How Much to Feed a Pug (Feeding Chart & Guide)

Feeding Pug puppies puppy food

Knowing how much food to feed your Pug puppy, all the way to its adult years, is one of the most critical tasks for its owner. Not only does this ensure the health of this tiny dog, but it also keeps it happy and satisfied.

Pug owners must look into the age of their dogs to determine how much to feed them. Pug puppies require ½ to 1 ½ cups of puppy food per day. Meanwhile, adult dogs would need about 1 to 1 ¼ cups of adult food, and senior Pugs may be given one cup of dog food daily.

This article will discuss all the details about feeding your Pug. Aside from the food amount, this will also tackle how often to feed your dog.

What Factors Impact How Much to Feed a Pug?

Pug dog with a bowl of dog food on the ground

Feeding is not just as simple as pouring dog food into a bowl and serving it to your Pug puppy or even your adult Pug. A lot of different factors come into play that affect your dog’s calorie requirements.

Below are some of the common factors that can influence how much food to feed your Pug:

  • Age: Age is the primary driver of how much food to give your dogs. Pug puppies will require a higher amount of calories to support their growing needs. On the other hand, as your Pug ages, they need enough food to fuel its bodily functions and keep them healthy.
  • Weight: A healthy Pug’s weight should be anywhere between 14 and 18 pounds. If your Pug weighs above or below this range, then you need to make the necessary adjustments to its diet immediately to prevent the condition from progressing into an illness.
  • Health Status: It is quite sad to know that the Pug is susceptible to a lot of health issues, such as skin and breathing problems. As these issues manifest, changes to the Pug’s diet may be warranted by your vet to aid in its healing.
  • Reproductive status: In case your female adult Pug is pregnant or lactating, a higher volume of food must be given to support the caloric requirements of these physiological changes in your dog’s body. Further, the lower metabolic rate of spayed and neutered Pugs means that their food volume must be reduced.

As you contemplate these factors, remember that each individual dog may have its own feeding requirements as well. Hence, always be sensitive to your dog’s needs so you can gauge the amount of dog food to give.

How Much to Feed Your Pug

Close up of a Pug eating dog food

As your Pug goes through its different life stages, expect to follow a different feeding guide for each. This will ensure that your dog continues to stay healthy and well-nourished, regardless of its age.

In this section, you’ll learn how much to feed a Pug based on the calories per pound required for its age. Take note that all the feeding instructions provided are based on an 8-ounce measuring cup.

Pug Puppy Feeding Chart (2 to 12 months)

I have bred Pugs for more than five years, and I have experienced the challenges of ensuring the survival of newborn puppies, especially with their brachycephalic nature and other potential health conditions.

However, I always made it a point to prepare the mother Pug early for healthy milk production.

This way, as the puppies were born, they benefited from the colostrum’s natural immunities coming from the steady supply of their mother’s milk. This can be done even after they start weaning by their 4th week.

However, as they transition from pure milk to soft puppy food, it is recommended to monitor their feeding closely to prevent instances of aspiration pneumonia, given their flat noses and innate breathing problems.

As your Pug puppy turns two months and all the way until it becomes a year old, you may refer to the feeding guidelines below.

AgeDaily Feeding Amount (Cups)Caloric Intake (Per day)
2 – 3 months½ – 1196 – 500
4 – 5 months½ – 1 259 – 499
6 – 8 months1 – 1 ½402 – 676
9 – 12 months1 ¼ – 1 ½560 – 676
*Use a standard 8-oz measuring cup

Don’t be surprised that a Pug puppy requires more calories or food than an adult Pug. Puppyhood is a critical stage in the growth and development of a dog, and quality food in the right amount must be a priority at this point.

Further, the Pug puppy feeding tips above come with the assumption that the Pug puppy does not have any existing health conditions. If there are, it is best to partner with your veterinarian for this task.

Adult Pug Feeding Chart (1 to 7 years)

Once your Pug puppy reaches maturity by its first year, it must now be transitioned from puppy food to adult dog food. An adult dog utilizes its caloric intake to maintain its normal body functions and daily activities.

The feeding chart below shows how much food to give an adult Pug:

AgeDaily Feeding Amount (Cups)Caloric Intake (Per day)
1 – 7 years1 – 1 ¼448 – 541
*Use a standard 8-oz measuring cup

Remember that adult Pugs are your typical lap dogs that do not require a lot of energy.

Hence, when it came to feeding my Pugs before, I selected commercial dog food brands that are nutritionally dense and provide a complete diet, even in small amounts.

When reading dog food labels, I looked for ones that are made of high-quality proteins and healthy fats. I also avoided those with high levels of artificial preservatives that can be harmful to the Pugs.

Moreover, as adults, their stomachs become less sensitive. At this point, it is safer to explore different food types, such as wet foods, raw diets, or even homemade food.

Just ensure that the food is prepared safely, especially generic meats. You may first give a small amount of a new food type to check any reactions in the Pug’s skin or digestive patterns before serving the entire amount.

Senior Pug Feeding Chart (8 years and above)

As a Pug reaches its senior years, it will naturally have a much lower activity level, as well as a decreased metabolic rate, compared to a Pug puppy or even an adult dog.

Hence, they also need fewer calories which should support their body functions and their reduced daily activities. Eating too much at this stage can lead to unhealthy weight gain for aging Pugs.

Further, the diet of senior dogs must also be protein-rich to prevent them from experiencing muscle mass breakdown.

The table below should help you determine how much to feed your senior Pug:

AgeDaily Feeding Amount (Cups)Caloric Intake (Per day)
8 years and above1358 – 433
*Use a standard 8-oz measuring cup

In addition, feeding senior Pugs wet food assists in their chewing as the teeth of old dogs may begin to wear down. Dry food can also potentially chip their teeth, so mixing it with other foods to soften it would aid them.

How Often Should You Feed Your Pug?

Pug feeding time

How often a Pug eats will also mostly depend on its age. A Pug puppy may undergo free feeding under strict monitoring. As they reach two months old, they may be given three meals a day. On the other hand, an adult dog may be fed dry food twice daily, while a single serving a day should be enough for a senior Pug.

As mentioned, it is best to free-feed a newborn Pug so that it can meet its nutritional needs and support its rapid growth and development. However, it should be monitored closely to avoid instances of bloating.

For older dogs and puppies, feeding them the right frequency for their age is important to ensure that they have enough energy during the day or night.

The table below summarizes the recommended feeding frequency for Pugs:

AgeFeeding Frequency
0 – 8 weeksFree feeding
2 – 12 monthsThree times a day
1 – 7 yearsTwo times a day
8 years and aboveOnce a day

As a rule of thumb, you need to divide the volume of food by the number of feeding times recommended based on the dog’s age. This guarantees that their energy level can last from one meal to the next.

How to Transition Your Pug to a New Food

Whenever you need to switch to a new food or try a new diet type for your Pug, a gradual transition must be done. This will increase its acceptability and prevent any digestive system problems from occurring.

To guide you through this process, the American Kennel Club (AKC) recommends this seven-day transition that indicates the ratio of the old food versus the new food:

DayOld FoodNew Food
Day 1 – 275%25%
Day 3 – 450%50%
Day 5 – 625%75%
Day 70%100%

As you slowly transition your dog to its new diet, watch closely for any adverse reactions in your dog’s skin, bowel movement, or even its behavior. 

If you observe any issues, temporarily stop the transition and seek veterinary advice urgently.

Tips on Feeding an Overweight Pug

Feeding an overweight Pug

With Pugs’ smaller stomachs and hearty appetites, they can easily gain weight. Overweight Pugs may look cute, but they are very unhealthy.

If your Pug weighs above its ideal body weight, you should take action to bring it back to its healthy state before it becomes a bigger problem.

You can follow the suggestions below on how to feed your overweight Pug effectively:

  • Strictly monitor your dog’s diet: Feeding guidelines are created using the ideal weight of a healthy Pug based on different age categories. Hence, following the recommended volume of dog food in these guides should help your dog eat just enough for it to get back to its healthy weight.
  • Control your dog’s treats and snack intake: Dog treats and snacks must be a part of your Pug’s daily caloric requirement and not above it. Hence, use these sparingly for training purposes only. Also, you might want to consider giving healthy snacks like fruits and vegetables that have fewer calories yet your Pug can equally enjoy.
  • Increase physical activity level: Pugs are not active dogs, so increasing their daily dose of exercise may be a challenge. Hence, you need to be creative in encouraging them to take a walk or play in the dog park on a more consistent basis to help them lose weight.

In addition, most Pugs have huge appetites. This means that they may tend to always ask for more than what you serve them. 

As a dog owner, resist the temptation of giving your Pug more food than what is required and stick to the recommended feeding schedule for your dog. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Pug puppy eating dog kibble

How Do I Know If I’m Feeding My Pug Enough?

There are different ways to determine if you are giving your Pug enough food to meet its daily caloric requirement. One method is to check its body conditioning score through visual or physical means.

If you can easily feel or observe your pup’s ribcage, abdominal tuck, and waistline, then you need to give your dog as much food as needed to get it back to its ideal weight. 

Alternatively, you can also bring your Pug to your trusted veterinarian for a more accurate check of your dog’s nourishment level.

Why Is My Pug Not Eating?

If your Pug is not eating, it might be a sign of food boredom or stress. In this case, you can encourage its appetite by adding wet dog food to its diet. 

Wet food is very aromatic and has a high moisture content, which can entice your Pug to go back to eating normally. 

Additionally, mixing and matching dry dog food, raw food, wet food, and a homemade meal might also work. 

However, if your Pug’s lack of appetite also comes with lethargy, vomiting, or diarrhea, these are signs of a more serious health problem and may need urgent veterinary attention.

Can I Feed My Pug With Human Food?

As omnivores, Pugs can be given human foods safely. Meat sources like chicken, pork, and beef, and plant sources, such as sweet potato, brown rice, and green beans, are all examples of healthy ingredients for your dog.

They can even be given raw food, so long as it is prepared in the safest and cleanest way possible.

On the other hand, you also need to research thoroughly before putting any human food in your Pug’s bowl. A lot of these may also contain toxins that can be harmful or even lethal to your dogs.

Do Pugs Eat a Lot?

Pugs are not picky eaters, and they love their food. Hence, expect them to gobble up anything you put in their bowls. They might even have a tendency to ask for more.

What you need to watch out for is how to manage their diet effectively so that they don’t eat more than what is recommended.

Can Pugs Eat Bones?

Like most dogs, you can give your Pugs bones, but do it with caution. Ensure that only raw bones are given, which are soft for them to consume. Cooked bones might crack into splinters and cause internal damage to your Pug.

Hopefully, this feeding guide has helped you understand your dog’s feeding requirements. If you have any other questions about feeding your Pug, please leave a comment below.

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