Lotus Blossom Pug

Lotus Blossom Pug

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Why care about genetics?

Most people would agree that genetics are important.  It's who your pug becomes..generation after generation. Sometimes knowing that can all fly out the window when it's time to buy a puppy. You just want a 'pet'...and all puppies are cute...and you have a budget to consider.  I want to take a little time to try and explain some things....so I'll share with you my process into owning and breeding these wonderful little dogs.
Years and years ago, I researched the different dog breeds and decided a pug was for me.  I knew right away that I wanted to become a breeder.  I went to the newspaper and found a baby girl puppy and then found a baby boy puppy.  When they grew up, they bred.  I was so excited!  I had full A.K.C rights ( to breed) for those puppies, as the people that sold me my pugs didn't really care what I did with them.  Once I was out the door, they had no more interest in anything having to do with that puppy. I had no idea that alarm bells should have been going off in my head. After I bred those two pugs, and when my puppies were ready to go home, I placed an ad in the newspaper.  People were happy to come and get their puppy...so I was happy....for about a few months.  That's when the phone calls started coming in with complaints.  Everything that could ever be wrong with a pug puppy seemed to be wrong with my puppies. I had no idea what some of these issues even were. I couldn't understand how there could be any issues at all as the parents seemed healthy.  I was a backyard breeder (but didn't know it)..and I bought my parents from backyard breeders.  A 'backyard breeder' doesn't mean you keep your dogs in the back yard.  It means you breed for no reason other than to produce puppies.  You have no idea what the genetics of the breeding pair are.  Frankly some people really don't care....but I did.  I had heard of a pedigree, but had no idea what it was for. A pedigree has a purpose..it traces the lineage of your dog so you can decide how to breed better genetics.  A pedigree with all pets on it (no Champions) will do nothing for you...as you can't find out anything about the dogs on it.  You can't google Elvis Pugsley...or Muffy and learn anything.  But you can google any Champion and find out via pictures and kennel name what those breeders are producing.  If you don't like your dogs head, you can breed to a line that has better heads (lets just say).  The problem is that no reputable breeder (with great genetics) places 'pet' puppies that can be bred. The good genetics are kept out of the hands of backyard breeders and puppy mills. If someone does scam a reputable breeder out of a puppy (that was supposed to be spay/neutered) and breeds it anyway...what they breed it with, will bring in undesirable traits and a host of genetic health issues with it.  Some of these issues crop up later...and then what? Backyard breeders aren't committed to long term anything..here today and gone tomorrow.
The other thing that happened to me when I placed the ad for my puppies in the newspaper was that an elderly lady called me from Tampa. They had misprinted my ad to read "champion puppies for sale."  This feisty little lady (Florence Prelwitz..who has since passed away) was sort of snippy with me.  How could my puppy or any puppy be a champion?  She told me if I wanted to see a Champion pug to come to her house....so I immediately drove two hours to get there..as I had never seen a Champion pug before. Her dogs looked nothing like mine. I was in awe! I went home and made the decision to place my pug parents in a loving home (after getting spay/neutered)... and I started over.  She sold me my first genetically sound pug (for thousands) and introduced me to the people that breed great dogs.  After they started trusting me, I was able to buy more great dogs.  I bought one little girl and paid a handler $13,000  to get her finished to her Championship (not counting the cost of the little girl.)  After she became a Champion, I was allowed to send for frozen semen (not cheap) from a top Champion boy, for a breeding.  Everyone of these show breeders has a good reputation to uphold and they spend thousands upon thousands of dollars toward 'bettering the breed" and passing on the best genetics. All this to make sure this breed continues to thrive...without health issues.  They personally know the breeders ( or know someone that knows someone ) that they will contact, to improve their breeding program and can check the pedigrees in order to make the best possible match. Of course you have to have references yourself.  No one wants their genetics being used by unscrupulous breeders so everyone is committed to spay/neuter contracts for all puppies that won't be used to further the breed. They have no need to ever put an ad in a paper to place a puppy (it's actually against the Pug Dog Club of America's bi-laws to do so). Reputation counts.
Now I'll share with you a typical e-mail that I receive on an almost daily basis:
Hello...  Our little muffy just died and we are grief stricken.  She was only two years old and it was from (pick a problem...I hear it all)(pug dog encephalitis, collapsed trachea, needed a liver shunt, died in the air while on a flight...heart issues...).  We paid thousands in Vet bills trying to save her.
When I respond to the e-mail and tell them what a nice (pet) puppy will cost, 9 times out of 10, this is what they reply: "That's way out of our price range for a puppy!  Do you know of anyone else with cheaper puppies?" My response is now going to be "Have you checked the newspaper?"
Champion Prelly's Luk-E-Lee. He was my first start in great genetics. (sold to me by Florence ..who bred the Prelly line of pugs.)  They are well known for wonderful large heads (which I love), great health, and the most wonderful loving personalities.  He is the great-grandson of the only pug to ever win Best in Show (over all dogs of all breeds) at Westminster.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Spay/neutering small puppies?

This is a subject that everyone seems to have their own opinion on. I can only tell you my view on this and why I spay/neuter my puppies early.  When anyone see's pictures of a puppy mill, they cringe.  I can't even watch some of the commercials on T.V.  How did these dogs end up there to start with?  How do pugs end up in puppy mills and in dog pounds and in rescue?  It all starts with a pug puppy that has the ability to produce offspring.  In the hands of the wrong person, this little precious baby will live a life of hell.  Owners of puppy mills need new blood to keep doing what they are doing, so they e-mail breeders and claim to be little old ladies just wanting a companion.  Some of them are willing to pay good money to get good blood lines with no health issues....so they can use this dog as a breeder for a very long time.  I've had it happen to me (puppy mill e-mails).  The minute I send a return e-mail informing them that their deposit will pay for the puppy to be spayed or neutered, they are no longer interested.  There is no way to really know who is e-mailing me.  This is exactly why the dog pounds/shelters have all puppies 'fixed' prior to adoption.  If we lived in a world where everyone was honest and had good morals and ethics, this would never be an issue...but we don't.
Isn't just holding the AKC papers until the new family gets their pug spayed/neutered enough?  Imagine this scenario: Frank owns a puppy mill and has a very sick AKC registered stud pug dog...we'll call him Pugsley.  Pugsley  dies.  Now he needs a replacement, so he gets (cons) a good? breeder into selling and shipping him a puppy and she holds the papers.  That's fine with him because he will now call the new puppy Pugsley and use the dead dogs AKC papers.  AKC makes all breeders that use a male for breeding, get DNA on the dog.  It doesn't matter in this case though because who is going to argue that the father of the litter isn't who they say it is.  Puppy millers don't allow people to see their dogs or their kennels.  They could be using their old AKC papers with a mixed breed pug and you would never know.  There are so many scams going on.
Is getting an 8 week old puppy fixed safe?  Putting any dog or animal or person under general anesthesia is taking a risk....at anytime.  Some Vets aren't as skilled at putting the flat faced breeds 'under' as others.  My veterinarian (Dr. Bailey) is an expert at this.  She skips the pre-tranquilizer injection and then just uses isoflurine gas to put them out.  When I pick up a puppy that just had surgery one hour prior, they come home and are running around and playing. 
The argument for not doing the surgery early is that the pug needs the hormones for bone growth.  A pug isn't fully grown for 2 years.  So if you were planning on getting your dog spayed or neutered after they are two, there would be an argument for this.  Most people want their pug fixed prior to the first heat....or about 5 to 6 months old.  So we are talking about an extra three months time difference (from when I do it verses when you would do it)...not enough to make a hormonal difference.
Being a good breeder is all about doing the right thing for your dogs. It starts with being ethical in every category involved in the owning, showing, breeding and care of your dogs. It ends with making sure any babies leaving here are getting a safe, wonderful home where he/she will be cherished for many, many years. I have to do my part.  Notice the two little pugs to the left in this puppy mill picture. It makes me want to cry!  If you want to see this pair bred again and again, support your local pet store..because that's where their puppies end up!

Friday, September 12, 2014


  I can remember the days (decades ago) when crating was considered 'mean'.  Some people felt it was like putting their dog into a prison.  This was the same time period when some people had no problem with shoving their puppy's face in an poo accident, hitting their dog while screaming 'NO' and then throwing the dog outside.  It didn't matter that they were gone for hours and failed to take the dog out to potty prior to leaving.  If the puppy chewed a shoe up, it was the same treatment.  Thank goodness times have changed!
  Dogs are descendants of the wolf (or so we are told), and all wild dogs have dens.  Dogs are very comfortable in a den and crates are in-house dens.   Dogs don't think of them as jail, as they don't understand our penal system. Pugs usually love their crates and feel very safe in them.  It's more than a potty training issue...it's about your pugs safety.  I use wire crates as the puppies like seeing me move about the house, and they don't feel isolated (like people who shut a dog in the bathroom.) 
When I get a folding wire crate home, the first thing I do is zip-tie the upper corners and remove the lid.  I'm not crawling in the crate to get my puppy while it backs up into the back end.  It's so much easier to just reach in from the top...to change water and newspapers etc.  Sometimes I'll use two crates pushed up against each other (both doors open) and zip-tie the doors to the side of the opposite crate so no one can get out through the little gap.  If I do that, I use bedding to cover the hump in between crates so no one gets their feet stuck.  I had one family (that adopted a puppy from me) get a crate/play area from Walmart online. It is not only beautiful but expands out:


  I do have my crate rules though.  If a puppy is crying, I never approach the crate until that behavior stops.  I have food and water available at all times, bedding on one side (with toys) and newspaper on the other side.  Sometimes people have to be gone (working) longer than a puppy can 'hold it', so it's unfair that they be sectioned off in a small area and forced to urinate in their bedding....and then sit in it all day.  Crying in the crate is usually a puppy that feels a bit lonely.  Wait until the behavior stops or you will be trained to 'come' when the puppy demands it.  Not good!  As soon as the puppy changes behavior to being quiet, go get him and take him outside for potty.  I never speak to a puppy in a crate as they need to know it's for quiet time.  You can never have company come over and have a quiet puppy in the crate if you interact with him every time you walk by.  I take the puppy outside and say 'go potty' in a serious tone.  Once the puppy potties, I change my tone to one of great happiness while praising him.  They have no idea what you are saying..but will know what the tones mean (after a while)...and then words later.  I then pick my puppy up and go back inside for play time on the floor.  Never leave your puppy unsupervised!  Their little back teeth are coming in when real little and any cords seem like fun to chew on.  You can have leather raw-hides to chew on, but these have to be supervised also.  Chewing on them makes them mushy and the puppy can choke on pieces.  I like the antlers and cow hooves myself.  They seem indestructible.
Once our puppy play time is over, I put the puppy back in the crate.  I use a crate that is at least 32 inches long.  When your pug is older, he may want to go in there for nap time...so buy one big enough to start with.  When your puppy is on the floor playing and has an accident, clean it up with vinegar...and don't say anything to the puppy.  They learn quicker with positive reinforcement (outside when they do pee), and can't hold it very long as little babies.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Socializing your pug

Good Morning!  I'd like to talk a little about socialization.  I have included an e-mail I received from Todd H.  It says, "Mollie Lu and Mabel Rose are doing unbelievably amazing! They are growing quick and are absolutely gorgeous. The picture was from their first visit to PetsMart today. They have been extremely social around the neighborhood and well behaved with everyone they come in contact with, including big and small dogs. We couldn't be happier."
 It's no secret that taking your pug out to experience new sights and sounds...people and other animals, will help them to not be afraid of new experiences. Pugs are pretty social and friendly by nature, but can become frightened easily if you fail to socialize them.  I knew someone that had a pug that wouldn't step on the grass as she didn't like the feel of it under her feet.  This was because they lived in an apartment/condo situation and their pug used indoor potty pads only.  At some point you will need to take your dog to the Vet for check ups and you don't want a dog that is petrified of the car, other dogs, and other people.  The best time to get them used to being 'out and about' is when they are young. Make sure they are current on their vaccinations and be very cautious around other dogs.  I don't trust anyone saying "My dog is fine..he wouldn't hurt a flea"!  My next door neighbors have a very large dog named Macho.  I always thought they said is name was Nacho..so that's what I called him.  I live in a semi rural area (in a housing area, but there are woods across the street...with no houses built there yet).  Macho-nacho has been in my front yard playing around many times while I was out there talking with his owner.  He never bothered my pugs, and happily played with them.  One day Mr. Neighbor guy was walking him around the block....being pulled by him was more accurate.  When they got around the corner, the neighbor outside washing his car greeted them.  That neighbors little 15 year old Min-pin was barking at Macho-nacho.  The guy washing his car said "is your dog friendly?"  While next door neighbor guy was trying to say "Oh yes...he would never hurt a flea", Macho-nacho lunged forward (pulling free) and literally ripped the hide off of the little min-pin. He died in rout to the Vets office.  The craziest thing about this whole situation was the reaction that my next door neighbor had.  He felt it wasn't really his fault that he couldn't control his dog while walking him...that it was the min-pins fault for barking at Macho-nacho.  He asked me how much min pins cost...maybe he could offer the car wash neighbor some money and everything would be fine.  What? Are you insane?  Your dog just killed a member of those people's family...like their baby!  Needless to say, I never allowed my pugs out in the front yard after that.  They finally moved and the new family that moved in, kept a chihuahua tied up outside all day in the heat.  That little dog was an escape artist (I'd escape too if I made to live tied to a tree in the Florida summer).  When she would escape, she would run into my yard and try to kill me. Numerous times I would go over and make sure she had water if she knocked her dish over.  There was no explaining this to her.  Thank goodness they moved too.  The bottom line is that you need to be very careful about other dogs when you have your pugs out for social time...or walks....or have insane people for neighbors.
 Below is the picture Todd H. sent of his two girls at petsmart. 
Mollie and Rose are having a fun shopping day!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Flying with your pug!

Good Morning!
Are you thinking about traveling, and wondering about taking your pug with you?  The great thing about pugs, is that they love to travel too!  They seem to know it's 'quiet time' and are pretty good about these things.  You do need to check with the airline ahead of time and make sure they allow dogs on board, in the cabin with you.  You will have to pay for a ticket (unless your dog is a service dog)...and that is usually around $80.00.  Most pet stores carry soft sided carriers....and most airlines require these.  If you are going to a Hotel prior to departure, or when you arrive, make sure the Hotel allows pets.
The picture (above) is of Miss Claira (all 10 pounds of her)....loved and owned by Bonny B.
Bonny travels often for her job, and wouldn't think of leaving her behind.  Miss Claira knows when it's time to go and gladly jumps into her flight carrier. Bonny makes sure she has a doggy day care lined up for her work day the following day, and Claira is always a big hit at her hotels and day care centers.  How can anyone not like a well behaved, non-barking pug!  She politely waits in her room for her room service meal...a pouched egg. Claira never leaves home without her purse...which she carriers with her...in her mouth.  (It's just a stuffed toy purse but we won't tell her that).
Pugs are like little people in doggy suits.  Their funny antics and wonderful personalities make them such a joy to have in our lives!  I feel Blessed!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Dog treats?

Good morning!
I love to give my dogs a nice treat.  They get so excited and know to run to the fridge and give me that 'look".  I think it makes ME happier than it does them.  We all love to go shopping and get a new little toy or treat for our furry children.  What is so disturbing, is that we can actually kill our dog if we choose wrongly.  Some treats can be deadly.  I saw the package of one brand of store bought treats that said 'made it America' on the front of the package, but in very small letters on the back it stated that the ingredients were from China. A friend of mine's pug almost died from this very brand of dollar store 'waggin train' treats. I hate that we live in a world where I feel almost scammed at every turn.  Can't we even trust that a dog treat is safe?  I guess not.
I buy cheese for treats.  Sometimes I cook a chicken breast or two and cut it up in small chunks and put it in the freezer.  There are so many recipes on the internet for homemade cookies and treats for our pets.  I've bought a 'homemade' cookie (that looked like our cookies) in the pet store for my pug...but they were as hard as a rock and my pug wanted nothing to do with it.
Below is a link if you would like to do more reading....

Here is a simple three ingredient recipe for you...
3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Pumpkin Homemade Dog Treats
1/2 cup Natural Peanut Butter
1 cup 100% Pure Pumpkin Puree, canned
1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour (I used Whole Grain Brown Rice Flour)


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, stir together peanut butter and pumpkin. Stir in the flour 1/4 cup at a time just until dough is no longer sticky.
3. Roll the dough out between two sheets of parchment paper to 1/4″ thick. Use a cookie cutter to cut out the dough, then place on the prepared pan.
4. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 8-10 minutes. Let cool completely. Store in an airtight container or freeze for up to 3 months.

Saturday, August 23, 2014


Good Morning!
I started this blog yesterday.  The lady that did my web-site suggested that I start one.  How on earth am I going to find something interesting (informative?) to say on a regular basis? That's a strange thought since I am always chatting away (most of the time to myself) about something.  So...instead of worrying about it, I'll just start sharing.
This morning I was on my porch having my coffee, when I noticed a big nasty spider.  I don't care how little they really are...they all look big and nasty to me.  I know they have their place in the environment...I just don't want them in MY environment.  After my heart started beating again, I noticed it was not moving...and actually had its legs off the ground....sort of trapped in a web that connected to my little wicker table.  That usually means one thing.  There is probably a brown widow spider nest up under the table.  Florida has these everywhere!  Unlike the black widow, the brown widow spider seems to not care about finding dark places to build their webs and egg sacs.  I've seen these in window casings (outside) and under my house eves every year.  Just leave a plastic chair outside for a month and then flip it over...almost always I can find the egg sacs.  The spider itself is a big chicken and will hunker down in the corner somewhere.  The web is VERY strong and can be hard to swipe away.  I use a stick to remove the web and eggs, after spraying the nest with wasp spray. The wasp spray shoots out so far that I don't actually have to be very close...which is good.  I wait a few minutes until I can see the spider die and then go back to remove the web and eggs.  No one on earth can know how much I hate this process. I have arachnophobia in the worse way.  The only things that spurs me on is the knowledge that those eggs will produce more babies.
These egg sacs are about the size of my pinky fingernail...and are usually seen in clusters of three or more...and they are everywhere here (outside).  Under chairs, flower pot lips, garage door crevices, window corners. The venom is twice as toxic as a black widow spider, but they are less likely to bite....and when they do, they inject less venom.  I'm not that concerned about the venom.  Anyone with arachnophobia understands the heart attack that accompanies just seeing these things.  I worry about my pugs.  They get under things and are much more likely to come in contact with a spider than I am.
So...today I am going to get outside for an exterior house and yard check.  I'll be armed with my trusty wasp spray and long pointy stick.  Of course my dogs will be inside enjoying the cool indoors while I'm doing this.  Anytime I use any chemical or pesticide (and I try not to), they are not allowed in the area.  Be still my heart...I must be brave..for I am Xena Warrior Princess!