- Breed group — Hybrid
- Height — 10-15 inches
- Weight — 18-30 pounds
- Coat length & texture — Short, fine, and soft
- Coat color — Tan, red, black, yellow, gold, or white with bicolor or sable markings
- Exercise needs — Average
- Intelligence — Average
- Barking — Very vocal
- Life span — 10 to 15 years
- Temperament — Friendly, loving, and easy-going
- Hypoallergenic — No
- Origin — United States
Puggle fun facts
- Puggles are considered a designer breed. A designer dog or hybrid dog is a mix of two or more breeds. In the case of the puggle, it’s a combination of the pug and beagle.
- They’re an increasingly popular dog breed. The first puggles were developed in 1980. But the adorable, charming, and compact companion dogs really began to explode in popularity in the early 2000s.
- Famous names have owned puggles. Celebrity dog lovers who have kept puggles include Julianne Moore, James Gandolfini, and Uma Thurman.
- Puggles are social media stars. With a mug like that, are you surprised? Earl the Grump and Bentley are among the puggles with Instafamous faces.
Puggle temperament and characteristics
When developing a designer breed, breeders hope to get the best traits of the parent breeds while reducing health risks. When it comes to personality, puggle enthusiasts say the breed got some of the best character traits of the pug like the Toy Group breed’s lap-sitting pug tendencies. However, some puggles are prone to hound-like behaviors, thanks to their beagle ancestry. Whether puggles make the best family dogs is a matter of debate. But the breed is affectionate and adjusts well to family life, including in homes with young children or other pets like dogs and cats.
Puggles often bark a good deal when someone comes to the door, but they’re typically friendly toward strangers.
If you welcome a puggle into your home, you’re likely getting a playful dog. Though they love to lounge in humans’ laps, they’re also eager to play fetch or go on hiking adventures like a beagle. These small dogs thrive in a home that loves spending time with them and giving them the love and attention they deserve.
👉 Puggles are generally easy-going dogs, but even the sweetest pup might not enjoy a small child poking at their eyes or pulling their ears.
Common puggle health problems
When developing a hybrid, breeders mix purebred dogs and crosses in an attempt to root out health problems in the original breeds. Puggles can be healthy companion dogs. However, they can be prone to certain health problems. Understanding these potential issues can help you find your puggle dogs prompt care should a problem arise, which can lead to the best results for your furry family member.
- Patellar luxation . This knee problem is very common, especially in small dogs. It occurs when the dog’s kneecap “pops out” of its typical location.
- Hip dysplasia. Hip dysplasia occurs when the hip joint doesn’t grow properly. Dogs with this condition may develop arthritis, and severe cases require surgery.
- Respiratory problems . Responsible breeders seek to give puggles longer snouts than their brachycephalic pug parents, hoping to reduce respiratory health issues. However, the possibility of breathing problems will vary by the dog.
- Obesity. Puggles are cute, and giving them tons of treats and table food is tempting. But the breed is prone to obesity, so it’s best to stick with a diet of primarily high-quality dog food to keep your puggle’s weight in check.
Cost of caring for puggles
Everyone wants to plan on having a healthy little dog, but health issues can happen to any canine. If your puggle requires special care, costs can add up.
Patellar luxation can be treated with physical therapy, costing $40 to $100 per session. In severe cases, your dog may require surgery. Depending on the veterinarian and area, the surgery can cost around $4,000 per kneecap. Hip dysplasia surgery can carry a similar price tag.
If your puggles’ breathing issues are severe, a veterinarian may recommend stenotic nares, a procedure to widen the nostrils and make breathing easier for your pup. It can cost more than $1,000.
Feeding your puggle a diet consisting mostly of dog food and getting plenty of exercise with them can help reduce obesity risks.
The costs of dog ownership can quickly add up. It’s a good idea to look into health insurance, as it may be a way to reduce out-of-pocket expenses. Policies provide the greatest benefits to pet owners who sign up their pets early. Other options may also help, such as creating a budget and a pet savings account.
👉 A responsible breeder will let you know about genetic health problems in the lineage of the individual puppy you are considering.
History of the puggle
The first puggles were developed in the 1980s in the United States using purebred pugs and beagles. Puggle breeders hoped to develop a healthy dog for companionship but with fewer genetic health and behavioral concerns than the parent breeds. Notably, breeders hoped to create pups with fewer breathing problems than the pug. Temperament-wise, as hounds, beagles can have high energy levels. But breeders hoped the “pug influence” would balance this trait out during breeding.
But creating hybrid dogs is unpredictable by nature, so it’s not possible to guarantee a puggle won’t inherit these issues and traits. Though puggles have been around since the 1980s, they seemingly exploded, with celebrities like Jake Gyllenhaal beginning to own them.
Unfortunately, this surge in popularity has led to perhaps the worst thing about the puggle’s history. These friendly companion animals are a boon for puppy mills and unscrupulous breeders, who have used the love people have for the breed to make top dollar. Crossbred puppies can be unpredictable and exhibit health issues, so it’s important to do your research to find a reputable breeder. It can be challenging to find a reputable breeder, and it requires finding someone who will allow you to see the sire and dam to ensure they are both in good health.
Puggles are not yet recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) or United Kennel Club (UKC). But these friendly dogs are recognized and registered with others that specialize in designer cross breeds, like the American Canine Hybrid Club and the International Designer Canine Registry.
Caring for your puggle
Caring for a new puggle puppy can be overwhelming, but this is true of any breed (or dog’s age). Your heart will be full, but your schedule will seem like it is, too.
You’ll need to make your first trip to the vet and schedule your dog’s vaccinations. If you’ve just brought home your first puggle, you may have a ton of questions — none is too big or small for your veterinarian to answer or point you to a resource to find more information. Puggles may be small, but they are playful, active dogs who can get into things. We can help you puppy-proof your home and prepare for teething.
No one likes to think about losing their new dog, but FidoAlert provides a free Fido ID and tag so you’re prepared just in case. Here are some other basics specific to Puggle.
Puggles do not have the same high energy as the beagle. Still, they’re active dogs who love to walk and play. The good news is that these easy-going dogs are adaptable and down for all sorts of physical activity. Hiking is a favorite — credit the hound roots. Puggles are also happy to engage in games of fetch or tug of war.
Most puggles have fewer respiratory problems than purebred pugs. But snout lengths vary. Because of this potential health issue, puggles, like pugs, are prone to heatstroke and overheating. Keep your puggle in a cool, shaded area on hot, sunny days if they have to be outside at all. Avoid high heat, and ensure they have plenty of water.
Puggles are pretty low-maintenance when it comes to grooming. They will shed a bit, but there’s a good chance you’ll never have to step foot in a groomer’s office for a haircut during your puggle’s lifetime.
You can get away with brushing your puggle’s short coat once per week with a bristle or rubber curry brush. A monthly bath will also help keep the puggles’ coats shiny. Clean their ears regularly, including after every bath or dip in the water.
A few other basics will keep your sweet pet looking and feeling their best. Nail trimming can prevent breakage and chipped or ingrown nails — these issues sound minor but can be painful to an animal. Daily toothbrushing is your pet’s best protection against dental disease, a sometimes overlooked health issue in pets.
Diet and nutrition
Healthy puggles at a normal weight for the breed can thrive on regular dog food with the AAFCO seal, which signifies it is nutritionally complete. Look for a bag of food that aligns with your dog’s weight and age. The vast majority (90%) of your dog’s daily caloric intake should come from this high-quality dog food. The remaining 10% can come from low-calorie treats.
Puggles are prone to obesity, so you’ll want to prioritize a healthy diet.
Older puppies and adult puggles will eat twice per day. Your veterinarian is your best resource for food portioning advice. It’s challenging to generalize how much a puggle should eat because it depends on their age, weight, and health conditions. The bag will provide you with guidance, but check closely. Sometimes, the food manufacturer will put daily amounts. In these cases, divide by two for the recommended meal portion size.
Typically, a 30-pound neutered adult dog will need about 794 calories per day.
Training your puggle
Puggles are highly trainable best friends. Their adaptable nature and eagerness to please make them one of the easier breeds to train.
Like all dogs, puggles benefit from proper training from a young age and early socialization. Still, older dogs can also learn new tricks (or commands like sit, stay, and come). The Humane Society recommends positive reinforcement training. Puggles respond better to treats and praise than to yelling.
When training your puggle, use short, concise commands such as “leave it.” Consistency is critical. Ensure anyone else in the home uses the same words to give commands and abides by the same rules so your animal doesn’t get confused.
Breeds similar to the puggle
Not quite sure that a puggle is right for you? Even if you are, it’s worth taking the time to research and consider different breeds with similarities to the puggle. Here are a few to get you started:
- Pug. If you love the sweet, affectionate nature of the puggle, you might consider becoming a pug parent instead (or as well). Pugs are also usually great with young children, strangers, and other pets.
- Beagle. The other half of the puggle’s parent breeds, the beagle, was bred to hunt, including small prey like rabbits and squirrels. They still walk with their noses to the ground but are not mostly known as beloved family pets.
- Labrador retriever. If you’re looking for a larger animal with a similar heart-of-gold personality as the puggle, consider a Lab.
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Frequently asked questions
Do puggles make good pets?
It depends on your lifestyle, but often, yes, puggles are great pets. Puggles are friendly, sociable, and adapt well to many types of homes. They generally get along very well with children and other pets.
Do puggles bark a lot?
Yes, thanks to their beagle ancestry, puggles are very vocal dogs. However, they are generally not aggressive dogs. Though they may bark to alert when a stranger arrives, they’ll usually be friendly.
Are puggles healthier than pugs?
Cross-breeding has helped puggles have fewer health issues than pugs. Puggles don’t usually have the same flat faces and have longer snouts, so respiratory problems are generally fewer. Still, every dog is different. Your veterinarian is your best resource for questions about a specific pug or puggle.
How healthy are puggles?
Puggles can be healthy little dogs, but they are susceptible to some issues, including hip and knee problems. They are also prone to overeating and obesity.
What sort of dog is a puggle?
A puggle is a hybrid dog and a cross between a pug and a beagle.