Pug FAQ.


One of the things I am contacted about the most is Pugs! I am often asked questions about how I found Lily and Lola and what they're like as pets so I thought that a blog post FAQ could be useful to those of you thinking about adopting/buying a Pug (from the perspective of someone who has owned 2 for the past 3 1/2 years).

I hope I have covered the main type of questions below but if you want to know anything else please leave a comment or send me an email and I'd be happy to answer.

Where did you get Lily and Lola from? Do you know any Pug breeders? Where should I get my Pug from?

I get asked these questions the most and I can't help too much unfortunately. I did a blog post a while ago explaining that I found Lily and Lola at the Dogs Trust in Leeds (click here to have a read).

If you're looking for a dog I would strongly recommend trying the Dogs Trust or your local animal rescue centre first as the dogs in there are truly in need of a good home, however you have to be on the ball. L&L had been living at the Dogs Trust for just 3 days when I went to visit, and shortly after I arrived a queue of other people turned up wanting to adopt them.

Animal rescue centres often have puppies and smaller dogs as well as larger breeds so it really is worth having a look to see if there's a pet that would suit your lifestyle/circumstances. I personally found it very rewarding adopting as opposed to buying but of course it's a very personal decision to make.

Alternatively you could register with a Pug rescue society and get on the waiting list for any that may need rehoming in the future.

If you do want to buy from a breeder I would recommend reading this.

How did Lily and Lola end up at the Dogs Trust?

The story goes that one day a woman turned up at the Dogs Trust with a car full of small dogs saying that her Mum had died and she wasn't able to look after them. A few days later the same woman brought in some more small dogs to be rehomed (including Lily, Lola and their fellow Pug friend Lulu - who was adopted in less than 24 hours!)

Obviously there is something not quite right about this story which makes me think L&L had been at some sort of puppy mill. They are very small for the breed and, at 18 months old, hadn't been toilet trained or trained to walk on a lead. Also Lily is mostly blind in one eye due to an eye infection which had not been treated. I also think Lily is slightly brain damaged as she can be quite slow and confused at times. Taking this into account, the Dogs Trust insisted that L&L should be adopted together and, although many people had asked, they would not seperate them.

How much did it cost you to buy everything you needed for Lily and Lola? What other costs are there?

Before Lily and Lola came home with me I paid a visit to a pet shop and spent around £90-£100 on a dog bed, bedding, 2 collars, 2 harnesses, 2 leads, 2 tags and toys. In hindsight I should have gone easy on the toys as L&L aren't really that interested and don't tend to play with toys or balls (they can't fit them in their mouths!) They do however like small teddies so if I do buy them new toys I tend to go for those.

The Dogs Trust ensure dogs are spayed/neutered, microchipped, up to date with vaccinations and have any outstanding medication before you adopt them, but obviously if you go via a breeder you would need to factor in these costs which your vet would be able to advise about.

Monthly costs are mainly food and treats, then on top of that there is regular flea/worm treatment and yearly 'booster' vaccinations at the vets. The annual vaccinations cost me approximately £30 per dog.

What is their temperament? Do they make good pets?

Yes, they make great pets! The personality of a Pug is rather special indeed. They are cheeky, greedy, loveable little things and love nothing more than being near people, and if possible sat right on top of them.

Lily and Lola have huge personalities for such small dogs, but they're both very different. Lily is gentle, loving and a little bit needy. Lola is confident, independent, naughty and protective of her Sister. She is also extremely greedy and goes absolutely mad at dinner time.

L&L follow me around everywhere I go, and yes, that means on trips to the toilet. It was strange at first but now it just seems normal to have 2 shadows following me round no matter where I go.

Pugs sleep on average 14 hours a day and L&L produce a rather loud volume of snoring for 2 small things. 

Do they need a lot of grooming/looking after?

Pugs shed a lot of hair due to their double coat. Jonathan and I have learnt to accept that our house is always going to be full of Pug hairs and that our black clothes will never be the same again. Regular brushing and using a "furminator" type comb can help but I haven't managed to find a solution as yet.

Pugs have bulbous eyes (as if you hadn't noticed) and folds/wrinkles which need to be kept clean to avoid infection. I use cotton wool pads or a clean cloth with warm water to carefully wipe inside the wrinkles, and then I dry them thoroughly. I try to do this every day if I can or at the very least every other day. Failure to do so can result in infection and a very smelly Pug! I also try to clean the inside of their ears as often as I can to avoid any waxy build up.

Pug nails grow rather quickly so regular nail cutting is a must. Walking on the pavement can help to keep them filed down, however Lily has flat feet so her nails don't touch the ground when she walks so the only option for her is taking her to a groomers on a regular basis to have her nails trimmed.

Do they need a lot of exercise?

From my experience my 2 are happy with walking little and often. Lily gets out of breath very quickly so I try to avoid really long walks, especially in extreme hot or cold weather as they don't cope well with it. If you want a dog you can take running, jogging or hiking then Pugs are not for you.

Can Pugs develop lots of health problems?

Unfortunately there are a few health conditions that Pugs can develop. An internet search will highlight various different problems that they can face, but I think it's important to say that of course all Pugs are going to be different. Therefore I wanted to just tell you about the problems L&L have faced.

As I mentioned earlier, when Lily arrived at the Dogs Trust she was half blind in one eye due to an eye infection which had not been treated. This left her eye scarred and her vision blurred. Thankfully she has one eye which works perfectly well, however a couple of weeks after I adopted her she developed an ingrowing eyelash in her good eye. This was causing ulcers to form on the eye and it was really uncomfortable for her. Lily had a series of eye drops before she was referred to see an eye specialist where a 15 minute appointment cost around £120, followed by an operation to remove the hair which cost just under £700. Therefore I would strongly recommend taking out pet insurance as I was able to claim this back minus the excess.

Apart from that (*touches wood*) Lily and Lola haven't experienced too many problems with the exception of some reverse sneezing which lasts for a few seconds at a time and causes them a bit of discomfort.

I hope reading this hasn't scared you off too much! I think as well as telling you how brilliant, funny and loving Pugs are, and how much I love Lily and Lola to bits, it is important to be honest about what it's like looking after Pugs, and any kind of pet come to that!

As I said at the beginning, if you would like to ask me anything else do feel free to leave a comment or contact me via email/Twitter and I'll get back to you straight away.


  1. What a great post! I love dogs and would really like to get one in the future, sadly I don't think we have the time with work right now to fully look after one. My family dog is still at home with my parents and miss taking him for walks. Like you I am pro adoption as there are so many beautiful lovely dogs who have been left through no fault of their own and think the work the Dogs Trust do is great! Thanks for such an informative post - Lily and Lola are beautiful!
    Lianne x

  2. I got a pug puppy last week, (he's currently asleep with his head on my mouse pad on my laptop) and have found this post really useful as I've always had larger dogs like Border Collies. You were extremely lucky to get them from Dogs Trust, I can imagine the demand (especially nowadays) would be crazy! I've always adopted dogs from places like that but for my pug I did buy from a breeder after a lot of research. It has been expensive but he's worth every penny. The only thing I would like to know is how much they eat? I know mine's only a puppy, but I'm curious about how much you feed yours now they're grown up. Oh and tell me about it with the hairs, I'm already covered in black hairs! Thanks for this post! Lily and Lola are gorgeous!

  3. I loved reading this post! I don't have a pug but I have a little yorkie pup and I think we (without knowing at the time) got her from a puppy farm. Its awful to think how they're treated there but at least your 2 have a loving home now :) I was planning on doing a puppy mill post soon so if you don't mind I'll link to your story too when I get round to writing it up! Laura x

  4. such an informatitive post! i love pugs, but don't own a dog as of yet, but i love reading posts like this - you need to understand the breed before buying / adopting one. i love your blog by the way, i'm a new follower and can't believe i only found you recently!

  5. I think this is a great post! My boyfriends family have two (well they are 3/4 pug and 1/4 shih-tzu). I adore them! They're so cute, funny, intelligent and so affectionate. I didn't used to like small dogs but I definitely will get one now :) they're definitely my favourite breed! xx

  6. I love pugs! Your two are so sweet! This is really great information, and I love that you have highlighted that you are better off going to a rescue first - my father in law runs a rescue and to hear some of the dogs stories is just heartbreaking! I know that's where I'll be getting my future dog, but I dont know which breed yet! Xo

  7. I'd love to get a Pug one day, I'm a student atm so obviously it's not really possible, but I think they're the sweetest things ever! Your post has really helped me :)

    L x

  8. @Rebecca-Louise - Aw you have a little black one? I'm jealous, they're so cute!

    I feed them twice a day, once first thing in the morning and then at about 4.30pm.

    I give them dry food only as wet stuff gives them the runs (!) and I use the guide on the packet which gives a daily amount, which I split into two. It works out to be roughly a big handful each per meal.

    Hope this helps!xx

  9. I've had Louie two years and this was helpful to me!! he does the reverse sneezing quite often but I had no idea what it was called! ahh puggies. loves them xx

  10. Its so sweet how you adopted them together :) I hope you all continue to have a long, happy and healthy life together !!! I have a miniature schnauzer and i couldnt magine what i would do if something happened to him ! Great post :)

    Beautiful Dreams

  11. What a great post :) you've made me really want to adopt a Pug too. Don't think I could quite handle 2 though! Lily & Lola are such a cute pair.


  12. Loved reading this post :) you've really made me want to adopt a Pug now. Don't think I could handle 2 though! But Lily & Lola are such a cute pair.


  13. I'd love a terrier but will be working full time for the foreseeable future. Are they ok alone during the day? I know some breeds suffer from separation anxiety more than others.

  14. @daisyisarobot -

    Hi Daisy, thanks for your comment.

    It's hard for me to say as I work part time so I am at home with them most of the time.

    And before that I had a dog walker who visited regularly. They were always fine inbetween her visits.

    With them sleeping 14 hours a day of lot of this sleep is throughout the day on and off. They're very lazy!


  15. awh I just love them an awful lot! love!

  16. I have a pug and I agree wholeheartedly with all of this. My wee one is nearly 5 and you do have to accept that you will always be covered in hairs!
    You're right as well you do need good pet insurance it is imperative with pugs, and get it as soon as possible as a lot of insurers dont cover existing conditions. They're brilliant wee dogs though, so happy, so so greedy and just so lovable!



  17. oh gosh, pugs are seriously the cutest! i loved reading all about them. how precious!
    xo TJ

  18. What a brilliant, helpful post! I would love a dog again, it just wouldn't be fair on one at the moment as I work 9-5. Lily and Lola are too sweet!

  19. Have Lily and Lola been around small kids before, and if so do they act normally around them? :)
    I'd love a pug, but I have a baby brother and I'd love to know xx

  20. This is a great post! I really want a pug so have looked online at all the health problems that they can get, so I'm really pleased that you addressed them all here as well. Your pugs are gorgeous and it's great to get some first-hand stories about them!

  21. @Millie H - Mine haven't been around many children to be honest, apart from if children come up to them in the street which happens occasionally.

    Usually they're fine and will lick their fingers (checking for food!), sometimes they have a little bark.

    But they never bite!

    The one thing my 2 hate is scooters or bikes as it scares them so they will bark at children who go past on those.

    Hope this helps a little! x

  22. This post has been super helpful :) I really love pugs! I'd love to have my own one day when I've moved out!

    x x x

  23. Aww, they're beautiful! :)


  24. This is such a fab post. They were all the questions we had when looking at pug puppies. In the end we decided we wanted a dog we could take on longer walks, but the boyf loves pugs so we went with the pug x jack russell - he's got the cuddly temperament of a pug & the craziness of a jr. we love it.
    the boyf still wants a pug too though. x