Dog breeder is ‘reengineering’ French Bulldogs’ faces to make them healthier

Dog shows emphasize appearance, so dog breeders over the years tried to make dogs look more appealing by cross breeding, even to the point of neglecting a dog’s health.

Take a look at French bulldogs. They actually have breathing problems so now there are people attempting to re-engineer those faces.

Chantal van Kruining is passionate about French bulldogs.

The veterinary assistant’s vision is to “Breed for health. Not show” hoping to change the mindset of people so they’ll care more about their dog’s health.

French bulldogs suffer from BOAS.

Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS) means these dogs have difficulty breathing. A light walk will have them panting with their tongues sticking out.

A skull malformation developed because of selective breeding.

Nostril openings are too narrow. A long soft palate and fairly narrow tracheas also adds to breathing problems that can lead to death.


Chantal van Kruining hails from the Netherlands.

She loves French bulldogs, but she knows all about their problems and it breaks her heart.

Chantal’s website Hawbucks French bulldogs, says that the short muzzle is there for aesthetic reasons. It is difficult to tell if a dog will have the same issues but the risks are there.

If breeders made sure that the trachea and throat cavities were wide enough, the tongue not too long and thick, and the nostrils open, it would be a different story. But it wasn’t so.

Chantal went into the breeding world and realized the horrible truth. Breeders didn’t care much for a dog’s health, focusing only on the aesthetics.

She began to research on genetics, including the abnormalities that occur in the breed. Chantal knows she’s on the right path even though she’s got a long way to go.

Chantal wants to see athletic French bulldogs that can play and run without having breathing problems.

Chantal’s vision is on her site Hawbucks French Bulldogs: “We strive for a French bulldog that is built a little more athletic. A French bulldog how they were meant in the beginning of the development of the breed. A dog that can run and play for several hours without trouble. A Frenchie that does not make a sound when breathing, under any circumstance.”

Chantal is also very transparent, making sure to keep her dog health testing public.

Chantal is precise with her tests, with results available on the site. People have gotten used to these abnormalities in French bulldogs but she’s out to change that perception. She is willing to answer questions whenever possible.