Sometimes dog owners refer to cligny dogs as ‘velcro dogs’ because they stick to their people like velcro.
If there was a picture in the dictionary to show a velcro dog, it would be of a pug!
If there was a picture of a lapdog in a dictionary, that would showcase a pug as well.
The truth is, pugs are clingy dogs. Of course, there are always exceptions, but most are really clingy.
Why are pugs clingy?
Pugs are clingy dogs because they were bred for the specific purpose of being lapdogs for Chinese royalty. Their job was to be little loving companions, so pugs thrive on being with their owners, and don’t always know how to entertain themselves if they can’t do their ‘job’ of being at someone’s side.
Related post: Why your pug always wants attention.
I snapped this one day after I finished doing some work at the kitchen table. I had been there quite a while so both pugs fell asleep at my feet.
Can clingy pugs be a problem?
Due to their clingy nature, pugs need a lot of attention and commonly suffer from separation anxiety when left alone. They are not naturally independent dogs.
I think pugs are best suited to families or households where they will not have to be left home alone all day. I discuss this more in depth in my post can pugs be left home alone for 8 hours?
Even for people who are at home a lot, pugs being clingy may pose a problem for some people. Not everyone wants a pet who will want to be on their lap everytime they sit down. We all have different personality or temperament preferences in pets. If you like an independent pet, I’d recommend not getting a pug as they may make you feel smothered.
Forgive the sheet that had popped off the corner of the mattress. I took this picture one morning after I managed to sneak up from where I had been sleeping (up against the wall) as I had to laugh at how tiny of a space they had smushed me into, even though my boyfriend had bee gone at work for a few hours so they had tons of room in the rest of the bed.
How Clingy Are Pugs?
If you like a really loving, affectionate dog but aren’t sure if pugs would be too much for you, it may be helpful to get an understanding of just how clingy pugs are!
Of course, pugs can vary from one to the next, but I’ll give you some examples of the level of clinginess that I experience with my two pugs.
They wanted to be on my lap anytime I sat down. They would tolerate it if I sometimes couldn’t or wouldn’t let them sit with me, but they didn’t like it. If I were doing cross-stitch, for example, I wouldn’t want them on my lap as they might get hurt with the needle. Or when I babysat, I’d hold the children rather than the pugs. Mine didn’t whine/cry when I was holding children instead of them, but they did cry if I was working on a cross-stitch project, or wrapping presents, or doing some other sort of project rather than holding them, sometimes. I think if my lap had a child in it, they understood I was busy. Where if I was doing cross-stitch, they didn’t grasp that I wasn’t willing t hold them because of the needle. They just saw that my lap was open and they were confused why they weren’t allowed in it!
I can’t really imagine having a ‘no dogs on the furniture’ policy with pugs. They really want a lot of lap time, and most everyone I know who has a pug has the pug sleep in their beds, too. I don’t think your average pug would be very happy if they weren’t allowed to be on the furniture with their humans, so they may not be well suited to people who want their dogs to stay on the floor.
My pugs would follow me everywhere. It was very rare for me to get up and walk to the bathroom or kitchen and not have them follow me.
They’d move around the room with me if I moved. For example, if I was sitting using my computer and then moved to sit on the floor, they’d follow me.
They wanted to touch me most of the time. Occasionally they’d be fine with just being close (especially my pug Frank). But most o the time they wanted to be in physical contact with me. If they were sitting next to me on the couch and I slid over, they’d most likely slide over too, so they would be touching me again.
Beans had to be touching me as often as possible, and she didn’t really like being next to me, she wanted to be in my lap. When working on my laptop from the couch she’d usually end up in this position shown above, between my legs while I put one leg up to make room for her.
They clung to me in bed. I’d sometimes wake up smushed to one side of the bed and unable to roll over without making one or both of them move because they’d be cuddled so close to me that I couldn’t reposition myself. Sometimes this happened even if I was in bed with just the dogs in our queen-sized bed. They wouldn’t care how much extra space the bed had, they wanted to be right up against me.
They’d whine/cry at the window or glass sliding door if one of us went outside and left them inside. This was even true if I stayed inside but my partner stayed outside…they’d cry that he had gone outside even though I was still with them!
They’d stay in the bathroom while I showered or bathed. Even if I took a long bubble bath, they’d often stay in there with me the entire time.
Whenever my partner and I would try to sit together or cuddle, our pug Frank would try to push his way in the middle.
Reasons why your pug has suddenly become more clingy
If you have a pug ad have noticed that they are now clingier than they used to be, this may be cause for concern. HEre are several reasons why you may notice a sudden increase in clinginess.
A change in their schedule or yours. If you are working longer hours, or your children have gone back to school, or anything of that nature, you may find that your pug is clingier once you are home. This is likely just the result of them missing you while you are gone.
Anxiety. Sometimes new, increased clinginess can be caused by anxiety. If you have anew pet, or had a new person move into your household, your dog may be feeling more anxious and is spending more time near you to try to feel safe.
Age/maturity. If your dog is transitioning from the puppy stage to being more of a mature dog, you may find them being more clingy. Pugs are generally low energy dogs, but pug puppies still have a lot of energy compared to adult pugs. As your dog gets older, and has less energy, they may spend more time attached to your hip.
A health problem. If your pug is not feeling well or experiencing pain, they may be more lethargic and laying around you more, and/or seeking comfort from you. If you have any reason to suspect that your dog is hurt or unwell, be sure to take them to the vet.
A very common experience with Frank, he always wanted to rest his chin on us!