Things You Need To Know Before Getting A Pug
Bringing a new dog into the family is a big decision, and it requires research and thoughtful consideration for things to go smoothly. You need to decide what breed you are the most interested in, and which one that would fit your lifestyle, because finding the right dog is about so much more than just picking the cutest one. A dog breed that has gained extreme popularity in recent years – not only in the United States but all over the world – is the Pug.
The Pug is an adorable dog with large eyes, a round head, and short and stubby legs. They snore when they sleep and grunt when they run, and it is surprisingly hard not to love them. Is it the right dog for you? Here are a few things to consider before you make a Pug a part of your family.
When people look for a dog, they usually start out by considering what type of dog breed would fit their lifestyle. Prospective Pug parents, however, often fail to do their research and they mistakenly assume the Pug to be a calm and lazy breed that will happily lie on the couch for a whole afternoon.
This leads to the wrong people choosing to get Pugs, which then ends with unnecessary re-homing needs and Pugs ending up at shelters. Here is the thing – Pugs are anything but low-key and lazy, especially during the first few years of their lives!
Many Pug owners describe their fur babies as tiny little balls of energy that spend their days roaming around the house, barking, running, jumping, climbing, slobbering (oh yes) and more. They can be extremely hyperactive and almost bounce off the walls if nobody is up for playing with them, and they will often play hard and rough until you are too tired to continue.
Rarely will the Pug be the one to say no to a game or to give up first, which can be a potential issue as it could lead to overheating. It is a small dog with a barrel-shaped body, but they are surprisingly agile and energetic for such an oddly shaped dog. There is no such thing as “impossible” for a Pug, and they will try anything once, twice and three times without giving up.
The breed usually calms down once they reach the age of three to five, but you are bound to grow a few grey hairs before that. It is not a breed for the person who can’t stand a little chaos in their homes, and you might find yourself needing the patience of a saint (not an understatement). They are, however, extremely lovable dogs, and it is not hard to understand why they have become so popular.
For anyone who has ever known a Pug, you probably know how impossible they can be at times! It is almost as if they were unable to learn what you are trying to teach them, and they seem to forget the second you turn your back on them.
It is not unusual for a Pug owner to walk into a room and found their angel-faced Pug standing in the middle of the kitchen table – even though you have told him repeatedly to get down and stay off. It is easy to mistake a Pug for being slow, but you quickly realize that they’re just stubborn.
Pugs aren’t unable to learn – they are just unwilling. …Sometimes. A Pug learns when they want to, they listen to commands when they want to, and they may choose to ignore you most of the time. They have a goofy personality that you will learn to love, and you might even start finding amusement in their stubbornness.
Yes, Pugs can be trained to do as they are told and to perform numerous tricks, but it requires patience from their owner. It is not that they don’t want to please you – they just have a lot of other stuff going on in their cute little heads.
It is easy to look the other way and focus only on how adorable a Pug puppy is, but it is important not to forget that it is a breed prone to several hereditary health issues. The shape of their skull and snout causes breathing issues – some which require potentially expensive surgeries, and the Pug is also known for suffering from skin conditions caused by food allergies or environmental irritants.
This does not mean all Pugs get sick or require extensive medical care, but you can’t stick your head in the sand here, as it is one of the dog breeds known to struggle.
Before deciding that a Pug is right for you, you need to be aware of the risks, and ready for the medical expenses that might accompany your new fur friend. It is not a breed for someone with a tight budget, for this reason, as it will be your responsibility as the dog’s owner to see to any future medical needs.
Consider putting away some savings for any emergencies or see if there are any good veterinary care insurances you can make use of. Keep in mind that not all insurance companies insure Pugs and other flat-faced- and disease-prone dogs, as they are considered a liability.
The risk of many health issues associated with Pugs can possibly be reduced with the right pug dog food, enough exercise and by regular check-ups at the vet’s, so if you are sure a Pug is what you want – just be sure you are willing and able to provide them with what they need.
Heat and warm climates can be problematic for the Pug because of their short snout and narrow airways. Their body does not cool down hot air the way the body of an average built dog would, which can lead to overheating and heat stroke.
Due to this, you might want to think twice about getting a Pug if you live in an area with very hot summers, as it will make life uncomfortable and possibly dangerous for your furry friend. There are however ways to protect a Pug from heat, but it is a small detail worth being aware of before picking a breed.
Extreme cold can also cause breathing issues in the Pug, again because of their small airways and often slim nostrils, but it does not tend to present such an immediate danger as that of hot temperatures. A sweater of a coat will usually be enough to keep them comfortable during walks and outings.
The Pug may have short hair that does not require much grooming, but many first-time Pug owners are surprised (if not to say shocked) by how much a Pug can shed! They don’t usually shed all year round and tend to shed the most when changing coats, usually as the season’s change.
Many dog breeds will shed to get rid of thick undercoat well ahead of summer and then again in the fall to prepare for the cold, and the Pug is one of these dogs despite their short hair.
What is so frustrating about Pug hair is that it sticks to everything, and you will probably end up thinking your Pug has thrown a Pug party while you were asleep, because how could so much hair come off one dog? This is something you need to be prepared for when buying or adopting a Pug, as it might not be ideal for people who are sensitive to dog hair.
Related: Dog Foods for Shedding.
Knowing what to expect when you buy or adopt a certain dog breed is the key to a successful dog-owner relationship, and the way to obtain this information is by doing proper research ahead of time.
Yes, Pugs are adorable, but they can also be demanding and expensive if they end up requiring medical care. Know what to expect and be ready for what you are going to get; because the Pug surely is one of a kind.