Linda Simon
Dr Linda Simon (MVB MRCVS, University College Dublin)
Photo of adult Frenchton
anji barton /

Also known as the Boston Frenchie, Froston or even the Faux Frenchbo Bulldog, the Frenchton is a relatively new hybrid creation that brings together the confident and charismatic Boston Terrier with the sociable and cheeky French Bulldog. These dogs are very people oriented and absolutely thrive on human companionship. Clever and amusing, when a Frenchton is about, there’s never a dull moment.

A small yet sturdy crossbreed, there is nothing dainty about the Frenchton. Boisterous and confident, these dogs think they own the world and will rule the roost in any home. Playful with children, they do require supervision around little ones as they can be quite rowdy when excited. Rarely shy around new people and always eager to make a new friend, the Frenchton makes a poor guard dog.

About & History

Though the Frenchton is a recently developed hybrid dog they have gained considerable popularity in recent years, thanks to the general public’s interest in the designer dog movement. Both the Boston Terrier and the Frenchie are popular breeds that are particularly prevalent in urban areas. Interestingly, the French Bulldog was used in the creation of the Boston Terrier, so the Frenchton seems a natural choice of crossbreed to create.

The French Bulldog

The French Bulldog is a descendant of the Toy Bulldog, an English breed that suffered many health issues in its times and is now extinct. They were first developed in the north of France, where they became popular companions for people from all walks of life, including the upper classes.

The local breeders decided to add some French Mastiff blood to the mix during the 1800s and the resulting dog became the Frenchie that we know and love today. This dog was exported in large numbers across the sea to America where they were appreciated for their self-assured personalities and attractive look. Unlike other Bulldogs who tend to have floppy ears, the Frenchie is renowned for its large, erect ‘bat ears’ that truly add to its charm.

The Boston Terrier

Boston Terriers have a characteristic black and white ‘tuxedo’ coat that is undeniably endearing and makes them stand out from the crowd. Developed within New England in the 1890s, they have marked their place in history by being the first ever American breed recognised by the American Kennel Club.

They were bred from a mixture of small Bulldog and Terrier breeds, including the English Bulldog, the French Bulldog and the Bull Terrier. They are recognised within the Kennel Club’s Utility Group and are generally kept as companion animals.


Frenchton Large Photo
anji barton /

Though small and compact, the Frenchton packs a lot of muscle and has a truly athletic build. They have a square shaped skull with a snubbed nose and pronounced jowls. Their round eyes are well spaced apart and may bulge somewhat. Most have dark brown eyes though blue eyes are possible and the majority will have the same over-sized ears as their Frenchie parent. Their neck is thick and short and their body barrel-shaped. They have stubby limbs that should be relatively straight. These dogs all have classically short tails.

Most weigh around 8kg to 11kg and will measure from 24cm to 36cm at the withers. They tend to weigh more than similar breeds of the same height as they have such well-developed, heavy muscles. Frenchtons have short, shiny fur that can come in a number of colours, such as black, white and fawn. Brindle and pied patterns are highly desired and commonly seen. Though they do not have a hypoallergenic coat, these dogs only shed moderately.

Character & Temperament

Full of bravado, the Frenchton seemingly has the mind of a dog five times its size! They never shy away from adventure and will be the first on the scene when something interesting is happening. This character trait means that they typically get along well with people and animals of all types so can do well in busy, multi-pet households.

This breed is very reliant on its family and often struggles if left alone for prolonged periods of time. In the most severely affected, they can develop a behavioural issue known as ‘separation anxiety’. Due to this, it is not advised for those who are not planning on spending much time at home to choose this hybrid breed.

Playful and tolerant of most children, the Frenchton makes a good family dog but it is still important for the kids of the household to be taught how to act around them. While tolerant, no dog should be expected to put up with rough handling or a disregard for their personal space.


Photo of Frenchton puppy
theduckmanz /

A good-natured dog that enjoys pleasing its master, the Frenchton is a pleasure to train and does not require a particularly experienced trainer to achieve good results.

Both brainy and food-driven, positive reinforcement reward-based training works best for these guys. It should be noted that a number of Frenchtons can possess a stubborn streak and may require more patience and dedicated training than others.


While health monitoring is advisable in all pedigrees and cross-breeds, it is an especially good idea in a naturally brachycephalic breed, such as the Frenchton, and responsible breeding is vital to maintain a healthy population. The average lifespan of a Frenchton is between 10 and 12 years.

Corneal Ulceration

As the eyes of the Frenchton can bulge, they are more prone than most to corneal ulcers. This may be secondary to an infection, dry eyes or even trauma. It is important to pick up on an ulcer quickly so that treatment can be commenced as soon as possible, preventing further damage to the eye.

Treatment typically consists of the use of a buster collar to prevent rubbing, atropine drops to help with pain and antibiotic drops to prevent secondary infections. The ulcer can be monitored with a green dye stain to ensure it is healing as expected.

Brachycephalic Upper Airway Syndrome (BUAS)

BUAS consists of a number of anatomical defects, such as narrow nostrils and an overly long soft palate, which make it harder for those affected to breathe.

While many will be managed with lifestyle changes (such as avoiding getting over-weight or exercising in the heat), others will require specialist surgery to maintain a good quality of life.

Patellar Luxation

A ‘popping’ knee cap, or one that luxates in and out of place, is a common orthopaedic issue in small dogs. Ideally, this condition would be tested for before breeding as it has a known genetic component.

Cherry Eye

The term ‘cherry eye’ refers to a condition whereby the third eyelid bulges out of the side of the eye. As the tissue is bright red and shiny, some liken it to a cherry fruit. Typically, both eyes are affected and surgery is advised to cure the issue.

Some wrongly believe that this is a mainly cosmetic issue when the truth is that it can result in infection and localised inflammation.

Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD)

When the discs between the bones of the spine herniate, they can impinge on the spinal cord and cause pain and neurological deficits. If severely affected, dogs can even become permanently paralysed.

Exercise and Activity Levels

Frenchtons do not have excessive exercise requirements and are quite content with a couple of 30-minute walks a day. Owners should aim to vary things up and to take different routes where possible to prevent boredom. Small dogs who do not need a lot of space, this breed does well in urban areas and can live in apartments and small houses happily.

As these dogs can have BUAS and impaired breathing, owners must always be conscious of how they are coping when exercising. This is especially important in hot and humid weather as they are not able to cope as well other breeds.


The short fur of the Frenchton is low maintenance and should be brushed once or twice a week to remove any dead fur and to maintain the natural shine of the coat. The ears are not prone to infection as they stand erect, but they should be cleaned of any excess wax as necessary.

Claws may need to be clipped if dogs are walked on soft surfaces, such as grass rather than pavement, and this is something that they should be taught to accept from a young age.

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