The pug is one of the oldest breeds of dog and is said to have origins tracing back to 400 B.C. Some researchers believe that pugs originated from Asia and are descendants of the short-haired Pekinese. Others theorize that pugs are the result of a cross between a small bulldog and a small form of French mastiff. The AKC recognized the pug breed in 1885.
Pugs have a small, stocky build, a large head, and a short, blunt muzzle. They have an undershot bite and huge prominent eyes. Their ears are small and thin, and are button or rose-shaped. Their faces have deep wrinkles. The pug’s tail is set high and curled at the back but double curls are preferred in show. Its coat is short, fine, soft, and smooth. Colors include black, silver, fawn, and apricot. A pug’s average height is between 10-14 inches, and weighs between 13-20 pounds. They can live an average of 10- 15 years.
Pugs are spirited and affectionate with an endearing and loyal streak. They make wonderful family pets for children and grownups alike. They are very intelligent and can get easily bored if not given the proper mental stimulation either through training and toys. They can easily pick up the tone of your voice, such as when you are praising them or reprimanding them. Pugs look up to owners who are confident, consistent, calm, and firm. Generally, they are not excitable dogs but they make excellent watchdogs. They can get along with other people and pets. Pugs that have weak human leaders are prone to jealousy and can develop guarding or possessive behaviors. Be sure not to allow your pug to take over by being a confident pack leader.
Pugs are susceptible to extreme weather conditions. They can quickly catch a cold or feel hot. They often get skin allergies and are liable to develop chronic breathing problems because of their short muzzle. More often than not, they also snore and wheeze. They may also develop Pug Dog Encephalitis (PDE), an inflammation of the brain that usually occurs during adolescence. The cause of this is still unknown. It is not easy to whelp pugs and they usually give birth via C-section because of the size of the puppies’ heads. They are also susceptible to keratitis, the inflammation of the cornea. Their eyes tend to tear up quickly and they easily gain weight. Be careful not to overfeed your pug.
The pug’s grooming requirements are fairly manageable because of their short coat. Routing brushing and bathing is enough. Dry them thoroughly after the bath so they don’t get cold. Make sure the creases on their face are also clean and dry because this area can emit odors and harbor bacteria.