When we first brought Claude home, we had no idea on how much food we should be giving him. We didn’t have a French bulldog puppy feeding chart, we’d never owned a dog, it was all new to us. We spoke to our vet, and this is what he told us about how much you should feed a French bulldog puppy.
A French bulldog puppy should be fed 3 times a day whilst there are still 2 to 6 months old. Once the French bulldog puppy reaches 6 months, you can reduce the feeding schedule down to 2 meals a day.
That’s the short answer, and it’s a good rule of thumb to follow.
But now having been a French bulldog owner for 3 years, I can now look back and give you some more detail on exactly what our French bulldog puppy feeding schedule was like and how it worked for us and him.
French bulldog puppy feeding chart
Below you can see a French bulldog puppy feeding guide I put together. It contains some rough guidance on how you should schedule and plan his feeds, and what other factors you might need to take into account. Please do print it out and put on your fridge.
How many cups of food should I feed my French Bulldog?
Before you look at the French Bulldog feeding chart below, you might want the quick answer to how many cups of food to feed your French Bulldog. As a general rule of thumb, you should feed a French Bulldog puppy aged 8 to 12 weeks around 1 and a half cups of food a day, in 3 separate meals.
As your Frenchie gets older, the number of cups of food you should feed them will change. You can see the cup amounts and frequencies in the French Bulldog feeding chart graphic below.
The French bulldog puppy feeding chart shown above is taken from the Royal Canin dog food range. This is exactly what we fed Claude as he was growing up. They range a specific French bulldog puppy food, and on the packaging you will see a version of the chart above, including how best to feed your own puppy.
It’s the food our vet advised, and we actually noticed that it reduced his farting and flatulence – plus he wasn’t as sick as much compared to other brands.
French bulldog puppy feeding tips
Before I get into too much detail on this, I am assuming that your puppy has already been weaned off his mother’s milk. The weaning process typically happens over a 2 to 3-week period, and you shouldn’t even have a puppy that young away from his mother.
When you take your puppy to his new home, he should already be used to eating puppy food. If he’s not, he’s been taken away from his mother far too early.
As I mentioned earlier, you should be feeding your French bulldog puppy 3 times a day. They need that regularity as they are growing and burning a lot of calories. You know how energetic they are!
How much you feed them at each mealtime will typically be half a cup of their dry puppy food. Across the day, that will equate 1.5 cups of food in total… until they get to around 6 months old.
However, their weight and health will then determine how much you feed them as they get older.
1. Calories matter, but are hard to count
As French bulldogs get older, you should try to feed them according to their weight. For every pound, they should be fed between 25 and 30 calories. I don’t expect you to be able to keep track of how many calories your dog is eating… it’s simply not practical.
However, for the rest of this French bulldog puppy feeding guide, I am just going to talk in cups. That’s the easiest way to measure how much they should be eating.
2. Puppy weight
How can weigh your puppy at the vets or, and this is can be a more interesting and fun way if your puppy already knows how to sit, have them sit on a scale at home. It will not be as accurate as a scale at the vet, but it could be a cheap and fun experience for you and your pet.
3. Puppy age
It can usually take about 2 to 3 weeks for a French bulldog puppy to be weaned off of their mother’s milk and adjust to dry and/or wet food. Because of this, your puppy may be a little stubborn about eating dry and wet food if they were only just recently weaned.
Here is where the math gets a little more detailed, but not too complicated.
When they are between 8 to 12 weeks old, the puppy should be fed about 1.5 cups of food per day. This food should be high in calories since they need extra nutrients that they are no longer getting from their mother.
This kind of follows the main rule when it comes to spreading out the meals to 3 times a day. But for younger pups, many owners will split the 1.5 cups into 4 smaller meals a day. Why? Because feeding them 0.75 cups twice a day can be too large a meal for them.
Large meals can actually lead to gastric dilatation-volvulus, also known as a twisted stomach or GDV, which can threaten the pup’s life. Small and often meals also help to control the dog’s blood sugar levels.
Once they are between 6 and 9 months old, they should be used to their eating routine. That is when the main rule is applied because by then, the pup will be maturing into its adult size and should weigh between 20 and 25 pounds.
4. What about older dogs?
Also, if you are wondering how much they should be fed once they start hitting their senior years, they should be fed a little less as long only if they are not as active.
As they become less active with age and/or if you start to notice they are gaining weight as they get older, try to limit their calorie intake to 400 to 500 calories per day.
Make sure you still stretch out the meals to 3 to 4 times like when they were puppies because it is not uncommon for their stomachs to weaken with old age.
5. Overweight or underweight?
French bulldog puppies usually weight between 8.5 to 12.5 pounds when they are around 3 months old. Once they reach 6 to 9 months, they are just at or are closer to reaching their adult weight, 15.5 to 23.5 pounds.
If the puppy is underweight, then add very small increments to each meal every day until they are no longer underweight. It is important to not add too much food because of the possibility of them getting a twisted stomach.
If the puppy is overweight, you can either slightly reduce the size of their meal until they lose weight, or you can give them more exercise.
Many people prefer the later since it helps the pup to get stronger and adds more bonding time. The same methods apply to grown French bulldogs as well.
If the dog does not appear to be gaining weight when they are underweight or vice versa if they are overweight, you might want to take them to the vet since it could be a sign that something is affecting their health.
6. Health conditions
Since not every animal is the same, ask your vet the next time your pup has a check-up what a French bulldog of their size and age should weigh.
Health factors like diabetes (yes, dogs can have diabetes), can make your pup need a more strict diet or feeding routine. Here are some different diets and feeding routines.
Raw food vs. dry and wet food
One of the biggest arguments you will hear as a dog owner is a dry and wet food diet vs a raw food diet. Many dog lovers say that there are too many preservatives, fillers, wheat, corn, and protein in dry and wet food.
While the raw food diet can be more natural, especially if it is organic, you also have to make sure your pup would be getting more foods with vitamins and minerals mixed in with the raw food that your pup would need.
Raw food diets can be more expensive, require more storage room for the meats and veggies, and take longer to prepare.
However, you would be personally ensuring that your little French bulldog pup is getting their full daily nutrition without harmful by-products and additives.
Is there a good dry food diet?
Possibly the biggest questions out of all of them: is there any good dry dog food out there and how do I find them?
The answer is yes, there can be some healthy dry dog food products, but it takes some time to look for. The key is to look for dog food that does not contain any preservatives, fillers, wheat, corn, and too much protein.
Fillers basically do not provide any nutritional value and can even harm your dog since most of the ingredients they use as fillers are common allergies for dogs that can cause skin conditions, bowel issues, and more.
Wheat and corn are included since they are also a popular allergen for dogs.
Too much protein is even more dangerous for them since it can put more pressure on the organs, throw off nutritional balance, increase the likelihood of diabetes, and can harm dogs that already have diabetes.
The better dry dog food will have lamb, beef, chicken, or fish, which is a popular favorite among Frenchies, as a meat source, a plant-based protein like lentils, peas, sweet potato, chickpeas, and/or dried fruit, and healthy fats like Omega-3s.
Handy Hint: I’ve created a downloadable guide to the different fruits you can safely feed a French Bulldog puppy. To see the safe and dangerous fruits list, click here.
Another two meat choices would be duck and turkey, but these are a little less common to find, especially if you are looking for a French bulldog specific dog food.
If the food has next to none or absolutely no harmful ingredients, you should notice that your dog’s fur is smooth, shiny, and their skin is healthy.
Your dog eats his food too quickly
Another common problem is how do you control how fast your French bulldog puppy eats.
French bulldogs love to eat their food and eat it fast, which is one of the primary causes of GDV. If your dog eats way too fast, there are a couple of cheap and easy ways to slow them down:
- Use a puzzle feeder (can be found in stores or online)
- Use a muffin tin (evenly spread the portions throughout the tin)
- Use a cookie sheet (a little less effective than a muffin tin but better for dogs with big mouths or dogs who are apprehensive towards the muffin tin)
So there you have it, your guide to how much you should feed your French bulldog puppy. Everything in this feeding schedule and the French bulldog feeding chart you see is based on personal experience.
Now Claude is fully grown (he’s now 3 years old) we feed him twice a day. Once in the morning, and once in the early evening.
Keep a regular feeding routine, and your Frenchies will stay at health as ours has!