Wednesday, March 30, 2016

So You're Getting A Pug!

Adding a sweet little pug to your family will be one of the greatest joys and incredible adventures that you could have. Those head tilts with melt your heart everyday, and their clownish personalities will be a source of endless entertainment. Delly has been such a fun addition to our family, and we've learned a lot along the way! It's hard to remember when she looked like this! (In true pug fashion, she is snoring at my feet right now.)


Because Pugs & Pearls is a little haven for pug people, I have received many, many questions about adding a pug to the family! Pug people are the best people, by the way. Welcome all of you! (Find more Pug Posts here!) So, you're getting a pug! Now what?!

Here's What You'll Need:

A Harness// Pugs cannot use regular collars. A harness is the way to go! I wrote an entire post on my favorite brand of harness. Not only is it better for their necks, but you get better control when going for walks. I don't have any preferences on leashes-we just use your standard non retractable one. Don't forget an ID tag! Those jingles will help you keep track of your little guy.

Baby Wipes// Pugs have some crazy deep wrinkles that get all kinds of crud in there. Unscented baby wipes really help keep their faces clean and stench-free. 

Deshedding Brush// Pugs are also big time shedders. In fact, we keep a lint roller right by the door, #puglife. A deshedding brush is awesome for keeping the dog hair at bay. You can use it as often as you'd like, but we find that brushing about every 2-3 days makes a huge difference. 

Something to Chew On// Those puppy teeth are no joke! Delly likes Nylabones, but I've read mixed opinions about their safety. Either way give them something to chew on that isn't your shoe. We lost a keyboard at work because of her! I brought little Delly with me to the office, thought she was sleeping and instead she was chewing on the USB cord...whoops! We've also had great success with stuffingless toys that you can find at any pet shop. 

Bowls// A puppy needs short and shallow bowls, so keep that in mind when you are shopping. We've had the best success with glass bowls. We did use metal bowls for awhile but we found that Delly's chin would break out a lot because of them. The vet suggested switching to glass and we haven't had a problem since. 

*Ask your vet about food and medicines! They'll be able to recommend your best options. 

Notes on Training:

Crate// Crate training was the best choice for us. If you are getting a puppy make sure to get a small crate or one that can be sectioned off. When potty training the crate will be your best friend. Put them in there when you can't watch them like a hawk. Don't punish them by putting them in their crate either. You want them to feel at home in there, not like it's puppy jail. 

Tricks// Teaching tricks on your own just takes a lot of patience and treats! Give them command words and just repeatedly practice. Pugs are very food motivated, so treats and praise are a great incentive. Delly knows: sit, stay, lay down, 'up', get in your kennel, and 'where's your bone?' (toy). Pugs are so smart, and they'll pick it up pretty quick. But, they also won't obey if they don't feel like it! 

Potty Training// There are a lot of methods out there. Here's what we did: We started taking Delly out every hour on the hour for a week. We came up with a command, in her case "Go Pee!". We'd stay outside as long as possible and reward her as soon as she went. Training treats are perfect for this, and we would keep a couple in our pocket. It's important to take them out pretty soon after meals, drinking or vigorous play. After a week we'd change it to every two hours, and then 3...etc. It was incredibly time consuming! Especially at night. Ugh, I don't miss those days! But it worked! It probably took about 6 months to be accident free. I think it would have been sooner but we slipped up a few times and waited to long to take her out. If we couldn't watch her, she was in her crate. Oh, if you catch them starting to go inside-startle them so they stop, and immediately take them outside. It's all about a routine and reinforcement. 

Attention// That sweet baby is going to miss their mommies and littermates, so make sure you give them tons of love and attention. This part is easy to do because you will be obsessed with them anyway. Our breeder gave us a towel that had the scent of Delly's litter on it, and we made sure she got to cuddle with that a lot at first. You will quickly become their family, so don't worry too much about that. 

Leave me a comment: Are you getting a pug?! Tell me all about them! What questions do you have about pugs or pug puppies? 

13 comments:

  1. Great post! I can't wait to share pug stories after Cooper gets here!
    When you were potty training, did you get up throughout the night like you would with a baby?
    Another thing us first time pug owners need help with is how to choose a vet. Any advice on that?

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    1. For potty training at night: take Cooper out before you go to bed, and no food or water for a while before bedtime. If he wakes up and cries, take him out (its really exhausting) but don't play with him and put him right back in the crate. It's usually not long before they can hold it all night and they don't pee in their sleep either. I've read that they won't go where they sleep- that's why you need a small crate at first. If it's too big they will pee in the corner and still have room to sleep. It's really one big experiment and you will get a routine down in no time! It's a lot of work at first and you will be doing a lot of spot cleaning and laundry!
      As for picking a vet, the best way is to ask your friends who they like! That's how we found ours. Thanks for your great questions :)

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    2. We are currently looking for a new vet in the city we are moving to and I have narrowed it down to a couple. The primary reason I've chosen the two I have - one vet owns a pug and the other loves them. Pugs have a lot of breathing problems as they get older and its great to find a vet that knows what she/he is doing!!

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  2. Omg. Delly was such a cute little baby!
    I would add that pugs really are clingy little dogs. They need lots of attention and love. If you are someone that has to work a lot of hours/is away from home traveling a lot (and not willing to bring your pug -we take ours everywhere!), a pug is not for you. They are the happiest when they are with their people. Maddie and BabyBelle are pretty much like velcro to me, but I am able to be home all day with them.

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    1. I couldn't agree more! They are people dogs, for sure. Fortunately when Delly was a puppy my husband worked from home and could be with her all the time. That was great for everybody! When he changed jobs and went back to an office, we got her to the point where she could be out of her crate all day and it's been just fine since! I'm so glad to have your opinion and thoughts! Pug people are seriously the best.

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    2. What did y'all do when you had to fly somewhere and brought them with you? We will most likely be bringing him with us when we got back for next Christmas and I want to know as much beforehand as possible about the process.

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    3. So far we haven't flown with a dog, but I do remember researching it one time. Each airline has different policies and they spell them out on their sites. You can have a lap dog on a lot of them as long as they are under a certain weight.

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  3. Aww what a cute puppy! I agree that pugs are an endless source of laughter - mine are the biggest clowns. And I know that they're smart but they are so stubborn and usually refuse to listen unless I have treats haha. They have totally trained US to do what they want!

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  4. It's very great to see your post!I like it .I'm looking forward to you in the next

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  5. They are adorable! Unfortunately I can't not get one because my fiance is allergic to cat/dog hair :(

    http://memoriesofthepacific.blogspot.com.es/

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  7. Totally agree... and the bowls... I did not know they were so important until my Tito kept breaking out on his chin. It turns out it was the bowls! (i had been using plastic or metal...) Now it is ceramic/glass ONLY and he is all cleared up!

    Also, pugs have VERY sensitive skin and many have food sensitivites that show up as skin issues. Tito had a very itchy ear for a long time. I kept it very clean and didn't know what was going on. Finally, changed his food as suggested to me and it is all cleared up now! No more scratching! And his nose wrinkle doesn't get as icky any more either. Wheat/grain free food is really the way to go. It helps with the gas, too. LOL

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    1. Great points! We changed her bowls to glass and washed them fairly frequently-never had a problem since!
      You are so right about their temperamental skin. A good food goes a long way. Our adopted pug Bailey made such an improvement with her dry skin, nose and scratchy eyes as soon as she got on a good food diet. She looks like a different dog! Nutrition is everything. Thanks for reading!!

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