Pug Breed Magazine - Showsight

Pug Breed Magazine features information, expert articles, and stunning photos from AKC judges, breeders, and owners.


Let’s Talk Breed Education!

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Official Standard of the Pug General Appearance: Symmetry and general appearance are decidedly square and cobby. A lean, leggy Pug and a dog with short legs and a long body are equally objectionable. Size, Proportion, Substance: The Pug should be multum in parvo , and this condensation (if the word may be used) is shown by compactness of form, well knit proportions, and hardness of developed muscle. Weight from 14 to 18 pounds (dog or bitch) desirable. Proportion square. Head: The head is large, massive, round - not apple-headed, with no indentation of the skull . The eyes are dark in color, very large, bold and prominent, globular in shape, soft and solicitous in expression , very lustrous, and, when excited, full of fire. The ears are thin, small, soft, like black velvet. There are two kinds - the "rose" and the "button." Preference is given to the latter. The wrinkles are large and deep. The muzzle is short, blunt, square, but not upfaced. Bite - A Pug's bite should be very slightly undershot. Neck, Topline, Body: The neck is slightly arched. It is strong, thick, and with enough length to carry the head proudly. The short back is level from the withers to the high tail set. The body is short and cobby, wide in chest and well ribbed up. The tail is curled as tightly as possible over the hip. The double curl is perfection. Forequarters: The legs are very strong, straight, of moderate length, and are set well under. The elbows should be directly under the withers when viewed from the side. The shoulders are moderately laid back. The pasterns are strong, neither steep nor down. The feet are neither so long as the foot of the hare, nor so round as that of the cat; well split-up toes, and the nails black. Dewclaws are generally removed. Hindquarters: The strong, powerful hindquarters have moderate bend of stifle and short hocks perpendicular to the ground. The legs are parallel when viewed from behind. The hindquarters are in balance with the forequarters. The thighs and buttocks are full and muscular. Feet as in front. Coat: The coat is fine, smooth, soft, short and glossy, neither hard nor woolly. Color: The colors are fawn or black. The fawn color should be decided so as to make the contrast complete between the color and the trace and mask. Markings: The markings are clearly defined. The muzzle or mask, ears, moles on cheeks, thumb mark or diamond on forehead, and the back trace should be as black as possible. The mask should be black. The more intense and well defined it is, the better. The trace is a black line extending from the occiput to the tail. Gait: Viewed from the front, the forelegs should be carried well forward, showing no weakness in the pasterns, the paws landing squarely with the central toes straight ahead. The rear action should be strong and free through hocks and stifles, with no twisting or turning in or out at the joints. The hind legs should follow in line with the front. There is a slight natural convergence of the limbs both fore and aft. A slight roll of the hindquarters typifies the gait which should be free, self-assured, and jaunty. Temperament: This is an even-tempered breed, exhibiting stability, playfulness, great charm, dignity, and an outgoing, loving disposition.

Disqualification - Any color other than fawn or black.

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Approved April 8, 2008 Effective June 3, 2008



!" have had the pleasure of rais- ing Pugs since 1965, and judging them since 1999. As I watch Pug judging around the country I would like to tell judges about our wonder- ful breed and how best to judge them. !"#$#%&$#%'&()%&*+#,-*%-.% /0123(2%&%+024 1. The correct head is very important. Dr. Harry Smith once told me, “When judging Pugs, identify and prioritize the ones with the correct head.” 2. A correct Pug is square and should appear cobby (the standard says, “Multum in Parvo”—meaning “a lot in a little”). 3. Also important is a level topline, a curly tail, a slightly undershot bite (reverse scissors) and sound movement. The Pug must have a large, round head with large, globular, dark eyes. The head of a Pug usually matures slow- ly and will not reach full size until after 2 years of age. A lot of pugs are shown as puppies, and therefore may not have as large a head as you might like. But dogs in Best of Breed should have a large heads with good wrinkle. Pugs are a square breed (dog or bitch). Never too long in body nor too short on leg. A fat Pug is just that, FAT! Fat will not make him any more square in body. We measure from point of shoulder to point of rump and ground to top of withers. Pugs have almost no tuckup. Straight front legs when viewed from the front. There may be some mus- cling on the outside of the front legs. You may see some rather bowed front legs and that is what we don’t want.

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The front legs are set well under when viewed from the side. The standard says 14 to 18 pounds for a dog or bitch, but many of the Pugs in the ring today weigh over 20 pounds and are still nice and cobby. This is gen- erally contributed to better diets than when the standard was first written. The rather small ear should reach only to the middle of the eye when alert. There are two different types of ears with preference given to the button ear. The other is a rose ear (folded, but not like the Bulldog). The dark eyes are set so that the mid- dle of the eye is at the top of the nose

and the bottom of the alert ear. A light eye gives a much harsher expression to the face and they should be penalized to the degree of the fault. 56&'&(3(2%-"#%73-# The bite should be slightly under- shot (reverse scissors) but there must be a chin—not mush-mouthed. To examine, cup your fingers behind the Pug’s ears. This gives you a good look at the beautiful wrinkles on the head as you to feel the head. As Pugs have a lot of skin on the head it is important to feel the bones underneath. So starting with your thumbs on the top

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Your examination of the head is now over. Some judges prefer to judge the body of the pug first and come back to the head last—that is fine. The neck of the Pug should be of sufficient length to hold the large head proudly. We do not want to see the head attached directly to the body with no neck. The straight topline should remain level moving or stand- ing. A young puppy may be slightly higher standing, but should level out when moving. The standard calls for a high set curly tail curled over the hip; however, you will see tails curled tight directly over the back and this certainly is accept- able. A double curled tail is perfection. A Pug with the tail down when moving is an unhappy Pug and should not win that day’s competition. Th e Pug has a double tracking gait with a slight convergence as speed increases.

This does not mean that a Pug should be run so fast that he single tracks, but rather that at a normal speed he will slightly converge but the front and rear legs should be doing the same thing. If you look at the rear going away, you should see only the rear and when com- ing at you only the front. This would be a true double track. I ask that the handler take the Pug down and back on as loose a lead as possible so that I can see the gait. If the Pug is strung up on a tight lead you will not see the proper double track. The last thing you want to look at for your consideration in the ring is color. In 2008, we added a disqualification to our standard to say only Fawn or Black colors would be allowed to be shown. This was added to clarify that we only want these two colors in the ring. However, Fawn does consist of many different shades and they may have

of the head slide them down and feel the good width of skull (see Figure 1) and on down to the muzzle which ide- ally would be in line with the outside of the eyes, not generally seen but should be at least to the middle of the eyes (see Figure 2). After you have felt the width of muzzle (and you can feel for a wry bite also at this time), slide your thumb to the front of the lips (see Figure 3). If the tip of your thumb bends forward slightly you will have a correct bite.

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black hairs mixed in. Smuttiness in the Fawn coloring is just a minor fault. When the standard says clear color that is to say there is a clear delinea- tion between the fawn and the black of the mask and ears on the Fawn dogs. Black Pugs are just that—black. What we don’t want are Blue, Brindle or White Pugs—all of which have been seen around. By saying only Fawn or Black, this should eliminate any other off color. Just remember that Fawn does come with black hairs mixed in. Blacks sometime sunburn too. A small amount of white on the chest is accept- able in the Pug. Judges of junior showmanship should ask the junior, “Please show me the bite and mouth as you do in the conforma- tion ring” and I expect the junior with the Pug to explain (politely) that we do not open the mouth of the Pug and then proceed to show how it is done. I hope that I have been helpful in getting you on the right track to enjoy judging our wonderful breed. We are very proud that our Pugs can say, ‘Look at me’ when you are judging them and you will laugh right along with all of us.

Remember: A PUG IS SQUARE WITH A LARGE ROUND HEAD AND CURLY TAIL. BIO My family raised Samoyeds when I was growing up. One day my father brought a pug to stay with us for awhile as he was showing it for a client. I fell in love and decided this was the breed for me. I showed several different breeds in junior showmanship while I was growing up, but never forgot the breed I wanted. My husband, Del, and I got our first pug, Kim Su of Toyah Dell, CD, in 1965. This little black girl pro- duced our first homebred Champion, CH. Donn-Del’s Kyling, CD. We have owned and co-owned several different breeds throughout the years, but will always have a pug. Our current pug, “Howdy” is the result of frozen semen from CH Glory’s Rowdy Moran, CD x CH Riversong’s Miss Molly. He is the love our lives. He has his CD degree and 2 legs on his CDX in obedience and his RE degree in Rally. I was an AKC licensed professional handler until

I began judging in 1999. As a judge, I am approved to judge all Hound breeds, all Toy breeds, and all Non-sporting breeds, plus Samoyeds, Alaskan Mala- mutes, Siberian Huskies, all Miscella- neous breeds, Best In Show, and Junior Showmanship all breed. I have judged foreign assignments in Germany, Tai- wan, Australia and in China. I have been a member of the Pug Dog Club of America since 1970. As a mem- ber of the Pug Dog Club of America I am currently on the Board of Directors and I am the Judges Education Chair- man. I was also the chairman for the National Specialty in 2008 and again in 2012. I am a founding member of the Northern California Pug Club, founded in 1988 and a lifetime member of the Gavilan Kennel Club, our local all-breed dog club. Donnelle Richards (AKC #16762) Pug Breeder Judge 9000 Ridgeway Drive Gilroy, CA 95020 Email: donnellerichards@verizon.net

Phone (408) 848-3336 Cell: (408) 489-1104

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T he Pug is a thumb breed. Do not open the mouth of a Pug. AKC has a chart of all breeds and how to check their bites. This is a thumb breed, as are: Brussels Griffons, English Toy Spaniels, Japanese Chin and Pekingese. These five breeds (as of June 23, 2018) are the ones that are examined without opening the mouth. We have had a lot of complaints of judges wrestling with the dogs to check the teeth. Please don’t wrestle this breed. The bite should be slightly under- shot (reverse scissors) but there must be a chin—not mushmouthed. Check- ing the bite is quick and easy. This is a thumb breed and you must examine on the outside of the muzzle and bite. We only state that we are slightly under- shot. You can feel this with your thumb. Below is how you should go about judg- ing the head of a Pug. EXAMINING THE PUG HEAD CORRECTLY • Cup your fingers behind the Pug’s ears. This gives you a good look at the beautiful wrinkles on the head and will help you to feel the head.

sion. Your examination of the head is now over. You may judge the head last—that is fine. The Pug must have a large round head The head of a Pug usually matures rather slowly and will generally not reach full size until after two years of age. The rather small ears should reach only to the cheek bones. They are soft like velvet and very expressive; helping to give the Pug the sweet soft expres- sion we so love in our breed. The large, dark globular eyes are set so that the middle of the eye is at the top of the nose and the bottom of the alert ear. A light eye gives a much harsher expression to the face and they should be penalized to the degree of the fault. Pugs should appear cobby (standard says Multum in Parvo—meaning a lot in a little). It is a heavy little dog. The standard says 14 to 18 pounds for a dog or bitch but many today weigh slightly over 20 pounds and are still cobby. Pugs are square (dog or bitch). Mea- sured from point of shoulder to point of rump and ground to top of withers. They should never be too long in body nor too short on leg. Pugs have only a slight tuckup. The front legs when viewed from the front should appear straight. There may be some muscling on the outside of the front legs and that should not be taken as not being straight. They are set well under when viewed from the side. The pasterns are only slightly bent. The neck should be strong, and of sufficient length to hold the large head proudly. The head with no neck and set on the shoulders is not correct. The straight topline should remain level moving or standing. A sloping topline is not level. The standard calls for a high set curly tail curled over the hip. A double curled tail is perfection. You see tails

curled tightly directly on top of the back and this certainly is acceptable. A Pug with the tail down when moving is an unhappy Pug and today that Pug should not win. The Pug has a double tracking gait. There is a slight convergence as speed increases, but look at a normal speed and you will see a slight convergence. The front and rear legs should be in a straight line. If you look at the rear going away you should see only the rear and when coming at you only the front. This would be a true double track gait. I ask that the handler take the Pug down and back on as loose a lead as possible so that I can see the gait. If the Pug is on a tight lead you will not see the proper double track. The last thing you want to look at for your consideration in the ring is color. Fawn does consist of many different shades and they may have black hairs mixed in. Smuttiness in the Fawn col- oring is only a minor fault. When the standard says clear color that is to say there is a clear delineation between the fawn and the black of the mask and ears on the Fawn dogs. Black Pugs are just that—black. By saying only Fawn or Black this should eliminate any other off color. Just remember that Fawn does come with black hairs mixed in. If you are a judge of junior showman- ship and don’t know what to do when you ask the junior to show the bite. I ask of all juniors “Please show me the bite and mouth as you do in the conforma- tion ring”. I expect the junior to either explain to me (politely) that we do not open the mouth of the Pug or to show how the examination is done. I hope this helps all of us to under- stand our wonderful breed and how it should be judged.

As Pugs have a lot of skin on the head it is important to feel the bone structure.

• Use your thumbs to feel the top of the head, slide your thumbs down and feel the good width of skull. • Continue to slide your thumbs down to the muzzle which should be at least as wide as to be to the middle of the eyes. Feel for a wry bite at the same time. • Then put one thumb in front of the lips. (If your thumb bends forward slightly you will have a correct slightly undershot bite. As your fingers are still cupped behind the ears you can again see the beautiful shape of the head and expres-

CORRECTION Hello, I enjoyed seeing my article again and received many positive comments thank you! I need to clarify one part of the description which can lead to a misunderstanding. I wrote “the distance between the front feet while standing should be the width of one foot.” To prevent misunderstanding I should have said PAW, meaning the anatomical foot of the dog, not the measurement of 12 inches, which is much too wide. Th ank you again for a great publication, Morton Goldfarb S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , M ARCH 2019 • 313

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! ugs have come a long way in the past few years. Th e good news is that our breeders are better today than ever in aligning their breeding programs to our Pug Standard. Th is means judges new to Pugs get to see dogs that across the board are consistently typey. Breeders are doing a fantastic job building strong breed type that is more cobby and square with a big round head and a tight curly tail. We are not see- ing as much extreme type in the ring these days, and by extreme I mean Pugs that are longer and larger than the Pug Standard, as well as Pugs that are under 14 lbs. and too small to even be in the ring. Our breeders are truly focused on creating a Pug that is compact—multum in parvo. We all know there are no perfect Pugs and while breeders strive for perfection, there is always work to do. For example, we should not be able to see a waistline when viewing a Pug from above, and we should not see a tuck up on the side view. When viewed from the rear, a Pug without a waist will have a square appearance. Breeders’ focus on improving top lines has paid o ff , with significant improvement displayed for all to see as the Pug moves around the ring. Our Pugs’ headpieces are stronger than ever, but we still see Pugs whose ears are too large for their heads. When alert, the Pug should exhibit button ears that are level with the top of the skull and the tip of the ear should be level with the middle of the eye. Speaking of Pug eyes, there is a miscon- ception that a light clear eye is a healthy, correct eye. One of the most endearing parts of Pug is the required dark round eye. Light eyes do not give the proper expres- sion in the breed and they are distracting. A light eye, clear or not, is incorrect. Coat color is always a big topic in judg- ing Pugs. I believe strongly that judges should judge the overall Pug and only then

consider coat color. Judge every part of the dog first—does it have a high-set tail, beau- tiful type, and gorgeous head? Exhibitors present a number of variations of fawn. Just remember when judging the Pug that there needs to be a contrast between the black of the face and ears and the fawn coat. Every new Pug judge must pay close atten- tion to how they examine the bite, as it is a major concern for exhibitors, in fact, it can be a deal breaker for exhibitors concerned about their dogs. Th ere is no need to see the teeth or handle the mouth. To examine the bite on a Pug put the thumb in front of the mouth to feel the slightly undershot bite. It is easy to intimidate any Pug but especially a puppy, so I speak to them gently, approach slowly, go over the Pug’s body and examine the bite last. I’ve had judges ask me about wrinkles down the back. Th e key thing to remem- ber when examining the Pug is you need to get your fingers under the wrinkles to see if the top line is level. Our breeders have done an outstand- ing job breeding black Pugs in the past few years! We see an increasing number of beautiful heads and Pugs that are just as typey as fawns. Competition is di ffi cult with black Pugs, however, because usually there are more fawns in the ring than blacks and the quality of fawns has also improved, making it di ffi cult for blacks to stand out in a crowd of fawns. I’ve heard from Pug exhibitors that movement doesn’t matter because Pugs are a toy breed. Really? A Pug moving away from the judge must be strong and free through the hocks and stifles, with no twisting or turning of the rear—even though it is com- mon to see this type of movement in the ring. And there is nothing quite so lovely as watching a Pug with correct side movement as it moves e ff ortlessly around the ring. My advice to new Pug exhibitors is to remember to show your Pug at a collected trot on a loose lead. Th ere is nothing more

disappointing for a judge than to see than a Pug strung up, gasping for air, as it is pulled around the ring. Exhibitors see handlers do it so they think it is correct and mimic them. I’d also like to see more Pugs in the ring that are shown without a lot of scissoring and sculpting. Th e Pug is a natural breed and should appear that way in the ring. Currently, the Pug Dog Club of Amer- ica’s Illustrated Standard Committee is finalizing plans for the first update to the Standard since 1997. Th e new version will include more illustrations to better repre- sent the Pug Standard. On the health front, we are working on cures for eye diseases, such as Pigmentary Keratopathy, highlighted by the current research conducted by Dr. Amber Labelle at the University of Illinois. We continue to work on eradicating Pug Dog Encephalitis with research in progress at the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medi- cine. Th ere is interest, both in the USA and abroad, in researching the rear limb ataxia/ paralysis that is not uncommon in the breed. Collaborations and fact finding are in the early stages but we hope to gain a handle on this problem in the coming years. I’d be remiss not to mention sportsman- ship. My single best advice to all dog show exhibitors, new or not, is to understand the definition of what it means to be a “good sport”. Too many exhibitors have lost touch with what good sportsmanship really means. In the end, a like all purebred dogs, Pug are bred to be companion dogs and so let’s not lose sight of that when exhibiting, judging, breeding and most of all, living with and loving our Pugs. BIO Mr. Hu ff is President of the Pug Dog Club of America. He has bred, exhibited and judged Pugs for several years. Jason lives in Cincinnati, OH with his beloved Pugs and Frenchies.


What is a Pug?


By Del Richards

hen I was asked to write this article I thought “what would people want to know about pugs?”

leon, depended on her Pug “Fortune” to carry secret messages under his collar to her family while she was imprisoned at Les Carmes. Queen Victoria of England had several pugs and to this day the Pug remains a favorite with royalty and dis- cerning people all over the world. For many centuries the Pug has been bred to be a companion dog and a pleasure to his owners. Black Pugs were imported from China and exhibited for the first time in England in 1886. Th e American Kennel Club first recognized the Pug in 1885. A pug is very moldable and wants to be very involved with your life and will adjust its life style to fit yours. As he loves

to please you he is easily trained. Th ey do well in AKC Companion events like Obe- dience, Rally and Agility. Th ey are known to be clowns and always make you laugh. If you don’t allow your pug to get overweight he can jump and retrieve very well. A Pug is always eager to please, eager to learn and eager to love. His biggest requirement is that you love him back. Pugs have an even temperament, exhib- iting stability, playfulness, litter mates with our granddaughter great charm, dig- nity, and an outgoing, loving disposition. If you want your Pug to runs the marathon with you – ok. If you want the Pug that just snuggles on your lap watching ‘Men

Th e breed originated in the orient and dates back to the pre-Christian era. Th ey were prized possessions of the Emperors of China and lived in a most luxurious atmo- sphere, at times, even guarded by soldiers. Dutch traders brought Pugs from the East to Holland. In 1688 William II brought his Pug to England when he was crowned King. By 1790 the Pug’s popularity spread to France where Josephine, wife of Napo-

“a Pug is very moldable and Wants to be very involved With your life and Will adjust its life style to fit yours.”

Howdy’s favorite pastime.

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“When not keeping any eye on you, their favorite Pastime is sleePing and of course they snore.”

in Black’ – ok. No other dog can equal the Pug in his virtues as a family pet. He appeals to mothers because of his natural cleanliness, intelligence, and the fact that he is a “Toy”. He appeals to fathers because he is a husky, sturdy dog needing very little upkeep. Children adore Pugs and Pugs adore children. Th ey are not too delicate for fun and games. Older persons and shut-ins find them perfect as companions because their greatest need is to be by your side and accepted into your way of life. Th ey don’t like heat. If you are too warm and uncomfortable, they are also uncomfortable. When not keeping any eye on you, their favorite pastime is sleeping and of course they snore. Pugs are basically 24 hour compan- ions. Once you own a Pug you will find it very di ffi cult to not have one with you all the time. BIO I grew up with a Dachshund, but my original AKC breeds were Pugs and Bor- zoi. My wife, Donnelle, and I obtained our first Pug in 1965 and our first Borzoi in 1968. I have been a member of the Pug Dog Club of America since 1970 and am a founding member of the Northern Califor- nia Pug Club. I am also a “Life Member” of the Borzoi Club of America. Our first Borzoi Champion also earned a Utility degree in obedience.

I was active in the early days of open field coursing and open field coursed with Borzoi, Afghans, Salukis, Irish Wolfhounds, Scottish Deerhounds, and Whippets. I helped with the creation of ASFA (American Sighthound Field Asso- ciation) and lure coursing equipment (the original was a hand crank lure). I was instrumental in working with ASFA to have AKC recognize lure coursing as an o ffi cial AKC event. In 1973, I was approved as an AKC Licensed Handler. I remained active as an all-breed professional dog handler until retiring from handling in 1999 to become an AKC approved judge. I have shown and finished champions in breeds from every group. I have owned Pug, Borzoi, Papillion, Belgian Sheepdog, Labrador Retriever, Dachshund, Border Terrier, and Whippet. I am presently approved by AKC to judge all Sporting breeds, all Hound breeds, all Herding breeds, plus Pugs and Papillions, all Miscellaneous breeds, Best In Show and all breed Junior Showmanship.

Litter mates with our granddaughter.

Del Richards (AKC #16761) Pug Breeder Judge 9000 Ridgeway Drive Gilroy, CA 95020 Email: delrichards@verizon.net

Phone: 1(408) 848-3336 Cell: 1(408) 489-3668

S everal years ago we were at a dog show with Rowdy (CH. Glory’s Rowdy Moran, CD). We were handling at the time and while we were setting up our pens there was a class of young students who came to look at all the dogs. Rowdy went and greeted all the children. Th ere was one young girl who obviously was afraid of dogs as she held her hands close to her chest and did not move. Rowdy went to the little girl and just sat beside her. He did not try to jump on her or anything. In a little while the little girl lowered her hand and petted him on the head. By the end of the day the little girl came back to Rowdy and was holding him and loving him. It really was wonderful to see just what intelligence he possessed and knew exactly what to do. He helped that little girl to become a dog lover.

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W e are all excited to get back to dog shows after our COVID hiatus. We want to restore that little bit of normal back into our dog life. It feels like we were all put on pause, there was a rewind, and now we are starting fresh. We are raring to go. With this in mind, I would like to take the opportunity to refresh readers’ understanding of some of the points of the Pug standard. I want to emphasize a few of the nuances that make a Pug, a Pug. I want to address the high points of type in our standard. I would certainly hope that anyone officiating in the ring already has a firm grasp of what mod- erate angles, moderate reach and drive, double tracking, and a level back mean. So, I’ll leave that for another discussion. I would like you to remember three important words when you think about a Pug; round head, square body, curly tail. These three words sum up the shape a Pug is expected to be. Say it again, “Round head, square body, curly tail.” Pugs are short-bodied, thickset, and square. We measure square from the point of shoulder to the ischium, and from the top of the with- ers to the ground. The standard calls for a Pug that is “ multum in parvo ,” which literally translate to “a lot in a little.” Basically, we are the con- crete block of the Toy ring. Calling for a lot in a little requires substance that is not overdone; nor should it ever be coarse. A fat Pug doesn’t have substance, he is just fat, and a scrawny adult clearly lacks substance. Admittedly, our standard can be confusing because it only addresses substance in terms of weight, stating weight from 14 to 18 pounds (dog or bitch) as desirable. And admittedly, today’s exhibits are often slightly larger than the “desired” weight we address in the standard. However, the Pug should be evaluated on the merit of its bone, muscle, and cobbi- ness as it relates to breed type. Always keep in mind that the Pug is a Toy breed of moderate angles. We never want to see Pugs that are excessively large, weedy, leggy, short-legged or long-bodied. Pugs never have a tuck- up. Our back is parallel to the ground and our underline is virtually the same. Think thick as a brick. Let’s move on to the curly tail. Our standard says the tail is curled as tightly as possible over the hip. The double curl is perfection. A Pug’s tail is a very distinctive characteristic, and a Pug carries his feelings on his tail. While a double curl is perfection, a tight single or 1-1/2 twist is perfectly acceptable and pretty much what you can expect to find. No daylight should ever be visible from within the curl. The tail should always remain curled tightly to the body—and this applies when mov- ing too. A low-set tail, a tail that doesn’t hold a curl, flops open when moving or shows daylight are all undesirable. It is not unusual for a puppy, or an exhibit that may have been startled by a noise, to drop its tail for a moment. However, when recovered, the tail should be carried high with that tight curl. (I joke that there are only three times a Pug’s tail comes undone; when he is ill, when he’s sleeping or when he’s dead.)


Here is a beautiful example of square, level back, the correct underline, and profile.



Nose: Although the Standard does not mention the nose, a short discussion is necessary. The nose is black, wide, and lies flat when viewed in profile. The top of the nose bisects the center of the eyes. The stop is concealed by an over-the-nose wrinkle. An unbroken wrinkle, set on the nose, unifies the face. Undesirable: A nose wrinkle covering a significant portion of the nose so as to negatively affect the Pug’s ability to breathe comfortably; a nosepad that is too large; lack of noseroll.

When alert, the tip of the ear reaches no further than the outer cor- ner of the eye. The rose ear appears smaller and folds differently, with the inner edge against the side of the head. The inner burr of the rose ear does not show like that of a Bulldog. The rose ear is small, neat, and tends to give the head a rounder appearance. Ears are always black, and both ears should be of the same type. Head wrinkle is another trait essential to a Pug’s expression. The standard says no more than the wrinkles are large and deep. In the fawn Pug, the wrinkles are set off by a darkening within the folds of the wrinkle. Wrinkles in the black Pug are more difficult to discern, so be sure to take a good look. Wrinkles can conceal an incorrect skull shape. The Pug’s muzzle is short, blunt, and square, but it is not up- faced. The muzzle is almost half of the dog’s face and is extremely important. It should be flat when viewed in profile. The cushioning of the muzzle should appear to be equal to the width of the skull. The width of the muzzle should be in line with the outer edge of the eye. The underjaw is wide and deep. The upper lips should be full and the lip line firm. When viewed from the front, the muzzle should not fall away under the eyes. To complete the round head, there should be sufficient fill and cushioning under the eyes. The bite of the Pug is very slightly undershot. An overbite distorts the expression and gives a lippy appearance. Too much underbite makes the dog look up-faced. Kindly remember that we are a “thumb breed.” There is no need to lift the lips, pry open the mouth or stick your fingers in there. Use the flat of your thumb over the mouth to feel the bite. We highly recommend that the bite check should be the last part of the table examine. I said in the beginning that I wanted to hit the points of our standard that are essential to Pug type. However, there are two other points I want to touch on before I close this discussion. Pugs come in fawn or black. Period. Fawn or black only; any color other than fawn or black is a disqualification. It is the only disqualifica- tion in our standard. While fawn comes in many shades, black is black. It is important to remember that a small amount of white on the chest in either color is perfectly acceptable. Another note on color: Pugs should be judged with no preference for color. My final note in our conversation today is that Pugs should also be judged with equal consideration afforded to both dogs and bitches. Welcome back to the ring, and let’s hope that we never have to take a hiatus like this one again.

I have saved the discussion of the head for last as the head is complicated. Remember that word “round” head? If only it were that simple. I find that understanding the correct head is the hard- est thing for many to grasp. Yes, the standard says our head is large, massive, and round. However, keep in mind that our head is large and round when viewed from the front. When viewed from the side, our face is flat. The head must always fit the body, meaning it should be in proportion to the body. The head should never be so large that it is out of balance with the rest of the dog. This is as unappealing as is the dog with a head that is too small. The head should always exhibit a firm lip line, thick cushioning under the eyes, substantial cheeks, and a strong, wide underjaw. But to really understand the Pug head, one must also under- stand the nose, eyes, shape and set of the ears, head wrinkle, muz- zle width, and the bite as these all fill and fit into the round head. So, look at the head from the front and “draw” in your mind an imaginary circle around the head. Every inch of the dog’s head should reach out and touch or fill the edges of that circle. Now, let’s get a little more specific. We’ll start with the nose. Draw an imaginary horizontal line across the top of the nose to the outer edges of that circle. That horizontal line should run through the center of the eyes. It should bisect the center of the eyes for the dog to have proper nose place- ment. A nose that is set too low gives the face an up-and-down or rectangular look. For the Pug’s head to be balanced, half of his face will be above that horizontal line and half of it will be below. The stop of the nose is always concealed by the nose wrinkle. The nose is always black, wide, and flat. The eyes are the soul of this breed and they should be dark, very large, and round. “Globular” in shape means round, it never means bulging. The expression of the eyes is soft and lustrous, but full of fire when excited. The expression of a Pug is extremely dependent on their big, dark, wide-set, appealing eyes. The eyes should never be small or beady, nor close-set, nor light. The whites of the eyes should not show, nor should the eyes be east-west. The center of the eyes should always be in line with the top of the nose. The rims of the eyes are black. Expression, size, shape, and color are of primary importance. The ears frame the head. They are thin, small, soft (like black velvet), and come in two shapes—rose or button—with prefer- ence given to the button ear. The ears are set wide on the head. The fold of the button ear is level with the top of the dog’s skull.



BY KATHLEEN L. SMILER, DVM, DACLAM Pug Dog Club of America Health Committee Chair

Pug Myelopathy is a recently recog- nized spinal condition believed unique in purebred Pugs. It is called by several terms (e.g., constrictive myelopathy, facet hypoplasia), and it is most often referred to as “Pug Myelopathy.” With an average age of onset of ~nine years, the rear limb incoordination (ataxia) may progress to paralysis of the rear limbs over a period of one to four years. Origi- nally referred to as “weak rear,” this has become a widespread problem in Pugs. Although the rear legs appear to be weak, the cause is a neurological defi- cit that develops in the spine. Affected dogs may initially drag their feet, stag- ger, have trouble jumping and can have fecal and urinary incontinence. It usu- ally affects just the rear limbs, unlike a very different disease, Degenerative Myelopathy (DM), which can have simi- lar initial signs, but slowly progresses tragically to complete paralysis and usually euthanasia. In Pug Myelopathy, we are learning there is usually a com- plex of spinal abnormalities that involve both the vertebral bones, and the spi- nal cord. Spinal cord compression—

often near the last pair of ribs—can be caused by one or more syndromes that may include chronic multiple moder- ate Hansen’s Type II intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) and spinal arachnoid diverticula (SAD) “pouch”, with fibrous thickening of the arachnoid (a layer of the spinal cord membranes – meninges - surrounding the spinal cord) and spinal cord atrophy. Unraveling the relation- ships between these conditions is one goal of the research at Michigan State University, led by Dr. Jon Patterson, which is funded by the Pug Dog Club of America . Although little is published about this condition, Pug Myelopathy may be the most common cause of mid- back spinal cord problems in Pugs. Many veterinarians are not yet knowledgeable about this condition, and affected dogs may have had a pre- vious diagnosis that was incomplete or inaccurate. Since so little is known, there is no consensus among neurolo- gists about the best way to treat it. Sur- gery may be appropriate for a limited number of individual cases, but it must be considered as soon as possible after

symptoms first occur, and may only delay progression of paralysis. The most important palliative treat- ment appears to be consistent physical therapy using rehabilitation exercises to preserve muscle strength and enhance development of a “spinal walk.” A thera- peutic wheeled cart, carefully fitted by a knowledgeable professional, may exercise the rear legs to assist, improve, and extend the ability to remain mobile. Other forms of integrative medicine can enhance the ability and interest to stay active. Pugs affected with Pug Myelopa- thy are usually pain free and can lead enriched long lives with good nursing care despite their disability. All senior Pugs require periodic wellness exams to detect and alleviate other problems of aging; including those of the dog’s front legs, shoulders, and neck; includ- ing using medication and/or supple- ments. It is critical that affected Pugs be carefully monitored for the ability to completely empty the urinary bladder several times a day. If your dog devel- ops signs of “weak rear” or ataxia, it is important to have your primary care




veterinarian arrange a referral for an examination by a board-certified vet- erinary neurologist or surgeon as soon as possible. In Pug Myelopathy, both bony (ver- tebral) and spinal cord abnormalities are found in most cases. Almost all purebred Pugs have hypoplastic (under- developed) or aplastic (absent) facet articulations between the vertebrae of the mid to lower back. These are best seen with a CT scan, but to understand lesions potentially compressing the spinal cord, an MRI is the preferred diagnostic test. Currently there is no way to predict which Pugs will develop a neurological disease at 7-12 years of age, long after a successful show and breeding career

has occurred. Using state-of-the art canine genetic tools, scientists at Pur- due University will begin to investigate the genetic variants underlying these canine spinal abnormalities, hopefully leading to the development of genetic tests. Such tests would allow breeders to screen for clinically relevant spinal abnormalities, and examine possible inheritance, while selecting for desired breed characteristics. A genetic test may also identify individual dogs “at risk” for Pug Myelopathy syndromes, be used to aid in diagnosis of an affected dog, and/ or supplement a prognosis after spinal injury or trauma. Genetic screening would improve the welfare and well- being of purebred Pugs, and provide direction in reducing other inherited

disorders in purebred dogs. To submit case history and medical records, test results and images, and pedigrees and DNA samples from affected Pugs please contact Dr. Smiler. A clinical study to examine the benefits of rehabilitation and physical therapy for long term nurs- ing care is also in development. To obtain more information on Pug Myelopathy please contact: Kathleen L. Smiler, DVM, DACLAM; smilerk@mindspring.com. Our websites: http://pugrearataxia- paralysis.com/ and http://www.pug- dogclubofamerica.com/pug-myelopa- thy.html. Our Facebook Page: https://www. facebook.com/Pug-Dog-Health-Rear- AtaxiaParalysis-218123938233440/. Wonderful Wheelie Pugs Support Group: https://www.facebook.com/ groups/wheeliepugs/. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Dr. Kathleen Smiler’s Pug, 7-year- old Lily (pictured left), was affected in 2005 by an almost unknown rear limb weakness first recognized at Auburn University. In the past 12 years Kathleen has increased aware- ness, promoted research, and devel- oped resources for Pug owners to pro- vide long term home nursing care for their own disabled dogs. Dr. Smiler is a 1970 graduate of the Michigan State University, College of Veteri- nary Medicine. Her work experience in research combines purebred dog practice with basic investigative sci- ence. She has held offices in many vet- erinary medical organizations, and is currently the Michigan Delegate to the AVMA.



186 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , M AY 2015

T oday, the Pug is renowned as a superb companion. He is often portrayed in print media, on television and in film as a happy loving member of the family which a true depiction of the breed. With a background typical of an Orien- tal breed, the Pug has been loved and adored through centuries and today his popularity is at an all time high. In 2014, 203 Pugs received their AKC Championships; 71 went on to Grand Champion status. In the Obedience ring, Pugs made their presence known as well: ten Pugs attained their CD and three their CDX! Th e Pug was o ffi - cially recognized by AKC in 1885; in 2014 Pugs were ranked #32 in popularity out of 178 breeds and varieties—although for Pug fanciers he will always be #1. Th e Pug loves his family but also is friendly with others, especially babies. His pink tongue is always ready to give kisses and he loves cuddles. Not the most easily trained, many have been very successful in obedience and as therapy dogs. Th is is a breed meant only for compan- ionship. He does not hunt, track, retrieve point or herd. He enjoys a rough tumble and a quiet snooze on the couch with his person. He is protective of his turf and will alert you to strangers approaching. As a family pet he usually attaches him- self to the person feeding him, but will share his a ff ections. Pugs are very good eaters and one must be careful of overfeed- ing as it is hard to resist those great big black, pleading eyes. Perhaps the worst thing that could hap- pen to a Pug is to be ignored. Th ey enjoy routine and once they understand yours they will want to participate on every level. Th ey are highly attuned to your moods and also will comfort you in times of sadness. Most Pugs in the classes are shown by their owners and often their breeders. Th ey are little clowns and will not always stand perfectly on the table. Do not expect them to because that bubbling personality is a large part of their charm. Th ey are very sensitive to their eyes being covered dur- ing a table exam and are especially unhap- py with a heavy-handed mouth exam. A slightly undershot bite can be determined by a visual exam or a light touch outside the mouth. Th e biggest complaint exhibi- tors have is bite exam and having a heavy hand on these toy dogs. Th e Pug is the largest dog in the Toy group—and his many admirers will argue he also has the largest heart.


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1. Where do you live and what do you do outside of dogs? Pelham, Massachusetts. I am retired and just enjoying life. 2. Number of years owning and/or showing Pugs? 42 years ago—I started in obedience. 3. What is di ff erent now about the sport from when you started? Too many professional handlers—they socialize with all the judges, making it di ffi cult for the owner/handler. 4. Describe the Pug in three words: Entertaining, funny and loving. 5. What about the breed makes it a great show dog? Th ey love being the center of whatever is going on. 6. What advice would you give a newcomer? Enjoy your time together—they are show dogs for a short time, have fun. 7. What is your funniest experience at a dog show? Th e Pug is very entertaining so it is hard to pick out one thing they have done to make you laugh. JUDY BROWN

I have always had a dog or dogs in my life. I started dog showing when the last of 6 boys I raised left for college. I missed going to all the sporting events. I decided on pugs because I had rescued a black pug from our Humane Soci- ety for my parents. I fell in love with him. My husband then surprised me with a little fawn pug puppy he bought from a backyard breeder in India- napolis for my birthday. I was smitten with the breed. My foundation is from Peachtree Pugs in Georgia. Although I love my fawns my true love is the blacks. Currently I have both black and fawn pugs in my house, along with Tibetan Spaniels. I have been showing Tibetan Spaniels for 7 years. I also have a Tibetan Mastiff. He is my therapy dog. I use him with the special needs children I work with at Head Start where I am Disability/Mental Health/Transition Manager. 1. Where do you live and what do you do outside of dogs? I live in Logansport, Indiana. I garden, read, and spend time with family and friends. I also like to travel but other than a summer vacation with my I’ve been in the breed for 15 years. I first owned a Pug 20 years ago; it was a pet pug from a backyard breeder before I knew better. My first show with a Pug was in Louisville, KY, in 2002. I received a pretty cobalt blue vase for winning open black bitch. I was thrilled. family most of my travel has been to dog shows. 2. Number of years owning and/or showing Pugs?

3. What is di ff erent now about the sport from when you started? Th e blacks have gotten so much better in the last 15 years, much more substance and big round wrinkled heads. When I first started in Pugs everyone was so friendly, we would have pitch-ins at the dog shows and there seemed to be a lot of encouragement between exhibitors. Now there are like little cliques, and so much back-stabbing. I see this everywhere I travel. I show another breed also and the people are much friendlier, welcoming and encouraging.

Continued on page 198

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