Written by Doris Donnerman (last updated August 17, 2009)
For a long time there has been considerable speculation about the origin of the Pug. At times the Pug has been called the "Dutch Dog". It is natural for many to assume that Holland was his first home. True, the dog was extremely popular in that country, but the preponderance of the evidence points to China as his birthplace. In fact, most of the Toy dogs with short noses and large heads and tails curled over their backs originated in that country.
Dutch traders did a lively business in China, and the breed was introduced into England from Holland. Yet most of the best English dogs of the late nineteenth century and American dogs of the early twentieth century traced back to a dog of pure Chinese breeding. While the Pug was popular in Holland, it is notable that little attention was paid to him by the painters of that nation, many of whom used dogs of various breeds in their best works.
The first black Pug to be exhibited in England was one belonging to Lady Brasey, who exhibited it at the Maidstone show in about 1866. It is said that the black Pug came from an infusion of blood from the Japanese Pug. This breed was white or black or white and black. Some black Pugs of today have a tendency to show a bit of white on the chest and feet.
The Pug is an affable little fellow, full of spunk and needing far less care than other members of the Toy group. The Pug is known for his even temper and outgoing disposition. He is loving, playful and highly adaptable. The Pug is essentially a house dog and needs the warmth and comfort of the interior. In the past fifty years he has gained back much of his lost popularity.
In general appearance the Pug is square and cobby. Common colors for the breed are fawn, black, apricot, silver and any combination thereof. The Pug generally weighs between fourteen and eighteen pounds.
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