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How much exercise do pugs need?

Pugs pack a lot of quirks into their little bodies. With their “just happy to be included” attitudes, it can be hard to know whether a walk istoo long, if they’re breathingtoo hard, or if they’re getting exactly the right amount of exercise. Read on to learn how much activity they really need and how to know when they’re over the limit.

How much exercise do they need?

Pugs need about 40 minutes of exercise per day. It’s best to break those 40 minutes up into a few sessions throughout the day, as pugs’ energy tends to come in short bursts. (We like to think they live by the motto: “it’s a sprint, not a marathon.”)

What type of exercise is best? 

Pugs are happy to follow your lead — in and out of the house. That’s why the best way to ensure your pug gets the exercise they need is to take them on a couple of short walks throughout the day. You may want to establish a morning and evening routine so that your pup gets used to it. Bonus: you create a routine for yourself, too!

Aside from walks, there’s nothing like a good play session. Finding toys that your pug likes — whether it squeaks, squeals, or is made for chewing — is the first step in a game of fetch or keep-away that will count towards their 40 minutes.

And, although their shapes don’t seem conducive to swimming, some pugs really love the water. There are doggie life jackets that help them stay afloat, and just be sure to let them rest between longer swims. 

What signs mean it’s time to hit pause

Pugs don't like to be left behind, and they’ll walk along you as long as you keep walking. But, if your pug is struggling to keep up with you on a walk they’ve probably reached their limit. If you’re planning to take a longer walk or hike with them, you can always bring a doggy backpack or carrying case and give them a breather every 15 to 20 minutes.

No one wants to have to end play time early, but if you notice your pug breathing heavily during a game of chase or fetch it’s time to take a rest. That doesn’t mean the session is over! Once they’ve stopped panting you can revisit the game.

Lastly, pugs are prone to overheating (their body temperature is 101-102 degrees Fahrenheit!) so in warmer months it’d be best to stick to the morning or evening for outdoor activities. Generally speaking, if it’s over 90 degrees you probably want to opt for an indoor session instead. 

You may get the feeling that your pug will never forgive you for leaving them behind when you take a run, but we promise they will, and sometimes it’s for the best.