Pugs are considered to be one of the cutest and friendliest breeds of dogs that there can ever be. These adorable wrinkly woofers are pretty easy to look after and make some of the most fun and manageable companions.
We love to keep them at home. We love to take them along as travel companions. And don’t we absolutely love our favorite pet influencers and celebs who inspire us to make it a better world for these little ones?
However, pugs are also one of those breeds that might suffer several health complications, mainly due to their physical structures that’s often considered to be “suppressed” or “stunted” by many researchers.
This is a reason why some subspecies may require special care and strictly controlled environments that ensure maximum comfort for them.
If you’re a pug owner, you may be aware of some of the most common complications that pugs might suffer from frequently. But, if you’ve just got your first pug puppy and feeling that something might not be all that right with its health, then this guide is for you.
Because here, we will be discussing 9 warning symptoms that say your pug puppy might be sick and what you can do about it right away!
- Behavioral change
Any sort of behavioral change is the biggest indicator that something is seriously wrong with your pet’s health. If you notice your pup behaving strangely then, he might be trying to tell you something.
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If a pug is going through a lot of pain or is unwell, it will first lose all appetite and have trouble falling asleep (look for changes in its sleeping pattern), a reluctance to exercise and restlessness.
Other changes in its behavior that might be definite signs of warning regarding its health can be:
- Clingy behavior
Even though a dog can be ill without getting a fever, checking body-temperature fluctuations can help determine any presence of an infection or if it is suffering from heat stress.
Newborn pug puppies will generally have lower body temperatures than adult pugs, that can be anywhere in between approximately 96 to 97 degrees Fahrenheit (35.5 to 36 C).
By the time it is 4 weeks old, the body goes up to about 100 F (37.8 C). Thereafter, by the age of 8 weeks and up, the normal body temperature remains between 100 and 102.5 F (37.8 to 39.2 C). Anything above this should be immediately taken as an anomaly.
The proper way of checking your dog’s temperature is to use a pet rectal thermometer, which is first lubricated with petroleum jelly.
- Troubled breathing
Pugs are a brachycephalic breed of dogs that have compressed jaw, short muzzle, and a compact skull. Such an anatomical structure of the head consequently causes the upper respiratory system to be compressed that can lead to breathing-related issues.
Although it is normal for your pug to pant a bit in hot weather or while running around or even a certain level of noise even when they’re resting, it’s pretty easy to mistake over-exertion or ragged breathing in pugs for the normal pattern.
Do observe if your pug is breathing very heavy while making loud wheezing noises, any sort of discharges along with it or is seemingly struggling to breathe normally. Any of these symptoms should never be overlooked.
- Changes or problems in mobility
The barrel-shaped heavy body of pugs with relatively short legs often lead to joint-related issues. However, certain other mobility-related issues that you shouldn’t overlook, especially in pups, could be limping, a slower gait, trouble rising up or sitting at an odd angle, or unusually holding a limb.
These changes can indicate either something as minor as a strained ligament or something pretty serious such as hip dysplasia, or other types of joint abnormality or osteoarthritis in pugs over the age of 6 years.
- Discharge and strong odors
Any sort of unusual or excessive discharge from the nose, eyes, or ears is a big indicator of some serious health issue. The most common ailments associated with discharges are allergies, but there could be other reasons as well.
Discharges from the ears could indicate ear infections, and similarly, eye infections could cause excessive eyes discharges due to any sort of eyelash or eyelid abnormalities or eye infections.
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Even though dogs will have that typical “wet-dog” smell or “doggie-odor,” any strong smells could be a huge red flag. Smells from the mouth can indicate dental issues and from the ears or eyes, infections in those parts. Since pugs have wrinkly face and body, any sort of strong odor from the body can indicate skin allergies, bacterial or yeast infections.
- Stomach issues
There are many factors which can cause a pug puppy to get an upset stomach or a disturbance in bowel movements. This could range from ingestion of table scraps to ingestion of toxins or developing a high-fat content. Bacterial or viral infections can also cause stomach issues in puppies. However, chronic stomach ailments are often associated with a pet’s diet.
Bloating (a severe and painful twisting of the stomach) is generally caused by rapid consumption of food and exercising too close to mealtime. This is also known as the Killer Bloat or Gastric Dilation Volvulus. It is commonly called Pug Dog Bloat and could sometimes be even fatal. Other severe stomach problems for pugs include pug dog constipation, diarrhea, and gastric problems.
- Severe respiratory issues
One of the more severe forms of the respiratory issues that are specifically observed in pugs is that caused by Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS). It is a combination of two or more conditions, or in some instances, secondary conditions which affect the airways, thus making it difficult for the pug to breathe. This is very common in pugs. The four associated conditions are:
- Stenotic nares or “pinched nostrils.”
- An elongated soft palate that partially blocks the entrance to the windpipe or trachea.
- Tracheal issues which may include hypoplastic tracheal conditions
- Everted laryngeal saccules.
Secondary conditions generally include laryngeal (voice box) collapse, tonsillar eversion, and hypertrophy.
- Neurological disorders
If you notice any sign of seizures, abnormal twitches, weakness, stumbling, or loss of focus or consciousness in your dog, then take it to the vet as soon as possible. The underlying conditions that could cause neurological issues in pets could be devastating and quite often, fatal.
Other symptoms could include confusion, disorientation, stupor, and other mental cognitive issues.
- Noticeable pain and outward appearance
It’s just the saddest thing that all dogs, pugs included, typically suffer extreme pain in silence. Sometimes they will only give you a reaction if you touch or step on the injured paw or limb. Check for any abnormal changes in their outward appearance such as rashes, lumps, sores, hair loss, scratches, or open wounds. Persistent shaking or scratching at the ear could be huge red flags, especially if your pet has been involved in an accident or a scuffle with another animal, or if there’s uncontrolled bleeding at any point of time. In these cases, seek veterinary care without a moment’s delay.
The most heartbreaking thing about being in a situation where your pet is hurting is that you don’t know what exactly is causing them pain. However, with proper care and attention at all times, you could help prevent most of these unpleasant occurrences.
And, if you’re looking to learn more about pug illnesses, then you could visit this website to read more about them.
We hope this was a useful guide.
Thanks for reading!