French Bull Tzu

15-25 lbs
8-12"
Unknown
French Bulldog
Shih Tzu

One’s a feisty companion derived from British fighting dogs, while the other’s a regal lapdog that was beloved by the upper strata of Chinese society — a Bulldog Shih Tzu mix might seem a peculiar canine blend, but early indications suggest that this is a friendly hybrid who inherits positive traits from both parents.

In this introduction to the Bulldog Shih Tzu Mix, you’ll learn that…

  • Their appearance can vary quite wildly from litter to litter
  • This Bulldog Shih Tzu mix is an energetic dog that needs more walking than other small breeds
  • The French Bull Tzu can be prone to Brachycephalic Syndrome and overheating
  • Their coat needs to be brushed three times a week

French Bull Tzu Breed Overview

What is a Bulldog Shih Tzu mix called? Unlike other hybrids with snappy portmanteaus — the Labraheeler and Staffweiler among them — a cross between a Shih Tzu and a French Bulldog doesn’t really have a definitive name yet. Some people call a French Bull Tzu, while others refer to them simply as a Bulldog Shih Tzu mix.

This unclarity over the name is down to the fact that this is a relatively new face on the scene, despite both parent breeds being popular in their own rights. We can see the Bulldog Shih Tzu mix winning more admirers in the future, however, as this is one charming hybrid.

Those living in apartments will be sure to appreciate the tiny frame and limited exercise demands of a French Bull Tzu, while the grooming regimen is also a lot less intense than that of the Shih Tzu side of the family.

In terms of personality, the Bulldog Shih Tzu mix will quickly become a cherished member of any family, and they respond well to socialization and training — even if they can be a little bit stubborn sometimes.

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purpose Purpose
Companion
history Date of Origin
Unknown
ancestry Ancestry
French Bulldog and Shih Tzu

French Bull Tzu Health

Average Size
Male French Bull Tzu size stats
Height: 8-12 inches Weight: 15-25 lbs
Female French Bull Tzu size stats
Height: 8-12 inches Weight: 15-25 lbs

French Bull Tzu Breed History


As we’ve mentioned, the French Bull Tzu is a new addition to the canine canon, likely emerging at some point since the end of the 20th century — the creation of the Labradoodle in the 1980s led to a huge wave of new combinations being introduced to the world by breeders.

We know a lot more about the respective parent breeds, however. The Shih Tzu is an ancient breed that originated more than a thousand years ago, possibly as a cross between the Lhasa Apso and a Pekingnese or another toy breed. 

The name Shih Tzu translates as ‘little lion’ and these big-maned dogs were initially popular among the upper ranks of Chinese society, before eventually filtering down to the whole population.

Sadly, this breed’s association with nobility led to them almost dying out after the 1949 Communist Revolution, but their fate was saved after seven breeding pairs were saved. This new generation of Shih Tzus found popularity across the world and they remain a popular breed to this day.

The French Bulldog — or Frenchie, as many prefer — is a relation of the English Bulldog, a tough and tenacious breed originally bred to fight bulls. When this barbaric practice was outlawed in 1835, these fighters were suddenly out of favor. In Normandy, dog breeders crossed the creatures with terriers, thereby reducing their size and creating the French Bulldog in the process.

This new breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1898 and they quickly became a social status symbol in Western Europe and the USA — at the turn of the 20th century, some of them sold for as much as $3,000, which is equivalent to around $35,000 today.

This desirability has never really ceased and in 2023, the breed managed the impressive feat of knocking the Labrador Retriever off the top of the most popular US breeds list, a position held for around three decades.

Unfortunately, this high demand has meant that some pretty unsavory breeders have emerged and this has led to puppy farms and an increase in congenital health disorders.

French Bull Tzu Breed Appearance


Like a lot of hybrids, there’s variation in appearance between French Bull Tzus. Their body can either be more portly like a French Bulldog’s or longer like a Shih Tzu’s. The tail tends to be long and carried straight. Whatever the shape, they’re always going to be small dogs, usually reaching no more than 12 inches tall or 28 pounds in weight.

Their bodies are covered in a coat that ranges from medium to long in length, the texture of which tends to be silky and fine. So far, the Bulldog Shih Tzu mix has been seen in a variety of colors, often a mix of reds, browns, blacks and whites.

More often than not, the face and its short, flat muzzle looks more Frenchie in appearance. Their eyes are normally dark brown in color, framed with fur and sparkling with mischief.


H2: Similar Breeds to a French Bull Tzu

Looking for a small breed with as much energy and affection to give as a Bulldog Shih Tzu mix? Well, here are a few similar varieties.


French Bull Tzu Breed Maintenance


Any Shih Tzu parents will let you know that looking after this toy breed’s luscious fur can be something of a part-time job in itself, but thankfully, the coat of a Bulldog Shih Tzu mix doesn’t need a lot by way of maintenance. 

Thrice-weekly brushing with a pin brush will keep the coat untangled and looking shiny, while fur around the eyes might need to be trimmed to ensure it doesn’t hinder their vision. If the coat is thicker or denser, some parents might opt for a puppy cut instead. 

Along with this, parents will need to stay on top of routine tasks, too. This includes trimming nails every few weeks so they don’t curl under or break, brushing teeth every day and checking ears for signs of infection or inflammation.

French Bull Tzu Health Risks


Both the Shih Tzu and French Bulldog are more likely to be affected by certain health conditions at one point or other during their lives, so it only follows that this is true of their hybrid offspring.

Sometimes, this can’t be avoided, but the risk is certainly lowered when parents deal with responsible breeders that carry out screening on their animals and remove genetic carriers of disease from the reproductive pool.

Health risks this breed may be affected by can include:


Brachycephalic Syndrome


This is one of the most common health disorders diagnosed in French Bulldogs, with the irony being this is caused by the squished-up face that makes them so irresistible to so many parents in the first place. It can also be diagnosed in Shih Tzus, too.

Dogs affected by this condition exhibit symptoms such as labored breathing, difficulty eating and overheating in hot weather. Unfortunately, Brachycephalic Syndrome can’t be cured outright, but only managed through weight management, lifestyle changes or surgery to expand airways.



Spinal Problems

There are two spinal problems to which a mix of Bulldog and Shih Tzu are more prone to developing. One is Hemivertebra, a congenital condition in which one or more of the vertebrae are deformed leading to a twisted spine. 

This will only cause an issue if the spinal cord is compressed or the spinal column is weakened. If this happens, the main symptoms are weakness in the hind legs, incontinence and pain. In these more serious instances, your vet might recommend surgery, which can often lead to a full recovery.

Another more commonly diagnosed spinal condition is Intervertebral Disc Degeneration. This occurs when one or more of the shock-absorbing discs located between the vertebrae begin to deteriorate and press on the spinal cord, leading to a lot of pain, reduced movement or even paralysis in serious cases.

The treatment options available to dogs with Intervertebral Disc Disease depends on the severity of the symptoms. Medication, supplements and crate rest can help in mild instances, but surgery is the only option to cure paralysis. Sometimes, this won’t be successful and euthanasia is the kindest route.


Hip Dysplasia


Even though Hip Dysplasia tends to affect medium to large dogs, it can also affect the French Bull Tzu as well. This happens when the hip bone fails to develop correctly, which leads to it moving against the corresponding socket with friction. This can cause limping, inhibited movement and pain.

As a fairly common condition, vets have a raft of treatment options to choose from. Weight loss and medication will usually be the first port of call, but physiotherapy or surgery might be required if the symptoms are severe.


Pulmonic Stenosis

One of a number of hereditary heart conditions, Pulmonic Stenosis is defined by abnormal valves that impede the flow of blood and is prevalent in Bulldogs. This can lead to weakness, lethargy, arrhythmia or heart failure.

A vet will have to perform several tests to be confident of a diagnosis, but once they have settled on Pulmonic Stenosis, they can look to treat it with medicine or an aortic valvotomy (a surgical procedure involving a balloon to widen the valves).

One of the best things about a wellness plan is the regular veterinary screening and testing of your pet — this can catch diseases at a much earlier stage.


What to Feed a French Bull Tzu

A Bulldog Shih Tzu mix needs a small breed dog food that’s designed around their specific needs — this will usually be denser when it comes to calories and nutrients to ensure they get what they need from smaller portions, as well as kibble being appropriately sized for tiny mouths.

As dogs prone to Hip Dysplasia and Pulmonic Stenosis, it’s particularly important to avoid obesity. This can be done by choosing dog food with high protein levels and fewer carbohydrates or filler ingredients.

Our partner Dog Food Advisor has compiled the best dog food for both French Bulldogs and Shih Tzus — pick any off those lists and you won’t go far wrong.

French Bull Tzu Temperament

There’s a reason why the French Bulldog made it to the top of the most popular dog breeds in the USA. Yes, they’re cute to look at, but they’re also friendly and fun to be around.

The French Bull Tzu is no different. They love being around humans and relish their affection — this makes them adept at learning commands. Occasionally, they can be a little stubborn, but patience and perseverance should overcome this.

Despite their size, they’re not known as excessive barkers. In fact, they’re more likely to be hesitant in stressful situations, such as being around exuberant young children.

French Bull Tzu Activity Requirements

Don’t be fooled by their little legs, a French Bull Tzu needs two walks a day and around nine miles of walking a week. In the warmer months, it’s recommended to do this during cooler periods to prevent overheating (a common affliction among Bulldogs).

The French Bull Tzu will also benefit from practising his social skills with the children next door and the dog down the street. In fact, trips to the dog park may be just what he needs to become an all round perfect pet dog. 

French Bull Tzu Owner Experiences

Nana
6 Months
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Playdate
The mood of the people changes happilty if around her
1 year, 8 months ago
Duggie
11 Months
3 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Playing ball is his absolute favourite
We rescued him a month ago. He settled in within a few days and he's certainly one of the family now. He loves being around humans and will happily play in the garden with my son. He won't stay in the garden on his own though. Hes so loving and playful
2 years ago
Dexter
3 Months
4 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
training
We have a very loveable pup called Dexter. He loves being around people and playing. He is very inquisitive and is confident around other dogs. He does not like the heat and seeks out shade when it’s hot. We have a lot more training to do but in the few weeks since we have had him he has come on leaps and bounds and is now sleeping through the night.
5 years, 9 months ago
Mr.Boo
1 Year
3 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Walking
Playing Ball
He loves to play has a ton of energy
4 years, 5 months ago
Stella
2 Years
1 People
House
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
I got he in a rehome situation one week before my husband passed away. She has been a god send.
3 years, 5 months ago
Polly
8 Weeks
4 People
House & Yard
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Chase
Fetch
Cuddling
Walk
Very relaxed dog. We have 2 small kids, she loves to be around them. Always wags her tail around them. Very funny dog. Our French bull tzu looks like a French bulldog, but her ears aren’t up. Maybe that will change. She’s te sweetest and learns very fast.
3 years, 4 months ago
Izzy
6 Months
1 People
Apartment
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
I got Izzy from my daughter as she kept bitting the children. I think it is just playing. She is so loveable and loves cuddles . She will cling to me wherever I go, and cries when I bathe or shower.
3 years, 3 months ago
Miss Nina Simone
1 Year
2 People
Condo
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
The most lovable dog. She must be wherever you are. If you are on the couch she is there. She hates to be out of vision of us. She growls when other animals are on tv as she them as a threat to us not herself. Her temperament well we say she is her patron godmother reincarnated a diva
2 years, 11 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Pweeeze!
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd