French Bull Tzu
- Height: 8-12 inches
- Weight: 15-25 lbs
- Lifespan: 10-13 years
- Group: Not applicable
- Best Suited For: Singles, seniors, families with older children, people who live in an apartment
- Temperament: Sweet, friendly, goofy, affectionate, adaptable, clownish, stubborn, intelligent, curious
- Comparable Breeds: Breed French Bulldog, Shih Tzu
French Bull Tzu Basics
There are a lot of unique and unusual designer dog breeds out there- but the adorable French Bull Tzu takes the cake! Combining the looks and personalities of both of his parents, this designer dog essentially looks like a shaggy, fluffy Frenchie and has a friendly, bubbly personality. In a nutshell- these are some seriously lovable pooches!
As the name suggests, the French Bull Tzu is the offspring of two popular purebred dogs, the French Bulldog and the Shih Tzu. Both of his parents are small breed dogs, so you can expect their mix to be of short stature and stocky build, too. Naturally, crossbreeding often yields unpredictable results, so you can never know what your French Bull Tzu puppy will look like when he grows up. These designer dogs can either be a perfect combination of their purebred parents or look more like one then the other. But that’s just a part of their charm, in all honesty.
The low activity needs, compact size, and adaptable character make the French Bull Tzu a great choice for people living in an apartment. Similarly, retirees and singles will also find that these utterly adorable dogs make perfect companions- they are very affectionate and eager to please. Curious to see if the French Bull Tzu is a good choice for your family and living situation? Read on to learn more about this rare and impressible breed.
This designer dog looks like a fluffy Frenchie and has a friendly, bubbly personality.
Even now, after decades of their existence, people still don’t make a clear distinction between designer dogs and mutts. And that’s with good reason: the only difference between the two is that there’s an intention to create a designer dog breed, whereas mutts weren’t a product of planned crossbreeding. The fact that mixed breed dogs have been around for ages makes it hard to pinpoint the exact time and place when people started intentionally producing each of the particular mixes.
However, what we know about some of the most popular designer dog breeds and the history of this phenomenon, tells us a lot about French Bull Tzu’s own story. It’s highly likely that this hybrid, too, had its start somewhere in the United States, sometime in the last 30 years. And regardless of if your own French Bull Tzu comes from an intentionally bred litter or was born from an accidental mating, you can be sure of its qualities- as they usually inherit a lot of great traits from both mom and dad.
The French Bull Tzu is a hybrid breed that is a result of crossbreeding a French Bulldog to a Shih Tzu. This is a first generation mix, as parents are always two different purebred dogs, and there hasn’t been any evidence that a breeder attempted multigenerational breeding yet. Usually, these F1 mixes tend to have relatively good health, but they are rather unpredictable. You can never know whose genes will be more dominant- even littermates can look significantly different one from another! Since there’s no standard of appearance or temperament, the American Kennel Club doesn’t recognize designer dog breeds, including the French Bull Tzu. Therefore, these cute mixes are not eligible for registration and official pedigree papers.
Nevertheless, if you are buying a French Bull Tzu from a breeder, it’s crucial to ensure you know everything about their family tree. Even without the paperwork for the French Bull Tzu puppies, there are ways to get the necessary assurances. A reputable breeder will be able to produce pedigrees for one or both parent and will give you a health guarantee for the puppy. Ideally, you’d also get to meet the mom and dad, so you could see for yourself their health, living conditions and their behavior. Puppy mills and dubious backyard breeders won’t offer any of these things- they keep their dogs in despicable conditions and produce sick, poorly bred puppies. Breeding and good genetics play an important role in your pet’s health- make sure to double check everything.
The French Bull Tzu is not a picky eater. However, that doesn’t mean you should indulge them with the food they like (hint: it’s usually what they shouldn’t eat) and forget about nutrients. All dogs need a healthy, well-balanced diet to thrive, and this hybrid is no exception. In fact, a carefully designed diet is particularly important for this Frenchie mix as he will often inherit his parent’s sensitivity to certain food groups. They often develop food allergies, so it’s important to choose premium, healthy food to prevent bad digestion and allergic reactions.
In most cases, the Shih Tzu and French Bulldog mix will do best on a high-quality dry food for dogs. Most experts agree that kibble is the safest choice, as it combines all the essential nutrients into a convenient crunchy form. For your mixed breed dog, choose only premium dry food, made from high-grade ingredients. It should also be appropriate for their age- puppies, adult, and senior dogs have different dietary needs.
As a small breed dog, the French Bull Tzu will be prone to obesity. Weight gain over their normal size can lead to many health issues, from joint pain to diabetes. To prevent this, make sure not to overfeed your pet and provide enough exercise. As a rule of thumb, a Frenchie-Shih Tzu mix shouldn’t need more than a cup of kibble on a daily base. Split this into two separate meals to avoid bloating.
As a small breed dog, French Bull Tzu doesn’t need much exercise to feel content and stay in shape.
While the French Bull Tzu might not be the easiest dog to train if you’re a first-time dog owner, these designer dogs are still very trainable. Smart and eager to please, they will respond to the right approach and a confident attitude. For best results, use rewards to motivate your dog to learn- positive reinforcement really works wonders. Yelling, punishments and harshness will lead you nowhere with a French Bull Tzu. They’ll only become afraid of you but won’t learn anything in the process.
French Bull Tzu puppies can be a bit stubborn or have a short attention span, so you’ll have to be patient. Begin training them as early as possible, ideally in the first few months of their life. Housebreaking, learning how to walk on a leash and simple commands are a good place to start.
A French Bull Tzu will weigh between 15 and 25 pounds. Their ultimate size will depend on their sex and which parent they favor. In any case, this will be a small breed dog, ideal for living in an apartment or a small house.
There’s plenty of reasons why both the Shih Tzu and the French Bulldog are popular pets. In addition to cute looks, these breeds have been perfected for the role of pets and family companions, their traits carefully selected through generations. As their mixed breed offspring, the French Bull Tzu will inherit a lot of those traits- both good and the bad.
With timely training and socialization, French Bull Tzu will be a friendly, sweet pooch with a lot of love for everyone they meet. They will get along with older, respectful children, and other pets of similar size- if their personalities are compatible, that is. But, while their affectionate nature is undeniable, these crossbreeds usually get very close to one person who they adore above anyone else- and follow their every step. In the case that they’re living only with one owner, these loving dogs can develop separation anxiety and become destructive when left alone- consider this if you’re working long hours.
These adorable clowns also have a playful, goofy side to them and will regale you with their silly antics. French Bull Tzu is a smart dog and will enjoy engaging games with his owners, playing with puzzle toys or simply goof around on their own- as long as they think it makes you happy, you can count on seeing more of it.
Common Health Problems
In some cases, crossbreeding leads to improved resiliency and health of the mixed breed offspring, an occurrence known as ‘hybrid vigor’. Sometimes, though, mixing purebreds could expose their offspring to two sets of breed-specific issues. In other words, there’s no guarantee French Bull Tzu will be healthy, apart from the assurance his parents were, and that there were no congenital issues in the family tree.
Generally, though, French Bull Tzu is a relatively healthy breed. Owing to their parentage, these designer dogs stand to inherit a few problems, including respiratory difficulties, and skin and eye issues common for both the Frenchies and Shih Tzus. Other potential conditions include canine disk disease, hemivertebrae, and pulmonary stenosis.
The life expectancy for a French Bull Tzu is between 10 and 14 years. A lot will depend on their genetics, as well as the quality of care they’ve received throughout their life.
As a small breed dog, French Bull Tzu doesn’t need much exercise to feel content and stay in shape. Their compact size means that they’ll tire faster than their large canine friends. Even indoor activities can do the trick for these feisty little mixes, which is why apartment dwellers often decide on this (or similar) breed. However, this doesn’t mean that your new pooch will not need daily walks and time outside. Fresh air and walking do good for anyone- your French Bull Tzu included. Ideally, you’d provide 30 to 45 minutes of daily walking, coupled with a bit of quality playtime. These designer dogs need to have engaging games to satisfy their curiosity and keep their bright minds sharp- puzzle toys are a great way to achieve this.
French Bull Tzu is a smart dog and will enjoy playing with his owners or with puzzle toys.
The American Kennel Club doesn’t recognize this designer dog, and neither do any of its international counterparts. The Shih Tzu and French Bulldog mix is recognized by the Dog Registry of America as French Bull Tzu, and by American Canine Hybrid Club under the name French Bull-Shih.
The only predictable thing about the appearance of a designer dog is that it will be unpredictable. Especially in cases where mom and dad don’t look alike, such as with the Shih Tzu and French Bulldog. These dogs might both be small and have that signature flat-face look, but that’s where the similarities end. Their coats, for instance, are complete opposites: Frenchie has a short, sleek coat whereas the Shih Tzu flaunts long, soft locks. Their baby’s hair can be either something in between or look more like one parent’s coat. In most cases, though, their hair is medium to long, with a cute shaggy quality to it. Their coat colors vary from brindle to mono color to two-color coats. Possible shades and combinations include red, fawn, white, cream, black, brown and many more.
Regardless of which parent’s genes are more dominant, the French Bull Tzu is not demanding when it comes to grooming. Regular brushing and a bath every once in a while will keep their coat in optimal shape.
French Bull Tzu puppies are extremely cute when small- but extremely fragile, too. It’s too easy to injure a pup this small, whether with rough play or clumsy handling. Needless to say, you shouldn’t leave them with children unless an adult is present to supervise them. Once they grow up a bit, at few weeks to few months old, these hybrids are ready to start learning.
Early training and socialization are a must for French Bull Tzu puppies- they prevent “small dog syndrome” and ensure your new pet behaves well and gets along with everyone.
Photo credit: Songdech Kothmongkol/Shutterstock; Alexander Kliuiko/Shutterstock