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Meet The Pug

September 15, 2021

Do you have a pug? If so, you’ve got a really cute pet. The pug is definitely one of the most beloved and unique-looking pooches. These little pooches with the smooshed faces have definitely earned some loyal fans! A veterinarian discusses the pug below.


The first pugs were bred as companion dogs for ancient Chinese nobles. Several emperors also became enamored with the breed. As one might expect, being the Emperor’s favorite pet is a pretty sweet deal! Those lucky pups lived pampered lives of complete doggy luxury, and even had their own guards. Pug dogs were also beloved in Tibet, where Buddhist monks kept them as pets. 

Going Global

The pug was brought over to Europe in the 16th century, where he soon charmed … well, pretty much everyone, including Goya, the famous painter, who actually painted several of them. Many Italian pugs were allowed to ride in the front seats of private coaches. In fact, they were often dressed in tiny replicas of the coachmen’s outfits. England’s Queen Victoria was another big fan. Pug dogs even became the official dog of the House Of Orange, after one pup alerted his owner, the Prince of Orange, about approaching assassins, thereby saving his life. (We’ll assume that dog also got completely spoiled for the rest of his life.) 

Pugs made it over to America in the 19th century. The AKC officially welcomed these cute, lovable pups into their ranks in 1885. In 1931, Fido got his own club: The Pug Dog Club Of America. One pug, Dhandys Favorite Woodchuck, even won the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 1981.


Pugs are brachycephalic, which means they have very short airways, and can easily lose their breath. You don’t want to overexert Fido, as he can go into respiratory distress if he gets too winded. However, you also shouldn’t let your pooch become a complete couch potato, either: that can lead to obesity, which in itself can cause or contribute to some very serious health issues. You’ll also need to be careful with your canine friend’s eyes, as those bulging ‘bug eyes’ can be prone to injuries. Ask your vet for specific advice.


Friendly, cuddly, and lovable, the pug has a special way of melting hearts. These dogs have often been referred to by the phrase Multum in parvo, which translates to ‘a lot of dog in a small space’ in pug Latin.They can be a bit stubborn, but are rarely aggressive. They’re remarkably patient with children, and are equally fond of naps and playtime. They’re often referred to as shadows, because they stick so close to their humans.

Do you have questions about pugs? Contact us, your animal clinic!