french bulldog underbite

French Bulldog Underbite: Unpacking The Causes & Cures

Cute and distinctive, French Bulldogs often sport an underbite. It’s a charming aspect of the French Bulldog’s unique look, but does it have any implications on their health? We’ll dive into the topic of the French Bulldog underbite, looking at its causes and effects.

Why is an Underbite Common in French Bulldogs?

The underbite is not only unique but also very common among French Bulldogs. According to veterinarians, over 80% of all Frenchies have some degree of underbite. It’s important to remember that while an underbite may seem severe on some dogs, many breeds can have slight variations in jaw alignment that don’t require treatment.

One reason underbites are so common among this breed may be due to selective breeding practices over time. As breeders focused on creating smaller and more compact dogs, they may have inadvertently created genetic mutations that contributed to this particular physical trait.

Another possible explanation for why underbites are so common among Frenchies is their short snouts. This unique feature can cause overcrowding of teeth or other structural issues within the mouth which can lead to misalignment.

Causes of Underbites in French Bulldogs

Genetics: The Role of Inheritance in Underbites

Genetics play a significant role in the development of underbites in French Bulldogs. According to the American Kennel Club, French Bulldogs are among the breeds most likely to develop an underbite due to their genetic makeup.

Breeding dogs with existing underbites can increase the likelihood of inherited traits and lead to a higher incidence of underbites in subsequent generations. The mode of inheritance for underbites is not yet clear, but it is known that certain genes control jaw development.

As such, Frenchies with parents or grandparents who have had an underbite will be more likely to develop one themselves. It is important for breeders to test their dogs for dental abnormalities, including underbites and overbites before breeding them.

Early Development: The Importance of Proper Puppyhood Care

During puppyhood, a French Bulldog’s jaw structure is still developing and can be affected by various external factors. Improper nutrition during this stage can hinder the development of jaw muscles and bone structure leading to an underbite. Similarly, physical trauma or excessive pressure on the jaws during puppyhood may also cause malocclusion.

It’s essential that puppies receive proper nutrition as well as ample playtime and rest during this crucial period. Providing chew toys designed specifically for teething puppies can help stimulate jaw growth and prevent any misalignment that could lead to an underbite.

Other Factors: Other Causes Of Underbites In French Bulldogs

Although genetics play a major role in the development of an underbite in Frenchies, other factors may contribute as well. Poor oral hygiene can exacerbate dental issues and cause tooth decay or gum disease which may worsen misaligned teeth over time. Additionally, diseases like periodontitis can lead to the loss of bone structure in the jaw and further exacerbate a preexisting underbite.

Trauma to the face or jaw area, such as getting hit by a car or falling from a great height, can also cause an underbite to develop. Understanding the causes of underbites in French Bulldogs is essential for preventing and treating this condition.

Genetics play a major role in inheritance, while proper puppyhood care and hygiene can prevent development or worsening of malocclusion, which can lead to an underbite. Identifying potential health issues associated with an underbite’s symptoms is also essential for early intervention and treatment.

Health Issues Associated with Underbites in French Bulldogs

Dental Problems: The Hidden Dangers of French Bulldog Underbite

While a French Bulldog underbite may be cute and endearing, it can create serious dental problems. Because the lower teeth protrude past the upper teeth, they receive more exposure to bacteria and plaque buildup. This leads to tooth decay, gum disease, and other dental issues.

In severe cases, untreated dental issues can even lead to bone loss and systemic infections. Additionally, an underbite can make it difficult for a French Bulldog to eat properly.

They may struggle with picking up food or chewing correctly due to their misaligned jaws. This can lead to poor nutrition and digestive problems.

Regular dental check-ups are crucial for any dog with an underbite, but especially for French Bulldogs. Owners should brush their dog’s teeth daily and provide them with appropriate chew toys designed to promote oral health.

Breathing Difficulties: How An Underbite Affects Your Frenchie’s Breathing

French Bulldogs are already known for their breathing difficulties due to their short snouts. However, an underbite can exacerbate these issues even further. When a Frenchie’s lower jaw extends past the upper jaw, it creates a smaller airway passage in the back of the throat.

This makes it harder for them to breathe normally, especially during times of stress or exercise. Owners should be aware of signs of respiratory distress such as wheezing or labored breathing.

If left untreated, these breathing difficulties can cause long-term damage or lead to more serious health problems. While some dogs may benefit from surgery to correct their underbite and improve their breathing, others may simply need lifestyle changes such as weight loss or reduced exercise intensity.


While a French Bulldog underbite may be a charming physical characteristic, it can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. Dental issues and breathing difficulties are just a few of the potential risks associated with this condition. Thankfully, there are steps that owners can take to help manage their Frenchie’s underbite.

Regular dental care and monitoring for respiratory distress can help catch any issues early, allowing for quicker treatment and better long-term outcomes. By understanding the causes and potential health risks associated with an underbite in French Bulldogs, owners can take proactive steps to ensure their beloved pets live happy, healthy lives.


What is an underbite in French Bulldogs?

An underbite in French Bulldogs refers to a dental condition where the lower jaw extends further forward than the upper jaw, causing the teeth to misalign.

Are all French Bulldogs born with underbites?

No, not all French Bulldogs are born with underbites. While the breed is prone to developing underbites, it is not a guarantee that every French Bulldog will have this dental condition.

Why do French Bulldogs often have underbites?

Underbites are common in French Bulldogs due to the breed’s unique head structure. The short, compact face and the placement of the jawbones can lead to an underdeveloped upper jaw, resulting in an underbite.

Can an underbite in French Bulldogs cause health problems?

In most cases, an underbite in French Bulldogs does not cause severe health problems. However, it can lead to some dental issues, such as uneven wear on the teeth, difficulty chewing certain foods, and increased susceptibility to dental diseases.

Do underbites in French Bulldogs affect their ability to eat?

French Bulldogs with underbites may face challenges when it comes to eating certain types of food, especially larger kibble. They might find it easier to consume smaller, softer pieces of food or have their diet adjusted to accommodate their dental condition.

Can an underbite be corrected in French Bulldogs?

In some cases, corrective measures can be taken to address an underbite in French Bulldogs. Orthodontic appliances, such as braces or retainers, may be used to help realign the teeth and jaw. However, not all underbites require intervention, and it is essential to consult with a veterinarian or veterinary dentist to determine the best course of action.

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