New Yorkers are saying “oui!” to the French bulldog.
The adorable, squishy little dog was the No. 1 most popular breed in the city for the third year in a row, according to the The American Kennel Club.
“He’s my little rugrat,” said Victoria Silva, a 24-year-old Chelsea resident, about her 2-year-old Frenchie, Chuck Bass. “He’s just so affectionate and playful, he makes me laugh. They really are the perfect apartment dog.”
The top 10 breeds for 2016, calculated by counting thousands of AKC-registered pups throughout the city, include lovable dogs like Labrador retrievers (No. 2) and poodles (No. 5). The humble bulldog, which was the top dog in 2013, came in at No. 3 for 2016.
But certain neighborhoods gravitated toward certain breeds, according to the club. The Frenchie dominated in popularity in Chelsea, Park Slope, the Financial District, Washington Heights and Murray Hill. The cavalier King Charles spaniel was the most popular pup on the Upper East Side, while the Labrador retriever was big on the Upper West Side.
“People with certain personalities gravitate to certain parts of the city. And people with certain personality traits gravitate toward certain breeds,” said Gina DiNardo, a spokeswoman for the AKC. “And it’s great that New Yorkers are interested in choosing the dog for them. It’s really important to make the match so that you have a great experience.”
Sandy Li, 28, got her 1-year-old Frenchie, Kiwi, as a puppy.
“I’m obsessed with the breed,” said Li, who lives in Chelsea. “I think they’re very human-dependent dogs, which makes them good human companions.”
Mark George-Cohen got his Frenchie, Tova, when she was a puppy eight years ago, flying all the way to Colorado to find her. The Chelsea resident said he’s seen the dog become more and more popular over the years.
“I saw it morph. One day I woke up and suddenly Frenchies took over the entire neighborhood,” he said. “They’re just so adorably cute, they’re so much fun.”
Fellow French bulldog parent and Chelsea resident Tory Haavik, 31, said his 3-year-old pup, Kona, is the perfect companion.
“They’re quirky and they have really big personalities,” Haavik said. “I’ll take a picture of him pouting or moping or waiting for his food … I think they just have a lot of emotions that look like human emotions.”
Frenchies, while very popular, do come with some heath risks: their shorter faces make breathing a little more difficult than other breeds, so they tend to have less tolerance to heat and long bouts of exercise, according to the AKC.
“He’s a New Yorker,” Silva said about her Frenchie and his sometimes picky needs. “It’s pretty typical.”