Boston Terrier versus French Bulldog: Choosing One

Sometimes, the criteria of getting a dog breed to own highly depend on the physical aspect. Most first-time pet owners are opting for a smaller dog breed rather than the larger breeds. And two of the most common small breeds to choose from are the Boston terrier and the French bulldog. But, comparing Boston terrier versus French bulldog, which one is better?

Both breeds are cute, lovable pooch. Their face tends to be angelic with innocent-looking eyes. Looking at them, they seem to have similar looks which make deciding between the two a hard choice. So, to help you in this struggle here is an ultimate guide about the differences and some similarities between these two dogs. 

An Overview of the Breeds

Initially, before we specifically detailed the differences and commonalities between the Boston terrier and French bulldog, let us first give a quick glance at the table below. The table shows a quick overview and a comparison between the two breeds.

Place of OriginUnited StatesFrance, England
GroupCompanion dogsCompanion dogs
AKC Recognized GroupNon-sporting dog (1893)Non-sporting dog (1898)
NicknamesAmerican Gentlemen Boston Bull Boston Bull Terrier BoxwoodFrenchie Bouledogue Francais
Breed TypePurebredPurebred
Weight10 – 25 pounds18 – 30 pounds
Height15 – 17 inches13 – 16 inches
Coat ColorsWhite Brindle Seal BackBrindle Cream Fawn White
Life Span12 – 15 years10 – 12 years

In the table above, we can actually recognize the Boston terrier from the French bulldog by just looking at their height and weight. Although both small in size, these two breeds have generally had slight differences in the said physical aspects. Compared to the two, the Boxwood weighs lighter than the Frenchie. But, the letter seems to be smaller by an inch or two.

To know more about the Boston terrier and the French bulldog, let’s have a detailed discussion of the two.

Looking back on their Bloodlines

Historically, Boston terrier came from Boston, Massachusetts. At first, the English bulldog and the already extinct English White Terrier was crossbred in 1870 trying to come up with a new breed. But, after long years of crossbreeding among the Boxer, Pit Bull Terrier, English Bull Terrier, and the French bulldog came the adorable Boston terrier.

Actually, it is very hard to distinguish the Boston terrier from the French bulldog as they came from the same bloodline which is the English bulldog. The Frenchie was born when the small toy Bulldogs were crossbred with the French Terriers during the Industrial Revolution in France. This crossbreeding resulted in a very lovely French bulldog.

Even in terms of the breeding group, the Boston terrier versus French bulldog has been compared. Both of them belong to the group of Utility breed in the United Kingdom together with other dog breeds like the Dalmatians, Poodles, and Schnauzers. Generally, this dog group is composed of different breeds that have a specific purpose which actually varies.

Boston Terrier between French Bulldog – Which One Looks Good?

Since they are both small in size, looking at the Boston terrier and the French bulldog at the first glance will generally put you in doubt. Aside from that, these two dog breeds both have buggy eyes and too little tails behind. So, to be able to get to know them better, let us explore every detail between the Boston terrier and the French bulldog.

Boston Terrier and French Bulldog – They Look Similar

Both being small, the Boston terrier and the French bulldog closely resembles the looks each other. But yes, these two dog breeds have some similarities in terms of their physical appearance. Let’s find out what they are!

boston terrier versus french bulldog
Smells Fishy: Checking out Their Nose

One shared commonalities of the Boston terrier and the French bulldog is their short nose plus their broad jaws. The nose of the Boston terrier is usually wide that comes in a black hue. While the nose of the French bulldog is short and the nostrils tend to be broader.

Since they both belong to the brachycephalic dog breed, their distinctive look gives them small nostrils and long palates. These are factors that lead them to various health issues and breathing problems.

Cute and Wiggly: Look at Their Tails

Another similar feature that identifies Boston terrier versus French bulldog is their squatty little tails on their behind. This wiggly thing of these dog breeds appears straight up or sometimes screwed while sitting down low near the rectum.

Generally, screwed tails of canines occur when there is a malformation in their vertebrae. This health-related issue is highly noticeable in French bulldogs than the Boston terriers. 

The Shedding Factor

The good thing about owning and petting these two dog breeds is that they are both low maintenance in terms of grooming. This is all in favor of their short coats that only require minimal shedding. However, the downside of it is that both breeds are sensitive to extremely low temperature.

Boston Terrier or French Bulldog – Their Physical Differences

Actually, to be able to identify which is between the Boston terrier or the French bulldog is better than the other; let us try to look at the distinctive features that make them unique.

Down Sizing Them

In terms of their size, the Boston terrier and the French bulldog are both small. But, to distinguish the Boston terrier from the French bulldog when it comes to this aspect is to check on their legs. Generally, the Boston terrier tends to have longer legs compared to the French bulldog. This basically means that the Boxwood is a little bit taller than the Frenchie.

At around 15 – 17 inches, the Boston terrier stands boastfully over the French bulldog. While the latter stands on a height of about 13 – 16 inches with a muscular body and large bony structure.

The Difference on their Ears
boston terrier versus french bulldog

When you take a closer look at the ears of the French bulldog, you will notice that their ears have a distinct bat-like appearance. It generally stands erectly with an average size. Meanwhile, pointed ears belong to the round-headed Boston terrier. So, looking at their ears will definitely help us to differentiate the Boston terrier from the French bulldog.

Getting to Know them Better

Isn’t these two dog breeds are cute and bubbly? Their small body makes them really huggable. But, do their good looks go well with their inner being? Let’s find out if their behavior blends with their attractive appeal.

Their Personality

What makes the Boston terrier different from the French bulldog in terms of their personality? Generally, these dog breeds are good examples of great personality packed in small packages. Both the Boston terrier and the French bulldog is friendly, compassionate, and wonderful, furry buddy.

The Boston terrier is actually active, subtle, and intelligent. After being alive burning up the energy within, the Boston terrier is eager to have some cuddle. That’s why they truly deserve the nickname American Gentleman. With this, the Boston terrier is also a good family pet.

French bulldog, on the other hand, has a bubbly personality and a well-balanced friendly attitude. They are famous for being a laugh maker, tenderhearted, and also love to cuddle. Despite being a good family pet like the Boston terrier, the problem with the Frenchie is their over-protectiveness with small children. Socialization at an early age is what they need to address the problem.

The Bulldog Successors – Barking their Hearts Out

Comes with their small package is their ability to bark quite a bit more. However, when it comes to barking, these two dog breeds are loud barkers like the others.

Training Needs

boston terrier versus french bulldog

When it comes to training, these two breeds are both easily trainable. This is the probable reason why they tend to be a great dog for first-time dog owners. The Boston terrier is a fast learner when it comes to teaching tricks. They listen well and able to obey commands. Early socialization is also needed by the Boston terrier because of their minimal territorial attitude.

Meanwhile, the French bulldog, for some time, is hardheaded. So, it is better to keep your authority at bay when training the Frenchies. Do not forget to use the positive reinforcement method while training them. Keep in mind that the French bulldog may have the potential to be stubborn and aggressive so train them properly.

Their Health Conditions of the Two Breeds

The health of these two dog breeds must be taken into consideration when you want to distinguish between these two breeds. Their brachycephalic features make them prone to numbers of health problems. Since it is an anatomical defect, the most common health issues that these dog breeds are facing are respiratory difficulties.

Below is a table that shows the health issues that can be seen in one dog breed or in both of them. Let’s check them out!

Eye problemsCataracts – early onset Eyelid deformities Corneal ulcers Cherry EyeCataracts – early onset Eyelid deformities Corneal ulcers Glaucoma Infections of the skin folds under the eyes
Knees or back legsPatellar LuxationPatellar Luxation Hemi-vertebrae Hip Dysplasia Intervertebral Disk Disease Von Willebrand’s Disease
Back problemsVertebral and cartilaginous disc disordersVertebral and cartilaginous disc disorders
Respiratory problemsReverse SneezingBrachycephalic Syndrome Cleft Palate Elongated Soft Palate
Ear problemsDeafness 
OthersBrain tumorObesity

Exercise Requirements

Most of the time, health-related issues on dogs arise due to lack of exercise. However, not all dogs have the same needs to undergo this kind of activity as they also have a different lifestyle. Let us find out how they differ in terms of their exercise requirements.

For the Boston Terrier:

Exercise is not actually a requirement for this dog breed. Because of his love for playing, this activity already compensates for what he needs. Although you can still provide him with exercise it is important to be cautious of the problems along the way. Boston terriers are susceptible to overheating because of their inability to regulate the temperature. A short walk is actually enough for this dog breed.

For the French Bulldog:

The French bulldog needs a very little amount of exercise. So, just a short walk daily will do the job as same as the Boston terrier. Remember they have breathing difficulties so long walks are not good for them.

Boston Terrier and French Bulldog: Welcome to the City Life

If you are living in a city and you want a dog to be with you, then these two breeds are the best breeds to have. They can generally live in small houses or apartments. You do not actually need a football field-sized yard when you pet these two breeds as they do not need much exercise.

Generally, both breeds can happily be relaxed with you on a couch inside your house. They are both adaptable to any living situations so moving to a new house is not a problem with them.

Boston Terrier and French Bulldog: The Cost of Buying One

Buying a puppy highly depends on the breeder. There are some breeders that offer these dog breeds at a higher cost. Yet, you may also find a few that will give you a pup that suits your budget. Recently, French bulldogs tend to be popular making them cost a little bit pricier compared to the Boston terriers.

An important note here – be careful in choosing the breeder where you can purchase a puppy as some of them are not reputable ones.

Frequently Asked Questions


A: Generally, both of them are cute and adorable dog breed. But, if you want to know which breed suits you look at their level of activity. The Boston terrier is more active than the Frenchies. Running, playing, and jumping is generally a thing for them. However, if you give to them these routines, be cautious about their overheating possibility.


A: Somehow they are. These two dog breeds are successors of the Bulldog. This basically means that they have some similarities in terms of physicality and inner characteristic.


A: Crossbreeding Boston terrier with other breeds like the French bulldog will generally give you the Frenchton mixed dog breed. Other names of this breed include Faux Frenchbo, Frenchbo, and Froston.

Final Words

In terms of physical appearance, many are asking the difference between the Boston terrier and the French bulldog. These two dog breeds look similarly alike. However, there are still other aspects of the canine’s life that make one standout from the other. Yet, regardless of which dog breed you choose among the two, you will definitely discover that both of them can be a great companion and a loving furry buddy.