If you were thinking about getting a pug because they have short coats to avoid constant shedding, you would be very surprised by the result. In reality, you will still be cleaning up after your pug, maybe as much as you would for a dog with a longer coat.
Their cute little faces are understandably irresistible, so the shedding should just be a bump in the road on a long and happy companionship. But just how much do pugs shed? That’s what we will be tackling today.
Pug Shedding Happens Often
Let’s get the big question out of the way. Yes, pugs shed, and they do it all year long. They aren’t seasonal shedders like some other breeds, but they do have profuse shedding twice a year. Short coats aren’t a sure indicator of how much a pet sheds. However, it can be easier to manage since the hairs are short and the color will blend into most carpet and hardwood floors.
Pug shedding can’t be determined because the amount will vary from dog to dog. We’ll cover what affects pug shedding but one thing to remember before you welcome a pug home is that pugs shed just like any other dog.
A Pug’s Coat
One of the most obvious indicators of how heavily a pug will shed is the coat type. Pugs can have both single or double coats, with the latter ones more prone to make their mark in your house. Even the color of your pug’s coat can influence the shedding!
The most common pug colors are black, silver, fawn, and a shade of apricot or beige. If you are a fan of the lighter shades, then get ready for more shedding. Silver, apricot, fawn, and beige pugs are usually the ones with a double coat. The darker pugs with black fur will most likely have a single coat. There are many breeders out there trying to come up with various coats by mixing dog breeds and pugs with varying shades, but only black and fawn are officially recognized.
It’s harder to find a black pug, but have seen our fair share of black pugs roaming about. If you can opt for a darker fur baby as they will shed less. They are also the recommended type of pug for people with more severe allergies.
Why Do Pugs Shed and When?
When can we expect a blowout? Pug shedding will happen all year round, but as we mentioned, there are two times annually that you will especially notice the pug hair billowing about. The big blowout will usually happen in the summer and winter. Pugs will lose their winter coat in the warmer summer months and shed their single or double-layer coat during the summer in preparation for the cold. This type of seasonal shedding is very common in dogs, so don’t be upset because pugs shed so much.
We now understand why they shed profusely two times a year, but why do they need to shed year-round? Just like us, pugs shed in order to rid themselves of dead and loose hairs. Shedding will keep them clean, give them new coats, and accommodate the fluctuating weather.
Another reason why pugs shed could be due to external factors. For example, pugs cannot tolerate the heat very well and since many of them have folds, they can develop itchy skin problems. Your pug may also be extra allergic. A good way to determine if a pug is shedding normally is to visit the vet.
Pugs that are extra stressed could also lose some of their hair. The stress could stem from anxiety, and a common form is separation anxiety we often see in these dogs. Pugs are naturally more affectionate and clingy and are more likely to become Velcro dogs. Pugs may not handle your absence as well as some more independent dog breeds.
What they come in contact with and what they eat can also trigger shedding. Check if your pug has recently switched foods or shampoos because these two items can often activate shedding and hair loss. Identifying external influencers before visiting the vet can help the professional make a more accurate diagnosis.
Controlling Pug Shedding
There must be something we can do to control the hair, right? Yes! There are a few things you can do to take care of pug shedding. Other than adopting a black pug, shedding can be managed through grooming. We have divided methods for managing shedding into different sections so you can have a multi-pronged solution to hair loss.
Brush Your Pug
As other pug owners will probably tell you, brushing is a way to get rid of the loose and dead hair on your pug. Even though their hair is shorter than 1 cm in length, daily brushing of your pug’s coat can help collect what would otherwise be accumulating around your house. You don’t have to follow a very strict regimen of daily brushing, but we would certainly recommend that during the aggressive shedding months – sometimes even multiple times a day!
Double-coat pugs should be brushed 3-5 times a week, while single-coat black pugs can do well with just 1-3. A bristle brush will do, but a pin brush can also help stimulate blood flow to your dog’s skin and elevate skin and coat health.
Brushing your pug also provides other benefits. We mentioned that pugs are dogs that have more sensitive skin. Regular brushing will give you a chance to monitor your dog for any signs of skin abnormalities.
Food and Supplements
Brushing is just as important as your dog’s diet. One of the first indicators of an unhealthy pup aside from lethargy and a lack of appetite is his appearance. What goes on inside the body is reflected on his skin and coat. If you see a black pug with a shiny and lustrous coat, then he is most likely one happy and healthy dog.
You won’t have to conduct too much research to know that your dog should be fed high-quality food, whether it’s kibble, raw, wet or fresh. There can be supplements in the diet that will support skin and coat health. Look for omega fatty acids such as omega 3 and 6 that will enrich your pug’s hair.
If you have trouble finding or can’t afford top-of-the-line food that contains skin and coat aids, you can always turn to supplements. There are options specifically geared towards maintaining and supporting your pug’s coat. They can come in the form of chewable tablets, which are viewed as a treat by your dog.
There are also liquid forms that you can mix into your dog’s food. You can kill two birds with one stone if your pup is a picky eater. The liquid or oil supplement will make a nice change from their regular “bland” kibble.
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Find the Right Shampoo
We briefly mentioned the importance of the right shampoo. While we all like to come out of the shower smelling fresh and hope the same for our dogs, the artificial fragrance can be harmful to our pets. When your dog is as sensitive as pugs, you must make every effort to steer clear of heavy fragrances. Your best bet is a formula that is all-natural, fragrance-free, and made for sensitive skin.
Many of the oatmeal formulas fit under this category. Burt’s Bees is also a good choice for a natural brand. No matter what you choose to use, make sure you rinse your pugs thoroughly to rid them of any lingering residue. It’s also important not to over-bathe your pug. If you give them a wash too often, you will strip their skin of protective natural oils and leave room for irritation.
There are also specific tools that can be used to help shedding. These are called shedding tools. If you can find one small enough for your pug, then you can give them a try. Items like the Furminator are usually created for larger dogs, and have too wide a surface to get between your pug’s rolls. Just a regular pin brush will do for their coat and your pug companion will love the gentle massage they get with every grooming session.
You should only apply medication if it has been recommended by your vet. Some pugs shed due to bacteria, allergies, and some form of the disease, and the vet will usually give you a prescription to combat these illnesses. Topical medication is likely if your pug is shedding due to a flea or tick infestation. Never assume you know what is going on with your pug and administer human medication.
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Frequently Asked Questions
How do I stop my pug from shedding?
You can stop your pug from shedding with the right tools and shedding management. Pugs shed for a variety of reasons, and the key to adopting the right method to rectify the situation is to assess the reason. A pug will shed all year round, especially the double-coated lighter breeds. Black pugs are the ones we suggest adopting if shedding is an issue. Groom your pug regularly and make sure to use natural products for bathing and to feed them nutritious and high-quality food.
How bad is pug shedding?
Pug shedding isn’t bad, it’s a natural part of their existence. You may find that the double-layer coat pugs may have excessive shedding more often, but that’s nothing to worry about. When you start to notice the shedding of hair coupled with other symptoms like furious scratching and sores on the skin, then it’s time to visit the vet.
Can I put a collar on my pug?
Yes, you can put a collar on your pug, but it’s worth it to note that their neck folds can make a tight collar uncomfortable, and it’s important to not leave the collar on for too long.
Because pugs don’t handle the heat well, leaving the collar on for too long can cause irritation. Collars should also not be used for training and walk if you can help it as they are a brachycephalic breed. This means a pug has a shorter snout than most other dogs and can have trouble breathing.
If you pull your pug too hard with the collar or overwork them on walks, you may hear wheezing and sniffling, indicating a respiratory issue.
Should pugs wear a harness?
A harness is a better alternative to a collar for walks. It’s okay to have a collar on your pup for ID purposes but try not to leave it on him permanently. A harness will evenly distribute weight around your pug’s body, which puts less strain on his neck. Brachycephalic dog breeds, ones with shorter snouts, usually have barrel chests that can handle a lot of pressure. Your pug belongs to this category and will do much better with a harness than a collar.
Should pugs wear coats?
Pugs are small dogs, and small dogs are usually more susceptible to weather changes. Also, they have sensitive skin and shorter coats. Even the double-coated pugs can get cold in the wintertime, so it’s important to make sure your best friend is not only comfortable but also warm. You can put a coat on your pug in colder months and he will definitely appreciate the extra layer.
The coat will also protect your pug from injury and skin issues that could develop from the cold. Not to mention, you can also go shopping for them and pick up cute costumes and matching outfits!
Shedding is very common for animals, and even a pug with short hair will shed noticeably throughout the year. The shedding process will get rid of dead hairs, and you can keep them from accumulating around your house with the right deshedding tool, constant grooming, and a nutritious diet. Silver, fawn, and apricot-colored pugs usually have double coats, so pick a black one if you want less hair floating around. Pugs are more demanding in terms of skin maintenance, so make sure you always keep them clean.
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Did You Know?
Seasonal shedding for dogs can last as long as a month! The shortest it will last is around 2 weeks. If you start seeing your dog’s hair come off in tufts, then it’s most likely that time of the year. If you notice your pug is shedding irregularly, then it’s time to pay the vet a visit.
Having a small vacuum or Swiffer broom always at the ready can help you manage serious shedding. Keep it where your dog frequents and high traffic areas in the house.