Are You Considering Adopting A Pug?
Time For a New Best Friend
Dogs really can be our best friends (way better than diamonds, and I like diamonds). Adding a dog, especially an adorable pug, to your family can change your life for the better. I know this because I adopted Kilo the Pug after fostering him for several months in 2014.
However, just because you may want a pug, it is still important to make sure that a dog is right for you and your lifestyle. Just because you see a breed like a pug looking cute on social media or TV, it does not mean that a pug is the right breed for you.
We believe a lot fewer dogs would end up in shelters if people did their research and understood that dogs are a tremendous responsibility and that every dog is different. They rely on their owners each and every day. Apparently, my rescue Kilo the Pug started out with an elderly couple who did not understand that all puppies need vet visits, attention, exercise, and training and make mistakes. I guess they expected a cute chill obedient little cuddler. Kilo is very cuddly and sleeps a lot but is quite demanding and has bursts of energy. Pugs can be quite hard to toilet train and are usually very food motivated and need love and attention. They quickly realized they could not cope and handed him off to a teenager who was equally ill-prepared. He went through 4 homes before us and ended up with severe behavioral issues that possibly could have been avoided or at least mitigated.
Here are a few questions you should consider before adopting a furry BFF like Kilo into your family.
10 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself
1. What kind of family do you have?
All dogs require a lot of time and energy, pugs especially. Make sure you have a supportive family who is willing to love, care for and contribute to the dog together. Do you travel, work all day and stay late? Who will take the dog out or babysit? Making sure you have a support system within the family will help both of your adjust to life with a pug easier.
Pugs are people dogs who love to be with their family. They are known for being affectionate and love to cuddle. Ask yourself will you have enough time to dedicate to your new pug, especially if you get a puppy?
2. What breed is suitable for you?
Pugs are known as being affectionate dogs who love their families and lots of attention. They also come with medical expenses, shed like crazy, can be difficult to train and can be greedy when it comes to food. Each breed has different characteristics and requirements, especially in terms of physical activity, attention, and training. Ask yourself what you enjoy and have time for. Before adopting doing lots of research is best. You can attend meetups, visits shelters, talk to other pug owners and breeders too to learn more about the breed.
Each breed has different characteristics and requirements, especially in terms of physical activity, attention, and training. Ask yourself what you enjoy and have time for. Before adopting, doing lots of research is best. You can attend meetups, visits shelters, talk to other pug owners and breeders too to learn more about the breed.
Check out Talent Hounds Breed Library for more information.
3. How old is the pug you would like to adopt?
If this is your first dog, perhaps consider adopting an older one. Older dogs are more available as they are less likely to be adopted at shelters, mainly because people prefer puppies. They are also usually already house trained and less destructive/high maintenance which can be easier for the owner.
Pugs often live 13 to 15 years so you must be prepared to share your life with your new friend and care for them for over a decade.
4. Do you have the budget for a pet?
Food, supplies, training, and veterinary bills add up- often to hundreds (or in the case of illness or accidents, even thousands of dollars). Dogs need to stay up-to-date with their vaccinations and must be tested for diseases such as heartworm. If you don’t have the budget for a dog, now is not the right time to adopt.
Like all breeds, pugs may face some health issues, like hip dysplasia, eye disease, patellar luxation, and Pug dog encephalitis. Some dogs may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Pugs are healthy dogs.
Pugs also live to eat. But you must be very careful as they age to monitor their diet and only feed good quality dog food to maintain their health and keep them slim.
5. Are you dedicated to socializing and training your dog?
Pets, especially those who are adopted, each come with their own set of challenges. Proper socializing, training, attention and care can help any dog. This will teach your pet to be comfortable around other dogs, people, cars and general life outside of the home. No dog, bought or adopted, is perfect.
Pugs have average energy levels, often in bursts, and are known to be mischevious. You’ll want to make sure your pug is both mentally and physically stimulated to keep them from being bored and destructive.
6. Are you dependable?
Dogs can’t just wait until it is convenient for you to take care of them. If you will be gone from the house longer than 8 hours, you will likely need to make arrangements for someone to come home to let the dog out. Pugs are a small breed and shouldn’t be expected to hold their bladders or bowels for longer than 8 hours.
Pugs also require regular weekly brushing and the occasional baths to keep them clean and looking their best. Their strong fast-growing nails should be trimmed regularly to avoid overgrowth, splitting and cracking. Their ears should be checked regularly to avoid a buildup of wax and debris and teeth should be brushed regularly.
If you want a furry friend in your life, be prepared to maintain a consistent schedule. The same goes for training. If you want your dog to be well trained, make sure to be consistent with training methods.
Pugs are also one of the most commonly stolen breeds of dog. Sadly, they are often stolen to be used as bait in dog fighting rings. That means if you adopt a pug it requires constant supervision at all times when they are out of the house.
7. What size is your home?
If you’re living in a one bedroom apartment you’ll need a dog that can be comfortable or who can acclimatize to that space. You’d be surprised by how much space a dog needs differs based on their breed. Many small dogs need lots of space to roam while some of the largest breeds are happy in smaller spaces.
Pugs are comfortable in small apartments because they need minimal exercise, but the breed can adapt easily to all situations. However, pugs are not outdoor dogs and cannot survive living in a dog house including the garage. They must live within the house with the family. Temperature is also a huge factor, pugs thrive in moderate climates—not too hot, not too cold.
If you have a pool or pond, it must be fenced off so that the dog cannot get into in. Pugs can drown rapidly since most are not always the most water smart breed or best swimmers.
8. Can you get the animal neutered or spayed?
Neutering and spaying helps to control the pet population. This treatment also contributes to the overall health of your pet. Some shelters will do this for you as a part of their intake program. Otherwise, it is another expense you will have to consider.
9. Will this be the right choice for the dog?
Don’t make a decision to adopt a dog based solely on emotion. Pug puppies are especially adorable, but the commitment to adopt is for the dog’s entire life. Think rationally about what is best for you and the dog. Many dogs end up returned to shelters or rescues because the family grows bored of the dog or no longer wants the responsibility. That’s why we suggest lots of research and carefully consideration prior to adopting.
10. Is fostering an option?
If you are really looking to have a pet, fostering might be a better choice rather than committing completely to the care of an animal. Temporary care is a great experience before starting full-time dog ownership as well. Plus you are helping contribute to saving an animal’s life by ensuring they have the best future possible. Here are a few questions to ask before fostering
Plus if you happen to fall in love with each other you can always adopt your foster. In fact, Kilo the pug is my foster failure from PugALug Pup Rescue!
Feel like you fit the criteria? Fantastic! Feel free to ask any other questions below!
Some really great tips here! A lot of them apply to any breed. It’s so important to do your research before making such a huge decision!
Jana Rade says
It’s always so important to realize the kind of commitment adopting a dog is.
PAWESOME CATS says
What a great post. I love pugs! Actually, we’ve been considering adding a dog to our all feline household, and the pug is on my shortlist but I’m just not sure how well the breed typically gets on with cats?
M. K. Clinton says
Terrific article and one that should be read by anyone considering a Pug or any pet.
Tenacious Little Terrier says
Very important questions to ask! Good advice for people to consider fostering or starting with an older dog.
Ruth Epstein says
Great information and a lot of it is for when you adopting any pet also and I do not think some people really think it through when they do adopt and that is another reason so many land up in shelters
I love Pugs! My sister, Alice, had one for 15 years. Lulu was sweet, funny, and so loving. Pugs are definitely not for everyone and do have some special needs because of their short noses. I understand that some are prone to eye injury since the eyes bulge out too.
I am excited to become a regular reader of My Pug Nation, Congratulations on the new blog!
Christine Caplan says
I love this blog! Congrats on this — it’s awesome and I have so many friends that are huge pug advocates. I like the last tip about fostering – I think fostering is such a great idea for anyone considering adopting as they get to prepare that munchkin for a home which is a good way to ease into pet parent responsibilities and maybe they’ll end up being a foster failure!
Kilo is such a cutie! He has come a long way in your care. Pugs are such unique dogs! You have a lot of great points about the breed. There is some research that should be done before choosing a pet for your family. Every pet is a little different.
Rebecca of MattieDog says
The one thing we noticed right away about Pug adoption – make sure you can pick up the fur! Our friend has a Pug and there is a bit of shedding! Other than that, we love Pugs to the moon and back!
Dsh Kitten CrewDash Kitten Crew says
Wow what a LOT of things to consider. I had no idea, but I guess it’s the same as adopting a cat you need to consider this, and this and this and this…..
I like the idea of adopting an older pug, I would much prefer that as a puppy would be a LOT to take on. (Why are puppies so popular – all that work!!)
Good luck with the new blog – go get ’em Pug!!
Tonya Wilhelm says
Great post. It’s always a great idea to ask these questions before rushing into adopting a pet or purchasing a pet from a breeder. Love your pug!
Lindsay Pevny says
Pugs are cute, but I don’t see myself owning one. I’m concerned about their breathing issues. Though I don’t exercise a lot, I like how my current dogs can go for long walks and sprints without getting too overheated.
These are fabulous questions for people considering any breed of dog. It’s great to note the different personalities in different breeds though. I’m so glad Kilo found you.
Sweet Purrfections says
The new blog looks great! People need to research breeds of both dogs and cats before adopting. There would probably be less pets in shelters if this occurred.
Malaika Fernandes says
We had Vodafone ad that was released here in India a couple of years ago that featured a pug post that the breed got really popular here. Unfortunately then the breed was rather bred unscrupolously and is not suitable for our very humid weather. they do make adorable pets but not suitable for our climate at all
Great post! All great information to ask yourself before adopting a pug. I know someone who wants a pug and will have to share this with them!
What a great post. I love pugs
Carol Bryant says
One of my most favorite things to read has to do with learning more about dog breeds. I adore that you shared history and details about Pugs. They are such a popular breed and I have many friends who are owned by a Pug. I will be sharing! In fact, I am tweeting this now.