The Pug is a popular companion dog breed known for its signature wrinkles and flat face. Their playful and affectionate personality has made them one of the most highly sought-after dogs in the world.

Origins of the Pug

Pugs are one of the oldest dog breeds in the world and can be traced back at least 2,000 years. They originated in China, dating as far back as the Han dynasty. At the time, they were regarded highly by Chinese Emperors.

It is widely believed that the Pug is named after the Latin word for "fist". This is because the Pug's wrinkles make it look like a human fist. They also have their own motto: "multum in parvo" or “a lot in a little”.

In the late 1500s and early 1600s, China started to trade the breed with Europe. The first Pugs were brought to Europe by Dutch traders. Similar to their popularity among Chinese emperors, Pugs were prized throughout European royal families. William Hogarth, a famous English artist from the early 18th century, was a Pug enthusiast. He portrayed Pugs in many of his famous paintings. Francisco Goya, a famous Spanish artist, also painted the breed in the early 1700s. Marie Antoinette also had a Pug before she married Louis XVI.

The modern Pug originates from Lamb and Moss, two Chinese "pure-bred" Pugs who were brought to England. They produced Click, who was bred multiple times, as he was an outstanding dog. Pugs were not brought to the United States until after the Civil War.

The Pug was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1885. Later, in 1931, the Pug Dog Club of America was founded.

cute pug puppy looking at you, head close up

Physical characteristics of the Pug


Chinese Emperors prized Pugs for their wrinkles, which often resembled Chinese good luck symbols. For example, the wrinkles on the Pug's forehead look like the Chinese character for the word "prince". The Pug breed's famous wrinkles are deep and pronounced.

Face and body

Pugs have large round faces. Their ears fold down and are smooth and black. They have an undershot jaw, which means that their bottom teeth stretch beyond the upper teeth. It is also rather small and thickset with a cobby body. The breed has a curly tail, which is often called a "screw tail".


The Pug has a short and smooth coat which comes in three colors: silver, apricot-fawn with a black face, or all black.


Pugs have round, protruding eyes. If the Pug is a purebred, it should have brown eyes. The color ranges in darkness and can even look black.

The Pug's personality

Pugs are one of the most highly sought-after dog breeds, not just because of their looks, but for their playful and affectionate personality.

These expressive pups are known to be one of the most charming dog breeds. They enjoy spending hours cuddling and playing with their humans. If well-trained from a young age, they are great with children and other dogs. As the Pug was originally bred to be a companion dog, the breed does not like to be left alone for hours on end.

Although they are not the most active of dog breeds, they are particularly playful. They only need about half an hour of exercise. As they have short noses and small air passages, they can have difficulties breathing in hot weather. Avoid going on walks or playing under the blazing sun.

Pugs love to show off and be the center of attention. They love being taught new tricks that test their agility, obedience and intelligence.

Because of the Pug's calm and quiet personality, they are ideal for people living in apartments.

Cute Pug dog on pillow

Health and grooming


The Pug's signature folds can provoke infections if damp or dirty. The wrinkle just above the nose, in particular, needs to be checked daily. In order to prevent infections, it is important to dry your Pug thoroughly after bathing them. It is also recommended to wipe in between the folds as often as possible. This can be done with baby wipes or cotton balls.


As Pugs have prominent and protruding eyes, it is important to check their eyes every day. This dog breed is prone to eye injuries.


The Pug has a high tendency to shed. It is, therefore, recommended to comb them weekly. It is also best to bathe them once or a month or whenever they get dirty.


The pug is prone to obesity and digestive sensitivities. It is important to measure out their food to prevent them from overeating.

Common health issues

  • Hip dysplasia
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Von Willebrand's disease
  • Cheyletiella Dermatitis (Walking Dandruff)
  • Pug Dog Encephalitis
  • Corneal Ulcers
  • Nerve Degeneration
  • Epilepsy

Life span

If a Pug is given proper care and has a healthy lifestyle, it could live up to around 13 to 15 years.

The Pug in pop culture

This dog breed is very popular among celebrities. The most famous of these Pug owners being Jessica Alba, Robin Williams, Billy Joel, and Hugh Laurie. Jessica Alba even co-starred with her Pug, Sid, in the film Honey.

There are also many Pugs who have become famous thanks to Instagram and Youtube. Some of the most famous include Silly Mr Eddie, Roxy the Pug, Lungo and Doug the Pug. At the moment, Doug the Pug's Instagram account has more than 4 million followers.

Pugs who have starred in films:

  • Patrick from the 2018 film Patrick
  • Frank from the 1997 film Men In Black
  • Percy from the Disney film Pocahantas

Pugs on Yummypets

If you would like to know more about this breed, take a look at the Yummypets Pug dog breed page. There you'll find hundreds of photos of this breed posted by our fellow Yummypals, as well as a list of Pug owners on Yummypets. It's a great way to get to know fellow Pug owners or to learn more about the breed by people who own them themselves.

Source: Buzzfeed, Wikipedia

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