make sure that it's not located at the throat.
Many manufacturers include soft material on the back of the strap that glides over the hair. This is great for preventing chaffing at the chest and around the legs.
Padding is another great feature to look for. While it's not always necessary, it can make a load of difference in what your dog feels. Padding is often included on the chest portion of the harness and helps to prevent any jarring pressure when they tug on the lead.
Visibility features are important on any piece of dog gear. Your furry friend needs to be seen. With a vibrant color, your dog is less likely to be hit by distracted drivers. Many harnesses also have some reflective material or threading for night walks.
The shiny surface will reflect light from flashlights and headlights. These unique visibility features will benefit you as well. Should your dog come loose from the leash and wander off, you'll be able to spot them right away.
Dogs have a very short attention span. They're not going to sit still long enough for you to figure out the pieces of a harness while you try to put it on. Harnesses come in all shapes and designs. Choose one that's easy to slip on and off at a moment's notice.
The best types of harnesses come in a single piece. Simply place it under their chest and connect the various straps to the piece on top of the body. There's no need to worry about getting their legs through any holes or fussing with tangled straps.
Over to You
The right harness will make life much easier for your French Bulldog. They'll be able to play and go on walks comfortably without having a painful collar choking them. You'll be able to keep your dog protected and help them live a happy life despite their unique condition.