Ah pugs: cute little bundles of wrinkly joy! They’re so adorable with their squishy face and their little chubby bodies…When you look at your furbaby, the last thing you want to think of are pug health problems.
But, as every pug owner knows, sadly, our babies are prone to some issues. There are breed-specific pug health problems caused by their brachycephalic (flat) skull, that gives them their distinct appearance. Unfortunately, breathing issues, allergies, eye-problems and more accompany the charm of the pug breed.
Pugs have laid-back temperaments and they’re house-friendly dogs that are perfect for apartment or smaller-space living. Pugs don’t require a lot of exercise but they DO require regular walks and activities, which is where some health problems come into play. Between their appetite and penchant for laziness, in many ways pugs are their own worst enemy when it comes to fighting off pug health problems.
Fortunately, because we, their owners, love them so much, we do everything we can to keep them healthy, fit and happy. Here are 10 ways you can prevent pug health problems and keep your dog feeling great for years to come.
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1. Maintain Your Dog’s Healthy Weight
The biggest thing pug owners can do for their dog is help it maintain a healthy weight. Pugs need regular walks daily. While they will never be the dog to take on a marathon, they enjoy occasional “zoomies” in the park and are quite fast when they want to be. Pugs can do agility and some pugs accompany their owners on hikes and jogs.
Pugs don’t do so well in hot conditions, due to their breathing issues, but they can still enjoy time outdoors and need to get regular activity. Pugs should walk at least a few blocks 2-3 times per day with plenty of play on the weekends.
To tell if your pug is overweight view them from the top. You should be able to see a waist that goes in slightly. Pugs can vary in weight from 10-25 pounds (some even larger), so the waist test is a good measure.
Pugs who are overweight experience heart, breathing and joint problems. Weight issues can lead to diabetes which can lead to blindness and death. If you want to avoid pug health problems and help your pug lead a long and happy life, the most important thing you can do is keep their weight in check.
2. Feed Your Pug a Consistent Diet
Similarly, a diet of people food and scraps isn’t for a pug. Many people foods contain toxic ingredients to pugs (onions, avocado, chocolate, artificial sweeteners and more). There are many foods pugs can’t or shouldn’t eat. Don’t risk it. Your pug will try to tell you that he can eat ALL the foods. Don’t believe him.
Feed your pug regular portions 2-3 times per day. Due to pugs tendency to overeat, it’s