Laughing Pug

Pug Personality: Can You Handle That Much Love?

Pug Personality: Can You Handle That Much Love?

Everyone loves a pug! There is no denying it. Who can resist their snorting and snuffling faces?! Or those big brown eyes and wiggly little corkscrew tails? They just love every second of quality time they get with their people.

But, it’s important to know what kind of personality and temperament they have before deciding to get one. Pugs are a very unique breed of dog. It can take some dedication to have one of these snuggle muffins as part of the family.

All Pugs are individuals. They all have a Pug personality of their own, but there are a lot of things that all Pugs have in common. Like most breeds, there are a few general standard traits that you can count on almost every Pug having.

Here we outline the wonderful side of Pugs we all know and love. Their mischievous nature and sensitive hearts. We will also highlight some of the issues that can come up with their not-so-great temperament tendencies.

It’s good to first understand the difference between a Pug personality trait and their general temperament. Technically they are two separate things.

Temperament is the natural or biological tendency of a dog. Think of it almost as a genetic trait; it is kind of instinctive. For example, how you can generalize and say with confidence that all Pugs are charming and sociable.

Whereas their Pug personality is a combination of a Pug’s temperament, learned habits, and life experience. So, it is much more individual to each pup. Different experiences that a Pug has growing up can change aspects of their Pug personality.

Thus, Pug personality and temperament are connected. You can say that generally, Pugs always love being around people. Yet, there might be some humans that a Pug learns to dislike over time. This learned experience can lead to a little one that isn’t too fond of all people.

This is all good information to know well before going into owning a Pug. Coming from a place of understanding will help you be the best possible Pug parent around!  If you know why your pup is behaving the way they are, you will know where to correct negative behaviors.

A Lot of Dog in a Little Package

Pug Personality

Pugs are little bundles of joy are a whole lot of dog wrapped in a small package. A Pug is always going to be the first one to be silly and playful. They are the class clown in doggie school. 

Most Pugs really enjoy being the center of attention. Pugs love just being goofy, hiding in a pile of blankets, or making funny sounds to get noticed. Pugs have the best sense of humor and like to show it off all the time.

It’s no wonder that they like to be in the middle of things. Boy, do they LOVE attention! Other breeds can be distant and disinterested. Not a Pug! These guys are called Velcro for a reason.

Having a Pug is almost like having a small child. Pugs are always by your side, looking for love and affection. They can be a little mischievous—trotting around, just as comical and sweet as a toddler. That’s the Pug personality you signed up for!

Pugs were originally bred to be lapdogs. This explains their tendency to be glued to your hip during any bits of downtime. That is what they are designed to do! Keep you warm and comfortable. And that they do!  Their Pug personality shines through as the #1 lapdog!

Pug puppy

Sensitive Souls

It is true that the Pug temperament is almost always a sensitive one. They can be very emotional. Imagine that the majority of a Pug’s life is responding emotionally to daily situations. 

They are so overjoyed when you get home because they love you so much. They snorffle and snort when giving you kisses. Pugs can’t contain their excitement for love and playtime. 

Pugs will also get very upset and let you know all about it. An unhappy Pug can be difficult, pout, act out, and even talk back. You know what we are talking about. That adorable little grumble-bark. As cute as it is, sometimes it is them being angry with you. Bet you didn’t know pouting and grumbling is part of the Pug personality!

Keep this in mind when training. Try to lean toward positive reinforcement as much as possible. A harsh scolding can actually hurt your pup’s feelings. 

There are always exceptions, though. They may have been rescued and lived in a shelter for a while. That would be one tough Pug. Growing up in a challenging situation can give them a thicker skin than most Pugs.  Their Pug personality may be a little tenacious than most.

Chow Hounds 

You could call Pugs the foodies of the dog world. They can’t get enough! They enjoy their food, and will still be begging for your dinner. A Pug is always on the lookout for a snack.  

Rarely are pugs very picky eaters though it does happen sometimes.  Is this part of their temperament or Pug personality?  Not sure. 

But Pugs seriously love food.  

Just like people, they are all different. Some Pugs personalities are just a little more difficult. So, occasionally they will fuss over food.

This particular general characteristic of being a chowhound can be hard to break. Because as we mentioned before, the Pug temperament is like inherited qualities. They are more built-in. That means these qualities are tough to change or modify.

One mission-critical thing to do is NOT give them any human food. Ever. Due to their undying love for food, you will never be able to convince a Pug not to beg at the table. Especially not once they have had a taste of what you are eating!

If you slip up just once, watch out! They will lay it on thick. They are using those positively precious big brown eyes. Making little whimper sounds to express how desperate they are to have you share. 

Make sure that everyone in the house is on the same page. When someone is secretly slipping scraps under the table, it can be bad news. You may end up with a plump Pug who is always begging.  Begging is not a great Pug personality trait.

Bacon Muffin

Food Obsession

These little buggers have a reputation for being a bit stubborn. Stubbornness is part of the Pug personality and temperament. Well, luckily for owners, there is a silver lining. 


We will get more into training later, but this is a good point to keep in mind. When working with your Pug on any training or a new skill, use lots of praise, and high value treats. 

Pugs typically aren’t super picky eaters. You can use basic treats—anything small, dog-friendly, and ideally low calorie. Maybe even try just using their regular kibble. Some people use baby carrots as a training treat as well. 

Be careful there, though. Only use veggies and human foods as a super high-value option if your pup won’t go for something like kibble. Then, make sure to give those things only during a training session. Reward with affection first when your happy little Pug has done a good job. Reinforce it with treats. 

Although, stubbornness is part of the Pug personality, add a few treats and see that Pug personality trait melt away.

Pug Personality Perfect for the Family

These super loyal pups adore their pack. Once you are a Pug’s “person,” you can expect endless snuggles and kisses all around. Lucky for us, love is part of the Pug personality.

Some environmental factors can determine how family-oriented your Pug will be. Pug personality and temperament are often very family-friendly. But remember, how they were raised can affect their overall behavior. Pugs that are raised in a larger family unit are much more likely to be extremely social. And on the flip side, a Pug that is under-socialized at a young age can be rather shy. 

Once you have done the work and raised a well-balanced Pug, your family will have a buddy for life. Pugs are devoted, little companions. They live to please their owners. In return, they only want some belly rubs and maybe a snack or two. 

Boy with Pug

Pugs with Children

Having any dog around children can be a challenge. Kids can be loud, crazy creatures that don’t always create a calm environment for pets. 

Thankfully, Pugs can stand up to challenge. Literally and figuratively. Since Pugs are built like tiny tanks, they can withstand a lot of the pulls and tugs from toddlers. Having such a cute pup in the house will lead to lots of hugs and kisses, which your Pug will adore!

The Pug personality is great with kids. Luckily, Pugs can’t get enough affection and attention. Just make sure to guide your children to be gentle and not tug too hard on the pup’s ears and tail. Teach them that doggies deserve love and sweet pets. 


Often, the Pug temperament trait of being super laid back helps a lot. They are excellent at just rolling with the punches. As long as one of their beloved humans is nearby, your Pug dog will be content. 

It is not uncommon to see a happy Pug sitting at a tea party all dressed up in a pink tutu and princess crown. As long as all eyes are on them, it is all good! Oh, and maybe if there are some biscuits to go with the tea.

Remember, though, a Pug personality can vary from Pug to Pug.  Not all of them are super chill. So make sure that you have stress-tested your pup before exposing them to screaming kids. Your Pug could be fearful if they had a bad experience with children in the past. 

Pugs with Other Dogs 

Pugs with other dogs

Another important Pug personality trait is their friendliness with other dogs. This is especially if you have another pup in the home and are thinking of making a doggie addition. This is part of their Pug personality.

Usually, Pugs get along with all other breeds of dogs. Their temperament is often very playful and carefree. Though sometimes a Pug can have a bad encounter with another dog. Maybe your sweet little pup got attacked by a bigger dog as a puppy. They will likely not enjoy other dogs around.

Don’t automatically expect a new Pug puppy to enjoy the resident dog. Also, don’t expect an existing Pug family member to welcome another dog into the home. Some Pugs are very protective of their owners and the affection they get from them. 

However, more often than not, you will find that Pugs get along with all creatures. Make sure to be prepared to introduce your Pugs to new family members 
the correct way. If you do that, everything should be fine. This will provide a positive experience for your pup. Hopefully, that will generate good behavior going forward. 

Hey, look at it this way. One more pup in the mix is one more playmate for your Pug. Yay! They will be overjoyed!

Pugs with Strangers

It is reasonable to assume that most Pugs get along with everyone. Including total strangers. Why wouldn’t a Pug love a new person in their life? That’s another pair of hands to pet them and play with them. The more, the merrier! 


The most well-adjusted Pug pups are ones that meet a ton of strangers. So you can increase the chances of your little one being friendly and sweet with everyone they meet. You just need to put in a bit of work upfront.  However, it is part of the Pug personality to love everyone, even strangers.


If you have a new Pug addition, try taking them on lots of leisurely walks around the neighborhood. Let them meet people casually on a stroll where they can get tons of attention from a lot of various people. Or invite different friends over to meet your new charming little fur baby. 

Being Separated from Their Pack

There is only one downside to the Pug personality how attached and affectionate these cuties get. Pugs really do not like being away from their pack. This can present itself as separation anxiety. And it can, unfortunately, lead to harmful or destructive behavior.  Being destructive is not a Pug personality trait.  Being lonely and bored when left by himself is.


Anxiety and the linked behaviors are because Pugs get very, very upset about being alone. Once one of these pups is in your family unit, expect it to be an extremely deep connection. 


There can be a handful of things that will trigger a Pug to have a difficult time while you are away. But remember, sometimes there is no real reason. The reason is usually just because they love you so much!

Shift in Daily Routine

Any quick change to a Pug’s schedule when it comes to family time can be difficult. For example, if their owner had been home a lot and is now away at work or school every day. 

It can be a challenging experience for a Pug the first time they are left alone for hours. They don’t understand why you were always home one day, and now you are gone. It can be very confusing and scary! Their Pug personality and temperament make them family dogs. They always want their family around!

Change in Family Unit

This one can be a significant cause. When a Pug is used to the whole family being together and that changes, it can be tough. Maybe a child goes away to college. A Pug’s personality is not going to do well with a hard shift like that. 


Pugs can get very attached to people in their family. This is especially true if the pup grew up with certain people always around.  

Having a transition period can help with a lot of these changes. Take the time to slowly ramp up the time your poor little Pug is alone or separate from their favorite person. 


Get them used to it a tiny bit at a time. If your Pug is your little companion all the time, maybe change that. As sad as it will be. Leave them home when you run short errands or stay out a little longer when you go grab a coffee. 


Your Pug will not be happy about it; you can count on that! But it will be good for them to get used to a little alone time. The most significant part of the Pug personality is being a family guy or gal.

Troubled Little Pug

Pug Barking

The problems that come up when Pugs are left alone. This can include excessive barking. Now, Pugs aren’t known for barking a whole lot. But they can if they are in distress. Being the lone wolf is not part of the Pug personality!


We know it is pretty adorable when they are howling and making silly sounds. But your neighbors might not think so, especially if it goes on for several hours non-stop. 

Other times, you may come home to a torn-up pillow or a destroyed houseplant. As stated earlier, being destructive is not part of the Pug personality.  However, when a Pug that is so close to his family is left alone for too long, they can’t help but be upset. And when they are that upset, they act out.


A lot of the time, these issues can become a real annoying trait. No one wants to come home to an explosion of feathers all over the floor. So be aware that this is something that will likely be an issue. Be prepared to do some work. 

It is important to start right away with training. As soon as your new Pug pup is home, get started. Enroll in classes and do everything in your power to set you both up for success. 


Pugs are smart little dogs, and they are eager to please their humans.  This is probably more part of their temperament, rather than part of the Pug personality.  Some folks have a lot of success with crate training. If you make a cozy and safe spot for them to rest while you are gone, they will learn that it’s ok. You always come back for them. And in the meantime, they are nice and comfy. Maybe throw in their favorite chew toy.


The adorable Pug personality traits, such as keeping you company, can also cause separation anxiety. At the same time, you do laundry or hours of snuggles on the couch. So try to remember, if a Pug is really sad you are away, it’s because they love you so much!


Maybe this is why we see so many Pug parents with more than one Pug. 

Getting Older

Senior Pugs have a whole distinct Pug personality of their own. Pugs can live to be 15 or 16 years old if they are well cared for. Generally speaking, they start to slow down a little around 6 or 7 years old. 

Though when we say “slow,” that kinda depends. If you have a super happy and active Pug, slow for them might still be running around in circles. 

Typically, they’ll get tired more easily and not want to cooperate when too much activity is involved. This can lead to your Pug to becoming a little more complicated. A huge trait of the Pug temperament is stubbornness. Don’t expect that to change as they get older. It may even get worse.

They might show a little less excitement about meeting you at the door. It takes longer to get out of their comfy bed; it doesn’t mean that they are less excited to see you, don’t worry. 

All of this is a broad generalization. Since all Pugs are different, you can have an 8-year-old Pug still doing zoomies around the house after a bath. That is one of their favorite goof-ball things to do after all!

Can’t Get Enough of Pugs!

Grumble Large

The moral of the story here is, if you want a loyal and affectionate companion, look no further than a Pug. The gentle and charming Pug temperament and playful Pug personality are for you!


Generally speaking, a Pug’s temperament will be an inherent and built-in part of who they are. There are just some things that are special about pugs. They are typically social, playful, goofy, and charming. While at the same time, stubborn and very opinionated.


Your Pug’s personality is going to be much more individual. Maybe your Pug had a bad experience as a puppy, and now they don’t like men with hats. Perhaps they grew up with a Lab in the home, and now they’re more spontaneously silly.


No matter what your Pug’s personality is like, there are some basics that you can count on. Pugs are incredibly loyal dogs. They will do their best to please their owner. Pugs will always and forever be lap dogs. That is just a fact. 


Are you are looking for a cuddle buddy that will always be by your side? A Pug will never let you down!

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