This is the 1890′s version– back when they had a muzzle!
This is what they look like now:
This breed has not been well-served by the fancy in the past 120 years.
Like many brachycephalic breeds, they have a hard time breathing and cooling themselves, and those wrinkles have a tendency to collect gunk that allows bacteria to flourish.
The double-curled tail has created a selection pressure for deviated spines, and oh, those bug eyes have a tendency to fall out under even modest trauma.
It’s very sad what we’ve done to this breed. It’s also a good example of how dog shows lead to extreme distortions in type.
This breed has no work. It never has had any work.
There is no way to divine a working trial for them.
But because its utility was solely in how it looked, extreme conformation could be justified.
There is absolutely no need to make any claims about this conformation giving the dog an advantage at doing a task– something that even the English bulldog fanatics at least attempt!
This sort of dog should have been built upon a different standard: Can it be a healthy and active family pet?
In its current form, the pug is compromised in its utility.
No one wants a dog that has all of these potential impairments.
But the attitude among the pet buying public has been “It’s cute. So who cares?’
This attitude needs to change.
And if it does, maybe the pug will come out better for it.
The expression on the dog in the 1890′s photo is much more reflective of the breed’s temperament than the distorted modern version.
These are sly little dogs.