Why Do French Bulldogs Scream? And Make Other Weird Noises…

Does your Frenchie make some weird noises? ¹

Whether you love them for their faces or their farts, French bulldogs are one of the weirdest and most wonderful breeds out there. This article will cover why they squeal; how to train them; what their sounds mean and more. We hope to offer you an insightful view into your French bulldogs breathing and why it’s so weirdness makes them so wonderful.

Why do French bulldogs scream and squeal?

Although not extremely common, many French bulldog owners have come forward with questions or videos about their lil pups squealing like pigs.

Owners reporting high-pitched screams and squeals coming from their Frenchies, and although there isn’t a quantitative amount of information surrounding the reasons, it can be narrowed down to their Brachycephalic breed and excitable personalities.

Brachycephalic breeds experience a variety of anatomic disadvantages from years of domestic breeding, resulting in stenotic nares, elongated soft palate, hypoplastic trachea and more. Hypoplastic trachea sees French bulldogs with abnormally narrow windpipes which limits breathing in and out.

Overexcitement, fear, boredom and other emotions in addition to Brachycephalic traits show these animals exerting high-pitched noises out of their tiny bodies. If the animal has not been harmed and is in no pain, and is expressing themselves through these squeals then it may be their way of letting you know they need love.

Whether they’re feeling lonely, scared, excited or hungry, squealing is generally considered normal among most dogs, with an especially high-pitched emphasis on bulldogs and their brachycephalic traits. The screams and squeals of French bulldogs and other hypoplastic trachea prone dogs are not always in pain, as many show signs of squealing when excited due to a lot of air leaving their tiny bodies and organs so fast. 

What are the most common noises that a French bulldog makes?

Bulldogs are a small and sweet breed, taking on the role of common house-hold companions worldwide, but their lovable stature comes with some serious health risks. Most medical issues derive from their Brachycephalic breed background, Brachycephalic referring to “short-head” in Latin, which sees French bulldogs struggle with a variety of respiratory problems.

You should only be alarmed by sounds that are new and that your Frenchie has not made before ²

From elongated palates to the upper airway, their small bodies and short snouts are bound to see a diversity of noises and concerns. Some noises you can expect to hear from the nose and lungs of your French bulldog are, but not limited to, snoring; snorting; sneezing; farting; whining; crying; slurping; gagging and panting. While most of these sounds are to be expected, as French bulldogs are known for their creative and talkative nature, you should always be sure to monitor any excess experiences of the above to ensure sickness isn’t picking of your pups anatomical weaknesses.

If your Frenchie has been a farter from the beginning, then there should be no stress when they rip another one loose, but if your animal has never panted a lot then it may be an additional anatomic abnormality making itself known. As French bulldogs, and Brachycephalic breeds in general, struggle with their breathing and health, it’s important to monitor and track your fur baby tri-monthly at least to avoid any issues going undetected. Most French bulldogs live happy and healthy lives, despite their anatomic disadvantages, with the help of awesome owners. So don’t be afraid to consider a farting Frenchie, provided you’ll provide a loving home, they’re a great giggle to have around.

6 noises to be most worried about?

As stated above, French bulldogs are a wonderful breed that uses weird noises to communicate. Most of the noises we’re about to list are normal among most dog breeds in moderation, especially those with brachycephalic traits, but should be greatly considered in excess. It’s normal for any dog to cry, for attention or food, but when the crying continues through the situation then it may be a sign your animal needs your help. So don’t stress too much if you see a sound your Frenchie makes below, only an excess should sound worry. These are some of the noises you should worry about:

  • Whimpering/whining:

French bulldogs are known for being vocal, as to excitement or boredom, but an excess of whining may be a sign your pup is stressed or injured. If they don’t respond normally to your love or food then it’s best to visit your usual vet for a checkup.

  • Snoring:

It’s common for Frenchies to snore as they sleep, some more than others, which is not something to be directly worried about unless they didn’t before. If you notice your French bulldog snoring louder or more than usual, they may be developing some health issues that you should get assessed at a vet ASAP.

  • Snorting:

Brachycephalic breeds often experience snorting when drinking water or breathing due to a variety of issues that accompany their breeding history, so while snorting is considered normal among bulldogs, continuous or snorting fits can often indicate narrow nostrils or weak flaps which are making it difficult for your dog to breath. Speak to your vet about options to assist airflow. 

  • Reverse sneezing:

While reverse sneezing is common among many dogs, brachycephalic breeds are prone to it due to their elongated soft palates. And while it is common, but doesn’t look comfortable, it should pass briefly. If you notice your bulldog reverse sneezing more often than sometimes, they may be experiencing allergies or annoyed nose, bring it up with their usual vet. 

  • Barking/growling: 
If your Frenchie has just started to bark more than usual, keep a close eye on them…³

Most dogs bark or growl when scared, but French bulldogs are quite a friendly breed not known for barking unless to an exception. They’ll make 100 different noises, but barking isn’t often one. If your French bulldog growls or barks a lot, it may be encountering anxiety, food aggression or guarding behavior. Do not ignore this behavior.

  • Panting:

Brachycephalic breeds struggle especially with breathing and body regulation, not making them great hiking buddies. If you notice your Frenchie panting then its best to try to cool them down, either with some ice water or open windows. If it persists or is a regular problem, speak to your vet about cooling pads and other options to help your pup fight the heat.

Most of these noises are normal among French bulldogs but should be addressed if monitored in excess. French bulldogs are not an easy breed to own, although they offer just as much love and value to life, so it is important for you to keep an eye on them to ensure any additional issues don’t go unnoticed. 

Why do they snort and make weird breathing noises?

As a Brachycephalic breed, French bulldogs can encounter a lot of potential airway issues. Stenotic nares, elongated soft palate, hypoplastic trachea, and overly enlarged tonsils are just a few breeding issues they may follow your Frenchie.

There is a price to pay for having such a cute
but flat face ⁴

Most issues may not cause problems or can be contained and treated, but an owner needs to know why their dog is making so many weird noises. Snorts and snores are common in most flat-faced animal breeds, including felines, as a price to pay for all that cuteness.

As breeders tried to continue the cuteness of Frenchies and refine their flat face, other organs had to take the back door which was down a dark and narrow alley. That dark and narrow alley being your Frenchies breathing. With their skulls being shrunk by breeders, French bulldogs are likely to experience narrow nostrils; a restrictive windpipe; sacs along the voicebox that block the trachea; and more.

And while not every French bulldog has every issue, most are common among their breed. It can be broken down to your pup’s body being too small for its organs, meaning those organs may be pushed against or restricted.

It is very common for all Brachycephalic breeds to make funny breathing noises and sounds in general, so don’t stress too much about snorting or snoring unless experienced in excess. Enjoy the variety of vocal stylings by your French bulldog. 

How can I make my French bulldog more quiet and calm?

Aside from their farts and slurps, Bulldogs are generally considered one of the quietest dog breeds today, with French bulldogs following in their footsteps. It’s not often that you will hear a Frenchie barking or crying over nothing, yes they’ll whine for attention and whimper when you shout, but they’ll generally quiet creatures outside of communication with you.

They may sneeze, fart, snore and more, due to anatomic reasons, but they won’t growl or whine without cause. So if your animal has never been a noisy buddy, then they could be calling out to help, attention or medical issues. If the noises are involuntary then its best to speak to your vet about potential problems and solutions.

Your French Bulldog can be trained to be more quiet ⁵

But if your lil Frenchie has always been a noise-making machine, or you just got them, then there are a few ways to teach them about talking time. Noting that all behavior issues such as anxiety, guarding and food aggression should be assessed and rehabilitated with the help of a professional.

Happy barking is a common issue dog owners of all kinds struggle with, but have overcome. Teaching the “quiet” command through rewarding, as to tell your animal to be “quiet” in a loud, firm voice until they stop, to which they will be rewarded with a doggy treat.

It’s always important to stay calm when your dog is barking, as for them to not associate their barking with your attention, especially to avoid coming across aggressive as this may further trigger your dog barking. If your dog is barking at a specific person or noise, exposure or desensitization therapy should help especially when combined with treats.

If you’re struggling to train your Frenchie, then it’s best to let a professional assess and assist them, as the issue may be deeper than a bark. 

Closing Thoughts

We hope this article helped you better understand the inner workings and breathing systems of French Bulldogs. From farting to sneezing to squealing, this talkative little breed truly holds a dear place in our hearts and eardrums. Be sure to learn more about other breeds by browsing our website.

Photo Credits

¹ Photo by Karsten Winegeart on Unsplash

² Photo by Martin Dufosset on Unsplash

³ Photo by Aaron Silvers

⁴ Photo by Marneejill

⁵ Photo by freestocks.org from Pexels