Our loveable dog breed with a great sense of humour and a desire to show off and thrives on companionship.
The Pug is an ancient breed of dog is traced back 2000 years! It is generally accepted that they originated in China and were owned by those within Court circles or from the ruling classes of the country. They were most likely bred as lap dogs for the Chinese monarchs and companions of Chinese emperors, unlike most other toy breeds that are full of energy.
There’s a recognised saying when it comes to Pugs, a motto that reads “Multi in Parvo”. This translates as “a lot in a little”, meaning there’s a lot of dog in a small frame!
This stubborn but affectionate dog breed has a life expectancy of 14-15 year old, that’s a lot of time to give a lot of love to our playful furry friends.
What does a Pug look like?
Pugs are recognisable for their square body combined with a very rounded head with a flat, wrinkled face. They are a Brachycephalic dog breed, (which is the technical term for a flat-faced dog). Their muzzles are short and full of wrinkles. Their eyes large and their small, delicate ears fall forward. Scan to the other end of their body and you’ll find a curly and short tail. They have short legs with both male and females standing between 25 and 33cm tall. Their small stature makes them likely to gain weight quickly, (their ideal weight for both male and females sits between 6-8kg).
This small dog breed has a short and smooth coat that comes in two colours – black and fawn. They can cross over and have a mixture of both colours but you won’t find any other colours for this breed!
They are incredibly high shedders due to their dense coat. Regular brushing to ensure dead skin and hairs are not trapped can help to reduce shedding but be prepared for the vacuum cleaner to make a popular appearance in your house! Grooming needs for Pugs are moderate with only one bath every month or so needed. Their nails do need trimming regularly as Pugs don’t spend too much time outdoors for them to wear down themselves naturally.
The wrinkles on this breed’s face need to be kept in check to avoid infections forming. A daily wipe of the muzzle should be all they need. Ensure that their faces are completely dry after washing too so to avoid any moisture getting trapped in between. Pugs are also high susceptible to gum disease so it’s important to regularly brush their teeth.
Personality traits of a Pug
Pugs are well-known for their stubbornness and dry sense of humour but they are loved for their laid-back approach and eagerness to please. They aren’t overly lively like other toy breeds of dog but they are overly affectionate and love to be in the company of others. They get along well with other dogs and children and are not barkers. It is very rare if they do bark, dig or chew at anything in the house but it is not rare to find them snoring exceptionally loudly! The structure of their face makes it hard for them to avoid their snoring habit.
A pug doesn’t need too much exercise and will often make sure you know they don’t want it too. Their overall health needs can be affected by this, (see next paragraph). Their minimal exercise needs and high attention needs make them the ultimate house or apartment dogs.
What common health concerns do Pugs have?
Due to the nature of this dog breed’s structure, they are unfortunately susceptible to many issues.
Obesity. The build of this dog breed and the amount of muscle packed into a small space, makes it easy for Pugs to gain weight. Dinner time snacks and little exercise can only make this worse. Allow your dog a diet that is without the suitable calories in order to maintain their weight. Excess weight on dogs can often cause joint related problems later on such as arthritis, (another disease that Pugs are extremely susceptible to).
Other bone and joint problems such as hip dysplasia, hemi-vertabrae (misshapen back bone) and patella luxation are common in Pugs due to their small legs supporting a sturdy body as they grow. Avoid activities like jumping from high to low or vice versa to avoid causing a more serious injury.
Eye injuries. The eyes of a Pug are so prominent that they are open game to accidental injury! Something as simple as walking into an obstacle such as furniture may cause chronic irritation and pain. You may notice symptoms such as discoloured eye discharge, weeping eyes or discoloured spots on the eye.
Respiratory issues such as Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome, (BAOS). Pugs with a reduced skull length and excess soft tissue in their airways may experience an obstruction in their airflow, making it hard to breathe generally but especially when exercising. Surgeries such as nose resections to enlarge their nostrils are common in the first year of their lives. The impact of these kinds of conditions can be reduced by keeping your dog cool in hot weather, avoiding excessive exercise and keeping your dog at a healthy weight.
Skin diseases and allergies come hand in hand with this dog breed. The wrinkles on a Pug’s muzzle can trap dirt and moisture, making it a playground for unwanted bacteria to develop. This often results in yeast infections and other skin diseases such as Pyoderma. Ensure this area stays dry and clean to avoid the build-up of unwanted bacteria. Symptoms of allergies (atopy) in dogs are itching, scratching, sneezing, rashes, hot spots and more.
Pugs don’t do well in heat. Their facial structure and short muzzles make it difficult for them to breathe or to cool themselves down in hot weather. Heat stress and heat stroke in dogs is extremely dangerous for Pugs.
If you’re looking for a loving, playful breed of dog that has a goal to spend time with you, Pugs are the one for you!