Looking for the basics in Pug care? From Pug coat care to Pug face wrinkle care, we've got you covered. And here's some good news - Pugs are relatively easy to care for compared with other dog breeds and you can cover most of it with just a few minutes per month!
(bonus tip: if you're looking for expert advice on house training your Pug, go check out the 2 FREE videos on how to potty train a Pug fast and easy)
Pug Coat Care
Let's start care of your Pug with the fur. Brush your Pug with a brush that has stainless steel bristles once a week. This will help cut down on the fur in the house as well as keep your Pug looking neat. But don't expect miracles - Pugs shed a ton! In the summer, when we brush our fawn Pug, it looks like he's smoking as the fur is flying off.
Some folks brush their Pug everyday because it helps reduce the amount of fur in the house. Pugs usually enjoy being brushed and many look forward to it. Simply brush in the direction the fur grows without pressing down too hard on the brush. Use smooth, even and gentle strokes.
As far as bathing goes, a lot of folks like to bath their Pugs every other week to once per month. The choice is yours based on how active your Pug is. Personally, we do every other week in the summer and once per month in the winter.
Pug Face Wrinkle Care
Here's one of the critical components of Pug care. The folds and crinkles on a Pug's face are magnets for gook! This stuff gets in there because Pugs spend a lot of time with their face in their food bowl, outside in the grass, etc. Plus, the face wrinkles collect a cocktail of dried tears and mucous...yum!
Clean those facial folds to make sure they don't develop any infections or fungus. We've had a couple infections with our fawn Pug, and while it's not a big deal to fix (non-prescription pads from the vet did the trick), you're best approach is to not let it happen in the first place. Since all that gook makes a Pug smell a bit "yucky", you've got extra motivation to clean the wrinkles regularly.
Cleaning the facial folds is easy if you've got a cooperative dog. Our black Pug is a bit of a baby when it comes to this...he constantly turns his face around to avoid the wipes! Best advice is to start cleaning the folds when they're a puppy so they get used to it.
You'll need a baby wipe that's non-alcoholic / non-scented. Hold the Pug firmly and gently run the wipe in the folds above the nose and below the eyes. Continue until the wipe is clean after running through the wrinkles. Finally, apply a very thin layer of Vaseline inside the fold above the nose the give some protection and healing to this sensitive area. I'd recommend doing this once per week or once every other week at the latest.
Pug Toe Nails
Pugs nails grow fast and you'll quickly find your Pug has some awfully sharp nails. This can be no fun if your Pug is a jumper or you have small children in the house.
There are a few options to trim the Pug's nails. You can clip ‘em, you can Dremel ‘em (a Dremel is a small power tool that has a sander attachment) or you can punt this task to a professional groomer or vet (see, there's an easy way out!). Clippers are less hassle but you run the risk of cutting the toe's vein if you're not too careful.
One of the best times to trim nails this is when your Pug is deeply asleep. They won't put up much of a struggle and they tend to be very relaxed. To avoid cutting too far down on the nail, clip just the curved part of the nail.
A Pug needs their nails trimmed every two to three weeks. There's more than an occasional scratch to you if you don't do this...Pug nails that grow too long can cause bleeding and breakdown of the pasterns on the paws, which will cause your Pug pain when walking.
Use a baby wipe or a damp cloth. Gently wipe clean only the areas of the ear that you can see....don't go too deep! Think what it would be like for somebody to do the same thing to you and that will help you measure the depth correctly. Clean the ears as frequently as they appear dirty. Our fawn gets dirty ears and needs cleaning once per month, while our black Pug hardly ever needs ear cleaning.
Pugs need their teeth brushed just like humans! There are two options - have your vet do it (easy answer!) or try it yourself. Again, it's best to start this when they're puppies to make it a habit.
Buy a dog toothbrush (they make them special) and dog toothpaste from your pet shop, and go to work like you were brushing the teeth of a small child. I know it sounds strange, but it's a pretty easy task and some Pugs even look forward to it! Check with your vet on how often to do this, but I tend to do this every 2 to 3 months for my Pugs.
Pug Nutrition and Health Issues
These are big issues beyond the scope of general Pug care, so we'll cover them in a separate article.