Do French Bulldogs Snore? Yes, a Lot! + They Snort Loud!


do french bulldogs snore a lot

When we first got Claude, I wasn’t really aware of how much snorting and snoring Frenchies were capable of. That soon changed after a few nights of him sleeping in our bedroom. So, if you’re here to find out whether French Bulldog snore, and whether it’s a lot, I am going to give you a real owner’s experience…

Do French Bulldogs snore? Yes, French Bulldogs do snore a lot. As a brachycephalic breed they are more prone to snoring than other dog breeds. In fact, French Bulldogs will even snore and snort loudly when they are awake as well as wheezing and grunting sounds.

That’s the short answer. If you’re after a dog who won’t interrupt you watching your favorite TV shows or who will let you get a good night’s sleep, a snoring Frenchie probably isn’t for you!

Why do French Bulldogs snore?

There’s a good reason why French Bulldogs snore a lot and why it’s so loud and bad. They are of a brachycephalic breed. In simple terms this means they have a flat face (often called smushed or smashed in).

Snoring is one of the most common traits of dogs with snub-noses and flat faces. It means that Frenchies have not just flat faces, but also narrow nostrils. As a result, it’s hard for air to move freely in an un-restricted manner.

Handy Hint: To more videos of Claude’s and his adventures, subscribe to our YouTube channel.

To get an expert opinion, I found a blog post by Doctor Brendan McKiernan of the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital. This is what he had this to say (view source).

“Brachycephalic dogs typically have enlarged soft palates, overly narrowed nostrils, and everted laryngeal saccules, meaning that tissue in the airway is pulled into and obstructs the airway. Problems also occur when tissues become swollen and when repeated small injuries to tissue go without treatment. In addition, thin scrolls of bone in the nasal cavity called turbinates may grow abnormally in these breeds, causing further obstruction of the airway.”

I won’t get into the ethical considerations of brachycephalic dogs and their breeding, that’s for another time (I’ve listed the health issues Frenchie owners should be concerned about elsewhere). However, if you’re getting a French Bulldog, snoring is something you will have to get used to.

Do all French Bulldogs snore?

All French Bulldogs will snore. The only exception to this would be if the Frenchie has had surgery to widen their nostrils (stenotic nares). This is a procedure that surgically corrects noisy breathing and snoring.

I’ve never met a French Bulldog who doesn’t snore or snort, unless of course they have had this surgical procedure. It is normal for French Bulldogs to snore. However, there can be times when you need to take it more seriously which I will talk about lower down the page.

Why do French Bulldogs snore so loud?

French Bulldogs snore so loud due to their brachycephalic nature. I’ve gone into this in a little detail already, but it’s worth mentioning that they don’t always snore when they are asleep.

It’s not just their sleep patterns (and yours) that can be disturbed by snoring and snorting. They can also snort when awake. Your Frenchie could also exhibit snorting after excessive exercise as the nostril passages can become enlarged.

french bulldog snorting
He might not look that comfortable, but he will still start snorting very loudly (and badly).

In the coming months I will be recording Claude’s snores to find out how loud French Bulldogs snore. I recently saw a video on YouTube where a pug was snoring at 96 decibels, so I will see if a Frenchie’s snore is louder than that.

In the next section I am going to talk more about French Bulldogs snorting when asleep, how bad they snore, if they snore when happy and awake, plus when you might need to talk to your vet.

French Bulldog snorting and snoring: when to worry

We have affectionately named Claude’s snores and snorts the “snortles”. It’s the best way in which we can describe them!

Snoring whilst awake is quite common in French Bulldogs. However, it’s not something that should be happening all of the time.

Is it normal for French Bulldogs to snort?

Yes, it is normal for Frenchies to snort and snore.

Snorting and snoring isn’t always due to the brachycephaly. It can also be due to an obstruction in their airways, and allergic reaction, the position they are sleeping in, their genetics, or another health issue altogether.

Why French Bulldogs snort and snore so much

Let’s look at all those snorting and snoring reasons in a bit more detail and when you might need to call the vets.

  • Something in their nose: Frenchies like to snuffle around for anything, and that can mean they get things stuck up their nose. It could be something as small as dust, or even some grass which will cause a blockage in their already small airways.
  • The position in which they sleep: we’ve noticed that Claude will often snore more depending on what position he’s sleeping in. However, there doesn’t seem to be any pattern here so we will often just shirt him into a different position to stop the snoring.
  • The way they have been bred: we already know that the genetics around Frenchies make them snore. But they can also get fatty deposits in their throat and long tongues all of which create lots of snorts and snores.
  • Medicines they may be taking: there are some medicines which will relax a Frenchie’s muscles around their nose, mouth and throat. This causes more obstruction and snoring. Medicines known to do this include some antihistamines pain killers, and sedatives.
  • Allergies they might have: Frenchies can get many allergies, some of which are airborne. During an allergic reaction, your French Bulldog’s airways can become swollen, restricting the movement of air more than usual, therefore more snorts and snores. 

My French Bulldog is snoring while awake

If your Frenchie is snorting all the time when awake, and not just after some exercise, it could be the sign of something more serious. You can see what those reasons could be in the previous section.

how bad do french bulldogs snore
He might have one eye open, but this Frenchie is still more than capable of snoring loudly when awake.

Do French Bulldogs snort when happy?

As owners, we have never noticed Claude snoring or snorting when happy. That’s not to say it doesn’t happen, just our personal experience so I wouldn’t say it was an indicator of happiness.

Handy Hint: Did you know there are certain signs your Frenchie is happy. I’ve listed them all in this guide to Frenchie happiness.

How to reduce your Frenchie’s snoring

I’ve previously written a guide on how to stop your French Bulldog from snoring which you can read elsewhere on the blog. Here are a few tips without the larger detail to get you started though.

  • Change his sleeping position: the quickest way to stop the snoring is to change the Frenchie’s position. This isn’t always fair though, as you will need to wake him up.
  • Keep him at a healthy weight: an overweight French Bulldog will snore and snort more. Don’t overfeed him or give him too many snacks. Here’s a feeding guide.
  • Keep him exercised: and of course, a Frenchie that is exercised enough will keep his weight down and also tone up the muscles that could reduce the “snortles”.
  • Don’t smoke near your Frenchie: smoke inhalation can also result in heavy snoring. Plus, it can lead to more complex health issues too!
  • Give him a pillow: if your Frenchie is able to raise his head when sleeping, it could open the airways up more than usual.
  • Give him a bed with raised sides: similarly, a bed with raised sides which he can rest his head on will work in the same manner.
  • Give him a round bed: some vets say that if a dog sleeps in a curled position, he will lengthen his airways and not snore as much, or as loud.
  • Get an allergy check: excessive snoring could be down to an allergy, so ask your vet to run an allergy check on your Frenchie. Here are some common allergies.
  • Make sure his bed is clean: allergies can be from dust mites, or dust and debris can get stuck in his nasal passage. To reduce this, always have clean bedding available.
  • Use a humidifier: to further the last couple of points, a humidifier near his bed will get some must needed moisture into the ait to help him breathe a little better, and not snore as much.

Handy Hint: Read this guide to stopping snoring which includes 19 proven remedies.

Conclusion

French Bulldog snort all the time! They are also massive snorers! Snorting and snoring is perfectly normal, and MOST of the time is nothing to be concerned about.

With Claude it’s part of his unique personality. He sleeps on our bed at night for a few hours before lights off time whilst we watch TV.

do french bulldogs always snore
French Bulldogs always snore whether they are sleeping on their back, front, side, or curled up!

I would estimate we probably have to shift him around a couple of times. Getting him into a different position will usually give us some respite for 30 minutes before it all starts up again!

However, if you do have any concerns and the snoring seems to be louder or more frequent than usual, especially if it’s happening a lot when your Frenchie is awake, you might just want to check in with your vet.

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Marc Aaron

I am one of Claude the French Bulldog's human parents. I write about all the things I've learned about owning a Frenchie, the adventures we have, and any advice and tips I've picked up along the way. Read more about Marc Aaron.

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