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Chocolate French Bulldog: A Sweet and Rare Color

chocolate French Bulldog

Chocolate French Bulldogs are unique canines with their visually striking appearance and affectionate disposition. Chocolate Frenchies are not a separate breed from the traditional French Bulldog but a color variation. 

These pups have the same disposition, vet needs, and nurture as other Frenchies. These include regular, high-quality shampoo baths because what is a beautiful coat without maintenance? Add to it above-average vet visits because that’s the way of a Frenchie.

If you’re considering adding a Chocolate French Bulldog to your family, it’s crucial to do your research and find a reputable breeder. Drawing from professional resources like Whitwam’s French Bulldog Guide for a complete Chocolate Frenchie breed profile and manual.

French Bulldogs are one the most popular small breed dogs. Because of this, we’ve seen several unique color and size adaptations, call them A-list Frenchies, to add to the breed’s charm.

These variations include Platinum Frenchies, Fluffy French Bulldogs, Cream, and our very own Chocolate Frenchies. No matter the look or size of the dog, all these Frenchies have the same playful and outgoing personalities that no one can resist. 

This is what we mean when we say Choc Frenchies are irresistible:

The AKC and many other major kennel clubs don’t recognize chocolate as a standard color. This makes it significantly challenging to find a reputable breeder since none will have major club certification. However, when you do find one, these pups will be worth the search.

Overall, the chocolate French Bulldog is a unique and lovable breed that is sure to capture the hearts of dog lovers everywhere. With their striking appearance and charming personality, they make an excellent addition to any family.

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History & Origins of the Chocolate French Bulldog

The French Bulldog originated in France in the 19th century from breeding mini English Bulldogs, which the French imported from England. They were companion dogs and quickly became popular due to their affectionate nature and small size. 

The Chocolate French Bulldog is a color variation of the breed that has always existed. The responsible recessive gene was always present in the breed’s genetic makeup but was not expressed until breeders began to breed for it selectively.

While the Chocolate French Bulldog is not recognized as a separate breed by major kennel clubs, it is a popular and sought-after variation of the French Bulldog.

However, it is essential to note that some breeders may prioritize color over health when breeding, causing issues within the breed.

Overall, the Chocolate French Bulldog is a unique and beautiful variation of the beloved French Bulldog breed with the same history. The color popularity may be relatively recent, but the dog’s charm is undeniable.

Chocolate Frenchie Genetics 

The chocolate coat color in French Bulldogs results from specific genetic interactions involving the B locus (b/b) gene. These interactions determine the intensity of black and brown (chocolate) pigments. Others point the chocolate color to a co/co cocoa gene.

Chocolate French Bulldogs carry two copies of the brown “b” allele at this locus, causing a dilution of black pigment to rich chocolate. On top of the b/b gene, the dog must also be able to produce eumelanin (at least one copy of the E allele at MC1R) to present as chocolate. 

This genetic combination can also influence the dog’s appearance, such as paw pad and nose color to brown. However, the health and well-being of the dogs should always take precedence over cosmetic traits.

Physical Characteristics of a Chocolate French Bulldog

What Do Chocolate Frenchies Look Like?

Chocolate Frenchies look like your standard Frenchie but with a coco-hued coat. They are notably muscular for their small size, with compact bodies. Their short, smooth coat comes in various shades of brown, ranging from light to dark chocolate.

The Choco Frenchie’s head is square-shaped, with large, round eyes that are set wide apart. They have the Frenchie breed hallmark, which is bat-like ears that are erect and pointed. They have a very short, wrinkled muzzle that gives them a unique and adorable expression. They have an adorable corkscrew tail.

Telling apart Chocolate Frenchies, Isabellas, and Lilac French Bulldogs is an extreme sport. This is because these dogs basically look like the same color but in different fonts. However, the difference is Isabellas and Lilacs have a blue tinge, while Chocolates are entirely brown. 

You can read our articles on Isabella and Lilac French Bulldogs for an elaborate explanation of their differences. 

Different Chocolate Frenchie Colors

Chocolate Frenchies have short and smooth coats with a soft and glossy texture. These coats come in a variety of colors and patterns. Here are some of the most common types:

Chocolate and Tan

Chocolate and tan Frenchies have a chocolate-colored coat with tan markings on their face, chest, and legs. The tan markings vary in shade, from light beige to a darker reddish-brown.

Chocolate Merle

Chocolate Merle Frenchies have a chocolate-colored coat with a Merle pattern. The merle pattern creates a marbled effect, with patches of chocolate and lighter base colors like cream or beige. Some Merle Frenchies also have blue or green eyes. 

Pied Chocolate

Pied Chocolate Frenchies have a mostly white coat with patches of chocolate. The chocolate patches can vary in size and shape and be located anywhere on the body.

Chocolate Brindle

Chocolate Brindle Frenchies have a chocolate-colored coat with brindle stripes. The brindle pattern creates a tiger-like effect, with streaks of chocolate and lighter colors like cream or beige. Brindle is the only chocolate color the AKC recognizes. 

Chocolate Tricolor

Chocolate Tricolor Frenchies have chocolate-colored coats with white and tan markings. The white and tan markings can be on the face, chest, and legs.

How big is the Chocolate Frenchie?

A Chocolate French Bulldog is a small-sized dog breed standing 11 to 12 inches (28 to 30 cm) tall at the shoulder. The weight of a Chocolate French Bulldog usually ranges between 16 to 28 pounds (7 to 13 kg). 

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Personality Traits of a Chocolate French Bulldog

Chocolate French Bulldogs are known for their unique and charming personalities. Choco Frenchies are lively, playful, affectionate, sociable, and eager-to-please pups. They love bonding with their hoomans and have quite a sense of humor.

They are a small breed of highly adaptable dog that can fit into any living situation. Despite their small stature, French Bulldogs possess a big personality. They are known to have a playful and entertaining side, often engaging in silly antics that can make their owners laugh. 

These dogs are below-average in intelligence but are eager to please and are treats-motivated. These highly loving dogs may be prone to separation anxiety if owners leave them alone for long.

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Health Concerns Specific to Chocolate French Bulldogs

Genetic Disorders

Like all purebred dogs, chocolate French Bulldogs are prone to certain genetic disorders. These include:

  • Brachycephalic Syndrome: This disorder affects dogs with short snouts, like French Bulldogs. It can cause breathing difficulties, wheezing, overheating, and other respiratory problems.
  • Hip Dysplasia: This is a condition where the hip joint doesn’t form properly, leading to arthritis and pain.
  • Patellar Luxation: This is when the kneecap dislocates, causing pain and difficulty walking.
  • Von Willebrand Disease: This bleeding disorder can cause excessive bleeding after injury or surgery.
  • Eye Problems: French Bulldogs are predisposed to various eye conditions, including cherry eye (prolapsed gland of the third eyelid), entropion (inward rolling of the eyelids), and cataracts. 
  • Obesity: Due to their sedentary nature and potential for overeating, French Bulldogs can easily become overweight. Obesity can exacerbate other health problems.
  • Skin Fold Infections: A French Bulldog’s face’s wrinkles and skin folds can be prone to infections if not kept clean and dry. Additionally, the chocolate gene has been linked to an increased risk for ear infections.
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD): French Bulldogs, like other breeds with short legs and a long back, are at a higher risk of developing IVDD, which involves rupturing spinal discs. 
  • Stenotic nares where the nostrils are too small.
  • Heart Conditions: Some French Bulldogs can be prone to certain heart conditions, such as congenital valve defects or cardiomyopathy.
  • Moderate issues like Dental issues, allergies, and food sensitivity.

To minimize the risk of these disorders, buying from a reputable breeder who screens their dogs for genetic diseases is essential.

Dietary Needs

Chocolate French Bulldogs have the same dietary needs as other French Bulldogs. They should be fed high-quality dog food, mainly protein (at least 25), appropriate for their age, size, and activity level. It’s vital to avoid overfeeding, as French Bulldogs are prone to obesity.

Caring for a Chocolate French Bulldog

Exercise Requirements

Chocolate French Bulldogs are a small breed but still require daily exercise to maintain good health and prevent obesity. A brisk 20-30 minute walk each day should suffice, but they also enjoy playing games like fetch or tug-of-war. These dogs are prone to overheating and breathing difficulties to monitor them closely. 

Grooming Tips

The short, smooth coat of a Chocolate French Bulldog requires minimal grooming. However, they do shed moderately year-round.

  • Regular brushing with a soft-bristled brush can help keep shedding under control. 
  • They also have wrinkles on their face that should be cleaned regularly to prevent infections. A damp cloth or baby wipe can be used to clean these wrinkles.
  • Owners must clean their Chocolate French Bulldog’s ears with canine wipes to prevent infections. 
  • Additionally, trim their nails monthly with clippers to prevent overgrowth and breakage. 
  • Bathe them with mild shampoo every 3 to 4 weeks to keep their coats clean and healthy. Dry their wrinkles thoroughly with absorbent towels to prevent itching and infections.
  • Brush their teeth twice a week and alternate with dental chews and mouthwashes.

Breeding Chocolate French Bulldogs

Breeding chocolate French Bulldogs can be challenging because the chocolate coat color results from a recessive gene.

Both breeding dogs must carry the recessive chocolate gene. This can be determined through genetic testing or by breeding two dogs that have produced chocolate offspring in the past. It’s also essential to ensure both dogs are healthy and have no genetic health issues that could be passed on to their offspring.

Once two chocolate French Bulldogs have been selected for breeding, the female should be in good health and at the appropriate age for breeding.

Note: French Bulldogs are remarkably hard to breed. Studies show Frenchies are 15.9 times likelier to suffer from birthing complications than other breeds. The difficulties are due to their large heads compared to their body size, making natural birth a hassle.

If you’re buying, get your Frenchie from a breeder with evidence for performing genetic health tests on the parent breeds. Also, visit the breeding area to meet the parents. Breeders should have a policy where they take back puppies if a buyer doesn’t take care of them.

Adopting a Chocolate French Bulldog

It’s essential to find a reputable breeder or rescue organization. Make sure they have a good reputation and are knowledgeable about the breed. You can also ask for references or read reviews from other customers. This will ensure that you’re getting a healthy and well-socialized dog.

Another thing to consider is the cost of owning a chocolate French Bulldog. They can be expensive due to increased veterinary care, food, and supplies. It’s important to budget accordingly to ensure that you can provide for your new furry friend.

When adopting a chocolate French Bulldog, it’s also important to be aware of potential health issues. French Bulldogs are prone to certain health problems, such as breathing difficulties and skin allergies. Ask the shelter or rescue organization about any health concerns and be prepared to provide ongoing care.

Finally, it’s essential to ensure your home is a safe and comfortable environment for your new pet. This includes providing a secure outdoor space, plenty of toys and activities, and a comfortable sleeping area. Frenchie rescue organizations include:

  • French Bulldog Rescue Network (FBRN);
  • Chicago French Bulldog Rescue (CFBR);
  • Rescue French Bulldogs (RFB);
  • Short Mugs Rescue Squad (site); and
  • Short Noses and Friends United Rescue (SNAFU).

Living with a Chocolate French Bulldog

A Chocolate French Bulldog is a delightful companion to have around. They are a playful breed that loves to be around their owners. Here are a few things to keep in mind when living with a Chocolate French Bulldog:

  • Like all dogs, Chocolate French Bulldogs need exercise. They are a small breed, so a daily walk around the block should suffice. 
  • Chocolate French Bulldogs have a short, smooth coat that is easy to maintain. They shed moderately, so brushing them twice a week will help keep their coat looking shiny and healthy. They also have wrinkles on their face that must be cleaned regularly to prevent infections.
  • Chocolate Frenchies respond well to positive reinforcement and love to please their owners. Training them early on is vital to prevent any bad habits from forming.
  • These dogs, like all Frenchies, may need more vet care than most breeds.
  • They do best in apartments.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a chocolate French Bulldog Puppy cost?

The cost of a chocolate French Bulldog puppy can vary depending on various factors such as the breeder, location, and pedigree. On average, a chocolate Frenchie can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 or more.

What is a chocolate and tan French Bulldog?

A chocolate and tan French Bulldog is a Frenchie with a chocolate coat and tan markings on their face, legs, and underbelly. This coloration is caused by a specific gene that affects the distribution of pigmentation in the coat.

How rare are chocolate French Bulldogs?

Chocolate French Bulldogs are considered relatively rare compared to other colors of Frenchies, such as fawn or brindle. This is because the chocolate gene is recessive and requires both parents to carry the gene for a puppy to be born with a chocolate coat.

What is the price of a chocolate brindle Frenchie?

The price of a chocolate brindle French Bulldog can vary depending on various factors such as the breeder, location, and pedigree. On average, a chocolate brindle Frenchie can cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 or more.

What is a double chocolate French Bulldog?

A double chocolate French Bulldog is a Frenchie that inherits two copies of the chocolate gene, one from each parent. This results in a darker chocolate coat compared to a single chocolate Frenchie.

What is the difference between chocolate and cocoa Frenchies?

There is no difference between chocolate and cocoa Frenchies. Both terms refer to French Bulldogs with chocolate-colored coats.

Does the chocolate Frenchie shed?

Yes, like all French Bulldogs, chocolate Frenchies do shed. However, their short and smooth coat requires minimal grooming, and shedding is not usually a major issue.

Final Thoughts

The Chocolate French Bulldog is a unique and beautiful breed becoming increasingly popular among dog lovers. While they may have some health issues to watch out for, they are generally healthy and active dogs that make great companions.


Tamsin De La Harpe


Tamsin de la Harpe has nearly two decades of experience with dogs in rescue, training, and behavior modification with fearful and aggressive dogs. She has worked closely with veterinarians and various kennels, building up extensive medical knowledge and an understanding of canine health and physiology. She also spent two years in the animal sciences as a canine nutrition researcher, focusing on longevity and holistic healthcare for our four-legged companions.

Tamsin currently keeps a busy homestead with an assortment of rescue dogs and three Bullmastiffs.

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