How Long Do Pugs Live?

Pugs are a well-known dog breed there are a part of a toy dog group because of their small size. Today the Pug is a very popular breed because of its cute, smushed face. Pugs enjoy being loved and they love owners that are very doting. Pugs come in three colors and they all have a black face mask. They have a large round head, big eyes and a wrinkled brow which allows them to have human-like Expressions. Please have delighted their owners for centuries and they make an ideal house dog today.

Before you get a pug you should understand what you have to do to care for one. Caring for a pug can be a lot of work and you need to properly monitor their house to ensure that they have the longest lifespan. Having a healthy pug can be hard work, but it will be a joy that you don’t regret having.

Origins of the Pug

You may not know this but the Pug is one of the oldest dog breeds in the world. As far back as 400 BC the breed existed. It began in China when ancient Chinese royalty adored it. The Pekingese and the Shih Tzu were other flat faced toy dogs that they enjoyed but the pugs were viewed as so valuable that soldiers guarded them. No one besides royalty and noblemen owned a Pug, and by the 16th century this changed. The Dutch Traders returned to Europe with a pug and the royal family loved it. Ordinary citizens also began to own the Pug and that’s how the popularity of the Pug Rose.

The book was introduced to America following the Civil War but its popularity decreased soon after. Only a few breeders continued breeding the Pug because of his low popularity but when the Pug dog Club of America was established in 1931, its popularity began to increase again. Currently, its popularity is very high since it’s placed 28 out of the 193 breeds of the American Kennel Club recognized in America.

How Long Do Pugs Live

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Everyone wants to know how long they have with their dog. You spend a lot of time loving your dog and you should have realistic expectations for how long you’ll have to spend with them. Even though you should treasure each and every day with your dog, it’s important to have and idea of what the lifespan of your dog is and what factors might influence that life span so that you can give them the best care.

if your pug is healthy and well cared for, they’ll usually live for around 13 to 15 years. There are a lot of factors that affect how long they live including muzzling, neurological conditions, infection and other factors. These factors can significantly shorten their lifespan, and even though we would love our dog to live as long as we do, you should appreciate and give them the proper care up until they are no longer with you. Not all pugs will make it 13 to 15 years, but there are some examples of pug surpassing the average lifespan.

Keep in mind that sometimes you cannot help the factors that your pug develops especially if it’s a congenital condition, so do not blame yourself if your pug develops a disease that you cannot stop. There are a lot of things that you can do to keep your pug healthy and alive, like monitor its weight, make sure it gets proper exercise and feed it amazing food.

Factors that Influence Lifespan

Congenital Diseases

Congenital diseases are ones that your pug is born with and oftentimes, you cannot stop them from developing. Hugs are usually born with congenital heart issues like heart defects and circulatory system issues. Other diseases that they have might have developed later in life and others might stem from the congenital issues they were already born with. The best way to prevent congenital diseases from wreaking havoc on your pug is to buy from a reputable breeder that seeks to eradicate these issues in their litter.


Cancers another unfortunate factor that can influence your plugs lifespan. Cancer can strike any dog at any time but pugs are more prone to certain forms. You need to be aware of malignant skin tumors and cancer and their reproductive organs. Cancer can be treatable if detected early but it’s very dangerous in any form. If left untreated it can lead to early death and if it’s diagnosed too late or has progressed too far, there’s no way to cure your dog. The only way to catch the cancer early is to keep up with your vet visits and ensure that you’re watching your dog for any noticeable changes in their behavior or health.

Spinal or Neurological Conditions

There are a few spinal and neurological conditions that you need to be aware of because they might develop in your pug.

The first one is hemivertebrae which is a condition where the vertebrae of your pug our mouths formed. They usually become wedge-shaped and that means that the spinal cord will become compressed. The compressed spinal cord can weaken your plugs limbs, cause incontinence and result in paralysis.

The next condition is constricted myelopathy. This can be confused with Hemi vertebrae but only occurs in pugs. This condition causes the malformation of the vertebrae also but it can result in loss of coordination and function of limbs. It often progresses to paraplegia in pugs.

Another disease that only occurs in pugs is Pug Dog Encephalitis. It’s also known as necrotizing meningoencephalitis. This is a fatal disease that can occur in pugs as young as two or three years old. This disease inflames the brain and leads to seizures, behavioral changes, weakness, disorientation, and pain. There is not a lot known about this disease other than the fact that it’s a genetic defect in pugs. The prognosis is often grim and there is not much that you can do to stop it from progressing.


Diet is another thing that you need to monitor if you have a pug. A low-quality diet can often have devastating effects on your pugs life span. If their diet is full of fat, empty calories and sugar, their health will Decline and you’ll often see the results in your Pug’s energy or physical abilities. You should ensure that your pug has a nutrient-rich diet that allows them to be in their best condition for as long as possible. If you’re confused about what to feed your puppy you can always consult your vet.

You also have to monitor their diet to be sure they’re not getting wet. Since they’re very small dogs they can gain weight very easily and they have a hard time losing weight once they gain it. Obesity has a lot of strain on the spine, heart, joints and hips, and your pug is already prone to developing issues with these areas. Also, obesity can cause breathing issues with your pug, which is dangerous because your pug is already a brachycephalic breed which is prone to having breathing issues. Be careful and be sure that you feed your dog the best food in the proper amount.


Infections are very dangerous and pugs and they’re the third highest cause of death in adult pugs. Infections account for about 11% of early deaths in pugs. Pugs can fall prey to viral, bacterial and fungal infections just like any dog. Some infections are more serious than others, but a lot of times you can get the infection treated with Veterinary Care. Be sure to consult your back whenever you notice any changes in health or behavior from your pug. It’s better to take your dog to the vet and have nothing be wrong than to have caught infection too late to treat it.


Even though the pugs are known for their cute smushed faces, it is a health risk. Years of selective breeding made the pugs muzzle into the smushed look that is popular today. The muzzle shortened overtime but the soft tissue still remained long and they became compressed. The soft tissues are that are compressed or what causes a variety of health issues in brachycephalic breeds.

They usually suffer from Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome and these symptoms can vary widely. You might notice they have loud snores, noisy breathing, or an intolerance to moderate exercise. It’s also good to know that heat exhaustion, collapse, stroke and sudden death can occur in brachycephalic breeds if you do not watch them while they’re exercising or playing.


A lot of vigorous and excessive exercise can hurt your pug, but letting them be lethargic and lazy can also be dangerous. Find a light workout routine that fits your Pug’s lifestyle. Without a routine workout, the muscles were atrophy and their heart with weekend. You’ll notice them gain a lot of weight and their health will start to decline without exercise. Talk to your vet about coming up with a routine that works for your dog and their health.


It’s important to give your pug a high quality of life. Pugs who have diseases that are not life-threatening issues, like joint conditions, can still have a shorter lifespan. Also, if their pain is not well managed or the condition is not treated appropriately, they will have decreased health and a shortened lifespan. Dogs who are in constant pain are tired of fighting and will give up. You’ll notice it retreat and develop depression. You need to keep a pug with health conditions as comfortable as possible so that they want to keep living. Giving them a nice place to sleep, a lot of attention, and close care is very important to be sure that your pug still wants to live.

If You Have or Want a Pug

If you want to own a Pug or have one, you need to know more about them first. Getting a Pug when you’re unfamiliar with them is bad as you won’t know the proper way to look after them. For your dog to have the best health, be comfortable in your home and presence, you need to understand them fully.

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Whether you are a new dog owner, have owned a dog for years, or just love dogs, our Canine Solutions book will give you an in-depth explanation of the many everyday things that people struggle with as dog owners and will help you maintain your dog around your home. A lot of our readers have used this book to be better dog owners and increase the well being of their dog along with their lifespan.

How to Take Care of a Pug

Monitor Their Weight

An overweight pug will develop other health conditions as a result of the weight, so you should feed them high quality dog food. Also, keep the portions under control and be sure that you converse with your vet about how much your pug should weigh.

Have a Good Relationship With Vet

Keep up with regular veterinary care and make sure you get them they’re scheduled vaccinations. Regular check-ups are also a great idea because you can catch issues before they worsen or progress. Also, you can talk to the vet about different dog foods or exercise plans to keep your pug healthy.

Treat them with Caution

Because pugs are a brachycephalic breed, be sure to give them hands-On supervision. Watch them while they’re swimming or exercising because they might have trouble breathing and be sure you keep them from over-exerting themselves. Consider getting a cooling vest for swimming activities and keep your house a good temperature for them.

The best thing is to be sure that your Pug is happy. Even though you want to keep them healthy take them out to the dog park and be sure they know you love them.