The motto of the pug is the Latin phrase multim in parvo (a bit) – an apt description of this small but muscular breed. They come in three colors: a black face mask, or all black with silver or apricot-fawn. Big round heads, big, gleaming eyes, and wrinkled brows give pugs a series of human-like expressions — surprise, joy, curiosity — that have delighted owners for centuries.
Pug owners say that their breed is the ideal house dog. In town or country, with children or old people, happy only as pets or in packs. They enjoy their meals, and care must be taken to keep them trim. They do best in moderate climates – not too hot, not too cold – but, with proper care, pugs can be their adorable anywhere.
The pug, often called the pug dog, is an ancient breed that can be discovered about 2,000 years ago. There was a preference for flat-faced toy dogs among the emperors of ancient China – Pekingis, Shih Tzu, and Pugs were all developed as sophisticated pets of the emperor, his family, and members of the royal court. Like many breeds preferred by the Far Eastern powerful people of the ancient world, the pug was a close treasure that outsiders could only receive as gifts.
Pug’s career as a citizen of the world began in the 1500s, when Dutch traders returned to Europe with specimens of the breed. Legend has it that the pug became the mascot of Holland’s royal home of Orange when a pug saved the prince’s life by barking at the prince to warn him of an attack by Spanish soldiers on his camp. When William and Mary of Orange arrived in England to take over the monarchy, their footsteps joined them and a craze began to breed among the British.
The worldwide fascination with pugs can be gauged by how many names the breed has in different eras and places: Lo-Sze (China), Mopsy (Finland), Doguillo (Spain) to name but a few. Among the Dutch, those still closely associated with the Pagans are known as Mofonds.
The theory abounds as to the origin of the name Pag. One suggests that the pug is based on the Latin word “”pugnace””, meaning “”fist”” – the idea that the dog’s face resembles a closed fist.
Thanks to its unique appearance and frequent presence in popular media, the pug is one of the most recognizable dog breeds in America. Even citizens with little interest in dogs are able to identify them correctly. As with all toy breeds, the pug is a very small dog. Although breed standards do not indicate an ideal height for the Pug, most dogs stand between 9 and 12 inches tall at the shoulder. The Pug is certainly heavier than most toy breeds, as a result of its stocky build.
Breed standards indicate that the ideal weight for the Pug is between 14 and 18 pounds, although these dogs usually weigh significantly more. A Pug is certainly small and portable, but is not a breed you would want to carry around in a purse. This breed is heavily built, and very thick and stocky. Although the pug’s legs are not particularly thick, this breed is described as having a small tank. The body of the pug is very square. The pug’s tail is short and curls tightly at the back. Some believe that the gender of the pug determines the direction in which the tail curls.
The head and face of the pug are the defining characteristics of the breed. The pug is the epitome of a brachycephalic breed, or a pushed-up face. The head sits on a very short neck which is so thick that it blends with the body. The head itself is covered with wrinkles and is very round, almost ball-shaped. The muzzle is very short, probably the shortest of any breed. The muzzle is also very square and wide, seemingly taking up almost the entire face. This muzzle is more wrinkled than the rest of the face. Almost all pugs have a slight under bite, although some have excessive. Pugs have very large eyes, often protruding far from the head. These eyes are very dark black in color, although they are quite bright. The Pug has an insistent and determined expression. Pug ears are quite small and thin. They are placed almost level with the top of the skull. There are two distinct ear varieties found in the Pug, the button ears which are semi-erect and the rose ears which are down and behind. Some pugs have their ears pointed forward, others at about a 90-degree angle to the top of the head, and some fall back.
The coat of the pug is fine, smooth, soft and shiny. It is relatively uniform in length across the body, but may be slightly shorter on the ears and face, and slightly longer on the tail. Most Pugs are fawn in color with black markings. These markings are well defined, and should be as black as possible. All pugs should have a completely black muzzle and mask over the eyes, which often form a mark. Additionally, the ears of this breed should always be black. It is also acceptable to back-trace (a line that runs from the occiput to the tail) along the pug’s cheeks and forehead with small black markings. This is a color and pattern for the breed that is universally accepted by all kennel clubs. Almost all kennel clubs around the world also accept solid black pugs, which make up a large minority of the pug population. Some kennel clubs such as the UKC also allow apricot and silver colored pugs with the black markings that are common for fawn dogs.
The gestation period in lasts for 60-64 days The primary period of the reproductive cycle of the female is called Proestrus and goes on for around 9 days. During this time the females begin to draw in males. The subsequent part is the Estrus when the bitch is receptive to the male. It goes on for around 3 to 11 days. The third part is the Diestrus. Usually, it happens around day 14. In this period the bitch’s discharge changes for distinctive red and reaching its end. The vulva gets back to average, and she will no longer allow mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time span between heat periods ordinarily keeps going around a half year. The litter size ranges between 6 to 8 puppies at a time’
The short, smooth, shiny coat of the pug requires minimal maintenance, but it sheds. Brushing weekly with a medium-bristle brush, a rubber grooming mitt, or a hound glove will help remove loose hair and help it look its best. Pugs do not need to bathe unless they are something particularly messy or start smelling of a dog. Pug nails should be cut regularly, as too long nails can cause discomfort.
Pug has been reared to be a companion and a joy to his bosses. He has an even and steady nature, great charm and an outgoing, loving nature. Pugs live to please their people, so it is usually easier to train them. Their feelings are easily hurt, and rigorous training methods should never be used. A pug wants to be with his family and will be sad if he is left alone for a long time on a regular basis. Early socialization and puppy training classes are recommended.
Looking at the opportunity, a pug happily spends most of the day on the couch – which, combined with the breed’s hobby for food, makes obesity a real possibility. But the pug is also playful, strong and lively, and owners can keep the breed fit with daily opportunities for moderate exercise, such as walking in the yard or playing sessions. It is important to remember that pugs as a small breed are not tolerant of hot weather, and they should not exercise vigorously when they are hot or humid — it is better to stay in air-conditioning. Some dog sports in which pugs participate and excel include agility, obedience and rally.
The pug should perform well on high quality dog food, whether it is commercially manufactured or prepared at home with the supervision and approval of your vet. Any diet should be appropriate for the age of the dog (puppy, adult, or senior). Pugs live to eat and are obese, so watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight levels. , So watch your dog’s calorie consumption and weight level. Treatment training can be an important aid, but giving too much can lead to obesity. Know which human foods are safe for dogs and which are not. Contact your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet. Clean, fresh water must be available at all times.
Pug’s deep, charming eyes are one of his main attractions, but also one of his weak spots. It has been known to have eye problems including corneal ulcers and dry eye. Like all flat-faced breeds, pugs sometimes experience breathing problems and perform poorly in sunny, hot, or humid climates. The breed’s parent club’s website, the Pug Dog Club of America, provides detailed information about the breed’s health.
Recommended health tests from the National Breed Club: