Known for their cute wrinkly faces and adorable personality, pugs have been a favorite among dog lovers for ages. In fact, the American Kennel Club ranked them as one of the most popular dog breeds between 2018-2019.
Thinking of getting yourself a black pug? Read on to learn more about its origin, physical features, personality, and more!
But before we begin, here’s an interesting fact about pugs in general. They have their signature wrinkly faces because the ancient Chinese bred them intending to create those wrinkled lines on their foreheads. The lines were similar to the Chinese character for “prince” (王).
History of the Black Pug
The origin of the black pug dates back to 700 BC. Some sources mention that their existence dates as far back as 400 BC.
Black pugs are believed to originate from China, where they were kept as companion dogs for emperors and other wealthy dignitaries. They thought that the pugs brought them good luck, so they valued them so much that they went as far as employing servants and guards to care for and protect them.
The Tibetan Buddhists also kept them as companions in their monasteries. It is also believed that black pugs were bred in Egypt as gods.
In the late 1500s, Dutch traders from China introduced the black pug to other parts of the world, like Japan, and Europe, specifically in England and Holland. There, they quickly became a favorite among royalty. This included Queen Victoria of England and Prince William of Holland. The breed made its first appearance in the US after the Civil War.
Several kennel clubs and organizations have recognized the black pug as a dog breed. In 1885, the American Kennel Club recognized this breed, classifying it under the toy dog group. The World Canine Organization recognized it in 1966.
Other clubs that acknowledged this dog breed include:
- The Canadian Kennel Club
- Australian National Kennel Council
- British Kennel Club
Like other pugs, black pugs have a wrinkly, short-muzzled face and a curly tail. They also have a compact, square-like body and grow to a height of about 1-14 inches. Black pugs have an average weight of between 14 to 18 pounds and a lifespan of approximately 12-15 years.
So, are black pugs rare? Well, not really.
They are actually considered the second most common type of pugs, with the most popular one being the fawn pug. Other than the fur coat color, the difference between the black pug and other pugs is that it has a single fur coat layer. This means it doesn’t shed much.
Personality and Temperament
Black pugs are known to be quite affectionate and loyal to their owners. They love snuggling up on their owners’ laps, making them great lapdogs. Also, this dog gets along with everyone, including strangers.
You won’t have to worry about their interaction with other pets because they don’t have a prey drive. What’s more, they are easy to train, making them perfect for first-time dog parents. However, pugs get easily distracted and bored with repetitive tasks, so it is best to make your training sessions fun and captivating.
Pugs, in general, require a moderate amount of exercise (about 20-30 minutes.) Due to their short-muzzled faces, they can have breathing problems if they exercise too much.
Some of the gentle exercises you can engage your furry little pal include daily walks for about 30 minutes or allowing it to play with its favorite toy in your backyard.
You can also engage it in mental stimulation activities, such as teaching it new tricks and playing hide and seek. These exercises will help burn the excess energy and prevent it from getting bored.
Feeding and Nutrition Requirements
Typically pugs are greedy eaters, meaning they can overeat if not monitored closely. They also gain weight quickly, so they can become obese if they eat too much. And since pugs are a brachycephalic dog breed, they will have breathing problems due to excess weight.
Vets recommend feeding a pug puppy about 50 calories per pound of their body weight and an older pug approximately 40 calories per pound a day. This is because the older ones are less active, therefore, can easily gain weight.
The nutritional requirements for a pug depend on various factors, such as its age, size, general health, and whether it is pregnant. So, it is best to consult your veterinarian to know what kind of food is ideal for your pet.
Do black pugs have more health problems? Although they are low-maintenance pets, their natural body structure makes them more prone to many health issues. Some of them include:
Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome
One of the main respiratory issues pugs have is the Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome (BAOS.) This is due to the shorter skull length in their faces, leading to excess tissues in their airways, obstructing airflow.
Black pugs with this health condition often have difficulties breathing even when engaging in moderate exercises.
Due to their large, protruding eyes, black pugs are more susceptible to serious eye problems. Their eye structure also puts them at a higher risk of damaging them, especially when running into objects like furniture.
Some of the symptoms to look out for in your pet include; discolored spots on the eyes, discharge coming out of the eyes, and extremely watery eyes.
The black pugs’ wrinkly faces trap bacteria, dirt, and dust, causing the skin to become itchy. This leads to excessive scratching and rubbing, resulting in raw skin that can easily contract infections.
What’s more, their curly pug tails also trap moisture and dirt, causing them to feel extremely itchy.
The upside for black pugs is that they don’t shed as much as their fawn counterparts. Black pugs only have a single coat, while fawn pugs have a double coat, which means double the shedding to cope with!
Bone and Joint Issues
Typically black pugs have short legs and heavier upper bodies. This structure makes them more prone to joint and bone problems. The main condition in this category is Luxating Patella.
This is a condition whereby a black pug’s knee is dislocated. Among the signs that your furry companion has this problem include:
- Difficulties standing up
- Hopping or jumping in an attempt to stand on one leg
Pug Dog Encephalitis
Also known as PDE, this is an inherited health condition and causes the inflammation of the brain. Pugs with this problem often have seizures. They may also be lethargic and show a lack of muscle coordination.
How Much Do Black Pugs Cost?
Black pugs are quite cheaper than fawn-colored ones. Normally, a black pug may cost between $500-$800.
If this price range happens to be a little bit high for you, there are many animal shelters with pugs that need a loving home and companion. All you have to do is find one near you and adopt a pug.
Should You Buy a Black Pug?
This depends entirely on your needs. Black pugs are great dogs, but they are not suitable for all instances. For example, they don’t make for good guard dogs. The following is a list of black pug pros and cons to help you make the right decision.
Black Pug Pros
- Great lap dog
- Gets along with other pets
- Not as expensive as other pugs
- Easy to train
Black Pug Cons
- Prone to joint and bone problems
- Can easily develop breathing problems
- Their eyes are more prone to injuries
Conclusion – Black Pugs
Their large, expressive eyes and loving but cheeky personality are just part of what makes black pugs irresistible. If you are looking for the perfect pet, this might be it. But, keep in mind that they crave attention, so expect your little friend to follow you around the house.