French Bulldogs are usually still quite tiny when they go to their forever home. A young puppy won't need a lot of exercise at first. In fact, your little pup will likely sleep a lot in the first weeks after you bring them home.
But by the age of four months old, your Frenchie will double in weight and start really becoming the lively little dog you chose when you selected a French Bulldog.
This is about when most owners start wondering how much exercise a French Bulldog puppy should get every day. In this article, we will walk you through the French Bulldog's exercise needs from early puppyhood to adulthood.
How Much Exercise Does a French Bulldog Puppy Need?
A good rule of thumb is to offer your French Bulldog puppy five minutes of exercise for every month of age. So if your French Bulldog comes home at the age of two months, you would offer 10 minutes of exercise during that first month. Then add five minutes for each additional month.
Using this schedule, by the time your French Bulldog is one year old, this would mean your dog is getting about one hour (60 minutes, or 12 months times five minutes) of exercise per day, which is right on target for this breed's adult exercise needs.
Listen to a Professional Dog Trainer Talk About Puppy Exercise
In this short and helpful YouTube video, a professional dog trainer takes a French Bulldog puppy through potty training with some help from structured outdoor exercises.
As the trainer explains, French Bulldogs are such sensitive and aware dogs that they often struggle with potty training more than other dog breeds. Combining exercise with house training can help achieve two goals at once, making both easier in the mix.
Take a Closer Look at the French Bulldog Puppy Growth and Exercise Chart
If you are caring for a French Bulldog puppy for the very first time, you may wonder just what to expect when it comes to your puppy's growth timeline and exercise needs.
Keeping your own weekly growth and weight charts can be really helpful to make sure you aren't under-exercising or over-exercising your French Bulldog puppy for their size and weight.
Here is a general French Bulldog puppy growth timeline you can use as a go-by for adding more exercise to your puppy's daily routine.
The weight variance you see at each growth milestone reflects differences in adult weight between genders.
8 weeks old
An eight-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 5 to 6.9 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 10 minutes per day indoors.
12 weeks old
A 12-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 6.2 to 9 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 15 minutes per day indoors or in your private back yard.
16 weeks old
A 16-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 9 to 12 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 20 minutes per day indoors, in your private back yard. As soon as your veterinarian clears it, you can also begin bringing your puppy to dog parks or public places.
18 weeks old
An 18-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 12 to 15 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 20 minutes per day indoors, in your private back yard, and in public dog-friendly spaces.
22 weeks old
A 22-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 13 to 16 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 25 minutes per day indoors, in your private back yard, and in public dog-friendly spaces.
26 weeks old
A 26-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 16 to 18 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 30 minutes per day anywhere.
28 weeks old
A 28-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 18 to 20 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 35 minutes per day anywhere.
32 weeks old
A 32-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 20 to 22 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 40 minutes per day anywhere.
36 weeks old
A 36-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 22 to 24 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 45 minutes per day anywhere.
40 weeks old
A 40-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 24 to 26 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 50 minutes per day anywhere.
44 weeks old
A 44-week-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 26 to 28 pounds.
This puppy can safely exercise for 55 minutes per day anywhere.
12 months old
An eighteen-month-old French Bulldog puppy typically weighs 28 pounds or less.
This puppy can safely exercise for 6o minutes per day anywhere.
Three Helpful French Bulldog Puppy Growth Formulas
Earlier here in this article, we mentioned that the average puppy will double their weight by the age of four months.
The typical adult French Bulldog weighs 28 pounds or less, as the American Kennel Club (AKC) explains.
And as UVK French Bulldog breeders explain, there are three pretty trustworthy formulas you can use to guesstimate your puppy's adult weight.
The four-fold formula states that a puppy will reach one-fourth of their adult weight by the age of eight weeks.
So if your French Bulldog puppy weighs five pounds at two months old, you can expect your puppy to weigh 20 pounds when fully grown.
The double up formula states that your adult French Bulldog will weigh double what they weighed at the age of four months old.
So if your French Bulldog puppy weighs 12 pounds at the age of 16 weeks old, you can expect your dog to weigh 24 pounds in adulthood.
Find out the sire and dam dog weights
The third way to guesstimate your Frenchie puppy's adult weight is to find out what each parent dog weighs.
Let's say you know your puppy's dam (mother dog) weighed 20 pounds and your puppy's sire (father dog) weighed 28 pounds.
You have a girl puppy. So you can loosely expect that your little girl will grow up to weigh about 20 pounds.
Can You Take Your French Bulldog Puppy Outside to Exercise?
This is a great question and a very important one for your French Bulldog puppy's safety.
As Arlees French Bulldogs breeder explains, you need to wait until your puppy has had the full series of required vaccinations before allowing your dog outside.
Typically, this means waiting until your puppy is 16 weeks (four months) old before going any farther than your own back yard.
In most cases, a French Bulldog puppy will leave their mother and littermates for their new forever home (your home) by the age of nine to 12 weeks old.
But until your puppy has had their final round of vaccinations and any necessary boosters, it is still possible that your dog could catch diseases from other dogs. So you need to restrict your puppy to your home and lawn until they are completely safe.
When in doubt, always talk with your puppy's breeder and your veterinarian about timing your French Bulldog puppy's first public outing where they might encounter other dogs.
Exercises That Are Never Safe for Your French Bulldog Puppy
As the French Bulldog Club of America explains, French Bulldogs must never be allowed to do certain things regardless of age.
Off-limits activities for French Bulldogs include the following.
Any water sports
French Bulldogs cannot swim. They are so top-heavy that they will drown if allowed into the water.
Anything outdoors in the heat
French Bulldogs have short muzzles and flat faces. They often have trouble breathing and are very heat intolerant. So you should never let your puppy exercise outdoors on a hot day.
French Bulldogs love to jump. But you shouldn't let your Frenchie jump because these dogs have a history of spine and disc problems that could become crippling.
Safe Exercises Your French Bulldog Puppy Can Enjoy
Your French Bulldog puppy can enjoy taking walks with you starting at the age of 16 weeks or as soon as your veterinarian says it is okay.
Training should give your dog some great daily exercise as well as allowing you to review common commands and add in some new ones to your dog's repertoire each day.
Simple games of fetch, slow feeders, puzzle toys, treat feeders, snuffle mats, and similar activities that engage your dog's mind, as well as body, are particularly appropriate for smart French Bulldogs.
Since Frenchies are notoriously treat-motivated, adding some playtime to treat time and mealtimes will help extend the enrichment and get your dog moving a bit without over-exerting your puppy.
With these tips, you can start giving your growing French Bulldog puppy some healthy and fun physical and mental exercise and positive training right away.
As a freelance pet writer and blogger, Shannon is passionate about crafting knowledge-based, science-supported articles that foster healthy bonds of love and respect between people and animals. But her first and very most important job is as a dog auntie and cockatiel, tortoise, and box turtle mama.