8 Reasons French Bulldogs Get Skin Bumps

by Stuart | Last Updated:   May 31, 2021

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Does your French Bulldog have a bump on or under its skin? While skin bumps are more common in older dogs, younger Frenchies can get them too.

The skin of a French Bulldog is sensitive and can be easily irritated. Frenchies are susceptible to many skin problems and allergies. Some of these skin conditions can result in the formation of bumps on their skin. Some bumps can be treated with home remedies, while others will require the attention of a vet.

In this post, we will discuss why your French Bulldog has skin bumps, what the skin issues are that affect the French Bulldog and how you can possibly minimize any issues.

Sick french bulldog dealing laying on couch with thermometre in mouth dealing with skin bumps

Why Does My French Bulldog Have Skin Bumps?

Your French Bulldog can develop skin bumps for many reasons. Most skin bumps are benign or harmless. However, it is possible that your pup can also develop permanent, abnormal growths of skin cells or tumors.

Here are some of the more common skin bumps in French Bulldogs:

1. Fatty Tumors 

These mostly happen in older and overweight Frenchies, especially around the ribs, although they can show up anywhere. They’re considered a natural part of aging in French Bulldogs and are not dangerous or harmful to their health (except inasmuch as they restrict movement if they’re located on/near joints). 

2. Sebaceous Cysts 

A Sebaceous Cyst is a benign, but messy, bump on your French Bulldog. It is a blocked oil gland that looks just like a large pimple and is filled with pus. When a sebaceous cyst bursts, a white cheese-like discharge comes out. If the “cyst capsule” is not removed or completely drained, it may fill back up after bursting. 

3. Warts 

Warts are caused by a virus and can be found around the mouths of young French Bulldogs. Usually they will go away by themselves. However, older Frenchies might need surgery to remove them, especially if they are causing your dog discomfort or difficulty eating.

4. Fleas

You might see skin bumps on your French Bulldog due to fleas/flea bites. Dogs who suffer from fleas show symptoms like scratching, licking, or chewing. Itching will start on the skin around your French Bulldog’s tail and neck.

Fleas can be treated with oral and topical medicines or anti-flea collars. In this case, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and it is best to treat your dog regularly to prevent fleas, rather then trying to treat the fleas once you have them!

5. Hives

Hives may appear as itchy red bumps on your Frenchie’s skin. The underlying cause of hives is a reaction to an allergen; such as a bee sting or contact with a plant. Skin bumps due to hives often resolve on their own if the case is mild. If they do not resolve, you should take your dog to the vet in case they are signalling a more severe allergic reaction that requires a prescription.

6. Skin Tags

Skin Tags are benign growths common in older French Bulldogs. Skin tags are something that humans often also get as they age, and these look similar. On your dog, they will look like distinctive bumps, usually appearing as stalk-like growths. Frenchies with one skin tag often develop more as they age.

7. Abscess 

An abscess is a buildup of pus under the skin of French Bulldogs. It can be caused by an infection or a bite from an insect or other creature. Your Frenchie should be much more comfortable once the painful pressure from pus is released by the abscess being properly drained by your vet.

8. Mast Cell Tumor 

A Mast Cell Tumor is a sign of the most common skin cancer in French Bulldogs. They vary widely in size but usually appear as raised, hairless bumps. Mast Cell Tumors in French Bulldogs can be highly aggressive and spread rapidly.

Take your dog to the vet as soon as you spot something that signifies this skin cancer as they need to remove them promptly through surgery before the tumor spreads to other areas.

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Is It Normal For French Bulldogs To Have Pimples? 

Yes, it’s normal for Frenchies to have pimples. Frenchies can get acne and pimples for many reasons. The triggers can be found in the environment, food, lack of hygiene, bacteria, infection, allergies, and using inappropriate cosmetics (such as dying your dog for the holidays). 

Hormonal changes can also be one of the potential factors for skin bumps and pimples on your dog. Just like in humans, French Bulldogs can have pimples due to a hormonal imbalance. In adolescence, your Frenchie will have a higher tendency to develop pimples and acne. 

How Can I Spot Abnormal Skin Bumps In Dogs?

First, how obvious the appearance of any new growth on your dog’s skin is will be pretty dependent on your dog and his coat/coloring. 

A convenient time to check your dog’s body is during grooming.

  • If your dog starts licking or scratching at a new lesion, make sure you closely check what is causing this.  
  • If you have a short-coated dog, a good look all over (remember ears, lips, gums, arm pits, groin and toes) is going to be pretty easy and should be part of your normal routine. 
  • But if you have a shaggy dog with long or thick hair, a thorough dermatological exam is going to be much harder. In those cases, examining the skin as the hair parts while you are brushing it will help you to see down to the skin itself. You can also feel for bumps. 
  • Going slowly and meticulously over your dog with a light touch of your fingertips can reveal surprisingly small growths.

The more familiar you are with their body, the quicker you’ll know if something isn’t quite right.

french bulldog standing with heading leaning to side looking at camera with grey backdrop

Final Thoughts 

Frenchies are undoubtedly one of the most adorable dogs to ever walk this earth. They are one of the most popular breeds in the United States and are well renowned for their iconic bat ears and easy going nature. 

French Bulldogs can develop many skin conditions and allergies in their lifetime. To minimize the risk, try to feed your Frenchie high-quality food right from the beginning and keep their skin clean and dry.

Watch out for skin bumps and examine immediately to see if something is wrong with your French bulldog! It is important to learn what skin bumps may mean and when your Frenchie’s skin bumps should be cared for by a veterinarian. To avoid unpleasant vet bills if something does arise, it is always a great idea to proactively take out pet insurance (click for a free quote) for your doggie.

Stuart loves blogging about his hobbies and passions. Sir Doggie is a place for him to share what he learns while being a pet parent. Click here to read more.