When we first got Carlos he was 5 months old and originally named Kevin. He waltzed into the Vets with his old owner like a little prancing prince, wagging his double curled tail all over the place like a propeller about to take off! It was love at first sight.
Having a Pug has been a big learning curve for me , we have had our ups and downs and i'll be honest when i say i've made some mistakes ( a 5kgs too heavy mistake and a goodbye pee stained $3000 designer rug mistake! ) but we no matter what we love this little dude and i could never imagine life without him.
My biggest realisation about Pugs was their personality and constant need for attention and company. They are not independent pups and it's absolutely true when people say they need human interaction. If you don't like cuddles, being followed around 24/7 and a clingy, needy pet then a Pug is not for you.
I'm someone who isn't very affectionate and rather independent so you can imagine my surprise when we got Carlos, he still to this day watches me in the shower and follows me around like a small fat shadow. He has shown me what undeniable and completely selfless love is. Im his "Alpha", his "number 1", his "mummy" and hes my "Carlito", my "fur baby", my "boo".
I want to share some tips with you in what i have learned along the way incase you are thinking of adopting, some you may agree with and some you may not, every pet and every owner is different so i can't speak for the rest of the community with what i have learned but hopefully they are a starting point for you. So .......Enjoy!
1. Pugs shed a lot! so much its not funny, i had to give up my rental at the time since it wasn't ideal for a dog who shedded so much, the carpet needed replacing after awhile no matter how much i vacuumed. Make sure you are prepared for all the fur, not so much with the black Pugs but the fawn ones are shedders! Arm yourself with lint rollers, heavy duty vacuum cleaner and hide precious furniture.
2.Look at your current situation. You need to really research breeds and what ideal circumstances suit you, living situations, work schedules and personal activities all affect your ideal pet. If you lived in a one bedroom apartment in the city and work all day long than a Husky would not be ideal. It's not fair on the animal otherwise. Pugs are such low maintenance pets and don't require a lot of physical activity or planning but they are companion pets and need company in the form of humans or other social pets. If you work all day long and plan to leave him/her alone, maybe a cat would be better suited.
3.Interview the breeder, don't be shy. You must ask questions when you first meet and greet the breeder. No matter what breed you are thinking of adopting you need to find out as much information as possible. Its a two way street when it comes to seeing if the animal is right for you so don't be shy. Ask to see papers, vet history, the parent/parents etc. It's important to evaluate the parents for signs of brachycephalic airway syndrome and the current condition of the animals. Spend time with your potential fur friend and the breeder and remember no question is a silly question.
4.Pugs are obsessed with food. No matter how much they beg or cry don't give in, Pugs are notorious for begging and acting like they have never been fed before in their little lives but its all for show. If you continue to give in you are just teaching them bad habits and also putting their weight at risk, no matter how small the portion might be. We make Carlos sit in his bed at dinner time especially while i'm cooking and if he stays there without crying or barking i will take a small portion out of his dinner feed and reward him. Healthy treats are fine too but remember to balance it out with his feed.
5. Pugs are made to live indoors! Pugs originated in China and made purely just to sit on the lap of Emperors, that's it! Sometimes they even had their own palaces! Later on in Europe they were highly regarded as royalty and again lived in their own castles and were treated with the utmost respect. Nowadays people think its ok to leave Pugs outside all night long but they were never designed to live outdoors and to even consider having a Pug as an outside animal makes me angry! Consider another breed but Pugs are made for castles and cuddles not outdoors.
6. Pugs are so easy to train. Because of their obsession with food Pugs are super easy to train! They will do anything for food. When we took Carlos to puppy school he was the show dog everyone envied since he would do everything the teacher told him to do just for a small morsel of food. Now yes, sometimes they are naughty and they will try get away with not listening or doing the act properly but no trick means no food! All of a sudden they doing cartwheels and the moon walk just for that piece of biscuit.
7. Overweight Pugs are not ok. I have had this argument countless times with owners but bottom line is it's not fair on your pet to be overweight, Pugs with unhealthy weights are prone to brachycephalic symptoms and health issues which only become more aggravated the bigger the Pug. Talk to your Vet about feeding or go on a dietary plan and i promise your Pug will thank you for it.
8.Be ok with having a stalker! Yes, you read right, Your Pug will be your biggest fan from the moment you bring him/her home. They will imprint on one person who they will consider Alpha and that is your privacy gone. They will follow every step you take, will never be more than a few centimetres from you and will watch your every move. No matter where you go, he will be there ! Carlos still to this day has to watch me in the shower, licking away at the condensation on the glass paranoid I might evaporate into the steam. And don't even think about trying to pee with the door closed.