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Key Breed Facts
Intelligence / Trainability
Children and Other Pets
Caring for a Puggle
Average Cost to keep/care for a Puggle
Breed Specific Buying Advice
The Puggle is a relative newcomer to the dog world and since they first appeared on the scene these little dogs have become one of the most popular crossbreeds around. They are a cross between a Beagle and a Pug and were bred in America during the eighties when they joined the list of other "designer or hybrid" dogs that have appeared on the scene over recent years.
Puppies can inherit the characteristics of either the Pug or the Beagle, but they can be a combination of both too. Pugs are typically used as sires with the Beagle being the dam thanks to her being that much larger than her Pug counterpart which ensures an easier birth. They have become popular over recent times thanks to the fact they’ve inherited many of their parent breeds physical traits which includes the endearing looks of both the Pug and the Beagle. This together with their mischievous natures has seen Puggles find their way into the hearts and homes of people the world over. They are not yet recognised by international breed clubs which includes The Kennel Club, but many Puggle breed clubs have been set up both here in the UK and elsewhere in the world with an end goal being to breed healthy dogs.
The Puggle first appeared on the scene in America back in the eighties and are the result of crossing a Pug with a Beagle. Over time, these charming little dogs have become popular throughout the world which includes here in the UK and for good reason. Puggles have inherited many of their parent breed traits, although how a puppy turns out is pretty much luck of the draw because the breed is still so young.
For the last 30 years or so, responsible breeders have started taking extra care when choosing their stud dogs with an end goal being to breed healthier Puggles. Hopefully, this means there will be less chance of a Puggle developing any of the hereditary health issues that affect both the Pug and the Beagle. Although some Puggles can look more like a Pug and others more like a Beagle with some being a lovely mixture of the two, the one constant is the fact that these little dogs boast extremely kind, affectionate natures and as a result they remain among the most popular cross breeds around today.
Height at the withers: Males 20 - 38 cm, Females 20 - 38 cm
Average weight: Males 6.8 - 14 kg, Females 6.8 - 14 kg
Puggles can inherit the physical traits of either of their parent breeds namely the Beagle or Pug. As such, it really is the luck of the draw as to how each puppy in a litter turns out with some puppies having adorable wrinkly faces like a Pug, whereas another puppy in the litter has a longer nose and looks more like a Beagle.
With this said, most Puggles tend to have Pug-like faces with the only real difference being in the length of a dog’s nose which means they are less at risk of suffering from breathing issues associated with brachycephalic breeds like the Pug. They also tend to inherit the very expressive and endearing eyes of both parent breeds. They have quite thick set, compact bodies and shortish legs with well laid-back shoulders and a nice firm, level backs. Their loins are nicely muscled and well-rounded which adds to a Puggles compact appearance. Their ears tend to droop down and their tails curl over their backs which dogs always carry gaily which is another distinct trait of both the Beagle and the Pug.
When it comes to their coat, Puggles usually have short, straight hair that lies close to the body. The colour variations can vary quite a lot, but some of the more common Puggle coat colours include the following:
Puggles have masks around their eyes, ears and on their backs which can be varying shades and some of them can have multi-coloured patches in their coats much like the Beagle which is especially true of second generation (f2) Puggles.
When Puggles move, they do with a jaunty, energetic gait and dogs always give the impression of being on the alert.
Prospective Puggle owners should be wary of any puppies or dogs that show any sort of exaggeration whether in their looks or conformation and that extra-small Puggles often come with many health issues so they are best avoided. A responsible breeder would always ensure that puppies they produce are of a good size and conformation and would avoid breeding extra small dogs for these reasons. Males should have both testicles fully descended into their scrotums.
Puggles are known to be playful and even-tempered little dogs which is why they are such a pleasure to have around. They are intelligent and affectionate and boast having a boundless amount of energy. They usually inherit their superb sense of smell from the Beagle and they love nothing more than tracking down any interesting scent they come across. They are incredibly social little dogs that thrive in a family and home environment, but this does have a bit of a downside because Puggles hate being left to their own devices for even shorter periods of time.
As such, they are a great choice for families where at least one person usually stays at home when everyone else is out of the house so they are rarely left alone. If they are left alone for long periods of time, they often suffer from separation anxiety which sees these little dogs developing unwanted and destructive behavioural issues around the home. However, some Puggles can be a lot more independent by nature and as a result they are far less clingy. The problem is that because they are so cute, they often get away with doing things that larger dogs would not be allowed to do. This can lead to a Puggle becoming wilful and harder to handle.
It's very important for puppies to be well socialised from a young enough age so they mature into well-rounded, outgoing dogs no matter where they are taken and who they meet. Their socialisation must include introducing them to as many new situations, people, noises, other animals and other dogs once they have been fully vaccinated.
When it comes to training, this too should begin early bearing in mind that Puggles are sensitive characters having inherited this trait from both parent breeds. As such, they do not answer well to harsh correction or heavier handed training methods. They do, however, respond very well to positive reinforcement. Because they are prone to putting on weight far too easily, it’s best to give a Puggle fewer high value treats when training them rather than lots of lower quality ones. Puggles are also known to like the sound of their own voices, especially when they are young and will happily sit and howl when the mood takes them. As such, it's very important to gently nip this sort of behaviour in the bud, although some Puggles just can't help themselves.
Because they are so inquisitive by nature, there's nothing they like more than exploring new places especially if it’s somewhere they can pick up lots of new scents. As such, care should be taken as to where and when they are allowed to run off their leads because if a Puggle gets a whiff of something interesting, the chances are they will off and investigate what it is, turning a deaf ear to a recall command. Puggles are renowned for being exceptionally good "escape" artists which means that owners must make sure back gardens are made ultra-secure to keep their pets safely in.
Puggles are the perfect choice for first time dog owners because they are so amenable and people-oriented, loving nothing more than to please and to entertain their families. They are particularly good with young children and older people too although playtime can get a bit boisterous at times.
Puggles are very social by nature and even though they have working and hunting dogs in their lineage, they do not have a very high prey drive. However, this is not to say that a dog would not give chase to a smaller animal when the mood takes them and this includes squirrels and the cat from next door.
Puggles have a very playful and energetic side to their natures and love to entertain and be entertained. They are known to be a little mischievous when the mood takes them and being so clever, a Puggle quickly learns how to open a cupboard door to get at any treats that might be in there and because they are so food oriented, they never give up until they succeed.
Puggles are highly adaptable little dogs and providing they are given enough daily physical exercise combined with as much mental stimulation to prevent boredom from setting in they are just as happy living in an apartment as they are living in a house with a very secure back garden.
Puggles form strong ties with their families and dogs are never very happy when they find themselves left on their own for longer periods of time. However, they are not quite as "clingy" as the Pug showing a little more independence to their natures. With this said, they are better suited to people who either work from home or in households where one person stays at home when everyone else is out so they are never alone for any length of time which could see a dog suffering from separation anxiety. This can lead to them being destructive around the home which is a dog's way of relieving any stress they are feeling and a way to keep themselves entertained.
Some Puggles like the sound of their own voices a little too much which is something that needs to be gently nipped in the bud when a dog is still young being careful not to frighten them. Others will only bark when there are strangers about or when something they don't like is going on in their surroundings.
Most Puggles like swimming and will take to the water whenever they can more especially when the weather is hot. However, if anyone who owns a dog that does not like water should never force them to go in because it would just end up scaring them. With this said, care should always be taken when walking a Puggle off the lead anywhere near more dangerous watercourses just in case a dog decides to leap in and then needs rescuing. It is also worth noting that Puggles with shorter muzzles might have trouble breathing which can make swimming more challenging for them.
Puggles are not natural watchdogs although this is not to say a dog would not be quick off the mark to let an owner know when there are strangers about although they would rarely do this aggressively because they are always so eager to say "hello" to people they meet.
Puggles are highly intelligent little dogs and they love to please which in short means that in the right hands, these little dogs are easy to train. The added bonus being they love the one-to-one attention they get during a training session. The key to successfully training a Puggle is to make their training sessions as interesting and as diverse as possible. Shorter training sessions carried out more often are better than longer ones because it keeps these intelligent dogs more focussed which can be challenging at the best of times.
As previously mentioned, puppies need to be well socialised from a young enough age for them to grow up to be more outgoing, confident characters and their training has to start as soon as a puppy is bought home. However, it's best to just teach puppies the "basics" and start their training in earnest once they have been fully vaccinated and slightly older. It's also a good idea to take a Puggle to puppy classes which not only teaches them how to behave, but it gets them used to being around lots of other dogs and people too.
Puggle puppies are incredibly cute and it is all too easy to spoil them when they first arrive in their new homes. With this said, they are very intelligent which means they can quickly get away with too much and this can make a Puggle harder to handle and live with. New owners must start as they mean to go on by teach a Puggle puppy the ground rules right from the word go so they understand the limits and boundaries, bearing in mind that a Puggle puppy may well test these from time to time. Puppies need to be taught the following commands as early as possible:
Puggles make wonderful family pets because they are so kind, gentle and sensitive by nature. However, they do like to be the centre of attention so it's important that any "playtime" does not get too boisterous or rough. Any interaction between toddlers and a Puggle should always be supervised by an adult because playtime might get a bit too rough which could end up with somebody getting frightened or hurt.
Because Puggles are social dogs by nature they usually enjoy the company of other dogs and if they have grown up with a family cat in a household, they generally get on well together. However, they would think nothing of chasing a neighbour's cat if the opportunity ever presented itself. Care also has to be taken when they are around smaller animals and pets, just in case.
For further advice please read our article on Keeping Children Safe around Dogs.
The average life expectancy of a Puggle is between 10 and 15 years when properly cared for and fed an appropriate good quality diet to suit their ages.
The Puggle is known to suffer from a few hereditary health issues that affect their parent breeds, although because the breed is so young, more time is needed to find out which disorders might affect them the most. However, the conditions that seem to affect their parent breeds the most include the following:
Other issues that Puggles may suffer from include the following:
Puggle puppies would have been given their initial vaccinations before being sold, but it is up to their new owners to make sure they have their follow-up shots in a timely manner with the vaccination schedule for puppies being as follows:
There has been a lot of discussion about the need for dogs to have boosters. As such, it's best to talk to a vet before making a final decision on whether a dog should continue to have annual vaccinations which are known as boosters.
A lot of vets these days recommend waiting until dogs are slightly older before spaying and neutering them which means they are more mature before undergoing the procedures. As such they advise neutering males and spaying females when they are between the ages of 6 to 9 months old. Other vets recommend spaying and neutering dogs when they are 6 months old, but never any earlier unless it is for medical reasons.
Puggles are renowned for being extremely food oriented which is great way it comes to training dogs. However, their large appetites and ability to track an appetising scent down with the greatest of ease means they are very prone to weight gain and why care should always be taken as to how much food a Puggle gets fed daily to ensure they don't get too fat.
Some Puggles gain weight after they have been spayed or neutered and it's important to keep an eye on a dog's waistline just in case they do. If a dog starts to put on weight it's important to adjust their daily calorie intake and to up the amount of exercise they are given. Older Puggles too are more prone to gaining weight and again it's essential they be fed and exercised accordingly because obesity can shorten a dog's life by several years. The reason being that it puts a lot of extra strain on a dog's internal organs including the heart.
Puggles are prone to suffering from allergies and it's important for a dog to see a vet sooner rather than later if one flares up. Allergies can be notoriously hard to clear up and finding the triggers can be challenging. With this said, a vet would be able to make a dog with an allergy more comfortable while they try to find out the triggers which could include the following:
All responsible Puggle breeders would ensure that their stud dogs are tested for known hereditary and congenital health issues known to affect the breed by using the following schemes:
The Puggle is not Kennel Club registered, but all responsible breeders must have their stud dogs namely the Pug and the Beagle tested for known hereditary health issues before they use them for breeding purposes.
There are no Kennel Club Assured Breeder requirements because the Puggle is not Kennel Club registered (Sept 2017).
As with any other breed, Puggles need to be groomed on a regular basis to make sure their coats and skin are kept in top condition. They also need to be given regular daily exercise to ensure they stay fit and healthy. On top of this, dogs need to be fed a good quality diet that meets all their nutritional needs throughout their lives.
Puggle puppies are boisterous and full of life which means it's essential for homes and gardens to be puppy-proofed well in advance of their arrival. A responsible breeder would have well socialised their puppies which always leads to more outgoing, confident and friendly dogs right from the word go. With this said, any puppy is going to feel vulnerable when they leave their mother and littermates which must be taken into account. The longer a puppy can remain with their mother, the better although it should never be for too long either.
It's best to arrange to pick puppy up when people in the home are going to be around for the first week or so which is the time needed for a puppy to settle in. Puppy-proofing the home and garden means putting away any tools and other implements that a boisterous puppy might injure themselves on. Electric wires and cables must be put out of their reach because puppies love chewing on things. Toxic plants should be removed from flowerbeds and the home too.
Puppies need to sleep a lot to grow and develop as they should which means setting up a quiet area that's not too out of the way means they can retreat to it when they want to nap and it's important not to disturb them when they are sleeping. It's also a good idea to keep "playtime" nice and calm inside the house and to have a more active "playtime" outside in the garden which means puppies quickly learn to be less boisterous when they are inside.
The documentation a breeder provides for a puppy must have all the details of their worming date and the product used as well as the information relating to their microchip. It is essential for puppies to be wormed again keeping to a schedule which is as follows:
There are certain items that new owners need to already have in the home prior to bringing a new puppy home. It's often a good idea to restrict how much space a puppy plays in more especially when you can't keep an eye on what they get up to bearing in mind that puppies are often quite boisterous which means investing in puppy gates or a large enough playpen that allows a Puggle puppy the room to express themselves while keeping them safe too. The items needed are therefore, as follows:
All puppies are sensitive to noise including Puggle puppies. It's important to keep the noise levels down when a new puppy arrives in the home. TVs and music should not be played too loud which could end up stressing a small puppy out.
As previously mentioned, Puggle puppies would have been given their first vaccinations by the breeders, but they must have their follow up shots which is up to their new owners to organise. The vaccination schedule for puppies is as follows:
When it comes to boosters, it's best to discuss these with a vet because there is a lot of debate about whether a dog really needs them after a certain time. However, if a dog ever needed to go into kennels, their vaccinations would need to be
Older Puggle need lots of special care because as they reach their golden years, they are more at risk of developing certain health concerns. Physically, a Puggle will start to have a greying muzzle, but there will be other noticeable changes too which includes the following:
Older dogs change mentally too which means their response time tends to be slower as such they develop the following:
Living with a Puggle in their golden years means taking on a few more responsibilities, but these are easily managed and should include taking a look at their diet, the amount of exercise they are given, how often their dog beds need changing and keeping an eye on the condition of their teeth.
Older Puggle need to be fed a good quality diet that meets their needs at this stage of their lives all the while keeping a close eye on a dog's weight. A rough feeding guide for older Puggles is as follows bearing in mind they should be fed highly digestible food that does not contain any additives:
Older Puggles don't need to be given the same amount of daily exercise as a younger dog, but they still need the right amount of physical activity to maintain muscle tone and to prevent a dog from putting on too much weight. All dogs need access to fresh clean water and this is especially true of older dogs when they reach their golden years because they are more at risk of developing kidney disorders.
Puggles are low maintenance when it comes to keeping their coats and skin in good condition thanks to their short, tight coats. A weekly brush is all it takes to remove dead and loose hair and an occasional wipe over with a chamois leather keeps their coats glossy. They shed throughout the year only more so during the Spring and then again in the Autumn when more frequent grooming is usually necessary to keep on top of things.
Because they are prone to developing Cherry Eye, it's important to regularly check a Puggle's eyes so that if the condition is flaring up, it can be caught and treated sooner rather than later. It's also important to check a dog's ears on a regular basis and to clean them when necessary. If too much wax is allowed to build up in a dog's ears, it can lead to a painful infection which can be hard to clear up. In short, prevention is often easier than cure when it comes to ear infections.
Puggles are energetic, intelligent dogs and as such they need to be given the right amount of daily exercise combined with enough mental stimulation as possible for them to be truly happy, well-rounded dogs. As such they need to be given at least 30 minutes exercise a day and the brisker the walk the better.
A shorter walk in the morning would be fine, but a longer more interesting one in the afternoon is a must. These dogs also like to be able to roam around a back garden as often as possible so they can really let off steam. However, the fencing has to be extremely secure to keep these inquisitive dogs in because if they find a weakness in the fence, they will soon escape out and get into all sorts of trouble.
With this said, Puggle puppies should not be over exercised because their joints and bones are still growing. This includes not letting a dog jump up and down from furniture or going up or down the stairs. Too much pressure placed on their joints and spines at an early age could result in a dog developing problems later in their lives.
If you get a Puggle puppy from a breeder, they would give you a feeding schedule and it's important to stick to the same routine, feeding the same puppy food to avoid any tummy upsets. You can change a puppy's diet, but this needs to be done very gradually always making sure they don't develop any digestive upsets and if they do, it's best to put them back on their original diet and to discuss things with the vet before attempting to change it again.
Older dogs are not known to be fussy or finicky eaters, but this does not mean you can feed them a lower quality diet. It's best to feed a mature dog twice a day, once in the morning and then again in the evening, making sure it's good quality food that meets all their nutritional requirements. It's also important that dogs be given the right amount of exercise so they burn off any excess calories or they might gain too much weight which can lead to all sorts of health issues. Obesity can shorten a dog's life by several years so it's important to keep an eye on their waistline from the word go.
Puppies need to be fed a highly nutritious, good quality diet for them to develop and grow as they should. As a rough guide, a Puggle puppy can be fed the following amounts every day making sure their meals are evenly spread out throughout the day and it's best to feed them 3 or 4 times a day:
Once a puppy is 11 months old they can be fed adult dog food as shown below.
Once fully mature, an adult Puggle must be fed a good quality diet to ensure their continued good health. As a rough guide, an adult Puggle can be fed the following amounts every day:
If you are looking to buy a Puggle, you would need to pay anything from £300 to over £700 for a well-bred pedigree puppy. The cost of insuring a male 3-year-old Puggle in northern England would be £18.29 a month for basic cover but for a lifetime policy, this would set you back £43.04 a month (quote as of October 2017). When insurance companies calculate a pet's premium, they factor in several things which includes where you live in the UK, a dog's age and whether they have been neutered or spayed among other things.
When it comes to food costs, you need to buy the best quality food whether wet or dry, to feed your dog making sure it suits the different stages of their lives. This would set you back between £20 - £30 a month. On top of this, you would need to factor in veterinary costs if you want to share your home with a Puggle and this includes their initial vaccinations, their annual boosters, the cost of neutering or spaying a dog when the time is right and their yearly health checks, all of which quickly adds up to over £800 a year.
As a rough guide, the average cost to keep and care for a Puggle would be between £50 to £80 a month depending on the level of insurance cover you opt to buy for your dog, but this does not include the initial cost of buying a healthy well-bred puppy from a litter produced by health tested parents.
When visiting and buying any puppy or dog, there are many important things to consider and questions to ask of the breeder/seller. You can read our generic puppy/dog advice here which includes making sure you see the puppy with its mother and to verify that the dog has been wormed and microchipped.
Puggles are an extremely popular breed both in the UK and elsewhere in the world which means that well-bred puppies command a lot of money. As such, with Puggles there is specific advice, questions and protocols to follow when buying a puppy which are as follows:
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