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Retro Pug (AKA Pug & Jack Russell Mix): Breed Guide

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Do you love the classic look of a Pug but also want the athleticism and energy of a Jack Russell? Then you may have found your perfect dog breed – the Retro Pug! 

This mix of two very popular dog breeds is becoming increasingly popular as more and more people discover its charms. 

This post will cover everything you need to know about the Retro Pug. Their history, what they were bred for, how they’re different from standard pugs, their temperament, and much more.

Keep reading to discover everything you need about Retro Pugs before deciding if this is the right dog for you.

Retro Pug

What Is a Retro Pug?

The Retro Pug is a mix of two very popular dog breeds – the Pug and the Jack Russell Terrier.

As its name suggests, the Retro Pug is a relatively new dog breed that only emerged in the last few decades. 

Thanks to its combination of the best traits from both parent breeds, the Retro Pug is an intelligent, playful, and loving dog that makes a great companion for families with children.

This breed is still relatively rare, but its popularity is growing rapidly as more and more people discover its many charms.

One of the major positives of this mixed breed is they inherit a longer snout than standard Pugs have. This helps them avoid a lot of the health issues that come with having a flat face/shorter snout.

What Was The Retro Pug Bred For?

The Retro Pug was bred to be the perfect family companion.

While the Retro Pug does have some hunting instincts from its Jack Russell parent, they are not an especially active breed. This makes them a great choice for families with children or for people who live in apartments or other small spaces.

Retro Pug Vs Pug: Are Retro Pugs Better Than Pugs?

Retro pugs have longer snouts, while standard pugs have a shorter snout. Both pugs are equally cute, but they have some important differences.

Standard pugs are more prone to snoring and breathing problems, while retro pugs are not as susceptible. This is due to the difference in the way their skulls are formed.

Retro pugs also have fewer wrinkles on their face, which means they require less maintenance. On the other hand, standard pugs require more facial wrinkle cleaning to prevent infection.

In terms of personality, retro pugs tend to be more laid back, while standard pugs are more energetic.

So in terms of their overall health, Retro Pugs have a better chance of not having genetic health conditions that shorten their life.

To say one is better than the other is not for us to say, considering people have different tastes and expectations of a pet.

Ultimately, the type of pug you choose should be based on your lifestyle and personal preferences.

Brief Retro Pug History

The Retro Pug is a relatively new designer breed that was only created in the last few decades.

Because they are so new, there’s not a lot of information on their history. So to get a better idea of their heritage, it’s best to look at their parent breed’s history.

Where Do Pugs Come From?

Pugs have long been a popular dog breed for their comical expressions and outgoing personalities. However, pugs are more than just a pretty face. They also have a rich history that spans hundreds of years.

Pugs were first bred in China, where they were prized by the imperial court. As a result, they were often depicted in art and literature during this period. 

Pugs eventually made their way to Europe, where they gained popularity among noblemen and ladies of the court. Queen Victoria was particularly fond of pugs, and she is credited with helping to make them one of the most popular breeds in England.

Pugs remained a fashionable breed throughout the Victorian era and into the early 20th century. 

However, their popularity declined during World War I and II as people began associating them with luxury and extravagance. 

Thankfully, pugs made a comeback in the late 20th century, and they continue to be one of the most popular dog breeds today.

Where Do Jack Russell Terriers Come From?

When most people think of a Jack Russell Terrier, they envision a small, white dog with a perky personality. 

However, the history of the Jack Russell Terrier is much more complicated than that. The breed traces its roots back to England in the early 1800s, where it was developed by a man named Parson John Russell. 

Russell was an avid fox hunter and set out to create an intelligent and fearless dog to keep up with the hunt. 

He eventually settled on a cross between the Fox Terrier and the Welsh Terrier. The resulting breed quickly became known for its hunting ability. 

In recent years, the Jack Russell Terrier has become a popular companion animal, but it still retains its hunting instincts.

Retro Pug Appearance & Traits

Retro Pug lying in grass
PC: @retropug_rex

Size (Weight & Height)

Retro Pugs are small dogs typically weighing between 13 and 18 pounds and standing between 10 and 14 inches tall at the shoulder.

Coat Colors & Texture

Retro Pugs can come in a variety of colors, including black, fawn, brindle, and silver. They have a short, smooth coat that is easy to care for.

For the most part, these dogs inherit the texture of their Pug parent. So while their face has fewer wrinkles due to their longer snout, they still have adorable wrinkles on their body.

Shedding & Grooming

Retro Pugs are moderate shedders, so you can expect to find a few hairs around your home. However, they are relatively easy to groom and only need to be brushed a few times a week.

It’s important to keep their wrinkles clean and dry to prevent infection, so you may need to wash them down with a damp cloth daily.

You should also trim their nails every few weeks and brush their teeth regularly throughout the week to keep their teeth and gums healthy.

When it comes to bathing, a good schedule for these dogs is every 2-3 months. This, of course, depends on how dirty they like to get, but in general, every 8-12 weeks should work to keep their body clean and healthy.

Are Retro Pugs Hypoallergenic?

No, Retro Pugs are not hypoallergenic. They are considered to be a moderate shedder, which means they will likely trigger allergies in people who are sensitive to pet dander.

Ears & Tail

Retro Pugs have ears that are similar to their Pug parent, and they usually have a long tail that is carried high.

These dogs typically have straight tails, but some may have a slight curl.

The shape and size of their ears can vary depending on which parent they take after more, but they are typically floppy and medium-sized.

Eye Color

Retro Pugs usually have dark brown eyes, but some may have hazel or green eyes.


Jug Dog
PC: @perlinia_photography

The lifespan of a Retro Pug is typically between 10 and 15 years.

While this is the average lifespan, some dogs may live longer or shorter depending on their individual health and genetics.

It’s important that they get plenty of exercise and eat a healthy diet to ensure they live a long, healthy life.

Common Health Issues

While Retro Pugs are generally healthy dogs, there are a few health issues that they may be more prone to. These include hip dysplasia, epilepsy, allergies, skin infections, patellar luxation, and eye problems such as entropion and ectropion.

Hip dysplasia is a condition that can afflict dogs of all sizes and breeds. The condition occurs when the hip joint fails to develop properly, resulting in pain, lameness, and eventually arthritis. While there is no cure for hip dysplasia, there are several steps that owners can take to help their dogs manage the condition. For instance, exercise and weight management are important for keeping the joints healthy and preventing further damage.

Epilepsy is a neurological condition that can cause seizures. While the exact cause of epilepsy is unknown, it is believed to be genetic. Dogs with epilepsy will typically require medication to help control their seizures.

Allergies are also common in Retro Pugs. They can be caused by various things such as food, pollen, dander, and chemicals.

Skin infections are another common health issue in Retro Pugs. These can be caused by bacteria, yeast, or allergies, and they usually result in itchiness, redness, and hair loss. Their skin folds are the major reason for their increased likelihood of skin infections.

Patellar luxation is a condition that occurs when the kneecap slips out of place. This can be painful for dogs, and it may require surgery to correct.

Eye problems such as entropion and ectropion are also fairly common in Retro Pugs. Entropion is a condition where the eyelid rolls inward, while ectropion is when the eyelid rolls outward. Both of these conditions can be uncomfortable for dogs and may require surgery to correct.

If you are considering getting a Retro Pug, it’s important to do your research and make sure you are getting a dog from a reputable breeder. This will help to ensure that your dog is as healthy as possible.

A good breeder can provide you with health clearances for your puppy’s parents, which can give you an idea of what health problems your dog may be at risk for.

Trainability & Intelligence

pug x jack russell

Retro Pugs are considered to be intelligent dogs, and they are typically not terribly difficult to train.

These dogs usually excel in obedience training and tricks. They are often very food motivated, which can make training them relatively easy. 

However, like all dogs, they will need patience and consistency from their owners.

While Retro Pugs are intelligent dogs, they can also be stubborn at times. This means that owners will need to be firm and consistent when training them while also knowing when it’s time to stop training for the day.

Socialization is also important for Retro Pugs, as it helps them to become well-rounded dogs. Exposing them to different people, places, and situations from a young age will help them to grow into confident, well-adjusted dogs.

Activity Level & Exercise Needs

Retro Pugs are considered to be moderate-energy dogs. This means they will need some exercise, but they don’t require as much as some more active dog breeds.

A couple of 15-20 minute daily walks and a play session should be enough to meet their exercise needs. However, if you have an especially high-energy Retro Pug, they may need a bit more exercise than that.

While Retro Pugs don’t require a ton of exercise, they do need some mental stimulation to help keep them from getting bored. This can be provided in the form of interactive toysdog puzzles, and learning new tricks or behaviors.

Retro Pug Temperament & Behavior

Do Retro Pugs Bark A Lot?

Retro Pugs are considered to be relatively quiet dogs. They typically don’t bark excessively, but like all dogs, they may bark when they are excited, scared, or trying to get your attention.

Do Retro Pugs Like To Cuddle?

Retro Pugs are typically very affectionate dogs that enjoy cuddling with their owners. They usually don’t mind being held or carried, and they love to be close to the people they care about.

In general, the more positive experiences they have cuddling when young, the more they will want to cuddle throughout their life.

Are Retro Pugs Good With Kids?

Retro Pugs typically do well with children, as they are gentle and patient dogs. However, it’s important to socialize them from a young age to teach them and the child how to interact safely.

As with any dog breed, it’s also important to supervise their initial interactions to make sure that everyone is playing nice.

Are Retro Pugs Good With Other Dogs?

Retro Pugs usually get along well with other dogs as long as they are properly socialized. They may try to dominate smaller dogs, but this is usually just their way of trying to play.

It’s important to gradually introduce Retro Pugs to other dogs and make sure that they have plenty of positive experiences with them. This way, they learn to view other dogs as friends.

If they’re too isolated, they’re more likely to see other dogs as potential threats rather than potential friends. Which can cause them to become anxious or overly clingy whenever they see their loved ones interacting with other dogs.

Are Retro Pugs Good With Strangers?

Retro Pugs generally do well with strangers. They may bark when someone new comes to the house, but they usually warm up fairly quickly.

Again, socialization from a young age is important to ensure they’re well-behaved in unfamiliar situations.

The more new people they meet and have a positive interaction with, the better behaved they’ll be in the future when in a similar situation.

Are Retro Pugs Good Apartment Dogs?

Retro Pugs can make good apartment dogs as they are relatively quiet and don’t require a lot of exercise.

However, they may bark when left alone for too long, so it’s important to provide them with plenty of mental stimulation to keep them from getting bored.

It’s also important to ensure they still get their daily exercise. Otherwise, they can become destructive and anxious.

Retro Pug Price

Jug Dog being held
PC: @amazing_ansga

The average Retro Pug price is between $750 and $2000.

Their price depends on a variety of factors, such as their breeder’s experience, the dog’s coat color/pattern, and the parent dog’s genetic health.

Also, another factor that’s unique to the Retro Pug is whether they have a longer snout or not. This is because the longer the snout, the less likely they will have breathing difficulties and the health problems associated with a shorter snout.

It’s important to note that you should always make sure you are getting a puppy from a reputable breeder.

Unfortunately, there are many unethical breeders out there who are looking to make a quick buck by selling sick or unhealthy puppies.

Where Can You Find a Retro Pug For Sale?

Retro Pug sitting
PC: @monsieur_knoedel

If you’re interested in purchasing a Retro Pug, the best place to start your search is online. You may also have to search for “Jug Dog,” as that’s what Retro Pug breeders sometimes list these dogs as.

A few good websites to start your search are Keystone Puppies, Greenfield Puppies, and Lancaster Puppies.

Each of these websites is a breeder directory where breeders from all over the country can list their puppies for potential owners to look at.

You may have to look at Pug mixes, or Jack Russell Terrier mixes to find a Retro Pug (AKA Jug Dog).

Also, you can always try contacting local animal shelters or rescue groups in your area to see if they have any Retro Pugs available for adoption.

Adopting a Retro Pug from a shelter or rescue group is a great option as you’re giving a dog in need a forever home. Also, you’ll likely be able to get them for cheaper than purchasing from a breeder.

Similar Breeds To The Retro Pug

Final Thoughts

The Retro Pug breed is a unique and fun-loving breed that is sure to bring joy to your life. They are great with children and other pets and make loyal and loving companions.

If you’re looking for a small dog with a big personality, the Retro Pug could be a great breed for you and your family. Just make sure you purchase from a reputable breeder and get your puppy from a litter that has been socialized from a young age.

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