About French Pit
Here’s a unique designer breed that is all sorts of charming! When you take a look at the parent breeds, you might be confused at first, but the French Pit is full of surprises: the mix between a French Bulldog and the American Pit Bull Terrier proved to be a match made in heaven!
Protective, loyal, energetic, and fun, these doggos can bring a lot of brightness and entertainment into any household. Moreover, they are great around kids and can be quite protective of their owners, making them a perfect addition to your family. Still, the French Pit might require some dedicated training, and needs owners that lead an active lifestyle. But even so, these dogs hold a lot of love that is aimed at breaking all stereotypes surrounding one of their parental breeds – Pitties.
The French Pit has a sweet and affectionate temperament, balanced with their energetic and playful character.
The secrets of this crossbreed’s origins are hidden within its name. Although similar at first glance, the two parent breeds in this story are quite different: the French Bulldog and the American Pit Bull Terrier. While the mix might seem odd, the final result is more than great! And the secret to that success is in the shared origins of both breeds.
The French Bulldog (contrary to its name) originated in England. Large at first, they were specifically “downsized” to become “Toy Bulldogs”, following an 1835 ban on dangerous bull baiting sports. From there, they ended up in the courts of France, where their popularity skyrocketed. Interestingly, the American Pit Bull Terrier also originates from the old English Bulldog breed. However, they diverted from them when a mix with the Terrier dogs was created. In time, the robust and muscular Pit Bull emerged, a dog created for purposes of “ratting” and dogfighting.
Still, the two breeds grew different over time, especially in size. The mix between the two was unexpected, but it’s here nonetheless. No one knows for sure where and when the crossbreed first appeared, but it is likely that it came into existence in the 1990s. Following the success of Labradoodle, hybrid breeders created many new combinations. It is possible that an attempt to limit the aggressive tendencies of the Pit Bull with the goofiness of a French Bulldog led to the creation of the French Pit – an altogether successful result.
For designer dog breeders, it remains a constant challenge to create a uniform appearance for their litters. This was apparent in the early, experimental generations, where litters were totally unique and no one knew what to expect. But with the pairing of French Pits, the appearance quickly became uniform and shared across litters. Today, we can even form a pedigree of sorts for this mixed breed. A French Pit is most often of a stocky build, with a medium-size and height that leans toward the Pit Bull. The facial features and the ears, however, are usually inherited from the French Bulldog. Still, unexpected results can come about – and litters can sometimes lean more to one side or another.
Colors are usually uniform, with the standards being black, beige, or white, with some spots possible. Also, the short, smooth coat is similar in both parent breeds, so you can expect the same with their offspring.
Food / Diet
There is no doubt that both the French Bulldog and the Pit Bull can have large appetites. The same applies to this unique crossbreed: its athletic build and parentage can make them quite voracious. To that end, you will have to make sure that their high-energy lifestyle is met with some protein-rich food, as well as a lot of carbs and vitamins. High-quality dry food formulated to meet their specific needs will do best – as long as it is rich in meat content.
Of course, you will have to make sure that their diet is balanced and given in just the right amounts, in order to avoid obesity. If you are in a doubt about this, it is best to contact your vet and seek advice. Every dog breed is vulnerable to that pesky extra weight, and it’s best to prevent it altogether. Still, the French Pit is generally muscular and tall, and you will have an easier time keeping their weight in check.
The French Pit might require some dedicated training, and needs owners that lead an active lifestyle
You would be surprised at how affectionate and loyal these dogs can be. They create strong bonds with their owners, and as such, they can be eager to please. This helps a lot with the training process, and with a good approach, you will usually see great results early on. Still, remember that you will need an “alpha” attitude, just like with Pit Bulls. Your French Pit will need to know who’s in charge. But once that is taken care of, the training process should be smooth. These doggos are quite smart – contrary to popular belief – and will eagerly learn when motivated.
Remember to always be patient with your pet, and to rely on positive reinforcement. Each successfully completed task or command should be met with a tasty reward. If you start the training process early on and persevere, you should have no trouble rearing your French Pit puppy into a loving, well-behaved dog.
The American Pit Bull Terrier is a robust, powerful, and muscular dog. However, when mixed with a French Bulldog, they tend to get smaller. In general, the resulting French Pit can be seen as a true medium-sized doggo. With this, their weight usually won’t exceed 30 to 40 pounds. Their height is complementary, ranging between 15 to 18 inches.
Temperament / Behavior
Shedding stereotypes is a difficult task for anyone, dogs especially. One of the parent breeds of the French Pit, the American Pit Bull Terrier, has a nasty reputation as a gangster dog, a violent fighter with a tendency for aggressive behavior. But the truth is often far from this. The Pit Bulls depend on their owners and the experiences that they receive. In a loving environment, they can grow to be affectionate, kind, and protective. Luckily, the stereotype did not transfer to the French Pit. When they were mixed with the goofy and playful French Bulldog, the end result was quite unique. The French Pit can have a sweet and affectionate temperament, balanced with their energetic and playful character.
These doggos love “zoomies”, as they are both playful and have insatiable energy. Sometimes, this can become a bit chaotic, especially in crowded homes. Due to this, the French Pit will be an ideal addition to equally athletic owners. If you are sport or outdoors-oriented, these sporty doggos might be ideal for you. But besides this, the French Pit is super sweet. They are so surprisingly affectionate and loyal, and very protective to boot. Properly socialized, they became the friendliest dogs, and gentle around kids. As such, they have some of the ideal traits for family dogs
Common Health Problems
Hybrid dog breeds are known to be healthier and stronger than purebred dogs. Scholars agree that this is due to their greater genetic diversity since they are of mixed origins. But even so, you should not be relaxed: crossbreeds can often inherit some of the genetic issues of their parent breeds. Both the French Bulldog and the American Pit Bull Terrier have some similar issues that you can experience with your French Pit.
The most notable of these issues is the brachycephalic syndrome, which results from the breed’s short snout. This can create problems with breathing, so you should avoid areas with extreme heat, and should try and avoid overexercising your pet.
They can also have some issues related to the skin. Certain areas of their bodies will have skin folds, and dirt can accumulate here, creating itching, eczema, and similar issues. Invest in some special dog wet wipes, and keep these wrinkled folds clean always. Senior French Pits can also be prone to the so-called “cherry eye”, better known as the prolapse of the third eyelid. This is a common issue with all Bulldog breeds
If the life expectancies of parent breeds are an indication, the French Pit can reliably have a life expectancy of 12 to 14 years. Not a bad result, especially if we take into account the fact that 15 years is an average maximum for most dog breeds.
We mentioned it already – the French Pit is one demanding bundle of energy! Muscular, tall, and lean, these dogs will require a lot of daily exercise – and then some. If you were hoping for a couch potato dog, this breed might be a handful for you, because you cannot neglect their exercise needs. Do so, and you might end up with an anxious, aggressive, and unhappy French Pit. And this means: destroyed and chewed up furniture, barking, lashing out, and lethargy! But remember to exercise them and tire them out, and all these issues will be far, far away.
To that end, you should establish a healthy daily routine of regular walks, visits to the park, or long and energetic hikes or runs. Of course, the best solution would be a spacious fenced-in yard with plenty of good turf. With that, your French Pit would be able to play about as much as they need, giving you some extra free time. Of course, mental stimulation is also important. Your French Pit’s brain needs to be kept sharp as well. Try out some unique dog toys and puzzles!
Protective, loyal, energetic, and fun, French Pits make great pets for active families and families with kids.
Being relatively new and just increasing in popularity, many unique designer breeds have a hard time finding their way to accepted and established dog breed registries. The same goes for the French Pit, which is sadly not listed on the American Kennel Club. But luckily, they are recognized by the American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC), the Designer Dogs Kennel Club (DDKC), and the worldwide Designer Breed Registry (DBR). That’s a big success for a relatively new crossbreed and a sure hint at the growing popularity of the lovely French Pit.
Thanks to the relative similarity of the coats in both parent breeds, the French Pit is a dog with a truly non-demanding coat. Smooth and shiny, this coat requires only casual brushing. Try establishing a routine of casual light brushing just a few times per week. That, and some casual bathing, will keep your French Pit spic and span! Still, remember to find the shampoo with a low pH value and non-toxic ingredients: this will help alleviate some of the possible skin issues that these dogs can have.
In general, it should come as a relief to know that these doggos are really low maintenance. If shedding and grooming are not something you are good at, the French Pit is the ideal choice for you without a doubt!
French Pit puppies will require a lot of your care in those early formative days. This is the time when you need to set solid foundations that will benefit your dog in the long run. Arguably the most important of these early steps in “puppyhood” is socialization. In an attempt to curb some of the possible “over-protective” traits of the Pit Bull, you should not neglect to introduce them to friendly dogs, strangers, and children – as early as possible. With these in check, your pet should grow up to become the best version they can be. And that means friendly, affectionate, and protective of their family!
Photo credit: Firn/Shutterstock
A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.
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