The “jug” is a type of hybrid dog (as well as the name of a vessel to hold fluids!) and they’re becoming ever-more popular in the UK as awareness of this rather interesting crossing grows each year.
Hybrid dog types as a whole are quite fashionable at the moment and there are a lot of advantages to choosing one over a pedigree – in theory – in certain respects.
However, the very nature of hybrid dog types makes them quite variable from dog to dog, and so it can be hard for people interested in buying a hybrid cross like a jug to find out reliable information about them before committing to a purchase.
With this in mind, this article will tell you ten things you need to know about the jug dog type, before you go ahead and buy one. Read on to learn more.
This is quite an interesting crossing because these are two very different breeds in terms of both looks and temperament, and in more or less every respect from energy levels to historical origins to core traits, and so the jug itself is very unique, and may fall anywhere on a spectrum between the traits of its parent breeds in each individual trait they display.
The fact that the jug is a hybrid dog or cross breed means of course that they’re not pedigree dogs, and are not eligible for Kennel Club registration. This also means that there is no breed standard in place for the jug to dictate their ideal looks and temperament, and nor can they be entered into formal Kennel Club dog shows (other than for activities).
Just about the only trait that you can rely on all jugs possessing is being small in size!
Both of their two parent dogs are small dog breeds, and whilst the size of any given pug and any given Jack Russell can of course be variable, they are never large.
They tend to be a touch more rounded that Jack Russells and a little leaner than the average pug.
The pug is a brachycephalic dog breed, which means that they have a short muzzle and soft palate. There is a huge amount of variance in the flatness of the face between individual pugs, and those with very flat, short faces also have breathing problems and other health concerns as a result of this.
Because the Jack Russell has a normal length muzzle, jugs are more moderate than pugs, but all jugs as a whole are brachycephalic to some extent, which prospective owners need to understand.
Pugs are not the most energetic dog breed, but Jack Russells are very lively and as a result, the average jug will tend to be a high energy dog that needs to be exercised a lot and spend plenty of time outdoors.
The pug side moderates this to an extent, but they do need plenty of walks.
As a terrier breed, the Jack Russell also has a very high prey drive and this tends to be inherited by the jug too. Jug owners need to ensure their dog is trained for good recall, kept on a lead in areas where cats might be around, and only allowed to run freely in enclosed spaces.
Both Jack Russells and pugs are reputed to have a stubborn streak – the Jack Russell in particular – and so jugs can be somewhat determined when they set their minds to something too!
This can make them somewhat wilful and potentially prone to dominance, but they like having something to do and a way to engage their brains, and so channelling their energies in positive directions can be very rewarding.
Jugs are a small breed, but nobody told them that, and they tend to be fairly bold and confident and generally outgoing and not at all daunted by new experiences or the presence of larger dogs.
Their handlers need to be able to harness their traits in positive directions, provide clear rules and boundaries, and ensure that their dogs are properly managed, obedient, under control and well behaved around others.
Pug health can be complex but Jack Russells are generally robust, and the jug hybrid crossing moderates some of the hereditary pug health risks to an extent, resulting in a dog type that tends to be fairly hardy and robust.
Jugs live for around 12-15 years on average, which is a little higher than the norm across the board for all dog types.
There is a lot to recommend the jug as a good choice of pet for many different types of owners, but they are reasonably complex dogs, and this should not be overlooked just due to their small size.
If improperly managed or not exercised enough they can become quite a handful and rather unpleasant to live with, and so all prospective owners should research this dog type in detail before committing to a purchase.