Homemade Dog Food For French Bulldogs Guide: Recipes, Nutrition & FAQs

homemade dog food for french bulldogs

Canine Bible is reader-supported. We receive affiliate commissions via some of our links. This doesn’t affect rankings. Learn more.


If you’re looking to make homemade dog food for French Bulldogs, you’re in the right place.

Got your notebook? You might want to take some notes! This guide will teach you everything you need to know to cook for Frenchies. From nutritional guidelines and benefits to risks and recipes, your Frenchie can try.

Let’s get started with the basics of French Bulldog homemade food!

Chapter 1: Nutrition, Benefits & Risks

Ch 2 

French Bulldog Homemade Dog Food Benefits

Jennifer A. Larsen, DVM, MS, Ph.D., and Joe Bartges, DVM, Ph.D., board-certified veterinary nutritionists and diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Nutrition, state that some of the benefits of switching to a homemade dog food diet include:

  • Diet management
  • Appeasing picky dog eaters
  • Combatting food intolerance and allergy issues
  • Avoid concern over food recalls
  • Bond-building
  • Portion size control
  • Fresh ingredients
  • Customization
  • More affordable

Commercially produced dog food is highly processed, which results in low nutritional value, whereas cooking at home for your Frenchie will preserve most of the ingredients’ nutrients. It promotes a healthier digestive system and can help prevent many conditions associated with a poor diet, such as obesity, poor skin and coat condition, pancreatitis, diabetes, and reduced immunity.

Food And French Bulldog Health: Why Feed Homemade?

French Bulldogs are notorious for food allergies, often allergic to multiple ingredients such as the protein found in traditional dog kibble, posing a serious health risk if not addressed. According to Vet 4 Bulldog, the most common food allergen in French bulldogs is the protein source found in meat (chicken 60%, then beef and fish). Also on the frequent food allergens shortlist are corn, soy, wheat, and dairy.[1] 

This breed is genetically and environmentally predisposed to developing canine atopic dermatitis (CAD), which can be caused by environmental factors, genetic and food-based allergies, say Nom Nom.[2] Unfortunately, allergies show up as skin problems, leading to rashes and scaly skin that are uncomfortable for your Frenchie. It can also lead to open sores, hives, and hot spots. If infected, these skin problems can become more significant issues. 

Food allergies can progress to more severe digestive health problems, such as IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease) in Frenchies, if left untreated. If you start noticing any problems in your Frenchies’ snout, legs, paws, or tender underbelly, food allergies or environmental allergies may be the culprit.

Other common health problems include hip dysplasia, conjunctivitis, deafness, cherry eye, skin conditions, patellar luxation and more.

How Can A Homemade Diet Help Frenchies With All of This?

Here are the main reasons a homemade diet is good for Frenchies.

  • Increased lifespan. Research shows that dogs that eat fresh food diets are linked to a 20% longer lifespan than those who don’t. A year-long study of 522 dogs by Lippert and Sapy found that dogs fed high-quality, freshly made, real food had an average life expectancy of 13.1 years versus just 10.4 years for dogs fed commercially processed pet food.[3]
  • Avoid allergies. Cooking for your dog allows you to pick ingredients that won’t trigger allergies in your French Bulldog. If you are unsure what ingredients may cause sensitivities or allergies in your pet, we advise doing an At-Home Food Dog Allergy test before selecting the ingredients for your dog’s next meal.
  • Obesity & joints. Switching to homemade dog food allows you to easily calibrate the amounts of carbohydrates, proteins, vegetables, vitamins, and minerals your dog needs to maintain a healthy body weight. Obesity in dogs can increase their risk for bone and joint problems (i.e., hip dysplasia) and subsequent osteoarthritis. Studies show that dogs maintaining their ideal body weight live almost 2.5 years longer (with significantly fewer diseases) than their overweight siblings.[4]
  • Bioavailability. Home-cooked dog food is easier to digest — more digestible food means dogs can absorb nutrients more efficiently and faster. Quicker nutrient absorption means minerals, vitamins, and amino acids act quicker in the body to carry out different functions, such as decreasing inflammatory responses that can help prevent allergies or help boost overall health.
  • Highly processed & oxidative stress kibble. When it comes to cancer, homemade dog food removes the highly processed food from the equation, which is often linked to cancer issues in dogs. Food processing has been shown to cause free radicals and carcinogenic chemicals to be released. With homemade, you no longer have to worry about oxidative stress due to processed food.[5][6]
  • Fresh ingredients with no chemicals. Homemade meals ensure your pup always eats fresh, wholesome, and chemical-free foods without additives, fillers, high-glycemic carbs, or colorants commonly found in kibble.
  • Easy digestion. Homemade dog food is easier to digest than those highly processed hard-kibble mystery balls. Feeding your pet freshly made food puts less stress on their digestive system and liver, reducing the likelihood of bloating or other digestive issues.
  • Excellent taste and smell. Dogs love the taste, smell and texture of fresh dog food.

French Bulldog Homemade Dog Food Risks

Making homemade dog food may sound safe and straightforward, but that’s not always the case.

  • Not understanding the nutritional needs of French Bulldog
  • Using inadequate or dangerous recipes
  • Not preparing a balanced meal
  • Using unsafe or harmful ingredients
  • Not understanding the impact of food and dietary changes
  • Neglecting your dog’s health conditions
  • Not understanding your dog’s life stages (puppies, adults & senior) nutritional needs

Research by the University of California Davis, School of Veterinary and two studies published in the journal Preventive Veterinary Medicine and The Journal of Nutritional Science found that most homemade dog food recipes lack key essential nutrients, and other recipes used dangerously high levels of some nutrients.[7][8][9]

Here are the findings:

  • 48% of homemade dog diets had an imprecise determination of ingredients and quantities
  • 71.3 % of dog owners did know how much food to serve per meal
  • 30.4% of the pet parents admitted to purposely changing the recipe
  • 40% of owners didn’t measure the proportions of the ingredients well enough
  • 28.3% didn’t use any recommended vitamins, minerals, or amino acids.
  • 97% of obesity cases in dogs could be traced to how owners fed and played with their pets.

It’s vital to understand that dogs’ nutritional requirements are unique. We recommend consulting a veterinary nutritionist who can address your French Bulldog’s dietary requirements and help you make nutritionally balanced recipes or recommend a homemade food service for convenience.

French Bulldog Nutritional Guidelines to Follow

According to the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AFFCO, the entity that supervises the nutritional value of commercial dog food), there are six essential nutrients all dog meals must contain to ensure a balanced and healthy diet for dogs. See the below for a breakdown of each nutrient and its importance.

A proper homemade diet should also consider your pup’s weight, health conditions, size, and activity level.

NutrientFoodDescription
Protein Chicken, lamb, turkey, beef, fish, yogurt and cooked eggsBuilds and repairs muscles and other body tissues. Needed to make new skin cells, grow hair, hormones, enzymes and more.
Carbohydrates Oats, brown rice, potatoes, and whole wheat Source of energy for dogs and supplies glucose needed by the brain, nervous system and other critical organs for normal function.
Fat From meats and oils such as olive or sunflower oil, fish oil, canola oils among others Responsible for providing quality energy. Necessary for the normal development and function of body cells, nerves, muscles, and body tissues
Minerals Calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, iron, zinc, etc. Common functions include the formation of bone and cartilage, nerve and muscle function, fluid balance regulation, the transportation of oxygen in the bloodstream and hormone production.
WaterWaterHydration is critical in dogs. A dog that loses too much water (10% to 15% of the water in his body) can get very sick and even die. Ensure they have water available throughout the day.
VitaminsA, B, C, D, E, and K Keeps skin and coat healthy, strengthens bones and teeth, and gives them the overall energy that they need to function.

Recommended Supplements For French Bulldog

Recommended supplements based on the French Bulldogs’ primary health susceptibility.

  • Hip & joints: French Bulldogs are generally susceptible to hip dysplasia, a hip deformity developed during a dog’s growth that can lead to arthritis. To prevent or alleviate these problems, it’s wise to supplement their diet with Glucosamine and Chondroitin to help maintain an active lifestyle and support joint tissue.
  • Skin problems: Some French Bulldogs might also develop Demodex red mite mange, a parasitic skin condition caused by mites. To help support and promote a soft and shiny coat supplements with fish oil and biotin can maintain healthy skin and hair.

Always consult your vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet.

You may also want to add a multivitamin like Zesty Paws Multivitamin Chews to ensure your French Bulldog pup gets the recommended balance of vitamins and minerals.

Never improvise when you’re cooking for your pet. To help you cook for your French Bulldog at home, check out Home Prepared Dog & Cat Diets: the Healthful Alternative by Donald R. Strombeck, DVM, Ph.D. He’s an expert in veterinary medicine, and many pet nutritionists look to this book as a guide for homemade dog food.

Healthy Dietary Changes in French Bulldogs

If you notice your Frenchie is struggling with any of the following health conditions below, the following dietary changes and adjustments may help bring relief and aid with recovery. A homemade fresh diet with the tips below might help control these conditions.

ConditionDietary Needs & Adjustments

Coat Color Changes


Increase amino acids which can be found in protein (>75 grams per 1000 calories)
Concurrent GI Signs

Avoid foods with tryptamine and histamine such as dairy or fermented vegetables and meats (yes, this includes bacon); try a simple ingredient food trial

Chronic Itching and Dermatitis

Fortify the diet with Vitamin E, B Vitamins, Zinc, omega-6 and the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil; add a dog probiotic; try a simple ingredient food trial
Dull Coat and Scaling

Adjust EPA and DHA levels in the diet (added fish oil being the most common way); try a food that has added zinc

Dandruff and Crustiness

Add Zinc and Vitamin A levels

French Bulldogs are more susceptible to skin conditions due to food allergies than other breeds. To minimize and prevent skin problems, adding a couple of squirts of dog-specific fish oil may provide relief and nourishment to affected areas. According to the AKC, fish oil reduces itchiness and flakiness in the skin through its omega-3 fatty acid content. Other significant benefits include strengthening heart health in dogs and promoting improved immunity against cancer.

French Bulldog Calorie Requirements

The caloric needs of dogs are based on their weight. An adult French Bulldog usually weighs between 16 and 28 pounds, meaning most French Bulldogs need between 435 and 659 calories daily.

Ensure you follow the 10% rule when feeding treats to your dog. Food would equal 90% of the total calories and treats the remaining 10%.

  • For instance, if a French Bulldog weighs 22 lbs., he would need 551 calories daily. For those eating treats, that’s 496 calories in food (90%) and 55 in treats (10%). Usually, most full-grown dogs eat two meals per day. So, you need to split 496 into two meals of 248 calories each.

You can use our dog calorie calculator to find the exact caloric needs of your dog based on his weight.

Pregnant or lactating French Bulldogs may need up to 2 to 4 times the food they usually need as the mother’s energy requirements increase after delivery and during lactation. Be sure to talk to your vet.

Homemade Dog Food For French Bulldog Puppies

A French Bulldog puppy’s diet is different from an adult Frenchie

Compared to adult dogs, puppies need higher protein, fat, calcium, and phosphorus levels. Too few (or too many) of these nutrients can cause deficiencies, stunted growth, or lifelong complications.

According to the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN), puppies need about twice as many calories per pound of body weight as an adult dog of the same breed.

Frenchie puppies should eat 3 to 4 times a day. When your puppy is a bit older (6 – 12 months), you can switch to 2 to 3 meals daily at scheduled intervals.

Your feeding plan should match your puppy’s age, activity level, weight, and overall health. To encourage proper growth and development, never skip a meal and make sure your puppy’s diet is comprised of an appropriate balance of proteins, carbohydrates, fat, minerals, water, and vitamins, as outlined in our nutritional guidelines earlier. Always get your vet’s advice about your puppy’s diet requirements.

Homemade Dog Food Delivery Service

Are you a busy French Bulldog owner who can’t find time to cook for your Frenchie and wish your dog could eat whole, fresh homemade foods more often? Are you lost when it comes to cooking balanced, nutritionally-appropriate dog meals? Whatever your reason is, a homemade dog food delivery service might be a great fit.

Nom Nom is one of our favorite options. They deliver freshly made homemade dog food tailored to your pup’s dietary needs straight to your door. Everything is made from real, human-grade ingredients (meats, veggies, grains, etc.) Veterinary nutritionist develops their food following the AAFCO nutritional guidelines. They do all the cooking for you, so you never have to worry about using the wrong ingredients, proper nutrition guidelines, portion sizes, and more.

Take 50% Off Your First Order at Nom Nom

In our experience, it’s a huge time-saver, and you can spend time on more important things like walks or training. Plus, you avoid all the hassle of planning, shopping, and cooking. We think it’s worth the cost after adding up the prices of all the ingredients you’ll need to cook a recipe.

Our readers have access to save 50% off their first Nom Nom order. Just use this link to get your Frenchie’s first homemade meal delivered.

Watch Canine Bible’s Maltipoo eating Nom Nom homemade dog food. She loves it and recommends it!

Chapter 2: Recipes, Cooking Tips & More

Ch 1

French Bulldog Homemade Food Tips

Before sharing our favorite Frenchie homemade food recipes, consider these recommendations when preparing your dog’s next meal.

  • Set a consistent feeding schedule
  • Feed your French Bulldog twice daily (puppies under 12 months, 3 to 4 times a day, check with your veterinarian)
  • Meal prep weekly or monthly
  • Measure and control portion sizes depending on your dog’s calorie needs
  • Keep meals frozen for 2 to 3 months or refrigerated for about 5 days
  • Make a new batch when the food supply is getting low
  • If you want to feed different recipes, you can make multiple batches and color code by ingredients, rotating out the other meals
  • Prepare the food in bulk and portion it into containers (one container per meal makes it extra easy)
  • Increase portions appropriately as your puppy grows
  • Monitor weight to make sure you are feeding the proper amount of calories

Cooking Homemade Dog Food For Frenchies

Never made food for your Frenchie companion before? This video will get you started.

Best French Bulldog Homemade Food Recipes

Here is a list of our favorite, best homemade dog food recipes for Frenchies for even the pickiest of pups.

We’ve also added a special treat recipe for your French Bulldog that is tasty and packed with remarkable health benefits. This recipe has our favorite secret ingredient, dog CBD oil. CBD oil can help with seizures, anxiety, arthritis, inflammation, pain, wellness and other health problems.

Note: Please consult with your pet’s veterinarian and use personal judgment when applying this information to your dog’s diet. The recipes below do not include serving size because portion sizes will vary depending on breed, weight, activity level, age, and your dog’s health. A common recommendation is to feed your dog a comparable amount of ounces/cups to what you would usually feed in kibble BUT check with your vet to be certain.


CBD-Infused Dog Treats

Treat your French Bulldog with these nutritious, therapeutic, and delicious homemade CBD dog treats. They are made with Pumpkin, a great source of essential vitamins and minerals (like vitamin A, potassium, vitamin C, and iron). Pumpkin also aids with digestion and hydration. Coconut is added for skin and coat, digestion and helps reduce allergic reactions.

Just be sure to check with your vet before to ensure CBD is safe for your pup and that you are giving the correct dosage.

You can also purchase already-made CBD dog treats so your pup can experience all the benefits of CBD without the cooking.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups gluten-free flour
  • 1/2 cup oats
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 Tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1 apple, cored and grated
  • 1/2 cup carrots, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup olive or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • dash of sea salt
  • 120 mg CBD oil

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease a dog cookie baking tray with coconut oil.
  2. Core and grate the apples, then peel and grate the carrots.
  3. Combine the gluten-free flour, oats, and coconut sugar in a medium-sized bowl. In another medium-sized bowl, beat the egg. Then, add coconut oil, water, and grated apples and carrots.
  4. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients bowl; mix thoroughly. Finally, add CBD oil and mix once more.
  5. Using a Tbsp measuring spoon, portion the dog biscuits and press them into the dog treat baking pan. Bake for 32-37 minutes or until the biscuits are firm and golden brown on the outside.
  6. Store in an air-tight container.

Recipe from: Truth Theory


Fresh Veggie Mix

This recipe has a balance of 50% protein, 25% veggies, and 25% grains. Your pup will be happy and grateful after trying this delicious mix of vegetables. It’s also budget-friendly.

Keep your Frenchie healthy and fit with this easy-peasy homemade recipe.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 pounds of ground turkey
  • 3 cups baby spinach, chopped
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 zucchini, shredded
  • 1/2 cup peas, canned or frozen

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan of 3 cups water, cook rice according to package instructions; set aside.
  2. Heat olive oil in a large stockpot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add ground turkey and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the turkey as it cooks.
  3. Stir in spinach, carrots, zucchini, peas, and brown rice until the spinach has wilted and the mixture is heated for about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Let cool completely.

Macaroni, Quinoa Turkey Recipe

The pasta is a hit with Frenchies. This simple recipe is a much healthier option than that kibble stuff.

Filled with quinoa, rice, carrots, apple (no seeds), zucchini and more wholesome ingredients will keep your Frenchie keep coming back for more.

frenchie homemade dog food

Ingredients

  • 3 lbs ground turkey (or any protein)
  • 1 cup uncooked millet (or any other whole grain: quinoa, rice, pasta)
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 carrot, shredded
  • 1 zucchini, shredded
  • 1 squash, shredded
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 1 tbsp calcium powder
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)

Directions

  1. Bring 1 cup of whole grain to boiling in a pot of water. I overcook it so that it’s soft and easily digestible. Drain.
  2. While that’s boiling, shred/chop the veggies.
  3. Cook ground turkey with olive oil and drain excess juices.
  4. Mix everything together! No need to cook the veggies. The cooked turkey and whole grain will warm them up a bit.
  5. Store in Tupperware or ziplock bags and freeze! Makes enough for around 2 weeks of meals (Fira weighs 14 lbs).

Recipe from: WhereSTheFrenchie


Wholesome Ground Sirloin Veggie

Make this 30-Minute 5-Ingredient vegetable and ground sirloin veggie mix for Fido. This nutritious recipe contains fresh vegetables and grass-fed ground sirloin.

This is the perfect meal for Frenchies who love meat and need a low-carb, nutritious meal. The eggs and herbs give an added boost of vitamins and nutrients

Ingredients

  • 6 cups cooked organic brown rice
  • 2 pounds ground lean beef, cooked through, fat drained
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and diced small
  • 3 carrots, shredded or thinly sliced
  • 1/4–1/2 cup minced fresh parsley or 1/4 cup dried herbs
  • 3 tablespoons of olive or safflower oil

Directions

  1. Start with cooking the eggs
  2. While the rice is cooking, you can brown the sirloin and get all of the fresh ingredients together.
  3. Combine all of the ingredients in a large container and stir to combine thoroughly.
  4. Store in the refrigerator in-between feedings.

Recipe from: This Messisours


Frozen Strawberry & Banana Smoothie Dog Treat

This classic strawberry banana smoothie recipe for dogs is easy to make with five simple ingredients in less than 10 minutes. After the first bite, your Frenchie will love the sweet taste.

All the ingredients are human-grade and will make them roll over. They are perfect for hot weather, but Frenchies can enjoy them all year round. It’s one of our favorite dog treats to make because our pups love it so much.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of Sliced Strawberries or a 16-ounce bag of Frozen Strawberries
  • 1½ cups Plain Greek Low Fat Yogurt
  • 1 sliced banana (if you have two, use them both)
  • ¼ cup of Skim Milk
  • 3 tablespoons of Honey

Directions

  1. Place all the ingredients in your blender
  2. Turn on the blender to a medium speed
  3. Blend for approximately 2 minutes
  4. Pour into the molds of your choice, or use ice cube trays
  5. Freeze for 4 hours or more
  6. Pop-out of the molds
  7. Ready to enjoy!

NOTE: For storage, use Zip Lock Bags or use some Tupperware. Please keep them in the freezer.

Recipe from: The Cottage Market

For even more Frenchie homemade food recipes and cooking options, be sure to check out Home Cooking for Your Dog: 75 Holistic Recipes for a Healthier Dog.


Best Homemade Dog Food Cooking Practices

Here are some general guidelines to follow when cooking homemade dog food for your French Bulldog

  • Never use unsafe or toxic ingredients for dogs
  • Use only boneless meats (no cooked bones)
  • Cook all animal products thoroughly to kill harmful bacteria
  • Cook all grains, beans, and starchy vegetables to make them easier to digest
  • Research every ingredient before using it for safety
  • Follow recipes as instructed
  • Add supplements to their diet if needed
  • Run any questions by a vet nutritionist

Monitor Weight And Health

We recommend monitoring your dog’s weight and health closely when switching to a new diet, especially a homemade one, since there are more margins for errors, nutritionally speaking. Symptoms of a poor diet may include excessive weight gain or loss, lack of energy, skin or coat disorders, allergies, malnutrition, or obesity. If you notice these problems, you need to revise your dog’s diet and consult with a professional.

What Foods Should Your Frenchie Never Eat?

Some ingredients aren’t good for your French Bulldogs or any dog. Avoid the ingredients listed below.

  • Chocolate
  • Xylitol
  • Onions and garlic
  • Avocados
  • Coffee, tea, and other caffeine
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Raw bread dough
  • Alcohol

Check out this handy list for a comprehensive list of all foods to avoid. Please print it out and put it on your refrigerator as a reminder.

French Bulldog Raw Food Diet

Yes, French Bulldogs can eat raw dog food. Check out our French Bulldog raw dog food if you want to learn more.

Raw dog food is meant to mimic dogs’ diet in the wild millions of years ago. Raw dog foods, organs, muscles, whole or ground bones, fresh fruits, vegetables, and dairy products are usually included. Several raw dog foods are available, including homemade raw dog food and store-bought (frozen, freeze-dried, and dehydrated).

However, the risk of contamination and nutritional imbalance is higher when handling raw foods; preparing a BARF diet for your French Bulldog requires a lot of extra care and planning. For this reason, buying commercially available raw dog food is best. Check out our best raw dog food reviews to find the perfect recipe for your Frenchie.

Best Raw Dog Food Delivery

Should You Feed Homemade Food to French Bulldogs? Alternatives

Can I feed homemade food to my French Bulldog? In short, yes. However, you need to know which foods and ingredients are safe for dogs and follow proper nutritional guidelines for optimal dog nutrition. Failure to provide a balanced dog meal to your Frenchie can result in malnutrition or obesity, leading to more severe health problems.

Remember that switching your Frenchie’s food from kibble to homemade is slow and should be done progressively. Is your French Bulldog prone to food allergies, GI problems, or food-related health issues? You may want to consider vegan dog food.

More veterinary nutritionists are recommending meat-free diets to help manage various health concerns, including food sensitivities and other digestive issues. Vegan diets also play a role in dog food sustainability and protecting the planet.


Like It? Subscribe & Share!

* indicates required

Canine Bible uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

[1] Vet 4 Bulldogs, [2] Nom Nom [3] Lippert & Sapy [4] AVMA [5] Lyka, [6] Hardvard [7] NCBI, [8] PubMed, [9] UC Davis


Similar Posts