French Bulldog Limping On It’s Back Leg

French Bulldog Limping On It’s Back Leg? 11 Possible Causes

Last Updated: August 21, 2023

In this article you will know the answer to the query “French Bulldog Limping On Its Back Leg? 11 Possible Causes“.

I tried to answer the question “why do French Bulldogs sit funny” in my previous post but one of the concerns was that French Bulldogs limp on their back legs which is the topic of todays post.

The Frenchies are such cute little dogs and they never sit still even when they are tired. In addition to playing rough with them their human parents always follow them around. Puppy puppies are so enthusiastic that they easily exhaust themselves and end up limping the next day. Our goal is to keep up with teenage athletes in a similar manner. Even though you’re no longer a teenager do you ever refuse to admit your age?

French Bulldog Limping On It’s Back Leg

French Bulldogs can also limp on their back legs because of more severe conditions. From the mundane to the severe we’ll examine the causes of a French Bulldog limping in their back legs.


Some Frenchies can be a bit rough when they play. Even so these lovable pups are not always as agile as their more athletic counterparts. Because of this sometimes they overdo the roughhousing a bit. This is when they suffer a sprain or some soft tissue damage. Its possible that overdoing the jumping and running will result in them pulling a tendon or ligament. You may notice that Chester becomes clumsy quite suddenly in this case.

This type of injury usually heals within a few days. Your pup just needs some rest some tender loving care and perhaps some painkillers. The same is true for us humans when we forget that we are no longer as athletic as our teenage counterparts.

You should let your puppy rest for a day or two if you notice he is limping suddenly after being rough the day before. You may need to change your plans to help him relax and not run around so much during that time. You should give your pup ample time to recover so he can recover fully and prevent further injury. As we all know compounded injuries are usually more serious and can result in serious harm.

Cuts Bruises & Broken Toenails

Occasionally dogs end up running in dodgy areas because they love to run. That part of the park has thorns or sharp twigs. Or perhaps they were unlucky and found that one piece of glass on the sidewalk. Their tiny paws could suffer cuts and bruises from all of this leaving them limp. The injuries could be quite painful.

Toenails that are broken are also related to this problem. Your Chesters toenails could sometimes split pretty badly tearing into the skin or poking into his other toes. It is even possible for toenails to break and split into nerve endings which is incredibly painful. They are all at least uncomfortable or somewhat painful.

Since some of these critters pack quite a punch they may also cause limps from bites on your pups feet. If your pup is affected by this you will probably see swelling and see your pup licking and biting the affected area.

When you see your pup limping check his trotters for scabs bruises or bleeding. Make sure there are no splinters thorns or other foreign objects between the cushions. Usually these are easy to treat and recovery is fairly quick but be sure to consult your veterinarian first. They are experts and can help you identify any underlying problems.

Behavioral Changes

In the event of a serious problem you might notice that your beloved Frenchie is suddenly lethargic instead of his boisterous self. You might also notice a decrease in appetite or rejection of his favorite foods. By themselves these signs are reasons to call the vet. You should definitely get him checked out as soon as possible if this is accompanied by visible swelling or limping. Such symptoms generally indicate more serious conditions. This will be discussed in the following sections.

Fractures & Dislocations

Both you and your pup can be very scared when it comes to fractures and dislocations. However Frenchies are genetically predisposed to dislocations despite being very active dogs. Its a bummer because we all know its nearly impossible to keep your Frenchie still for long periods of time. Take Milo to the veterinarian if you see him limping and licking his back leg since hes probably in pain.

Hip Dysplasia

The hip dysplasia that occurs in French Bulldogs is incredibly common. This condition is usually treated by surgery. If this happens you will need to replace your whole hip which is unpleasant for both of you. Another condition affecting your pups paws and front legs is elbow dysplasia. Both conditions require surgical procedures that can take months to recover from. Following surgery many dogs live a healthy active life. It is unfortunate that some dogs do not recover fully and remain affected by the condition for the rest of their lives.

Dislocated Kneecap

Another common injury in Frenchies is dislocated kneecaps. When are these guys going to get a break? This condition affects your pups hind legs and is also known as luxating patella. Its really painful to tread on that back leg so you’ll see your pooch limping or skipping. You should take Milo to the vet as soon as possible since he will need medical intervention. Most of them will recover completely.

Inflammatory Disease

It is also known as panosteitis and is caused by inflammation in the long bones of your pups hind legs. You’ll see that your dog shifts his weight from side to side limping on either side. The vet will be able to treat it but its quite painful.

Bone Cancer

Frenchies have a lower risk for bone cancer than their large-breed counterparts which is good news for us. The vet can diagnose bone cancer in your Chester by taking a blood test.


Just like their human parents our pups develop all kinds of aches and pains as they age. It is common for older dogs to have arthritis and Frenchies are no different. Despite its inability to cure arthritis can still be managed. When your pup develops arthritis you can help him cope with lifestyle changes pain medication and anti-inflammatory medications. You can also show your pup plenty of love and affection.

Lyme Disease

Dogs are also affected not just humans. Dogs can contract Lyme disease months after they have contracted it and symptoms do not appear right away. As a result your dog will not begin to limp for quite some time. Fortunately Lyme disease can be treated with antibiotics. Consult your veterinarian.

Valley Fever

Dogs of all ages and sizes can get valley fever which is specific to the US. Your pup will limp as a result of valley fever.

Neurological Disorders

French Bulldogs are susceptible to spinal injuries because of their genetic makeup. There are several factors that can cause your pup to limp or even develop lameness in their back legs. Usually the condition cannot be cured. Depending on the extent of the problem your veterinarian could suggest medical interventions. The treatment is likely to take a lot of time and surgery so prepare yourself for a long journey and the possibility that your pup might not fully recover.

Degenerative Myelopathy

Degenerative myelopathy a spinal nerve disease leaves the back legs lame over time. During this condition your pup loses control over its bowels and its hind legs. As they weakened you could even see the muscles in their hind legs waste away. Frenchies are prone to this problem especially the dogs bred to have extremely short tails. 

Despite the fact that there isnot a cure for this condition it can be managed. Your ailing dog will find it easier to get on and off the couch or up the stairs if you make a few lifestyle changes. You should also groom Milo on a regular basis and provide him with a comfortable bed. He might develop bedsores if he lies in bed too long so grooming serves a dual purpose: It forces him out of bed. Additionally it gives you a chance to check for sores. Additionally you’ll get to bond with your pup – Frenchies are social creatures who love to be touched and cuddled. 

The use of kinesiology tape can be used to treat degenerative myelopathy as this can restore some feeling and blood circulation to affected areas. When your pup is in poor condition a wheelchair might be able to help him get around more easily.


It is common for Frenchies to overdo the roughhousing due to their cuteness and busy schedule. A Frenchie may limp the next day from the rough play but this usually clears up within a few days. Frenchies are genetically predisposed to severe medical conditions that can cause them to limp and have lameness in their back legs. You should contact the vet if you see your pup limping and it does not improve within a couple of days. It may indicate a severe condition such as hip dysplasia arthritis or a neurological disorder.

Share on:
Amanda Dogs Trainer

Amanda (Author)

With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

Osvaldo Maciel Dogs Trainer

Osvaldo Maciel (Content Reviewer)

Osvaldo Maciel, a stalwart in the field with 14 years of experience, is a revered dog trainer. His journey is defined by a profound understanding of canine behavior, shaping unbreakable human-canine bonds. Osvaldo guides owners to connect with their beloved pets, leaving an indelible mark of happiness and transformation. His legacy shines through the countless lives he has touched.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *