Want your French bulldog to be a part of your water adventures but you’re worried about their safety? While it’s true that the body shape of a Frenchie makes swimming a near-impossible task, a life jacket can be the solution you’ve been waiting for.
Whether you’re an avid boater or a frequent beach visitor, today, we’re helping you find the best life jacket for french bulldog so you can share the fun with your best friend.
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Why Do Frenchies Need a Lift Jacket?
Safety is something that you need to actively pursue, not take for granted. In the case of dogs, this is even more important since it’s our responsibility as owners to make sure they’re out of harm’s way.
When near or in water, dog owners must be extra careful to avoid their pets getting caught in reckless and unpredictable water currents and waves. If life jackets can be our saviors in such situations, then why not use them for our pets too?
French bulldogs, especially, are in desperate need of such support since they’re poorly built for swimming and activities involving water. Even if you’re dealing with shallow water, their safety can’t be guaranteed because they’ll struggle to stay afloat due to their unique build.
French bulldogs have a heavy, dense body that’s far from flexible. Their snouts are flat and short, which makes breathing when in water rather difficult. To inhale, Frenchies have to tilt their heads, making the situation even worse as their dwarf bodies will struggle to stay suspended in the water.
Ironically enough, French bulldogs love water and will always jump at the chance to play around it or even dive into it. As a result, owners of Frenchies need to be even more cautious.
Not only should they provide strict supervision, but they should first secure their French bulldogs with a well-fitted life jacket.
Life jackets help keep Frenchies afloat and prevent them from sinking — an otherwise probable event as their short and dense bodies struggle to learn to swim. This isn’t only important for teaching your dog swimming, but also during any activity that includes water.
Purchasing the right life jacket for your French bulldog’s distinctive body will protect them from the fatal consequences of water accidents.
Why can French bulldogs not swim?
The main reason why French bulldogs are bad swimmers is because of their particular body shape — ironically, this is one of the top reasons why many people find Frenchies irresistible in the first place.
French bulldogs are brachycephalic. In simple words, this means their skulls are short and wide and their faces are smooshed in.
The short snouts of Frenchies force them to tilt their heads higher up than most other dog species when in water. Unfortunately, such a position makes it near impossible for their heavy body to stay afloat.
Not to mention that in the French bulldog breed, the muscles weigh more than fat. So if you don’t provide proper supervision, these dogs will go down like a rock.
French bulldogs also have a dense torso and a large head, making it quite exhausting for them to swim. Yet you can still teach yours to swim using special precautions and techniques.
Features To Consider Before Buying a lifejacket for a French bulldog
When shopping for the best life jacket for French bulldogs, there are several points you need to first consider so you can make the right purchase. Here are a few of the most important ones:
It doesn’t matter if you take your French Bulldog swimming regularly or occasionally, you can’t risk their safety with materials that get easily ripped. Luckily, most lifejackets are constructed to be used over and over without any compromising the performance of its materials or stitching. Life jackets made out of neoprene are more likely to last longer than other materials
Not all Frenchies come in the same size even if they belong to the same breed. This difference in sizes means you should look for adjustability beyond the standard fit from XXS to XXL. Make sure you can easily adjust the vest around your dog’s neck and belly to achieve a snug fit that won’t restrict your Frenchie’s movement.
All of the life jackets we’re reviewing below come with specific size charts. To ensure your dog is getting a correct fit, measure your dog both sitting and standing. This includes the girth (areas around the widest part of the ribcage and neck) and back length. Also. don’t forget to measure your Frenchie’s weight.
The aim of a life jacket is to keep your French bulldog afloat, which is why you must check the reliability of the floatation material.
With short and flat snouts as well as heavy and short bodies, the life jacket should offer enough buoyancy aid. Choose a vest with floatation panels on both sides and on the belly to keep your dog above water so they can swim without sinking.
5 Best Life Jackets for French Bulldog
Kicking off our list with a widely popular option, the Outward Hound Granby Splash Life Jacket is often ranked high up among French bulldog owners, and for all the right reasons.
For starters, this dog life jacket comes in 3 bright colors (orange, green, and red) along with reflective accents, allowing for improved visibility while in the water. To provide extra safety for your swimming Frenchie, there’s front float support that keeps your dog’s head above water.
The construction of the Outward Hound Granby Splash Life Jacket makes it suitable for all swimmer pups no matter their level of experience. The ripstop material delivers excellent buoyancy in the water but still doesn’t get in the way of movement on land.
The adjustable release buckles on the side help provide a secure fit for your Frenchie, whereas the neoprene belly band braces their chest and belly. We also love the dual grab handles that grant you quick and easy access to rescue or restraint your pet while swimming or on land. Some dog owners have a problem with the horizontal placement of these handles though.
The Outward Hound Granby Splash Life Jacket is a great choice if you’re looking for a high-end life jacket for occasional use. But it’s missing a D-ring, so you’ll have to use the handles instead of a leash.
- High visibility
- Front float
- Two grab handles
- Easy to adjust
- Lacks D-ring
2. AOFITEE Dog Life Jacket
Both secure and stylish, the AOFITEE Dog Life Jacket is another solid option for French bulldog owners looking for a reliable product that also looks good.
This life jacket boasts impressive durability thanks to its ripstop construction, made out of high-density and abrasion-resistant Oxford and Nylon cloth paired with pearl cotton foam and heavy-duty stitching.
Not only does this jacket offer good buoyancy in the water, but it also allows for free movement meanwhile. Moreover, the neck design gives your Frenchie extra space while maintaining their body in a natural swimming position.
The AOFITEE Dog Life Jacket features a reinforced rescue handle on top that lets you grab your puppy quickly in case there’s an emergency. It’s also convenient to use it when putting them in or getting out of water. The built-in D-ring even allows you to use the jacket as a harness on land.
This dog life jacket features adjustable nylon straps and quick-release buckles in the neck and belly for easy fitting and added comfort. The heavy-duty Hook & Loop closure makes it even more simple to secure and remove.
The AOFITEE Dog Life Jacket comes in grey shark, orange shark, and pink mermaid shapes that are quite adorable and effortless to spot as they offer high visibility.
- Sturdy stitching
- Doubles as a harness
- Quick-release buckles
- Cute design
- The fit at the neck can be tricky
3. ZippyPaws Adventure Life Jacket for Dogs
If you want to ensure your French bulldog’s safety but you’re on a bit of a tight budget, then the ZippyPaws Adventure Life Jacket for Dogs may be exactly what you need.
With this life jacket, safety comes before all else, which may be the reason behind the lack of color options. Thanks to its impressive buoyancy, the ZippyPaws life jacket helps keep your dog afloat in water whether they want to swim all day or just not too keen on it.
This reliable flotation is due to the dense foam panels that you can depend on to keep Frenchie safe. To provide extra visibility, this life jacket for dogs features bright, reflective stripes sewn into the vest so you, or nearby people and boat, can easily spot the pup.
Offering outstanding value for money, the ZippyPaws life jacket has built-in handles that make it convenient for you to retrieve your French bulldog when they’re in over their head or simply hold the dog when need be.
- Good quality material
- Reliable floating
- No color options
- No D-ring
4. King Pup Dog Life Jacket
The King Pup Dog Life Jacket is a decent option that’s on the more pricey end of the spectrum. It comes in a unique style that features a U.S. stars & stripes pattern, so your Frenchie will look good while being easy to spot. The added reflective stripes create better visibility at night and low light situations.
This jacket also has a lot to offer in the fit and comfort department, starting from the fact that it’s made with extra padding to deliver great buoyancy for your dog when swimming. There’s also additional float support on the front side that ensures your dog’s head stays above water at all times.
As for convenience, the King Pup Dog Life Jacket features a handle at the top to help grab your Frenchie easily with your hand or a boat hook. You may, however, need to reinforce the stitching of the handle as some customers found it not very sturdy.
On the brighter side, you’ll have no issues cleaning the life jacket after your adventures since you can simply throw it in the washing machine.
- Ample padding
- Neck support
- The grab handle isn’t very sturdy
- A bit pricey
5. A-MORE Dog Life Jacket
Last but definitely not least, the A-MORE Dog Life Jacket has everything your and your Frenchie need to have a fun time out in the water without worrying about safety issues. This is a terrific option whether you’re hitting the beach, pool, going boating, swimming, fishing, or surfing.
Durable and lightweight, this life jacket is made out of high-quality polyester that ensures longevity while being comfortable for movement. It also has a super adorable design with a shark or mermaid pattern for a touch of style.
We appreciate the convenience of this life jacket when it comes to adjustability. It features velcro straps around the waist and the neck, as well as buckles in both places that you can swiftly tighten or loosen as much as you need to give your Frenchie a secure fit.
The A-MORE Dog Life Jacket also includes a safety handle on top so you can lift your pup in or out of the water easily. Moreover, the breathable underbelly mesh allows for proper draining and drying.
- Lightweight yet durable
- Cute design
- Good draining and drying
- The fin doesn’t stay up
Choosing the best life jacket for bulldogs can be a confusing task, especially with so many features to consider and brands to look through. This is why we made sure to include only the top-performing dog life vests to make sure you end up with a reliable purchase no matter what you pick.
That being said, we recommend the Outward Hound Granby Splash Dog Life Jacket as today’s winner thanks to its impressive durability, excellent buoyancy, and ease of adjustment. It’s also available in multiple bright colors, provides great visibility in low light, and even comes with a front float to keep your dog’s head above water.