The Average Life Span Of Pugs

A pug is a toy breed dog, small and stocky. They are very cute, cuddly, and sociable companions. Their only desire is to make sure that their pet parents are happy. Pugs usually have bulging eyes, short strong legs, and a flat face. Well, this type of “visage” is what is causing many breathing problems, and consequently, a shorter average life span of Pugs. So what is the average age of pugs? We’ll cover that a little later. For now, let’s focus on where the breed comes from and its main characteristics.

average life span of pugs
The Average Life Span of Pugs

Where Is Pug Coming From?

The history of the breed goes all the way back to ancient Egypt where pugs were worshiped and cherished by the nobility. Egyptians always considered cats sacred animals, but dogs were on the same level as their feline counterparts. They served as companions as well as guards, and protectors of assets.

Later on (around 2000 years ago), the selective pug members traveled to Tibet and were domesticated by Buddhists. Monks fell in love with these big-eyed pups and quickly developed a bond, making them devoted companions and monasteries’ guards. Pug pups let their owners know if an outsider was approaching the gates. Tibetian priests regarded these dogs as sacred as they believed that they helped to drive diabolic spirits away.  

Pugs eventually ended up in the European royal courts and were very popular among European monarchs. It is a known fact that both Queen Victoria and later on Queen Elizabeth II adored the breed and had many Pug pets in their royal residences. The former liked the breed so much, that she became a Pug breeder herself, raising many pups to be her royal canine companions. One of her favorite Pug pups was the one named Basco. 

The Main Pug Characteristics

  • Appearance: as mentioned earlier, they have big, bulging eyes, a short head with a flat wrinkly face. Their bodies are stocky and muscled with tiny, but nimble legs. The coat is rather short as well, so usually, there’s no need to groom it. The tail usually curls up in a circle, it is a quite peculiar sight to see.  
  • Weight: on average, they weigh about 14-15 lbs, but certain pups can grow up to 20 lbs. It all depends on how active they are and what type of food they eat. If they constantly stay active and eat a lot of protein-based foods(chicken, beef, etc.), they will be very muscular. Therefore, will weigh more as muscle mass is heavier than fat. Or on the contrary, if they overeat (and Pugs tend to do so if not watched), they will become very obese, and, consequently, weigh more as well.
  • Height: usually, they reach about 13-14 inches in height, no more than that. Their height will mostly depend on what other breeds are mixed in with the Pug. For example, if it’s crossbred with the Jack Russel Terrier or a Beagle, a Pug will be obviously much taller in appearance than its pure-bred counterpart.
  • Colors: range anywhere from pale beige and fawn to black. The latter is a rare find and the black puppies usually are much pricier than their lighter-colored canine peers.
  • Character: they are very jolly, happy, and curious pups, willing to explore the world with much eagerness. More so, if their pet parents are involved, as Pugs are extremely social creatures. They thrive in a household with kids, as they regard them as excellent play partners.
  • Trainability: Pug pals are not necessarily the easiest to train, since they tend to be very stubborn. It’s a typical Pug gene, but it is actually fun to see how their personality unravels. It is worth explaining to them why you want them to do something, especially if the reward will follow the training session. They need to respect you to follow your lead, therefore you will feel like you need to be a role model pet parent, and a better version of yourself.

You have to start the training process from early on, to prevent any unwanted behavioral problems in their adolescence. And what is the average life span of Pugs you may ask? Let’s find out.

average life span of pugs
Average Life Span of Pugs

What Is The Average Life Span Of A Pug?

The average life span of a Pug is about 12-15 years. Some pugs who are crossbreed with another dog (like in the case of Puggles and Retro Pugs) tend to live longer as the breed they are mixed with lives longer too. Also, the mixed breeds have a lot fewer health issues, which also prolongs the average life span of Pugs.

Females tend to live a little longer than males. The average age of a female Pug is 13.5 years, while males live for about 12.7 years.

A lot depends on what pet parent feeds his/her Pug baby. If it’s high-quality dog food or homemade meals, the pup will live a lot longer, way into its senior stage.

Also, Pugs who get enough daily exercise tend to live a lot longer. They don’t need any intensive running around, but a few short potty walks a day should be plenty to keep them active as well as healthy. 

The oldest Pug in the US recorded was the one by the name of King Tug. He turned 18 years old in 2020. So how do you make sure that your Pug lives the longest, what’s the key to that?

Taking Care Of A Pug

To make sure that the average life span of Pugs stays in a decent range, these furry pals need to follow a certain type of health routine to keep them in tip-top shape. Also, each individual breed’s needs vary. Therefore you might want to do extensive research on your dog’s breed to see what the best care plan for this particular kind is.  

The three pillars of a long, healthy life for both the two-legged and the four-legged are proper nutrition, exercise, and mental health stimulation. The latter is needed to prevent dementia, Alzheimer’s syndrome, and other brain health-related issues.

  1. Exercise: make sure your Pug pal gets enough daily exercise to keep it from getting obese. Obesity is one of the main Pug problems since they tend to overeat. A few short walks during the day(morning, afternoon, evening) should be plenty to satisfy its exercise needs.
  2. Mental health: puzzle toys are the best at keeping your Pug engaged for a while as well as focused. They are aimed at helping your Pug stay mentally young for years to come. Some good examples may include Kong toys, feeding puzzle trays, rolling balls, etc. A pet parent can place some sort of food inside and make it a fun mealtime for his/her Pug pup. 
  3. Nutrition: you have to consult with your dog’s vet to see what the best dry food for your kind of dog is. Also, it’s a really good idea to give your flat-faced pooch a lot of raw fruits and veggies together with its regular meal. Apples, carrots, berries, celery, broccoli, and cukes are among canine favorite healthy snacks. Partially because of the crunch factor. Make sure it stays hydrated as well throughout the day.


As we learned, the average age of Pugs is 12-15 years. But with proper personal care, a Pug pal can live much longer, taken it follows a good health, nutrition, and exercise routine. It is a pet parent’s responsibility to take a little wrinkle-faced fella to a veterinary specialist every year for a routine health screening. Timely problem detection can aid in a quick recovery and prolong the average life span of a Pug.

stuart and his dog

Family Dog Expert Author

Hi there! I’m Stuart, a devoted dog lover and family dog expert with over a decade of experience working with our furry companions. My passion for dogs drives me to share my knowledge and expertise, helping families build strong, loving bonds with their four-legged friends. When I’m not writing for SirDoggie, you’ll find me hiking, playing with my beautiful dog, or studying music.