pug life span

Pug Life Span – How Long Do Pugs Live?

Normally, the average pug life span ranges from 12 to 15 years. However, most pug dogs only last for 12 years or even shorter than the average life span. A male pug may only live up to 12.8 years while the female counterpart can live up to 13.2 years.

Pug Life Span – Common Causes of Pug Death:

 In a 20-year study, 100 pugs were observed for the most common causes of their death. Puppy pugs that are one year old and below usually die of infection and trauma, followed by inborn or congenital diseases. Therefore, how long do pugs live depends on their health conditions.

The following are the leading death causes of pug dogs :

Neurological disorder

The number one cause of death for pugs is having a neurological disorder. With 27.4 percent of pugs die from this disease, the most affected part of the body is the nervous system which consists of the spinal cord, nerves, and brain.

Pug encephalitis is the most common type of neurological disorder for this breed. It causes brain inflammation which often leads to muscle control loss, lethargy, and seizures. This fatal disease is breed-specific, so it may only affect pugs.

Pug Life Expectancy



With 10.9 percent of pugs die from infection, this makes it one of the most common health problems that affect the life span of this dog breed. An infection may include bacterial infection, distemper, parvovirus, protozoal disease, and fungal infection.

Skin infections and yeast infections don’t include in this category, although they are serious issues that need medical attention. Likewise, staph infections due to allergies are easily curable so they are not a threat to the life expectancy of pug dogs.


The big C is life-threatening for all dogs, but 12.5 percent of pugs die from this disease. Common cancers that affect pugs are lymphoma, mouth cancer, testicular tumors, mammary tumors, and skin tumors.

However, skin cancer remains the number one type of cancer that kills pugs. Skin tumors and mast cell tumors are usually found in the neck, head, hind legs, and the main body.

Congenital disease

This includes illnesses or diseases that are inborn, such as the abnormal contraction of a tube or passage within the body and improper flow of the blood. A Heart defect is also a common congenital disease in pug dogs.

How Long Do Pugs Live

How to Extend Your Pug’s Life Expectancy

There are so many ways to extend pug life span that are natural and easy to do. For instance, you can start with your pet’s diet which should consist of healthy ingredients. An excellent dog diet includes fresh fruits and vegetables, just make sure they are all edible for dogs.

Pugs are prone to having an overweight condition, so you need to be careful with the foods you give your pooch. If you let your dog become obese, he may suffer from chronic pain in the joints and hips, breathing issues, and heart problems. To help your dog live a healthier and longer life, make sure he maintains a healthy body and weight.

Choose home cook food or premium dog food with natural ingredients such as sweet potatoes and carrots. Also, avoid giving your dog unhealthy and fatty treats. It’s also important to have a schedule when giving meals to pugs in order to eliminate impulse offerings of snacks and other unhealthy foods.

Here are other helpful tips to extend pug life span of your beloved pug:

  • Give your dog mineral supplements and essential vitamins on daily basis. However, you need to consult your veterinarian regarding the correct dosage before you give any vitamins or supplements to your pet.
  • Allow your pug to get some daily exercise, but not too much of a routine. A morning walk would be good or some playtime in the afternoon to keep them active. After the exercise, give your pet some water and let him rest for a bit before giving any food.
  • Proper grooming helps maintain healthy skin while preventing skin infections and other health problems. You also need to make sure that your pug’s teeth are regularly brushed to avoid infections that can reach the bloodstream.
  • Regular checkups are a must. Pet parents need to bring their dogs to the vet regularly for checkups and other medical needs. Earlier treatments help prevent certain health conditions from advancing to later stages that are often hard to treat.

Noticeable Changes As Your Pug Age

Pugs are considered seniors once they reach the age of 7 to 9 years old. But this will be determined by your veterinarian to get a more accurate classification. Some pug owners don’t notice the changes in their pets because the transition from adult pug to senior occurs bit-by-bit.

The most obvious sign that your pug is growing older is the sudden slow down of movements. Their barrel-shaped body caused the knees, legs, and hips to carry all the weight of the body. Once this has taken its toll, you will notice that your pet is moving slower over time.

Another sign of aging is hearing loss, although this may not be noticeable for most dog owners. As your pug approaches old age, they may develop hearing difficulty which could affect how they socialize with other dogs and their owners. Prepare your dog by training them with hand signals so they won’t find it hard to understand you once they develop hearing loss.

Lastly, pugs usually gain fat stores while losing their muscle tone. Check with your vet what type of exercises your dog can do to stay healthy and active. Remember, fat in pugs doesn’t just increase as they age, but it also moves. Therefore, it’s very important to keep your pooch healthy by giving them a balanced diet and regular exercise.


The life expectancy of your pug generally depends on his lifestyle and diet. The healthier food they eat and the more frequent they exercise, the longer they can live and be with you.