Caitlin UltimoBehavior / Breed Lists

Pug Dog Breed

Once nicknamed the Dutch mastiff, the Pug is a small dog with a wrinkled face, short legs and barrel chest. In addition to being one of the world’s most physically distinctive dogs, the breed is also well loved for its charismatic personality and effortless charm.

Pug Physical Characteristics

The Pug is a compact and square-bodied dog breed with a soft expression and clearly defined black markings on its muzzle, ears, cheeks and forehead, which has deep and huge wrinkles.


The breed is commonly seen in fawn or black.


Fine, smooth, short and glossy.

Pug Personality and Temperament

Activity Level



The Pug is a playful, confident, and friendly companion that is willing to please its human family.

Things to Consider

The breed can be headstrong and adamant at times. It is also known to frolic about and occasionally get into trouble.

Pug Care

Ideal Living Conditions

Because of its small size, the breed can happily adapt to both apartment living and a suburban environment.

Special Requirements

Regular cleaning and drying of the Pug’s coat is necessary to prevent skin infections, especially in the dog’s facial wrinkles.

Pug Health

The following conditions are commonly seen in Pugs:

Pug History and Background

Multum in Parvo, meaning “a lot in a little,” is the official motto of the Pug and sums up its description. The breed has had various names throughout the years, including Mopshond in Holland, Chinese or Dutch Pug in England, and Mops in Germany. But the word “pug” is thought to have come from the Latin pugnus, meaning fist and attributed to its clenched fist-like head, or from the 18th-century marmoset “pug” monkey, which purportedly appeared quite similar to the dog.

The breed is often thought of as different from other members of the Toy Group, as some believe it is descended from the mastiff or a mastiff-like dog (even being nicknamed the “Dutch mastiff” for a time) while others concluding it bears more of a resemblance to the Pekingese. And though its exact ancestry is not known, many consider the Pug as one of the first breeds miniaturized in Asia. China is the earliest known source of the breed, where Buddhist monasteries of Tibet favored the breed as a pet. The Chinese considered its facial wrinkles an important feature of the breed, referring to it as the “prince mark” because of its similarity to the Chinese figure for prince.

Brought to Holland by the Dutch East India Trading Company, a Pug would become a pet to William I, the Prince of Orange in the mid 16th century. The breed was also bestowed the position of the House of Orange official dog after one of its kind saved the life of William I by alarming him to the approach of an upcoming attack of Spaniards at Hermingny in 1572. Later, when William II landed at Torbay to be crowned King of England, his cortege included pugs, making the breed fashionable for generations.

By 1790, the Pug had made its way to France. Most notably used by Josephine, wife of Napoleon, her pug, “Fortune,” carried secret messages under his collar to Napoleon while she was confined in Les Carmes prison.

In England, the breed gained popularity during the Victorian era. These dogs sported cropped ears, which further enhanced their wrinkled expressions. And in 1885, the American Kennel Club would recognize the breed. Since then, it has become not only a popular show dog, but a wonderful family pet.

By: Chewy Editorial