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Vets Warn Pugs Can No Longer Be Considered 'Typical Dogs'

Stewart Perrie

| Last updated 

Vets Warn Pugs Can No Longer Be Considered 'Typical Dogs'

Vets have warned that pugs can no longer be considered a 'typical breed' of dog because of their health issues.

Pugs typically suffer from breathing difficulties as a result of their breeding, which is diagnosed as brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome.

In addition to that, the breed is also susceptible to eye injuries like as proptosis, scratched corneas, and painful entropion.

The Royal Veterinary College (RVC) has issued a stark warning to potential pug owners to avoid buying the breed until their health can been ensured.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

Dr Dan O'Neill, associate professor in companion animal epidemiology at the RVC, said: "Although hugely popular as pets, we now know that several severe health issues are linked to the extreme body shape of pugs that many humans find so cute.

"It is time now that we focus on the health of the dog rather than the whims of the owner when we are choosing what type of dog to own.

The warning comes after research published in Canine Medicine and Genetics revealed just how badly pugs suffer.

The RVC's study, which surveyed thousands of dogs in the UK, found that pugs were 1.9 times as likely to have one or more disorders in a single year compared to non-pugs.

The breed also had a higher risk of 23 out of the 40 most common disorders that dogs experience.

They were 54 times more likely to have brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome than the average dog, and are 13 more likely to suffer from corneal ulceration.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

Pugs also sadly have an 11 times higher chance of having skin fold dermatitis.

This research concluded: "The widely differing health profiles between Pugs and other dogs in the UK suggest that the Pug has diverged to such an extent from mainstream dog breeds that the Pug breed can no longer be considered as a typical dog."

British Veterinary Association President Justine Shotton explained how these new statistics aren't 'shocking' to those who have dealt with pugs.

But she said the data should be used as a warning to people to avoid pugs until their overall health can be improved.

"Vet teams see pugs with these distressing health problems – from breathing difficulties to eye ulcers and painful spine abnormalities – in veterinary practices across the UK on a daily basis.

"This study clearly demonstrates how it is the extreme characteristics many owners find so appealing, such as squashed faces, big eyes and curly tails, which are seriously compromising pugs' health and welfare and often result in a lifetime of suffering.

"While these extreme, unhealthy characteristics remain, we will continue to strongly recommend potential owners do not buy brachycephalic breeds such as pugs."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Animals, Dogs

Stewart Perrie
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