Our Guide: French Bulldog Colors and Color Patterns
May 20, 2023
French Bulldog Colors
What colors do French bulldogs come in?
One of the many reasons we are fond of Frenchies is the variety of colors and color patterns they come in. This is one of their unique characteristics as there are many colors to choose from. We don’t have a favorite color and we find there are some people who gravitate toward certain color patterns while others enjoy every color of the Frenchies. If you have a preference in color, we will be able to accommodate your preferences.
Acceptable AKC Colors for Frenchies
Now to give more background on AKC colors that are acceptable. For colors that are ‘unacceptable’ to AKC standards this means that the color isn’t recognized and a color that isn’t recognized under AKC standards, you wouldn’t be able to show. All of our Frenchies are AKC registered but AKC won’t allow certain color ways in the show ring. What they say is that “all terms regarding color and colorations should be taken subjectively, as there is a great deal of difference of opinion within the Frenchie community as to which term defines which color”.
The AKC Color Standard
The AKC color standard is: “Acceptable colors – all brindle, fawn, white, brindle and white, and any color except those which constitute disqualification. All colors are acceptable with the exception of solid black, mouse, or liver; black and tan; black and white; and white with black, which are disqualifications (for dog shows). Black means black without a trace of brindle.”
Hierarchy of Colors for Frenchies
To give you a better understanding of color, you should understand the hierarchy of color and how some genes are expressed differently. To have a baseline knowledge of recessive and dominant genes, you can then factor in why some Frenchies are more expensive than others, as this is a huge determining factor when pricing a Frenchie. For instance, a traditional fawn will be less expensive than a solid blue. To further understand, a blue or chocolate gene is recessive, making these two particular colors more rare and harder to come by, therefore making them more expensive, whereas a fawn frenchie is much more common, yet still beautiful but less expensive than the rare recessive colors. Pure black is also a recessive gene (a/a). Another rare color pattern is a black frenchie with tan points, we call these ‘black and tans’ which are beautiful frenchies.
Colors of Frenchies
Frenchies come in many different colors and for those of you who are familiar with the colors they can come in fawns (light brown french bulldog that vary on a spectrum with or without a black mask), black french bulldog, shades of chocolate, blue french bulldog shades, gray shades, cream, lilac, merle french bulldog, pied french bulldog and variations of these colors and patterns. We tend to have all the colors throughout the year. To gain a better understand of solid and what that means. When a French bulldog is solid it means that most or all of their coat is one color, now they can still be solid with a splash of white on their chest, neck, head, nose, etc. These traits are actually very common and make your Frenchie unique to the others that may be in the same color family.
Now that you have a good understanding and baseline knowledge of the color patterns that French bulldogs come in, use this guide to help you see different colors and choose the right French bulldog for you. We personally don’t have a favorite and find each color unique in its own way.
Fawn French Bulldog
Fawn frenchies are considered a traditional color unless they are blue fawn frenchies. Fawns can range from anywhere to light brown, dark brown, golden, red, silver and anywhere in between these colors. One characteristic of the fawn that is unique is how each fawn color varies and there are rarely two fawns that look exactly the same shade. Fawns almost always have the black mask unless they are a mask less fawn. Fawns do not have any brindling on their coats. The brindle gene is dominant over the fawn color. Brindle gene (kbr) is dominant over the fawn (ky). A puppy must inherit a ky gene from both parents in order to come out fawn. One copy of the kbr gene can produce a brindle puppy. Below you will find pictures of the different patterns of fawn frenchies.
Silver Fawn Frenchie
Here is a rare color fawn we had, a silver fawn. As you can see with the fawn, sometimes you get splashes and touches of white in various spots, here this puppy has a white stripe up her nose inherited from dad.
Blue Fawn Frenchie
This is an example of a blue fawn frenchie, both parents of her carried the blue recessive gene, making her have a more grayish blue to her fawn coat.
Light fawn french bulldog
To show you the contrast of the fawn variations, here is an example of a light fawn/light brown french bulldog. The color of a light fawn can vary but they are typically light brown with a black mask.
Red Fawn French Bulldog
A red fawn frenchie is a rare color fawn variation of the frenchie.
Fawn Pied French Bulldog
Fawn pieds can range from any of the colors above but with pied patchy markings. Here are a few examples of a fawn pied and a red fawn pied.
Brindle French Bulldog
The brindle French bulldog has a darker coat that can have varying patterns throughout. There are several types of brindle frenchies. One would be the common tiger brindling which is heavy brindling patterns throughout. Another type is the seal brindle which is almost solid. A seal brindle you can determine if they are a solid after 6 weeks since there coat starts coming in more. Its harder to determine a seal brindle until they are a bit older. A more rare brindle are the blue brindles as this is the recessive gene where both parents carry the blue gene. The brindle (kbr) gene is dominant over the (ky) gene.
Blue Brindle French Bulldog
A less common French bulldog color is the recessive blue brindle Frenchie. The diluted blue causes their coat to be more of a grayish blue brindle and a very pretty color. Eyes are typically hazel or blue. They almost always have lighter eyes when they are a blue brindle.
Blue Brindle Pied French Bulldog
Here are a few examples of a blue brindle pied.
Cream French Bulldog
The cream frenchie is a light white shade that almost has a yellowish or orangish tint throughout. The DNA make up of a cream is e/e, any frenchie that is an e/e will be a cream. Below is our cream french bulldog male, Oscar.
Sable French Bulldog
Sable frenchies are a more rare version of the fawn. They have the fawn coat but with black tipping on the fawn hairs, giving them a washed tipped black look with a fawn base. It is a very nice coloring shade. Below is one of our previous puppies.
Rare French Bulldog Colors
Now we will move onto the colors that are not recognized by the AKC, yet but are very rare and beautiful, desirable french bulldog colors.
Pure Black French Bulldog
A pure black Frenchie isn’t recognized under AKC standards and will be disqualified from any competitions. Pure black is when both parents carry the black gene, A locus, which is why pure black is extremely rare. Pure blacks are more expensive because of their rarity. They can also come in black pied.
Pure Blue French Bulldog
The pure blue is a desirable color that like the pure black is extremely rare and more expensive.
Black and Tan French Bulldogs
Black and Tan Frenchies are extremely rare and also disqualified from AKC standards.
Blue and Tan French Bulldogs
Blue and tans are similar to the black and tans but with the blue diluted gene. They are very beautiful and rare color pattern. Although not AKC recognized blue and tan, black and tan and chocolate and tan are sought after, rare colors that are very desirable and expensive.
Merle French Bulldog
Merle french bulldogs are becoming popular color choice. They come in a variety of shades such as blue merle french bulldog, black merle french bulldog, lilac merle french bulldog, pied merle french bulldog and many other varieties of color combinations making them even more unique. To read more about Merle frenchies, check out our post here.
Ticked French Bulldog
You will also see this a color pattern in a Frenchie, a ticked color pattern is considered a color under AKC standards but will get points marked off in a show. The ticked pattern is the spotted marking on the Frenchie below.