Many of the primary health problems of French bulldogs are due to their shortened faces. They are intolerant of heat and exercise and also suffer from issues with cherry-eye and spinal disease.
Brachycephalic syndrome is one of the breathing conditions associated with the dog's shortened face. It prevents the free flow of air through the respiratory system. Many of these dogs require surgery to correct conditions such as an elongated palate, which can be expensive for their owners.
In areas where temperatures are high during certain times of the year, owners must provide an air-conditioned area where the French bulldog spends most of its time. According to VetStreet, French Bulldogs die in extremely warm weather. The website reports one instance of French bulldog dying when the air conditioning stopped working due to a power failure during an electrical storm.
Cherry-eye is a condition due to an inflamed tear duct. The muscles that normally hold the tear duct in place sometimes become weak, causing the red duct to cover part of the eye. Surgical options for this condition include removal of the tear duct, which sometimes causes problems later in life, or replacing the tear duct by creating a new opening in the muscle.
The most expensive health problem of French Bulldogs is that of spinal health. The discs in the dog's spine degenerate prematurely. Surgery for this condition costs between $3,000 and $6,000 per episode, according to VetStreet.