Finally, that day you’ve been waiting for has come. You have just brought home an adorable Pug that you have fallen in love with. What now? Is this it? Just fun and games from now on? If only it was this easy......
Now that you have a dog of your own, the hard part has just begun. Raising and caring for a dog is not that different from raising a child. For some reason people take offense to that comparison, but it’s true. You have to take care of your Pugs health, bathe and keep them clean, teach them new things, take them outside on walks and provide them with a healthy and nutritious diet. All those things apply to raising a child and if you ask certain dog owners, they will say that their Pugs are a lot like children to them.
Pugs require a fair amount of consistent and ongoing care. On the surface this may seem like a lot of work, but it really isn’t. The things you’ll need to do take only a matter of minutes each week, and in one case, some common sense and vigilance.
Pugs nails grow extremely fast. You’ve got a couple of choices here. You can start learning how to do this yourself from week one, or you can take your Pug someplace to have it done. Vets and groomers will do this for you for a small fee, which is good, but if you’re not squeamish, and your Pug is amenable, why not do it yourself?
If you’re going to do it yourself, one of the best times to do this is when your Pug is in her deep sleep on your lap at night. She may wake up, but she’ll likely won’t be motivated enough to put up a struggle. Keep styptic powder in case you cut to far and clip the vein and a Q-Tip to apply it. To avoid cutting too far, simply cut the curved part of the nail only and make sure the clipper of the nails is someone in your house who has a steady hand.
Clip those nails every 2/4 weeks, and for your dogs comfort and health, be vigilant about this. Nails that grow too long can cause discomfort from your Pug not standing high enough on his paws, and eventually cause bleeding and breakdown of the pasterns which will cause long term discomfort when walking. These little guys will not wear them down by running on pavement.
As far as grooming goes, they are surprisingly heavy shedders. For short-haired dogs, they require quite a bit of maintenance. If fuzz on your furniture, on your clothing or in your car would be a major concern, this would not be the right dog for you.
Pugs are not the type of dogs that need constant brushing, bathing and grooming. They still need the basic type of regular upkeep. You still have to clean their ears, clip their nails, brush them and bathe them. They do not get haircuts. In fact, having your Pug shaved is a big no-no. That double coat protects them from heat and cold. If winters are harsh where you live, your Pug will need a nice warm coat.
The main difference between Pugs and most other dogs is in their face. Pug faces are full of adorable little wrinkles. Although cute, they can be a health concern if not cleaned regularly. If left unclean for too long, bacteria can start to collect, grow and form into colonies. This can result in painful bacterial infections. To avoid that, you have to clean between each wrinkle to get rid of bacteria and dirt.
Those adorable wrinkles and crinkles on a Pugs face are called folds, and in between those folds accumulates a whole hodgepodge of stuff. This stuff gets in there because Pugs spend a lot of time with their face mashed against the carpet, the ground and of course, their food bowls. Add to all this a mix of dried tears and mucous, and you’ve got yourself some stuff in those folds. Your job is to clean those facial folds out to make sure they don’t develop any infections or fungus there. Since all that stuff makes a Pug smell a bit boggy, you’ll also be keeping your Pug smelling nice in the process. Cleaning a Pugs facial folds is pretty easy, as long as he cooperates. Start this routine immediately, and your Pug should be cooperative, if not happy about your touching his folds. The only tools you need for this is a Q-Tip, a cup of warm water and some Vaseline. Dip the Q-Tip in warm water and gently run it in the folds above the nose, and below the eyes. After you’ve gotten the stuff out, apply a thin layer of Vaseline inside the fold above the nose and presto, you’re done…Nothing to it. You can do this once a week, or sooner if your Pug starts to smel.
Pugs in puberty can suffer from acne. As they get older it will disappear. It is recommended to leave these pimples and NOT to express. Of course, a good hygiene is very importance.
Pug are sensitive to heat and humidity, and because of this it is important to be aware of the conditions outside, and how long your Pug is outside.
In addition to something immediate such as heat stroke, it’s also possible that over- exposure to high temperatures can cause long term damage to your Pugs organs including the heart, kidney and liver. It’s not at all uncommon for Pug owners to find their Pugs enjoy laying outside, but please remember that your Pug really doesn’t know any better and it’s up to you to be careful. A good rule to follow is to keep an eye on the temperature outside during the warm weather months and make sure that your Pug doesn’t stay outside for more than 10-15 minutes at a time. Make shorter walks with your Pug and don't let them run or play during extremely hot summer days.
If your Pug does appear to be overheating, which can be indicated by a heavy and persistent panting, you should feed her cold water and cool her off with towels watered down with cool water, or a cold water bath. But the best treatment for a Pugs vulnerability to hot weather related problems is always to be preventative for hyperthermia.
Pugs like the good life with lots of sleeping and eating, so much so that you must be careful not to overfeed them because they can easily become overweight.
Use a harness instead of a collar.
A Pug can breathe much better without a tight collar around his larynx.