Showsight Presents the French Bulldog

wiTh diane Burvee, Jame

s dalTon, anne KaTona,

molly marTin, mary mil ler, osa & roBin sTansell

desi murphy, virginia ro

wland, luis and paTTy s

“Judges need To rememBer ThaT The Frenchie is NOT ‘A LITTLE BULLDOG.’”

The standard calls for reach and drive, the action is unrestrained, free and vigorous. The standard calls for them to be active, alert and playful. This makes for a correctly made Frenchie with correct temperament to hold the correct outline, when moving around the ring. We see too many that cannot carry themselves with the correct outline. VR: I think it is important that French Bulldogs be sound movers; their pear-shaped bodies mean that they should move closer in the rear than the front. That being said, Frenchies are companions, as long as they are not lame and show any sign of patella issues, my decision is usually based on other things besides gait. L&PS: Gait is very important. The standard is very specific: correct gait is double tracking with reach and drive, the action is unrestrained, free and vigorous. Double tracking in the Frenchie is different from “double tracking” in other breeds. Since the Frenchie is a pear-shaped breed, in a mature dog the front legs will make a wider set of tracks, and the hind legs will make a narrower one. Hence “double tracking.” You should be able to see the rear legs inside the front when the dog is moving towards you, in a mature dog. I say a “mature” dog because young Frenchies tend to be slow to develop the pear shape until their chest drops and their front widens. This may not fully develop until the dog is 2 or 3 years old. On side gait, you see the epitome of breed type—the topline that makes a Frenchie unique. A Frenchie has to be able to walk for us to consider it in Breed or Group competition. RS: Gait is specific for each breed and as such is part of type. 2. Do you tend to favor Frenchies that are more “Bull- dog” or “Terrier” in style? DB: I want the happy medium in a moderate Frenchie, so I neither favor a “Bully” Frenchie, nor a “Terrier-like” one. Both are equally as incorrect and undesirable. The modern French Bulldog we know today is derived from Bulldogs mixed with some Toy Terriers along the way in the old English days, so it is understandable to see some of these ancestral traits surfacing. To breed a French Bulldog that is truly correct in its balance and propor- tion, where it is not too long/short in both body and leg length, and yet housed with the right amount of bone and substance without being too “stuffy” (Bulldog-like) or too “weedy” (Terrier-like) is one of the most difficult things to accomplish as a Frenchie breeder. JD: While I have to wonder if this question is serious, unfor- tunately I have had some aspiring judges actually ask this

question! It is a French Bulldog, not a French Terrier—so anything resembling “Terrier” in style is completely incor- rect in my opinion and should be judged accordingly. AK: The word in this question that bothers me is “favor”— I try not to “favor” either type because it depends on where in the country one is judging as there may only be one type shown. When I have a choice I “favor” a Bulldog shape in a small size over Terrier. MMartin: I’m not actually sure what is meant by “Terrier” style, so I must answer “Bulldog.” Bulldogs and French Bulldogs share many similarities in silhouette, shape of the head, pear-shaped body and gait—although the French Bulldog traits are not as exaggerated. MMiller: I reward characteristic that are strictly French Bulldog, but if I had to make a choice between the two it would be the Bulldog. DM: Being that the Toy Bulldog is a major part of their back- ground, they certainly should appear more Bully than Terrier in type. VR: I judge to the standard. The standard says nothing about a Terrier in style. Frenchies are Bulldogs—less extreme than their Bulldog cousins—which a comparison of the two breed standards will confirm. In my experience when people refer to the Terrier influence in Frenchies, it is in reference to temperament. Some Frenchies can be feisty around other dogs. Though that is not necessarily a Terrier characteristic as that (English) Bulldogs can be very feisty. L&PS: Judges need to remember that the Frenchie is not “a little Bulldog.” Yes, they were originally developed from Toy Bulldogs (with the infusion of other breeds—includ- ing some Terriers), hence you find characteristics of each in the Frenchie. Everything about the Frenchie standard is MODERATION, and that is moderation in comparison to the Bulldog. The correct Frenchie will fall between these two extremes. RS: I favor Frenchies that meet the breed standard. I see no reference to different styles. 3. How much importance do you give to ear size, shape and set? DB: I place a tremendous amount of importance on ear size, shape and set, and judges who don’t are missing the point! The quintessential bat-ear is one of the breed’s hallmarks, and a dog without the proper bat-ear should technically be disqualified, as per our standard. I have never seen a judge even question the shape/size of ears on Frenchies, except Judith Daniels who DQ’d a dog

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