Are French Bulldogs Hard to Train? Things You Should Know


If you love your French bulldog and think it’ll be a piece of cake to potty train, think again. French bulldogs are extremely independent and stubborn, making them a huge challenge to train regardless of what you’re trying to teach them.

But even though the answer to the question, “Are French bulldogs hard to train?” is “yes,” it doesn’t mean it is impossible to do. In many ways, it requires the same things as training other breeds, especially if you follow the right rules.

Are French Bulldogs Hard to Train?

French bulldogs are hard to train due to their stubbornness and their fierce independent streak, but the bottom line is, with consistency and patience, you can get past these traits and train the dog well.

Whether you’re trying to teach your Frenchie basic commands or trying to potty-train them, they often think they’re the boss and not you, which contributes to the difficulties many pet owners have when training their French bulldog.

A French bulldog is easier to train if you establish dominance over them and teach them early on who’s boss. Keep in mind that Frenchies are also very smart dogs, and therefore, it’s very likely that they truly believe that they can become your boss easily! This is one of the reasons why you can’t be hesitant or timid when you’re trying to train one of these dogs. They will pick up on that and might cause even more problems.

Keep in mind that they are compact, small dogs with very small bladders. This means that even once they’re completely trained, they may still have accidents and not be able to make it to the outdoor potty area on time. If you’re patient with them and learn how to train them properly, this will be less of a problem over time.

French Bulldog Puppy Training Schedule: Some Suggestions

Consistency, patience, and positive reinforcement are all a necessity with potty-training your French bulldog. Here are some tips to make the process a little easier for you:

  • Always give them a lot of supervision. Some Frenchies are so clever that they will try to sneak into the other room and potty there. If you’re keeping a close eye on them at all times, this is much less likely to happen.
  • Only train for short periods of time, roughly 10–15 minutes only. Train them several times a day for the best results, but make sure each of the training sessions is short. You also have to make sure you train with them every day so they don’t forget what they’ve already learned.
  • Know when to take them outside to potty. This should include when they wake up, before they go to bed, and roughly 15–20 minutes after they eat. If they’re still puppies, you have to take them outside every hour or so until they get a little older. Once they reach about six months of age, you can take them outside every two hours.
  • Make sure you always go outside with your French bulldog. Don’t just let them out in the yard by themselves, but be with them the entire time. Many pet parents find that taking them outside while they’re on a leash makes it easier to control them and prevents them from running too far away.
  • Never punish the dog when an accident occurs. Instead, use positive reinforcement in the form of treats or toys to reward positive behavior. Have some treats ready to go each time you train the dog and make sure they receive the treat five to ten seconds after the good behavior so they learn exactly why you gave it to them.
  • Take every opportunity to get your dog socialized. A dog park or regular park should be frequently visited when you’re potty-training your Frenchie because the more social the dog is, the easier it will be to potty-train.
  • In addition to socialization, keep in mind that a Frenchie has a lot of energy and needs roughly one hour of exercise every single day. If the dog doesn’t get this much-needed exercise, you might find parts of your house have been destroyed because the dog will use its energy elsewhere. And this is something no pet parent wants to experience!

If you decide to crate-train your Frenchie to keep them from having accidents, do it slowly and try not to keep them in the crate for long periods of time. If the dog’s stubborn streak is too strong and you’re having trouble with the training, there’s nothing wrong with hiring a professional dog trainer to make sure the job is done right. They’re less expensive than you think and produce great results.

Why Are French Bulldogs So Hard to Potty Train?

The more you learn about a French bulldog’s temperament, the easier it will be to figure out why potty training can be a challenge with this type of dog. French bulldogs are very playful and have tons of energy. They’re affectionate and quirky, and they are not known to bark frequently.

Frenchies also love the company of humans and love to please, so this particular trait can actually help you potty train your dog a little faster.

Frenchies are curious and love to go exploring, and they can even be a little willful at times, which can make training a little more difficult. They have good dispositions as a general rule, but they need nearly constant physical and emotional stimulation, which is why you want to keep your training sessions short. In addition to potty training, make sure you train your Frenchie to master the recall command; otherwise, their independent streak might have them running off in the opposite direction.


French bulldogs are independent, stubborn, and sometimes willful, and even though they have good overall dispositions, these traits can make them a little difficult to train. Nevertheless, the task is not impossible, and if you go slow, train only for short periods of time, and train frequently, they will eventually catch on and become potty-trained.

You also need to supervise these dogs constantly and always use positive reinforcement and never punishment.