Chests need to be broad and full but narrowing at the loin to show some tuck up from the side and the pear shape when viewed from above. The hind feet need to track inside the footprints of the front feet. Let’s not pay attention just to the heads and lose the distinctive body shape of the French Bulldog. Yes, this is a head breed, but let’s keep the total package. MMiller: Toplines. DM: Fronts and rears have improved greatly. We are seeing better ears. Toplines and balance needs to be worked on. We see too many Frenchies that are low and long with flat backs. VR: Overall quality has really improved; I still see wry bites and occasionally dogs with breathing issues. L&PS: Breeders need to become more familiar with the breed standard. I read our standard every time I judge our breed (as I do every breed) and always pick up on some point I might have forgotten. Breeders need to work with each other to produce better quality dogs. Since most Frenchies are “finishable” largely because they are shown against dogs of equal quality, often there is no great incentive to improve quality. After all, you never know whose turn it will be to win on a given day. RS: Ear set and size, toplines, proportions and sound movement. 9. The standard has a weight disqualification. As long as not over 28 pounds, what is your preference in size as far as judging the breed. Do you believe that a Frenchie can be too small? How often have you called for the scale in your judging? DB: Always call for the scale if in doubt, as there are over- sized Frenchies being shown and even specialed! All weights and sizes within 28 lbs. is correct, but I have never found a diminutive small French Bulldog to be typi- cal as it would most likely lack bone and substance. So yes, I do believe a Frenchie can be too small, and I would venture to admit as a breeder, I personally would not breed a bitch under 20 lbs. A Frenchie should be a sturdy, muscular and dense dog of small or medium stature. It should never appear teacup-ish or Toy-like. On the other hand, it should not be tall and rangy either. My ideal size for a female is between 22-26 lbs., and between 23-28 lbs. for a male. Remember secondary sexual characteristics are also very important, as the Standard specifically states that “due allowance is to be made in favor of bitches, which do not bear the characteristics of the breed to the same marked degree as do the dogs.” On top of size, a correct bitch should always look feminine and elegant without lacking bone or substance, while a male should appear masculine, muscular and substantial. JD: It is difficult to find a dog with desirable bone and sub- stance under 25 lbs. Most of the top-winning dogs today are between 25-28 lbs. as they should be, in my opinion.
Although the standard does not have a minimum weight requirement, I absolutely do believe that a Frenchie can be too small. These are not Toy dogs, they are small Bulldogs. I prefer bitches in the 20-25 lb. range. Anything smaller than this and there is usually not enough bone and substance for me either in the ring or the whelping box. So far in my judging career I have not called for scales, but would not hesitate to do so if I thought it were necessary! AK: In answer to too small? Yes, I do think a bitch in any breed can be too small for breeding purposes. I would always want a free whelper, if possible, in any breed. I usually look for the middle of the road in size. I have called for the scale in three situations when I wanted to use that dog for placement. I never call for a scale to weight a dog out. I usually want to weight him in so I can use him in a placement. All three times the dogs weight- ed in at exactly 28 pounds. The scales are so much easier to use today than when I first started judging. If a judge does not understand how to use the new electronic scale, then ask the superintendent for help to get comfortable with the scale. MMartin: I do not have a size preference if not over 28 pounds. I don’t believe I’ve ever judged a Frenchie I felt was too small. I have called for the scale once. MMiller: I don’t have a particular size I prefer, but rather I look for proper proportions. Yes, I am starting to see some very small dogs. I have not called for the scale. DM: I find the most appealing males are around 26 pounds and bitches around 24 pounds. Yes, a Frenchie can be too small. They are not Toy-like dogs. They are a lot of dog in a small package. It is very difficult to get a small Frenchie with proper bone and substance. VR: I do not have a size preference generally; if I think the dog could be over 28 pounds, then I would call for the scale. The standard mentions that Frenchies can be of medium or small structure. I prefer an adult French Bulldog to be over 18 pounds, anything under that I feel is too small. L&PS: As a breeder, my size preference is for a larger dog. As a judge, I try to weigh (pun intended) all sizes equally as long as I have the muscular dog of heavy bone that the standard calls for. Remember that the Frenchie is not a Toy breed and yes, they can be too small. I call for the scale whenever I have a dog whose weight I question. I would much rather weigh, and if the dog weighs in, judge it accordingly; if it weighs out, disqualify it. I’ve actually had judges tell me that they try to “pick from the middle” so they don’t have to worry about having an oversized dog. Weigh the damned dog, don’t ignore it or put it at the end of the line! Judges who do not come from a weighable breed, need to weigh to set size in your mind. I probably call for the scale about every third or fourth time I judge the breed, and I weighed two dogs at
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