Did you know that Frenchies can’t swim!?
Yep, that’s right…
Well, they can’t swim without a life jacket.
Let’s take a look at why Frenchies can’t just swim like your average dog, then we’ll look at the 5 best life vests for Frenchies.
FrenchieWiki Pick: Ruffwear – Float Coat Reflective Life Jacket for Dogs
Why your Frenchie needs a life jacket
- They’re flat-faced: French Bulldogs, like other brachycephalic breeds, have a flat, shortened skull and a compact body. This affects their airways, making it harder for them to breathe efficiently. In water, their short snouts and narrowed nasal passages make breathing challenging, potentially leading to respiratory distress.
- Their muscles make them sink: French Bulldogs have a dense body structure with a high muscle-to-fat ratio. Unlike buoyant breeds like Labradors, they struggle to stay afloat. Their heavy body weight makes it difficult to maintain a natural swimming position and stay above the water surface.
- Short legs and compact build: The physical structure of French Bulldogs, with short legs and a compact body, hinders their ability to paddle effectively. Their short limbs don’t provide the necessary leverage and propulsion for efficient swimming, resulting in exhaustion or difficulty staying afloat.
The 5 Best Frenchie Life Jackets
There are some things for our Frenchies that we can afford to cut corners on…
You know, stuff like pajamas, hoodies, etc.
But when it comes to our Frenchie’s safety, you need something that you can depend on for years to come.
The best of the best
This Ruffwear Float Coat is the best-of-the-best.
It’s got everything you could ever need from a Life Jacket: high buoyancy & visibility, durable construction that will last for years, and a grab handle.
Extra-rugged high-quality construction
Keep your Frenchie safe in the water
Built for adventurous Frenchies in mind
- Convenient— has an easy-to-grab handle
- Effective— keeps your Frenchie afloat so you don't need to worry when they're near water
- Visible— high visibility & reflective design makes it easy to spot your Frenchie when they're out there swimming
- Doesn't have head/neck support
Another great option to keep your Frenchie afloat is the Outward Hound Granby Splash Orange Dog Life Jacket.
It’s the most affordable option on the list and doesn’t skimp on any features — it has reflective piping, two grab handles, and a foam chin panel to keep your Frenchie’s head above water.
For a Frenchie, you’re going to want the medium size.
- Rescue handles
- Thick foam for buoyancy
- Reflective piping for visibility
- Foam chin panel to keep head up
This Petglad Reflective Dog Life Vest is designed for French Bulldogs — it will fit most adult Frenchies with no issues.
The neck floatation part of this Life Vest is the best on this list — it helps keep your Frenchie’s head above water. It’s removable too if your Frenchie hates it.
Can’t find the exact life jacket you (or your Frenchie) want?
Looking for a specific color?
Well this Vivaglory Life Jacket comes in 11 different colors to suit you & your Frenchie’s personality.
Last on our list is this Shark Life Jacket.
This one is sure to make a splash — get ready for tons of attention at the pool!
It comes in 12 cute colors & patterns so no two Frenchie Sharks are alike.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I need a swim vest for my French Bulldog?
Frenchies have so much muscle that they just sink — they can’t really float in the water. A life vest provides additional buoyancy and support for Frenchies, helping them stay afloat and swim more comfortably.
It’s a must-have for any Frenchie that is going to spend any time near the water.
How do I choose the right swim vest for my French Bulldog?
When selecting a swim vest, consider the size, fit, and buoyancy provided.
The ones in this article should fit an adult Frenchie, but if your Frenchie is a puppy or bigger/smaller than the average Frenchie, you might have to measure them to ensure you’re getting the proper fit.
Choose a vest that is designed for French Bulldogs or small breeds, ensuring it allows for comfortable movement and doesn’t restrict breathing or cause discomfort.
Can all French Bulldogs wear swim vests?
Yes, swim vests are generally suitable for all French Bulldogs.
However, it’s essential to consider the size and fit of the vest to ensure it provides proper buoyancy and doesn’t restrict your dog’s movement or breathing.
Can swim vests completely eliminate the swimming difficulties of French Bulldogs?
While swim vests can improve buoyancy and swimming ability, they may not completely eliminate the inherent challenges that French Bulldogs face in the water due to their anatomy.
It’s still important to exercise caution, provide supervision, and prioritize your Frenchie’s safety while swimming.