The Puggle is a hybrid or mixed breed dog — a cross between the Beagle and Pug breeds. They’ve become fairly popular, thanks to their fun-loving personality and cute looks.
Although these dogs sometimes have the unfortunate status of “designer breed,” you may find them in the care of shelters and rescue groups. Remember to adopt! Don’t shop if you want to bring a dog home.
Puggles get along with kids and other dogs, and can make a great family companion. Just be aware that they may enjoy barking, and although they’re intelligent and loving, they’re not always eager to please when it comes to training.
Contrary to popular belief, small size doesn’t necessarily an apartment dog make. Plenty of small dogs are too high-energy and yappy for life in a high-rise. Being quiet, low energy, fairly calm indoors, and polite with the other residents are all good qualities in an apartment dog.
Some dogs are simply easier than others; they take to training better and are fairly easygoing. They’re also resilient enough to bounce back from your mistakes or inconsistencies.
Dogs who are highly sensitive, independent thinking, or assertive may be harder for a first-time dog parent to manage. You’ll get your best match if you take your dog-owning experience into account as you choose your new pooch.
If you’re new to dog parenting, take a look at 101 Dog Tricks and read up on how to train your dog!
Some dogs will let a stern reprimand roll off their backs, while others take even a dirty look to heart. Low-sensitivity dogs, also called “easygoing,” “tolerant,” “resilient,” and even “thick-skinned,” can better handle a noisy, chaotic household, a louder or more assertive owner, and an inconsistent or variable routine. Do you have young kids, throw lots of dinner parties, play in a garage band, or lead a hectic life? Go with a low-sensitivity dog.
Some breeds bond very closely with their family and are more prone to worry or even panic when left alone by their owner. An anxious dog can be very destructive–barking, whining, chewing, and otherwise causing mayhem. These breeds do best when a family member is home during the day or if you can take the dog to work.
Breeds with very short coats and little or no undercoat or body fat, such as Greyhounds, are vulnerable to the cold. Dogs with a low cold tolerance need to live inside in cool climates and should have a jacket or sweater for chilly walks.
Dogs with thick, double coats are more vulnerable to overheating. So are breeds with short noses, like Bulldogs or Pugs, since they can’t pant as well to cool themselves off. If you want a heat-sensitive breed, your dog will need to stay indoors with you on warm or humid days, and you’ll need to be extra cautious about exercising your dog in the heat.
All Around Friendliness
Some breeds are independent and aloof, even if they’ve been raised by the same person since puppyhood; others bond closely to one person and are indifferent to everyone else; and some shower the whole family with affection. Breed isn’t the only factor that goes into affection levels; dogs who were raised inside a home with people around feel more comfortable with humans and bond more easily.
See Dogs Less Affectionate with Family
Being gentle with children, sturdy enough to handle the heavy-handed pets and hugs they can dish out, and having a blasé attitude toward running, screaming children are all traits that make a kid-friendly dog. You may be surprised by who’s on that list: Fierce-looking Boxers are considered good with children, as are American Staffordshire Terriers (which are considered Pit Bulls). Small, delicate, and potentially snappy dogs such as Chihuahuas aren’t always so family-friendly.
**All dogs are individuals. Our ratings are generalizations, and they’re not a guarantee of how any breed or individual dog will behave. Dogs from any breed can be good with children based on their past experiences, training on how to get along with kids, and personality. No matter what the breed or breed type, all dogs have strong jaws, sharp pointy teeth, and may bite in stressful circumstances. Young children and dogs of any breed should always be supervised by an adult and never left alone together, period.
Friendliness toward dogs and friendliness toward humans are two completely different things. Some dogs may attack or try to dominate other dogs, even if they’re love-bugs with people; others would rather play than fight; and some will turn tail and run. Breed isn’t the only factor. Dogs who lived with their littermates and mother until at least six to eight weeks of age and who spent lots of time playing with other dogs during puppyhood, are more likely to have good canine social skills.
Stranger-friendly dogs will greet guests with wagging tails and nuzzles; others are shy, indifferent, or even aggressive. However, no matter what the breed, a dog who was socialized and exposed to lots of different types, ages, sizes, and shapes of people as a puppy will respond better to strangers as an adult. Remember that even friendly dogs should stay on a good, strong leash like in public!
Health And Grooming Needs
If you’re going to share your home with a dog, you’ll need to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothes and in your house. However, shedding does vary greatly among the breeds. Some dogs shed year-round, some “blow” seasonally, some do both, and some shed hardly at all. If you’re a neatnik, you’ll need to either pick a low-shedding breed or relax your standards. To help keep your home a little cleaner, you can find a great de-shedding tool here!
Drool-prone dogs may drape ropes of slobber on your arm and leave big, wet spots on your clothes when they come over to say hello. If you’ve got a laid-back attitude toward slobber, fine; but if you’re a neatnik, you may want to choose a dog who rates low in the drool department.
Some breeds are brush-and-go dogs; others require regular bathing, clipping, and other grooming just to stay clean and healthy. Consider whether you have the time and patience for a dog who needs a lot of grooming, or the money to pay someone else to do it.
Due to poor breeding practices, some breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, such as hip dysplasia. This doesn’t mean that every dog of that breed will develop those diseases; it just means that they’re at an increased risk.
If you’re adopting a puppy, it’s a good idea to find out which genetic illnesses are common to the breed you’re interested in. You may also want to ask if your shelter or rescue has information about the physical health of your potential pup’s parents and other relatives.
Some breeds have hearty appetites and tend to put on weight easily. As in humans, being overweight can cause health problems in dogs. If you pick a breed that’s prone to packing on pounds, you’ll need to limit treats, make sure they get enough exercise, and measure out their daily food servings into regular meals rather than leaving food out all the time.
Ask your vet about your dog’s diet and what they recommend for feeding your pooch to keep them at a healthy weight. Weight gain can lead to other health issues or worsen problems like arthritis.
Dogs come in all sizes, from the world’s smallest pooch, the Chihuahua, to the towering Great Dane, how much space a dog takes up is a key factor in deciding if they’re compatible with you and your living space. Large dog breeds might seem overpowering and intimidating, but some of them are incredibly sweet! Take a look and find the right sized dog for you!
Easy-to-train dogs are more adept at forming an association between a prompt (such as the word “sit”), an action (sitting), and a consequence (getting a treat) very quickly. Other dogs need more time, patience, and repetition during training.
Many breeds are intelligent but approach training with a “What’s in it for me?” attitude, in which case you’ll need to use rewards and games to teach them to want to comply with your requests.
Dogs who were bred for jobs that require decision making, intelligence, and concentration, such as herding livestock, need to exercise their brains, just as dogs who were bred to run all day need to exercise their bodies. If they don’t get the mental stimulation they need, they’ll make their own work–usually with projects you won’t like, such as digging and chewing. Obedience training and interactive dog toys are good ways to give a dog a brain workout, as are dog sports and careers, such as agility and search and rescue.
Common in most breeds during puppyhood and in Retriever breeds at all ages, mouthiness means a tendency to nip, chew, and play-bite (a soft, fairly painless bite that doesn’t puncture the skin). Mouthy dogs are more likely to use their mouths to hold or “herd” their human family members, and they need training to learn that it’s fine to gnaw on chew toys, but not on people. Mouthy breeds tend to really enjoy a game of fetch, as well as a good chew on a toy that’s been stuffed with kibble and treats.
Dogs who were bred to hunt, such as Terriers, have an inborn desire to chase–and sometimes kill–other animals. Anything whizzing by, such as cats, squirrels, and perhaps even cars, can trigger that instinct. Dogs who like to chase need to be leashed or kept in a fenced area when outdoors, and you’ll need a high, secure fence in your yard. These breeds generally aren’t a good fit for homes with smaller pets that can look like prey, such as cats, hamsters, or small dogs. Breeds that were originally used for bird hunting, on the other hand, generally won’t chase, but you’ll probably have a hard time getting their attention when there are birds flying by.
Some breeds sound off more often than others. When choosing a breed, think about how often the dog vocalizes with barks or howls. If you’re considering a hound, would you find their trademark howls musical or maddening? If you’re considering a watchdog, will a city full of suspicious “strangers” put your pup on permanent alert? Will the local wildlife literally drive your dog wild? Do you live in housing with noise restrictions? Do you have neighbors nearby? Then you may wish to choose a quieter dog.
Some breeds are more free-spirited than others. Nordic dogs such as Siberian Huskies were bred to range long distances, and given the chance, they’ll take off after anything that catches their interest. And many hounds simply must follow their noses–or that bunny that just ran across the path–even if it means leaving you behind.
High-energy dogs are always ready and waiting for action. Originally bred to perform a canine job of some sort, such as retrieving game for hunters or herding livestock, they have the stamina to put in a full workday. They need a significant amount of exercise and mental stimulation, and they’re more likely to spend time jumping, playing, and investigating any new sights and smells.
Low-energy dogs are the canine equivalent of a couch potato, content to doze the day away. When picking a breed, consider your own activity level and lifestyle, and think about whether you’ll find a frisky, energetic dog invigorating or annoying.
A vigorous dog may or may not have high energy, but everything they do, they do with vigor: they strain on the leash (until you train them not to), try to plow through obstacles, and even eats and drinks with great big gulps. These dynamos need lots of training to learn good manners, and may not be the best fit for a home with young kids or someone who’s elderly or frail. A low-vigor dog, on the other hand, has a more subdued approach to life.
Some breeds do fine with a slow evening stroll around the block. Others need daily, vigorous exercise, especially those that were originally bred for physically demanding jobs, like herding or hunting.
Without enough exercise, these breeds may put on weight and vent their pent-up energy in ways you don’t like, such as barking, chewing, and digging. Breeds that need a lot of exercise are good for outdoorsy, active people, or those interested in training their dog to compete in a high-energy dog sport, such as agility.
Some dogs are perpetual puppies — always begging for a game — while others are more serious and sedate. Although a playful pup sounds endearing, consider how many games of fetch or tag you want to play each day, and whether you have kids or other dogs who can stand in as playmates for the dog.
Dog Breed Group:Hybrid DogsHeight:13 to 15 inches tall at the shoulderWeight:18 to 30 poundsLife Span:10 to 15 years
More About This Breed
Puggles are a cross breed of the Pug and Beagle. They have the wrinkles of their Pug parents and the longer muzzle, ears, and tail of a Beagle — a look that draws comparisons to miniature Mastiffs. This unique appearance and his friendly nature has driven a rapid rise in popularity since the first Puggle was bred in the 1990s.
Cross breeds such as the Puggle are often referred to as designer dogs rather than mixed breeds because they’re bred on purpose and are a combination of two known breeds. People who raise them hope to end up with the best of both worlds: for instance, the Pug’s laidback personality and the Beagle’s longer nose, which makes breathing easier. Sometimes that happens and sometimes it doesn’t; it all depends on the shuffle of the genetic cards.
Puggles are active. Not content to laze around the house, they play energetically indoors and out, racing around the dining room table and down the hall. Some enjoy digging outdoors. Expect to give them at least 30 minutes of exercise per day. Puggles are good walking companions, but they’re not the best choice if you want a jogging partner. Agility training is a good way to direct your fun-loving Puggle’s need for speed.
Puggles are smart, but they may or may not be eager to please. Neither the Pug nor the Beagle is especially known for ease of training, and both breeds can be stubborn. Use positive reinforcement techniques such as food rewards, play, and praise, and keep training sessions short and sweet.
Being a social dog, the Puggle gets along well with everyone. He usually enjoys the company of children and isn’t known for aggression toward other dogs. Puggles will bark to let you know when someone comes to the door, but given their friendly nature, they’re not guard dogs. Some are howlers, a trait inherited from their Beagle parent.
The Puggle can be a cute and cuddly lovebug. Before you fall in love with that wrinkled face and hang-down ears, however, it’s important to understand that you could end up with a dog that displays one or more of the worst characteristics of the Pug and the Beagle, such as respiratory problems (Pug), stubbornness (Pug and Beagle), tendency to wander (Beagle), howling (Beagle), hip dysplasia (both), and eye problems (both). If you’re willing to welcome whatever surprises this little dog brings, you’re sure to enjoy life with your new dog.
- The Puggle is a cross breed — a mix of the Pug and Beagle — rather than a true breed.
- Puggles are active and energetic. They need daily exercise and will enjoy a couple of 15-minute walks or playtimes.
- Puggles shed, and need weekly brushing to get rid of loose or dead hair. They also require some special care to keep their skin folds and wrinkles clean and dry.
- Puggles are smart, but they can be stubborn. Train them with positive reinforcement techniques, such as food rewards, praise, and play.
- Puggles generally do well with other dogs and pets, although they may chase smaller pets..
- Loving and gentle, the Puggle can make an excellent companion to anyone, including first-time dog owners, and will do well with children of all ages.
- Puggles are companion dogs and may suffer from separation anxiety when they’re left alone for long periods.
- Puggles can adapt to any type of home, from city apartment to suburban house. However, beware if your housing has noise restrictions — barking or howling is a common trait in Puggles.
- To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store.
The Puggle is the result of an accidental cross breeding between a Pug and a Beagle, probably sometime in the 1990s. The breed has become very popular, thaks to his novelty, sweet nature, and cute looks.
There are no breed clubs for the Puggle, and no efforts to make him a recognized breed. Most litters are the result of first generation breedings between Beagles and Pugs, but there have been a few breedings of Puggles to Puggles.
Most Puggles are 13 to 15 inches tall at the shoulder and weigh 18 to 30 pounds. Toy-size Puggles are usually less than 13 inches tall and weigh 8 to 17 pounds.
The Puggle is a sweet, intelligent dog who can fit easily into family life. They can be playful and cuddly and enjoy spending time with the people in their lives. Puggles usually get along well with everyone, including kids and other pets. Potential behavior problems include howling, barking, digging, or wandering.
Like all dogs, Puggles need early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — when they’re young. Socialization helps ensure that your Puggle puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.
Not all Puggles will get any or all of these diseases, but it’s important to be aware of them if you’re considering this breed.
- Stenotic Nares, also known as pinched nostrils, is a congenital disorder (meaning the dog is born with it). It affects dogs with short muzzles and makes it difficult for them to breathe. Signs include noisy breathing and exercise intolerance. Dogs that aren’t getting enough oxygen may have blue gums. Mild cases can be managed by preventing obesity, limiting exercise during hot or humid weather, and using a harness instead of a neck collar. More severe cases may require surgical repair.
- Hip Dysplasia is a heritable condition in which the thighbone doesn’t fit snugly into the hip joint. Some dogs show pain and lameness on one or both rear legs, but you may not notice any signs of discomfort in a dog with hip dysplasia. As the dog ages, arthritis can develop. X-ray screening for hip dysplasia is done by the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals or the University of Pennsylvania Hip Improvement Program (PennHIP). Hip dysplasia is hereditary, but it can be worsened by environmental factors, such as rapid growth from a high-calorie diet or injuries incurred from jumping or falling on slick floors.
- Hypothyroidism is caused by a deficiency of thyroid hormone and may produce signs that include infertility, obesity, mental dullness, and lack of energy. The dog’s fur may become coarse and brittle and begin to fall out, while the skin becomes tough and dark. Hypothyroidism can be managed very well with daily medication. Medication must continue throughout the dog’s life. A dog that is being treated for hypothyroidism can live a full and happy life.
- Patellar Luxation, also known as “slipped stifles,” is a common problem in small dogs. It is caused when the patella, which has three parts-the femur (thigh bone), patella (knee cap), and tibia (calf)-is not properly lined up. This causes lameness in the leg or an abnormal gait, sort of like a skip or a hop. It is a condition that is present at birth although the actual misalignment or luxation does not always occur until much later. The rubbing caused by patellar luxation can lead to arthritis, a degenerative joint disease. There are four grades of patellar luxation, ranging from grade I, an occasional luxation causing temporary lameness in the joint, to grade IV, in which the turning of the tibia is severe and the patella cannot be realigned manually. This gives the dog a bowlegged appearance. Severe grades of patellar luxation may require surgical repair.
- Epilepsy is a disorder that causes seizures. Epilepsy can be managed with medication, but it cannot be cured. A dog can live a full and healthy life with the proper management of epilepsy, which can be either hereditary or of unknown cause.
- Cherry Eye occurs when the gland located in the dog’s third eyelid (known as the nictitating membrane) bulges out. It looks like a reddened mass at the inner corner of the eye. Cherry eye can be repaired surgically.
If you’re buying a Puggle, it’s important to research the health conditions that affect both the Pug and the Beagle. Both parents should have health clearances from the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals for hips, patellas (knees), and thyroid and from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF) certifying that the eyes are normal.
Because some health problems don’t appear until a dog reaches full maturity, health clearances aren’t issued to dogs younger than 2 years old. Look for a breeder who doesn’t breed her dogs until they’re two or three years old.
Puggles are people-lovers and should live indoors with the family, not outside. So long as they’re indoor dogs and get enough exercise, they can adapt to any living situation, including apartments — although they can bark a lot. Some even have a tendency to howl, a trait they inherit from their Beagle parent.
Puggles are intelligent but can be stubborn. They’ll respond best to training that uses positive reinforcement techniques such as food rewards, play, and praise. Ample exercise will help keep them from becoming unruly. Give your Puggle a couple of 15-minute walks or playtimes every day. Be sure to always walk your Puggle on leash or play with him in a securely fenced area. Beagles may ignore commands when they’ve picked up an interesting scent, and some Puggles have the same tendency.
Recommended daily amount: 5/8 to 1.5 cups of a high-quality dog food daily, divided into two meals.
How much your adult dog eats depends on his size, age, build, metabolism, and activity level. Dogs are individuals, just like people, and they don’t all need the same amount of food. It almost goes without saying that a highly active dog will need more than a couch potato dog. The quality of dog food you buy also makes a difference — the better the dog food, the further it will go toward nourishing your dog and the less of it you’ll need to shake into your dog’s bowl.
Like their parent breeds, Puggles enjoy their meals and are prone to obesity. Keep your Puggle in good shape by measuring his food and feeding him twice a day rather than leaving food out all the time.
If you’re unsure whether he’s overweight, give him the eye test and the hands-on test. First, look down at him. You should be able to see a waist. Then place your hands on his back, thumbs along the spine, with the fingers spread downward. You should be able to feel but not see his ribs without having to press hard. If you can’t, he needs less food and more exercise.
For more on feeding your Puggle, see our guidelines for buying the right food, feeding your puppy, and feeding your adult dog.
Coat Color And Grooming
The Puggle has a short, smooth, double coat. The undercoat is short and dense, covered by a slightly longer topcoat. Colors include fawn, red, tan, lemon, black, or any of those colors with white (known as particolor). Some Puggles have black masks on the face.
Puggles shed, like both their parent breeds. Brush your Puggle weekly to get rid of excess hair. Bathe him only as needed, but be sure to keep the folds on his skin and around his muzzle and eyes free of dirt, debris, and moisture to prevent infections. After a bath, it’s very important to dry thoroughly between any folds. Check your Puggle’s eyes regularly to ensure that they’re clean and free of any irritation, indicated by redness or discharge.
Other grooming needs include dental hygiene and nail care. Brush your Puggle’s teeth at least two or three times a week to remove tartar buildup and the accompanying bacteria. Daily is better. Trim his nails once or twice a month, as needed. If you can hear the nail clicking on the floor, they’re too long. Short nails keep the feet in good condition and won’t scratch your legs when your Puggle jumps up to greet you.
Start grooming your Puggle when he’s a puppy to get him used to it. Handle his paws frequently — dogs are touchy about their feet — and look inside his mouth and ears. Make grooming a positive experience filled with praise and rewards, and you’ll lay the groundwork for easy veterinary exams and other handling when he’s an adult.
Children And Other Pets
The Puggle is generally a sweet-tempered dog who gets along well with children of all ages. Even so, it’s important to always teach children how to approach and touch your Puggle, and to supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent biting or ear pulling from either party.
Puggles are sociable and generally do well with other dogs and pets. They may chase smaller pets, however, especially if they’ve inherited their Beagle parent’s hunting instincts. Proper training, plus lots of exposure to small pets, beginning in puppyhood, can minimize this trait.
This cross is often available at local animal shelters. You may also find Puggles through the rescue group below:
- Saint’s Puggle Rescue