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Chug (Pug & Chihuahua Mix)

Nicole Cosgrove

Height: 10 – 14 inches
Weight: 10 – 20 pounds
Lifespan: 10 – 13 years
Colors: Gold, brown, black, tan, fawn, white, brindle
Suitable for: Individuals and families with older kids looking for a small dog with a big personality
Temperament: Playful, affectionate, smart, often stubborn

If you thought “chug” only describes the act of downing an adult beverage at breakneck speed, allow us to introduce you to the Chug dog! This pint-sized mix of the Pug and Chihuahua breeds packs a whole lot of personality into a small dog package. But don’t dare try to tell the Chug they’re a small dog because they certainly don’t act like it! Always playful and usually bold, Chugs make fun and affectionate companions in the right home. Read on to learn all about the Chug and what it takes to make one part of your family!

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Chug Puppies – Before You Buy…

Energy:
Trainability:
Health:
Lifespan:
Sociability:

What’s the Price of Chug Puppies?

The price to purchase a Chug puppy is generally $600-$800.  While it’s always important to make sure you work with a responsible breeder, it’s even more essential when purchasing a hybrid breed like a Chug. Both parent breeds, especially the Pug, are prone to inherited health conditions.

A responsible breeder will make sure their breeding dogs are healthy and free of any of these conditions. Genetics being what they are, there is still no way to predict with certainty how a hybrid puppy will turn out, but starting with healthy parents will at least give you a solid starting point.

If you prefer to adopt instead of buying your new Chug, there’s a good chance you’ll find one available. Try your local shelter or look for Chug rescue groups online. The cost to adopt varies by the rescue group, shelter, and often the age of the dog.

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3 Little-Known Facts About Chug

1. Chug is an amazing name…but it’s not their only one!

You may also see these dogs called Pughuahua, Pugwawa, or the less exciting, but accurate, Pug-Chihuahua mix.

2. They’re small dogs but they don’t always act like it.

A Chug’s size will vary a little bit depending on which parent they most take after. Since Pugs and Chihuahuas are both toy breeds, all Chugs are going to be on the small side. However, many Chugs are gifted with strong self-esteem, leading them to act like much larger dogs. This tendency often gets them into trouble if they feel the need to pick fights with actual large dogs.

3. Their coats can be short, long, or anything in between.

All Pugs have short hair but Chihuahuas come in both long and short-haired varieties. Depending on what kind of hair a Chug’s Chihuahua parent had, they might be fluffy, scruffy, or just plain short-haired.

Chihuahua and Pug
The parent breeds of Chug: Left – Chihuahua (liggraphy, Pixabay); Right – Pug (Toberoon, Pixabay)

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Temperament & Intelligence of the Chug

Like with all hybrid breeds, the Chug’s temperament isn’t necessarily going to be consistent from dog to dog. They could take after either parent breed more strongly or be more like an even mix of both personality traits. Pugs tend to be goofy, friendly, sometimes stubborn dogs. Chihuahuas are usually friendly with their families but tend to be a little more reserved and suspicious of strangers if not properly trained and socialized.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Because they are usually small dogs, Chugs aren’t the best choice for families with very young kids. Toddlers and other energetic kids who don’t know better could easily hurt a Chug, especially when they are puppies. Older kids who’ve learned how to handle and behave around small dogs make a better match for Chugs. Of course, all dog and kid interactions should be supervised to make sure everyone is on their best behavior.

Chugs are generally fairly low-maintenance pets. They don’t need a lot of space and can live in cities, apartments, or houses with yards. They’re usually friendly, affectionate, and playful, all qualities that make them lovely family companions.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

When properly socialized, Chugs usually get along with other pets. As we already mentioned, Chugs often believe themselves to be much bigger dogs than they actually are. This can cause them to behave over-confidently and stir up trouble with other, larger, pets that they can’t get themselves out of. Chug owners should be aware of this and take the time to train and socialize their dogs in how to behave with other pets.

Neither Pugs nor Chihuahuas are known for having a strong prey drive and may be able to live safely with birds or small pocket pets. Be aware, however, that many exotic pets can be stressed out just living in the same house as a predator, even one as small and adorable as a Chug!

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Things to Know When Owning a Chug:

Before you fall completely under the spell of these cuties, take the time to learn a little more about what it takes to keep one happy and healthy. Here are some things to know before you bring home a new Chug.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

As small dogs, Chugs don’t eat a lot compared to larger breeds, making them less expensive to feed. They should be fed a quality, nutritionally balanced diet, either commercial or home-cooked. If you choose to prepare homemade food for your Chug, work closely with your veterinarian to ensure your dog still gets all the right nutrients. Both Pugs and Chihuahuas love food and are prone to becoming overweight so it’s likely your Chug will be the same way. Monitor their weight carefully and adjust how much food they are eating as needed.

Exercise 🐕

Chugs are generally energetic dogs but because of their size, it takes a lot less effort to tire them out! Because they tend to gain weight, Chugs should stay active daily, whether it be a walk or a fun playtime with human or animal friends.

If your Chug inherits their Pug parent’s flatter nose and face, be very cautious exercising them outdoors in warm weather. Flat-faced dogs can become overheated more easily, leading to a serious medical emergency.

Training 🎾

Training a Chug can require some patience and creativity, but not because they aren’t smart enough to learn. Pugs are sometimes unfairly believed to be not the smartest of dogs, but both they and Chihuahuas are intelligent dogs, who tend to be stubborn. This stubborn nature, combined with a short attention span, is what may make Chugs a challenge to train.

Short, fun training sessions with plenty of positive reinforcement will be most effective for a Chug. Many behavior problems with small dogs like Chugs are the result of a lack of training and socialization. Unfortunately, some owners might not feel the need to put as much effort into training smaller dogs who are, let’s face it, easier to control than larger, stronger breeds.

All dogs, no matter how small, need structure and boundaries and may act out without them. Help your Chug be the best family member by taking the time to train and socialize them.

Grooming ✂️

No matter whether they have long hair or short, Chugs don’t require a lot of grooming. They’re not considered hypoallergenic dogs, especially if they have more of a Pug coat. Pugs tend to shed a lot for short-haired dogs. Regular brushing will help keep the hair under control and keep your Chug’s coat healthy and shiny.

Many small dogs, including Chugs, are prone to dental disease. To help keep their teeth healthy, brush them regularly or use other dental health products recommended by your veterinarian.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Because they are a mix of two breeds, Chugs could be prone to the same health conditions that impact either of the two parent breeds. In some cases, being a hybrid dog will make them healthier overall than a purebred with many inherited health conditions.

However, as with any other genetic trait, the health of a crossbreed dog like the Chug is hard to predict with certainty. Here are some of the health conditions found in Chihuahuas and Pugs that may pass on to your Chug.

Minor Conditions
  • Obesity
  • Dry eye
  • Allergies
  • Skin infections
Serious Conditions
  • Brachycephalic airway disease
  • Necrotizing meningoencephalitis
  • Heart disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Seizure disorder
  • Luxating patellas

Serious Conditions:

If your Chug is flat-faced like a Pug, they may suffer from brachycephalic airway disease, which can cause breathing problems and heat intolerance.

Pugs also get an inherited brain disease called Pug dog encephalitis or necrotizing meningoencephalitis.

Chihuahuas are prone to serious health conditions like heart disease and epilepsy, a seizure disorder.

Both Pugs and Chihuahuas can have problems with their joints, especially a condition called luxating patellas, or loose kneecaps.

Minor Conditions:

As already mentioned, both Pugs and Chihuahuas tend towards obesity.

Both breeds can also suffer eye conditions like dry eye, and Pugs often get allergies and skin infections.

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Male vs Female

After reading over all the information and deciding the Chug is the right dog for you, the only remaining question is whether to get a male or female dog. There aren’t many differences between male and female Chugs, other than the general differences between male and female dogs. Males are usually a bit larger and sometimes more energetic.

If you don’t plan to breed your Chug, the best plan is to have them spayed or neutered. Spaying a female dog is usually more expensive than neutering a male. If you decide against having your female Chug spayed, you’ll need to be prepared to deal with her going into heat every 6 months.

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Final Thoughts

No matter which parent they take after, Chugs will be cute dogs who can easily charm unsuspecting humans. Before you bring home any dog, no matter the size or breed, make sure you learn more about them than just how adorable they are. Not every breed is the right match for every family or living situation. Also, be sure you’re prepared for the cost and commitment of caring for a dog. Chugs can be a wonderful addition to your family and deserve all the love and treats (in moderation) that you can give them!

We have lots more Chihuahua Mixes and Pug Mixes for you to explore!


Featured Image Credit: Eric Isselee, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.