This page contains links to DWN's and our Partner's & Collaborator's resources, research and reports that pertain to management of health and welfare issues in Pugs.
The pug is a brachycephalic breed. Breathing issues, spinal (hemivertebrae & screw tails) as well as several ocular issues can impact the quality and length of life in the Pug breed. Locomotor concerns (hip and patella defects) are also recognized issues.
Obesity, reproductive (whelping) issues and thermoregulation ( heat intolerance ) are important management concerns.
Breed Conformation and Welfare Issues
FECAVA International Resources:
Healthy Breeding: Brachycephalic issues: shared resources
Hemivertebrae in Pugs
The Evolution of Petface
Pug Myelopathy References
Pug_Myelopathy_References final 04.28.21_Smiler.docx
The document contains references to research on French Bulldogs as well as Pugs.
The Kennel Club and University of Cambridge's Respiratory Function Grading Scheme
Points of concern for special attention by judges
Dogs showing respiratory distress including difficulty in breathing or laboured breathing
Excessive nasal folds
Excessively prominent eyes
Hair loss or scarring from previous dermatitis
Signs of dermatitis in skin folds
Sore eyes due to damage or poor eyelid conformation
Sweden: SKK: Breed Specific Instructions: BSI
Pug – brachycephalic and small molossoïd breed
Areas of risk are:
1. Breathing problems: Forced breathing with pronounced snoring sounds due to short muzzle, pinched nostrils, narrow respiratory channels (insufficient room in pharyngeal cavities and airways) and/or short and open rib cage with short ribs and sternal bone. Obesity/overweight. See Appendix 2.
2. Face: Overly short muzzle with improper dentition, excessive loose skin, and hair on a nose wrinkle disturbing the function of the eyes as well as the nose. The standard does in fact not ask for a nose wrinkle – neither unbroken nor broken.
3. Eyes: Protruding eyes, which increase the risk of eye injuries. See Appendix 3.
Look for sound breathing, sound skin and eyes, the formation of the rib cage, and the size and weight. The standard mentions the ideal weight to be 6,3-8,1 kg. The standard calls for: “Muzzle: relatively short”
BSI - Nordic Kennel Clubs 2018 (second edition)
DWN Articles and Blogs
The LIFE file has rates of most common and highest risk causes of death.
The VC file has rates of most common and highest risk conditions requiring veterinary care.
A walking test developed for brachycephalic dog breeds will be adopted by the FinnishPug Dog Club. The Club has included the test in their requirements for breeding dogs. The requirement of passing the walking test will come into force when tests can be carried out all over Finland. The Finnish...
IPFD has an ongoing role to report on international activities for health and welfare for dogs and to serve as an information hub. Issues with brachycephalic dogs continue to be at the forefront of health efforts by many stakeholders. Our partners at the Swedish Kennel Club have recently...
...They state that their goal is to identify "the most resilient dogs among thepug population in order to establish the healthiest possible pool of dogs for breeding". Pug fitness test Germany 2019.pdf The new effort in German exemplifies several important approaches: It has been de...
Internationaler Klub für Französische Bulldoggen e.V. (IKFB) feature article and video; breeding soundness tests - French Bulldogs
The attached paper describes a preliminary study done at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine of The University of Helsinki at the request of and in collaboration with The FinnishPug Club. The study aimed to determine whether aspects of clinical history and symptoms or other evaluations could diffe...
...breeding age French Bulldogs andPugs , using owner questionnaire, physical examination and walk tests Authors: Aromaa, M; Lilja-Maula, L; Rajamäki, MM Source: Animal Welfare, Volume 28, Number 3, August 2019, pp. 287-298(12) Publisher: Universities Federation for Animal Welfare DOI: http...
...there has been a lot of focus of health and welfare issues in brachycephalics and in the spring information aboutPugs in the Netherlands. The situation of government regulations on dog breeding is a complex one, and without appropriate inclusion of all relevant stakeholders, we cannot be sure tha...
Summary of Kennel Club Breed Records:Pug 2020 A new research report, Summary of Kennel Club Breed Records:Pug 2020, has been produced by Cassandra Smith. The report utilises publicly available data offered by The Kennel Club to describe health and breeding-related statistics and information. T...
Update 2020: Read about the current scheme: The Kennel Club and University of Cambridge Respiratory Function Grading Scheme. And agreement to partner with the Federation Cynologique Internationale, and their member clubs from 90+ countries throughout the world. Brachycephalic breeds' healt...
...English Bulldogs andPugs .
...French Bulldogs &Pugs ... VetCompass developed infographics, which summarise brachycephalic breed research... What's available? Bulldogs in the UK: Facing up to some challenges + full paper; French Bulldogs: Soaring UK popularity + full paper; Pugs : Weighing up health priorities + ful...
...Dogue de Bordeaux andPug breeds from the 1800's through today is illuminating in terms of...
De Decker, S., Packer, R., Cappello, R., Harcourt-Brown, T. R., Rohdin, C., Gomes, S. A., Bergknut, N., Shaw, T. A., Lowrie, M., & Gutierrez-Quintana, R. (2019). Comparison of signalment and computed tomography findings in French Bulldogs, Pugs, and English Bulldogs with and without clinical signs associated with thoracic hemivertebra. Journal of veterinary internal medicine, 33(5), 2151–2159. https://doi.org/10.1111/jvim.15556
O’Neill, D.G., Darwent, E.C., Church, D.B. et al. Demography and health of Pugs under primary veterinary care in England. Canine Genet Epidemiol 3, 5 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40575-016-0035-z
Pegram et al. (2021) “Frequency, breed predisposition and demographic risk factors for overweight status in dogs in the UK” Journal of Small Animal Practice. DOI: 10.1111/jsap.13325. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jsap.13325
Dan G O'Neill, Aoife M O'Sullivan, Erin A Manson, David B Church, Paul D McGreevy, Amanda K Boag, Dave C Brodbelt, Canine dystocia in 50 UK first‐opinion emergency care veterinary practices: clinical management and outcomes, Veterinary Record, 10.1136/vr.104944, 184, 13, (409-409), (2019). https://bvajournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1136/vr.104108
O’Neill, D.G., Pegram, C., Crocker, P. et al. Unravelling the health status of brachycephalic dogs in the UK using multivariable analysis. Sci Rep 10, 17251 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-020-73088-y
Great expectations, inconvenient truths, and the paradoxes of the dog-owner relationship for owners of brachycephalic dogs
Packer RMA, O’Neill DG, Fletcher F, Farnworth MJ (2019) Great expectations, inconvenient truths, and the paradoxes of the dog-owner relationship for owners of brachycephalic dogs. PLOS ONE 14(7): e0219918. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0219918
Rohdin, C., Jäderlund, K.H., Ljungvall, I., Lindblad-Toh, K. and Häggström, J. (2018), High prevalence of gait abnormalities in pugs. Veterinary Record, 182: 167-167. https://doi.org/10.1136/vr.104510 https://bvajournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1136/vr.104510
Pug Dog Club of America: Pug Dog Encephalitis (PDE) Genetics Research Project - University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine
See more ongoing Research info at PDCA: https://www.pugdogclubofamerica.com/pug-health-research.html