Pugs Vs French Bulldogs – The Ultimate Comparison!

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Both the pug and french bulldog breeds have seen steady growth over the last decade with each managing to rapidly gain popularity and method of the two breeds showing any signs of their popularity fading or slowing in growth anytime soon. Due to both dogs being brachycephalic breeds with a large number of similarities, we constantly see people reaching out trying to make sure that they are getting the correct breed for their situation.

In all fairness, though, both breeds are so similar with only minor differences between them meaning that the majority of our readers will be able to go with either of them without issue. In addition to this, both of the breeds are so popular that finding a reputable breeder to source your puppy should not be difficult and as a small dog breed, both the pug and the french bulldog are ideal for smaller homes or homes without a large garden or yard.

Before we go any further with our article, we just want to quickly say that this is not a point-scoring article. We are simply going to go over the differences and similarities between the two breeds in the main areas anyone looking to add a pug or french bulldog to their families will likely care about. Our hope is to try and help any of our readers interested in either of these breeds choose the correct dog for their situation and help as many people interested in these dogs as possible.


When it comes to their diet, both of the featured dog breeds do well on a standard primary food source designed for small breeds. Although most people opt for either a dry or wet food source, some people have taken to going with the more expensive raw food option and make most of their dog’s meals at home. That said though, this can be expensive and a suitable dry dog food that is at least 26 percent protein supplemented with a suitable wet dog food should be fine for most pugs and french bulldogs.

When it comes to treats, the majority of pugs and french bulldogs will enjoy kitchen scraps provided they are based around a real source of protein such as chicken, lamb, beef, duck or any other animal. Although there are some great high value treats on the market these days, kitchen scraps will likely do just as well for the majority of pugs and french bulldogs if you are trying to train them.

One thing that is often recommended for both breeds is that you try to add a suitable oil supplement for dogs into their diet if possible. Both pugs and french bulldogs can have issues with hot spots, dry skin, and itchy skin due to not getting enough Omega 3 or Omega 6 in their diet and these supplements offer a quick and easy way to fix that. That said though, a pug does tend to have a higher chance of having these issues than a french bulldog but getting their essential fatty acid intake back up usually corrects the issue.

Health Issues

As we touched on earlier in the article, both the pug and the french bulldog are brachycephalic breeds meaning they have a smaller head with a shorter snout than most other dog breeds. This can lead to a condition known as brachycephalic airway syndrome that is usually mild in both breeds but can sometimes end up developing into a serious condition that may require surgery. If your pug or french bulldog is snorting, suffering from noisy breathing, tiring quickly, fainting when exercising, or snoring while they sleep then they probably have brachycephalic airway syndrome.

Thankfully, these health problems serve as an early warning system for dogs with brachycephalic airway syndrome allowing you to get your pug or french bulldog to your local veterinarian as soon as possible. Your local vet will then be able to best advise you on how to move forward with these health issues as it is important to fix as quickly as possible do your pet can breathe, sleep, and exercise as normal.

The short snout on both breeds also put them at risk of having a pharyngeal gag reflex, being born with stenotic names, pinched nostrils, and brachycephalic airway syndrome as covered above. Although these conditions are usually mild it is definitely something that we would want our readers to be aware of and it is highly recommended that you consider getting some pet insurance for your pug or french bulldog to reduce the costs of any of these health problems occurring in your pet.

Although both pugs and french bulldogs can have issues with the wrinkles in their skin, the higher number of wrinkles in pugs makes them more susceptible to irritation and infection if regular cleaning is not carried out. We always recommend Earthbath All Natural Grooming Wipes to our readers as they have an excellent reputation with many pug owners using them to keep their dogs faces as clean as possible. They are quick and easy to use and very budget-friendly while also having earned themselves a large number of great reviews from the community over the years with many reviews from other pug owners too.

Due to the smaller head of both breeds, they can both have issues with their eyes too. Pugs can have issues with an eye prolapse whereas french bulldogs can have issues with a condition called cherry eye too. Although these conditions are rare, it is just another one of the health issues that we feel the need to make our readers aware of and again, recommend that you consider getting your pug or french bulldog some pet insurance.

Are Pugs Or French Bulldogs Healthier?

We have seen a number of people reaching out and asking if a pug or a french bulldog tends to be healthier and it’s hard to call. Both breeds can have multiple health issues but there have been official studies done for french bulldogs that found that 72.4 percent of a study of 2228 french bulldogs had some form of health issue with them. We were unable to find any comparable study for pugs but this is a high chance of your pet having a problem.

Now, keep in mind that with this study, just shy of 18 percent reported serious disorders with the rest being made of things such as common issues with conjunctivitis, ear infections, and diarrhea. That said though, this is still around a one in five chance that your pet french bulldog can have a serious health issue and in all honesty, we wouldn’t put the chances of having similar issues with a pug that far behind them. As we have said above, this is just a stronger reason to ensure that you have a good pet insurance plan for your pug or french bulldog to help reduce any potential vet bills for your dog.

Size And Weight

Although both the pug and the french bulldog are small dogs, the pug is the smaller of the two with it tending to be around 10 to 12 inches tall and come in at 14 to 18 pounds of weight when fully grown. A french bulldog tends to be around 11 to 13 inches tall and come in at 20 to 28 pounds of weight when fully grown. The small size of both breeds make them ideal dogs for life in an apparent but keep in mind that you will still have to take your dog out for regular walks.

Family Life

Both the pug and the french bulldog tend to make great family dogs and get along with the whole family and can interact well with children and other pets. They both love attention and are generally happy and playful making them great companion dogs. Both pugs and french bulldogs tend to make a strong bond with their families quickly with some potentially having issues with separation anxiety if they are left alone for long periods of time.

This can sometimes result in excessive barking from either breed until you return home and potentially cause problems with your neighbors depending on your situation. This can often be mitigated if you get your pug or french bulldog as a puppy and have been able to train it from a young age to be alone without having these issues. Some people also opt to get a second pug or french bulldog to keep each other company in the home if you will be out at school or work most of the day too.

Both breeds have their own unique personalities that can be hilarious and they can really become a character in your family. Pugs definitely tend to be more strong-willed than a french bulldog who can be more of a lapdog but this usually results in the pug staying in its bed when its walk time if it doesn’t feel like going for a walk rather than anything to be worried about.


Both pugs and french bulldogs have a decent level of intelligence making them easier to train provided that you are able to keep the training interesting and keep it as more of a game. There are definitely more intelligent dog breeds out there but this can work in your favor as the more intelligent dog breeds tend to be harder to train. Both pugs and french bulldogs tend to be highly motivated by food meaning that some high value treats or high protein kitchen scraps will usually work a treat in the training process.

Although pugs and french bulldogs are likely to play with a complex, interactive dog toy, they are more likely to lose interest before they are able to solve it, even if they are able to smell the treats inside of it. The intelligence of both breeds usually also results in a high level of curiosity with both pugs and french bulldogs tending to warn you of strange sounds around the home allowing them to act as an early warning system for a potential intruder.


Both featured breeds will shed and they will both shed moderately year-round with two seasonal shedding spikes where they blow their undercoat. The average frenchie may shed a little less than the average pug but in reality, the amount of shedding that the breeds do is close enough to class them as the same. If you do suffer from allergies to dogs then their shedding may cause you some problems unfortunately but there are steps you can take to minimize flare-ups in the owners of the dogs.

Most people should be able to take advantage of a suitable de-shedding brush as well as a decent deshedding dog shampoo and control the shedding from their pug or french bulldog. This can help to reduce the chances of any allergies flaring up in the owner and can sometimes allow you to have a pug or french bulldog in your home without any flareups at all or the need for antihistamines.


Both the pug and the french bulldog are companion dogs that have been bred to be around people most of the time with them both being similar to lapdogs and enjoying relaxing with their human family. It is very rare that a pug or a french bulldog will act aggressively or try to display dominance or territorial threats with both breeds preferring to relax and take the easy life. Although we touched on the use of the breeds as an early warning system for any strange noises around your home, neither pugs or french bulldogs make for good guard dogs or personal protection dogs due to their small size and friendly temperament.


That concludes our article going over the key points for the pug and french bulldog. We have covered all of the main points of the two breeds that we are able to think of throughout our article and we hope that our readers have found our article helpful. As we touched on back at the start, this was never meant to be face off style article to try and say that one breed is better than the other as both pugs and french bulldogs are excellent pets. They are loving and loyal and their friendly personalities make for great pets, our article was simply to point out the differences and similarities of the breeds to try and help our readers discover if one will be a better fit to their home than the other.