They’ve been called the “clowns of the dog world,” they have a national day (15th October) and were specifically bred for one purpose; to be companion animals to humans. That’s because they’re loveable, have adorable faces, are loyal, and have an incredibly easy-going nature. We’re talking about pugs! Owning this squishy faced man’s best friend is awesome and quite unique. That’s because they’re one of the sweetest, funniest and most intelligent breeds you’ll ever come across! But even with these incredible features, you can’t just go and get a pug. There are loads of things that you should know before getting a pug.
If you’ve been thinking about bringing home a pug, it’s most likely that you want to know lots of things about this enchanting breed. While a pug’s health is one of the most important things to consider, it’s important to spend some time and get to know more about this adorable dog breed.
· Where Do Pugs Come From?
· What is the Size of a Full-Grown Pug?
· What is the Ideal Weight for Pugs?
· When Do Pugs Stop Growing?
· What is the Average Lifespan of a Pug?
· What Colors do Pugs Come In?
· Pug Temperament and Personality
· Are Pugs Easy to Train?
· Are Pugs Good with Kids and Family?
· Are Pugs Aggressive (Can they Bite)?
· Do Pugs Shed a Lot?
· Controlling Excessive Shedding
· Do Pugs Need a lot of Exercises?
· How Often Should You Bathe Your Pug?
· Do Pugs Have a lot of Health Problems?
· Do Pugs Bark a lot?
· Are Pugs Good for First-Time Owners?
· What Dog Foods are Appropriate for Pugs?
· How Many Times Should You Feed Your Pug in a Day?
· What Human Foods can Pugs Eat?
· How Many Puppies can Pugs Have?
To save your precious time and mitigate the stress of hopping from one place to another wanting to know more about the pug breed, we’ve gathered loads of things you should know before getting a pug.
Where Do Pugs Come From?
Pugs seem like a relatively recent and modern breed. In fact, you might think that they were created right for apartment living. However, pugs are quite an ancient breed and have been around since 400 B.C.
Also known as Chinese pug or the Dutch mastiff, pugs have always been associated with royalty. They were originally bred in China as the stationary pet of the Chinese Emperor. The pug was meant to sit on the lap of the Emperor who believed he could see different Chinese characters in the pug’s squishy facial wrinkles. From China, pugs were brought to Europe in the 16th century and were popularized in the West by the Dutch and the United Kingdom Royal families.
What is the Size of a Full-Grown Pug?
Early pug breeds in the 18th century going backward have been depicted in pictures has being long and lean. However, the modern pug preference should have a square body, compact structure, and wrinkled cute face (which makes them famous). They should also have a deep chest, well-developed muscles, and of course an attractive little ring of a tail.
Full-grown pugs generally grow to between 10 and 13 inches (25 cm and 36 cm) in height at the shoulder. These sizes also depend on the gender of your pug as male pugs are usually a little taller than female pugs.
What is the Ideal Weight for Pugs?
Although the pug is a small-sized dog breed, you’ve probably come across pugs that are bigger, fatter, smaller or taller than others.
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), the ideal weight for your pug should be somewhere between 14.3lb (6.5 kg) and 17.6lb (8.5 kg) for both male and female pugs. You should, therefore, consult with your vet if your pug is outside this range as he may be classed either as over-weight or under-weight.
When Do Pugs Stop Growing?
Like many small dog breeds, pugs usually attain full maturity status and stop growing earlier than bigger dog breeds. Usually, a pug will attain full maturity and stop growing after one year.
In terms of sexual maturity, many pooches will attain sexual maturity before they stop growing. A female pug typically attains reproductive capabilities after 6 to 9 months old. A male pug will, on the other hand, reach his reproductive capability after 6 months to 12 months. So if you’re looking to spay or neuter your pug before it becomes sexually mature, you can consider doing it before they attain the above-mentioned ages.
What is the Average Lifespan of a Pug?
As a dog owner, it’s crucial to know the life expectancy of your lovely pooch. This is important as it’ll help you plan the average years that your canine friend will be by your side as a companion.
Typically, the average lifespan of a pug is between 12 and 15 years. This certainly makes them one of the longest-living dog breeds. You can make your pug live longer by making him happier and healthier.
What Colors do Pugs Come In?
As a dog lover who is interested in the pug breed, you’re probably looking for the standard color of the pug or looking for something trendy, different or rare. A purebred pug is available two colors only: fawn and black! These are the standard colors recognized by the AKC, as well as other major kennel clubs.
This doesn’t however mean that there are no other colors. In short, the colors of a pug puppy are always determined by the DNA of both parents. For instance, a black to black breeding would most definitely produce black puppies. On the other hand, a fawn to black breeding would most likely produce both colors. Let’s briefly look at common the colors that pugs do come in.
Fawn – This is the most common color that pugs come in and definitely the most popular pug color. In other words, it’s the color that most people think of when talking about or looking for a pug. 65% of pugs are available in fawn color.
Black – This is the second most common pug color. Although it’s now recognized by AKC, it was considered undesirable in the past. It’s nevertheless one of the best pug colors you’ll ever come across. 22% of pugs are available in black color.
Brindle – Coming in many shades, brindle is a mixture of fawn and black. You can also have a silver brindle or apricot brindle. 4% of pugs are available in apricot while 1% pugs are available in brindle.
Silver – This is a unique pug color and one of the rarest. You may be confused to think that your puppy pug is black when it’s in fact silver. You should also not confuse this color with silver fawn. 3% of pugs are available in silver making it one of the most unique colors.
White – Not to be confused with albino or fawn, this is a very unique pug color. You should nonetheless keep in mind that white pugs can have tear staining issues. This can be easily corrected, by ensuring that his eyes are healthy at all times.
Pug Temperament and Personality
While each dog has his own personality, it’s fair to say that pugs are strong-willed almost borderline to stubbornness. Although many people may say that they’re stubborn, we think it’s fair to give the lovely pug a benefit of doubt. For this reason, we can fairly point out that they are intelligent enough to know what they actually want and this might be confused by being stubborn.
One thing that pugs aren’t known for is their aggressiveness. This is because it’s in their nature to try to please their masters at all times! That’s why they tend to have a larger-than-life attitude; loving and very playful.
Your pug’s expressive eyes, wrinkled forehead, and innocent expression will always melt your heart. In fact, they’re so at peace with everybody (including children) that they’ll only sound off a rather odd bark when visitors arrive. Just don’t be surprised when he welcomes the visitors to your home with, grunts, snorts, and snuffles. Well, that’s what pugs are: so peaceful, lovely and endearing! In short, pugs are friendly little dogs with outgoing and clownish personalities.
Are Pugs Easy to Train?
To be very honest, Pugs have a reputation for being harder to train than most dog breeds. This isn’t because they’re stubborn but because they’re easily distractible. They can also get bored quite fast especially when involved in repetitious tasks, which can make them go into a horrible rebellious streak.
This doesn’t, however, mean that it’ll be impossible to train your pug. You can actually do it but it requires hard work, consistency and lots of praise. You should teach your pug to become focused and also basic obedience commands that can allow you to control him. It’s also important to potty train him at an early age and train him to follow the “leave it” command. Generally, training pugs that are 6 months or older can be quite difficult so it’s crucial to start at an earlier age.
Are Pugs Good with Kids and Family?
Given their playful nature, pugs can be an ideal family dog. They’re friendly, love being cuddled and are generally patient. They’re known to rarely bite or nip, which makes them reasonably harmless to children or anyone else.
If you have children around, you’ll realize that pugs will become their best friends. This is basically because pugs have a happy-go-lucky attitude and will play well and peacefully with children whether indoors or outdoors. Similarly, pugs are known to be very loyal and constantly devoted to the entire family.
Their small stature makes them perfect for apartment living, so you shouldn’t be worried if your family lives in an apartment. But this doesn’t mean you can’t get a pug if you live in an expansive home. Just remember that they aren’t suited for adverse temperature and shouldn’t spend most of his time outdoors.
Are Pugs Aggressive (Can they Bite)?
Although pugs are generally friendly and loving even to strangers, they can become aggressive if they’re not properly socialized. They can also become aggressive when threatened or when they become fearful, unhappy or anxious. As you can see, aggression in pugs can only be manifested in specific circumstances. You should therefore avoid these circumstances by ensuring that your pug is well socialized from an early age.
This means that you should allow your pug to come in contact with other people, animals, and sounds at an early age so that he gets used to them. Additionally, you shouldn’t leave your pug alone for long periods as he’ll feel lonely, become unhappy and anxious, which may make him aggressive.
Do Pugs Shed a Lot?
The straightforward answer to this question is yes. Despite their cute faces and loveable nature, pugs are among the heavy shedding dog breeds. In other words, they’ll drop plentiful amounts of hair since they have coats with shorter life cycles.
When it comes to shedding, there’s actually not much you can do to stop it! As a pug owner, you can simply embrace it and stay in control so that it doesn’t become excessive. Your pug will leave dead hairs all around the house and you’ll need to pull them out.
It’s been noted that Fawn pugs tend to shed a lot more than black-colored pugs. The main reason for this is that fawn pugs have double coats while black pugs have single coats. As a result, fawn pugs tend to shed a lot more since the undercoat pushes out hairs on the upper coat in growth, thereby resulting in faster hair loss.
Controlling Excessive Shedding
To manage shedding, you can routinely brush your pug to remove loose and dead hairs. When carrying out this routine grooming, you should always use a tool that goes deep enough into the thick coat. For example, you can use the Thunderpaws De-Shedding Tool, which can work exceedingly well in safely pulling out your pug’s excessive hairs.
You can also consider giving your pug omega fatty acids supplements to make his coat and skin healthy. This can reduce poor coat quality, which can result in hair breakage and extra shedding.
Do Pugs Need a lot of Exercises?
Although pugs are susceptible to obesity and may enjoy lots of exercise, it’s very important that you do not over exercise your pug as they’re exercise intolerant. Pugs have a hard time breathing because of their compressed faces, short noses and compromised air passages. You should therefore not engage him in any kind of exercise that can increase the demand for oxygen.
In essence, you should keep the exercise fun and not strenuous. This is basically because the exercise can help strengthen his respiratory system, improve his digestion and sleep, and keep his muscles toned and joints flexible. The exercise should also help manage your pug’s weight, of course along with a healthy diet.
You can, therefore, consider walking your pug for about 20 to 25 minutes during morning or evening hours when the temperature is moderate. You can also involve them in free play and toys but with moderation.
How Often Should You Bathe Your Pug?
As our companions, we need to bathe our dogs every now and then. On the contrary, every breed has different bathing requirements depending on how active they are, their coat type, natural oil, conditions and many more.
Normally, you should bathe your pug every 2 to 4 weeks. You shouldn’t bathe your pug too often, say more than once every two weeks, as this can lead to skin problems. On the other hand, going more than a month without bathing your pug will leave him dirty and smelly. You should also apply common sense and exceptions. For example, you should obviously bathe your pug after a trip to a muddy beach.
It’s advisable that you use the correct shampoo, ensure that the water temperature is right and make it a positive experience to your pug. You should not forget to wipe his ears, clip his toenails, brush his teeth and wipe his eyes.
Do Pugs Have a lot of Health Problems?
Pugs are known to enjoy relatively good health. But like other dog breeds, they have some health issues that can hinder their well-being. The pug is a brachycephalic breed, meaning that it has a short and compressed face and nose. This can lead to breathing problems and that’s why pugs tend to snore a lot even when not sleeping.
Other common health problems in pugs include skin problems, breathing problems, eye problems, tail problems, and pug dog encephalitis; a chronic inflammation of the brain that’s inherited and can affect pugs aged between 9 months and 4 years.
Do Pugs Bark a lot?
While we want and depend on our dogs to bark to alert us of any potential danger, we wouldn’t want a dog that’s overly vocal. In other words, we wouldn’t want a dog that barks without any proper reason.
Luckily, pugs do not bark any more than other dogs. They’ll only bark when necessary and as a way of communicating with you. Your pug will bark to tell you to feed him or to inform you that he’s bored or to inform you of his feelings!
A pug also has a strong sense of territory and will bark out as a way of warning you or as a way of defending himself. In addition to barking when bored, your pug is also likely to bark when excited.
Are Pugs Good for First-Time Owners?
Given their sturdy and compact nature, pugs are categorized by AKC among toy group of dogs. This means that the pug is a small dog breed that’s perfectly suited for small spaces and apartment living.
Pugs are great dogs for first-time owners. Their squishy faces make them loveable but they’re also a low maintenance dog breed. Their wonderful personalities will make them a life of your party and you’ll never get bored.
What Dog Foods are Appropriate for Pugs?
Despite their loveable nature, pugs are notorious for needing special care in terms of their diet. They love eating and will eat just about any dog food but you should only give him highly nutritious dog food that’s appropriate for his energy without damaging his very sensitive digestive system.
It’s therefore important to take very seriously what you feed your pug. This is because anything he consumes can either positively or negatively affect his health now and in the future. When feeding your pug, it’s vital to keep in mind that the pug is a dog breed that is prone to weight gain and is sensitive to certain food additives.
That said, it’s recommended to feed your pug dry kibble as opposed to wet canned dog food. This is basically because dry kibble is much appropriate for his teeth than wet dog food that can also lead to runny stools. Some of the best dog foods for pugs include Wellness Complete for Small Breeds, Royal Canin for dry food, Orijen Adult dog food, AvoDerm Small Breed, and AvoDerm Natural Weight Control Dog Food.
How Many Times Should You Feed Your Pug in a Day?
When it comes to feeding your pooch, you can either choose free feeding or scheduled feeding. Free feeding refers to the method of leaving out food so that your dog can access it as he wishes. Differently, scheduled feeding is the type of feeding where you offer your pooch a given amount of food at certain times.
Given that pugs are prone to weight gain, the best method to feed your pug is through scheduled feeding. This can help you control how much he eats and can help him stay fit and healthy. With that in mind, you can feed your pug puppy aged between 8 weeks to 6 months three times a day in the morning, midday and in the evening. You can also consider incorporating healthy snacks in between meals.
After six months, you can feed your pug two meals a day. This switch should be done gradually until your pug gets used to two meals. To avoid canine bloat, you should ensure that your pug doesn’t eat too fast or too much.
What Human Foods can Pugs Eat?
Humans and dogs metabolize foods differently. Some foods can be safe for human consumption but can be toxic and possibly fatal for dogs. On the contrary, there are other human foods that are completely safe for dogs as occasional treats.
Some human foods that you can feed your pug include carrots, eggs, peanut butter, salmon, blueberries, popcorn, pineapple, watermelon, bread, oatmeal, green peas and many more. You should however avoid giving your pug foods such as onions, macadamia, avocado, and chocolate.
How Many Puppies can Pugs Have?
A pug will be pregnant for about 65 days and will give birth to a litter of about 4 to 6 puppies. This can nonetheless vary and somewhere between 1 and 9 is perfectly normal.
Final Thoughts – Should You Get a Pug
As one of the most unique dog breeds in the world, there’s arguably nothing more soothing in the world than having a pug as your canine companion. His squishy and wrinkled face will always put a smile on your face. He’s so loveable and affectionate that you’ll
always want him on your lap or next to you on the couch. For this reason, you should definitely get a pug but only if you have enough time to shower him with enough love and attention. They don’t need much exercise, are perfect for apartment living and can be one of the best breeds even if you’re a novice owner. Get a pug and have a party on a daily basis!