We all immediately recognize the flat snoot, wrinkled face, and large expressive eyes of the loveable Pug. The Pug breed’sroots can be tracked back to Imperial China in 700 B.C., during the time of Confucius, when the breed was known as lo-sze. Imported to England in the 16th century, the breed quickly became a popular lap dog among the aristocracy. A Pug named Pompey is even credited with alerting Holland’s William I, Prince of Orange, to an assassination attempt by Spain. Over time, pugs have been the favored breed or both royals and celebrities—from Napoleon and Queen Victoria to Andy Warhol and Rob Zombie.
Here are 5 characteristics that may help you decide if the pug is the right dog breed for you:
1. Pugs are natural cuddlers.
If you want a small affectionate dog that will bond easily with you, the Pug might be your go-to-breed. As a breed, they tend to be expressive, exuberant, and often comical. They’re eager to play and will follow you, well, pretty much everywhere. Pugs tend to sleep more than other dogs (an average of 14 hours a day), and in this way are much like cats. So while they are known as eager people-pleasers, they’re also snoozers. Pugs are also known to be great family dogs and are very playful and affectionate with children. Also, because of their mouth shape, pugs have trouble delivering an aggressive bite and so are considered to be on the more kid-safe end of the breed spectrum.
2. Pugs tend to be smart, observant, and quick learners.
The plus side of this trait is that they can be easily trained. The minus is they will quickly learn where you store the treats, and can get into their share of mischief. They also tend to be a little on the stubborn side, so training your Pug may require a little extra patience on your part. But if you persevere, you’ll be amply rewarded for your efforts.
3. Pugs are relatively low-maintenance.
They don’t bark much—which is ideal if you live in an apartment or have roommates—and they tend to sleep a lot. Contrary to myth, pugs do shed, and their coarse short hair needs regular grooming. Fortunately, most Pugs love the physical contact that a good brushing provides and are eager for the attention.
4. With pugs, a little exercise goes a long way.
Due to their small stature, pugs don’t need fields of running room and adapt well to apartment living. About 20 minutes of brisk exercise a day should be sufficient to keep your pug healthy, happy, and entertained. They do tend to have a robust appetite and have a predisposition for obesity. So you’ll want to watch your dog’s weight and limit treats, especially in older animals.
5. Pugs get along well with other animals.
Pugs tend to be lovers, not fighters. So they’ll try to endear themselves not only to you and your children, but to any other pets you might own. Because of their size and sleeping habits, they tend to do well with cats; it’s not uncommon to catch your Pug and cat snuggling together for a nap.
So if you are looking for a small, smart dog that loves to play, sleep, and cuddle, consider a Pug. As a pug owner, what would add to this list?