These wrinkled-faced dogs have an adorably rich history. In honor of National Pug Day, learn about essential facts for any Pug fanatic.
1. THIS IS AN OLD RACE.
Because the line of Pugs goes back so far, their ancient history is a bit murky. Most believe that the breed originated in China and existed before 400 BCE and was called (or at least closely related to a breed called) “lo-sze”. Buddhist monks kept dogs as pets in Tibetan monasteries.
2. THEY HAVE BEEN TREATED AS ROYALTIES.
The emperors of China kept pugs as companion dogs and treated them with all the luxuries of royal life. Sometimes the pampered doggies were given their own mini-palaces and guards.
3. A GROUP OF PUG IS CALLED A GRUMBLE
In Holland the pug is called a pug dog, which comes from Dutch to “grumble”.
4. THE BREED LIKELY TAKES ITS NAME FROM A MONKEY.
Marmosets were kept as pets in the early 18th century and were called pugs. The name made the jump to the dog because the two animals shared similar facial features.
5. THE CARLIN IS THE OFFICIAL BREED OF THE HOUSE OF ORANGE.
In 1572 the Dutch were in the midst of the Eighty Years’ War, a protracted struggle against the Spaniards. The Prince of Orange, William the Silent, led the Dutch forces into battle. According to Dutch legend, while the prince slept in his tent one night, Spanish assassins were hiding just outside. Luckily, William’s pug, Pompey, was there to bark wildly and jump in his owner’s face. The prince awoke and apprehended his potential assassins. For this reason, the pug was considered the official dog of the House of Orange. The effigy of Prince William I above his grave also features Pompey at his feet (although oddly enough this dog does not have a flat face, which suggests to some that it was a breed different).
Later, when Prince William III came to England to reign with his wife Mary II, he brought his pugs, who wore small orange ribbons, to their master’s coronation in 1689.
6. THE PERFECT TWO-BUCKLE CARLIN TAIL.
Pugs are known for their curly tails that curl towards their bodies. According to the AKC, “the double loop is perfection”.
7. THERE IS A CARLIN WITH AN MBA.
In 2009, Chester Ludlow the Pug received an online graduate degree from the University of Rochville. He submitted his resume to the website and paid around $ 500 for the entry. A week later, he received his grades, diploma and a school window sticker in the mail. Although he never attended a class, he earned a 3.19 and an A in finance. Chester may have been the first pug to graduate.
It’s a shame that the University of Rochville is not accredited. It was all a stunt by a website called GetEducated.com. The website reviews online colleges to protect students from diploma mill fraud. So even if Chester the Pug has a degree, you won’t see him getting a job anytime soon (unless that job is featured in some cute commercials).
8. THERE WAS A SECRET ORGANIZATION BEARING THE NAME OF THE DOG.
Around 1740, Roman Catholics formed a secret fraternal group called the Order of the Pug. The Pope banned Catholics from joining the Freemasons, so this group was formed as a replacement. They chose the pug as their symbol because the dogs were loyal and trustworthy. The Grandmaster was male, but each division in the group had two “Big Pugs” who were always a male and a female.
To join, members had to prove their dedication by kissing the backside of the Big Pug under its tail (luckily the Big Pug was porcelain). Other wacky habits included wearing dog collars, scratching at the lodge door for entry, and loud barking.
This result was probably not the expected result of the ban on Freemasonry, so this new foreign group was banned in several areas, until it finally fizzled out. . Probably due to a lack of people willing to kiss a pug’s bottom.
9. JOSEPHINE BONAPARTE’S CARLIN DIDN’T DISAGREE.
Napoleon’s wife, Josephine, had a pug named Fortuné that she loved so much that she refused to let the dog sleep anywhere other than in her bed. It is said that when Napoleon first got into bed with his new wife, his pug bit him on the leg.
10. THEY ALSO HAVE ROYAL CONNECTIONS IN THE UK.
Long before Queen Elizabeth II met her first corgi, Queen Victoria was Britain’s best dog lover and loved pugs. Victoria loved dogs so much that she also banned the practice of cutting the ears, allowing pug owners to enjoy their puppies’ velvety ears in all their glory.
11. THEIR SHORT NOSE CAUSES SOME PROBLEMS.
Pugs are brachycephalic, which means their noses are deeper than other dogs. Although cute, these squashed faces can lead to breathing problems. Their facial structure makes it difficult to breathe long and deep, which is why you might hear a pug sniffing while running. Dogs are always very energetic, but they may not be the best swimmers and can have problems on airplanes.
12. Pugs are made to be companions.
Pugs are excellent pets due to their adaptable personalities. Whether you like to stay at home or enjoy the outdoors, little dogs will be up for anything. Raised to be companions, their favorite place is by your side.
An earlier version of this article was published in 2015.