You could earn SmartPoints on this page!SmartPoint Coin

The Pug has a BIG personality delivered in a SMALL package! What's not to love about the wrinkled, adorable, flat-nose face Pug?

This toy breed originated from China more than 2,000 years ago! This little breed made its way to Tibet, Japan, and Europe often given as royal gifts, they also became extremely popular in Holland. In the 19th century, this little breed found its way to the United States.

A little Pug, named Fortune, carried hidden messages for Josephine de Beauharnais (first wife to Napoleon Bonaparte) while she was imprisoned during the Reign of Terror, and delivered them to her family. Fortune was the only visitor allowed to see Josephine during her imprisonment.

Bred For

The Pug is a toy-companion breed. They are often referred as "multum in parvo" (meaning: much in little), describing their big personality in a small package! They are believed to have been the ancestor for the English Bulldog, the modern Pekingese, and the King Charles Spaniel.


The Pug's height is 10-14 inches and they can weigh between 14-20 pounds.The Pug's best known features are its wrinkled face, bulging eyes and flat nose. Their wrinkles will need to be cleaned daily to avoid any type of bacterial fungus issues. Their body tends to be compact, short, and stocky with straight legs. Their head is large and round with a short muzzle and an under-bite and the ears tend to be small and fold over. Their tail is tightly curled over their hip. Their coat is short, smooth and glossy with colors of black, brindle, silver, apricot-fawn and fawn with a black face and ears.


This small breed is enthusiastic and enjoys being around children and adults alike. They tend to be a little entertainer by being silly and making people laugh, which is why they are often referred to being "Clownish." The Pug is a loving, happy, and smart breed. With their silly personality and laid back demeanor, they make an excellent Therapy Dog. They can have a stubborn streak to them, so early training and socialization will benefit your Pug long-term. They look forward to play time and nap time making the Pug the best of both worlds. They are considered a dignified breed, but the Pug is known for their snoring, snorting, and passing gas.

Activity Level

Their activity level is low. They only require short walks (15 minutes) around the block or down the street once or twice a day. During extreme heat, care must be taken so the Pug doesn't overheat due to their flat nose causing them to have difficulties with breathing. If you are looking to fly abroad with your Pug, they are NOT airline approved, meaning majority of airlines ban Pugs from flying due to their breathing issues. Your Pug will make the perfect traveling companion in a vehicle. This little breed is perfect for condo or apartment living. They are not heavy on the barking and enjoy lying around all day. The Pug can easily become obese due to their lazy attitude and low energy level, so it is important that pet-parents have them on a strict feeding and walking schedule every day. The Pug is a perfect reading or movie buddy, enjoying their time to be curled up next to you and relaxing!

Health Concerns

A typical life span for the Pug is 12-14 years. This breed is considered to be an overall healthy dog! Health concerns are: Hip Dysplasia, Susceptible to Eye Injuries, Brachyephalic (difficult with breathing), Pharyngeal Gag Reflex (reverse sneezing), Necrotizing Meningoencephalitis (NME) (an inflammation of the brain and meninges), Hemivertebrae (spinal paralysis), and Demodectic Mange.

Rescue First

As you begin looking for a Pug, please check with rescue organizations first. Every year there are millions of dogs being euthanized, not because they are bad dogs, but because there is no home for them and insufficient resources to care for them at rescues. By adopting a dog, you are truly saving a life!

At the very least, NEVER purchase any dog from a pet store. Unfortunately, those puppies almost always come from puppy mills. Instead, look for a reputable breeder to work with.

On a final note, it is important to spay and neuter your puppy by 6 months old to have a healthy and happy pet for many years to come!

Do you enjoy short-leisurely walks? Are you looking for a little companion that will enjoy curling up next to you while reading a book? Want a breed that will happily make you laugh with their silly antics? The Pug could be your breed!


Dog Breed Info

Original Dog Bible, 2nd Edition by Kristin Mehus-Roe

Photo Credit:

More from Health Coach Victoria Swanson Others Are Reading


  • Love this breed! I don't have too much experience with them myself, but my two favorite pug videos are:

  • I've had several Pugs over many years, including 3 seniors I adopted, two of whom lived to nearly 17! I only have a lovely 12 yr old lady Pug now, who has been with me since puppyhood, and I treasure every day with her. They are the most devoted, fun dogs with a great sense of humor, but they take no nonsense. My two very large breeds still respect her and get out of her way!

Comment on the Smart Living Network

Site Feedback