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How Fast Can a Pug Run? {Is Running Fast Bad for Pug?}

We all love a good healthy running competition of dogs in our neighborhood park. It’s amazing to see our pugs running with dogs of other breeds. You can get disappointed with your pug’s performance since your pooch is not a running breed. Pugs are companion breeds. They do not do well in running. A person might be intrigued to know if a pug can run. Well, the truth is pugs will run as much as they want to. It depends on the pug’s mood whether to run or not? They will simply decide when to run according to their mood. Let’s look at some other interesting aspects of pug’s running.

How Fast Can a Pug Run?

Pugs can run as fast as 5-10 mph. This is considered much faster than average humans. A lot of factors however go into a pug’s ability to run. Their health, legs, legs, body composition, genes and their natural inclination towards running. These factors are incredibly important to place a pug in the race of being top in the dog race. 

Some similar breeds like chihuahua also clog at a similar speed. Not all dogs are the same. Pugs are companion dogs who prefer a leisurely life. In comparison to a dog from a rough breed who loves doing outdoor stuff. Dogs that do well in running have aerodynamic bodies and have strong abdominal muscles.

As far as the Merck Manual Veterinary Manual is concerned, both humans and dogs have strong ligaments, muscles. joins and tendons. They almost engage similar body parts when running. 

Can Pugs Run Fast?

Pugs are not natural-born runners. When compared to humans they can be considered fast. But when compared to other dogs they are slower. And these are the reasons for it-

Pugs are brachycephalic dogs

Running can be a bit difficult for dogs of the brachycephalic breed. Their physiology limits them from running fast. They can be short of breath. It is better to avoid long hours of strenuous exercise. Even a long walk can trigger breathing problems in your pooch. 

Pugs have squished faces like bulldogs, Shih Tzu and other types of dogs. They are not suited for strenuous aerobic exercises. Their short snouts can cause a lot of difficulties breathing for them. Pugs love to run. Make sure you feed them water during a running session. You should avoid taking your pug when it is too hot. They can have breathing problems. 

Pugs have short legs

Pugs are after all a part of the toy dog group. They do not have long legs and therefore cannot run in long strides. They have short and stubby legs. Pugs can run with other dogs in the dog park. Their short legs can create a lot of hindrances. Pugs cannot flex their legs. They have smaller strides. They are smaller in size. 

People should also remember that pugs are bred to be companion dogs. Their main intent is to be companion dogs and not running dogs. They cannot run very fast. They were bred to look cute. So, they have shorter legs and squished faces when compared to other dogs. That’s why pugs do not have leaner legs to compete with other long dogs.

Reasons For a Pug to Run Fast

Pugs can be slow or fast depending on many factors. Sometimes you might get shocked seeing two different pugs running at different speeds. One pug might be running like he/she is walking on a treadmill. There can be a pug who runs fast like a speedy dog. Various factors affect a pug’s speed. 


Age is such a crucial factor for a pug to be able to run. As usual, age will make a huge difference in the running speed of dogs. A younger dog will be able to run much faster when compared to a dog who might be running slow. 

Like humans, dogs’ age and their performance and physical capacities go down. An older pug cannot run very fast due to arthritis. Because of the problem they might have weaker bones. 


Health is also such a huge factor in a pug doing well in running. Health determines many things. A young healthy pug will run better compared to an unhealthy one. If a pug is unhealthy, do not unnecessarily make them run. 

Their love for it

Pugs also like humans have their choices, likes and dislikes. They may not like to run so they won’t bother to run either. Pugs are adamant this way. If your pooch loves running you would see it in their behaviour. 

Their actions will pretty much reflect it. Do not expect your pooch to run long distances if they do not like it.

Conditioned to enjoy running

Pugs like any other dogs adapt fast when they get habituated to something. Pugs as a dog breed do not like rough things. However, if you are an owner that likes to take your pooch for running, walking, hiking and exploring sessions. There is a greater chance of your dog being physically active than other dog breeds.

Moreover, pugs require a lot of exercise to remain fit and healthy. Make sure your pooch has a good exercise regimen. 

Mixed Breed Pug

If your pug is a mixed breed, there is a good chance they will be able to run. Mix Breed pugs acquire characteristics from both their parents. If they have some characteristics from a non-pug parent, the mixed breed pug can run well. The mixed-breed pugs will be able to beat their pure breed counterparts for sure.


Do Pugs Run Faster Than Other Breeds?

A dog’s running speed is dependent on various factors. It includes many things, a dog’s body composition, stamina, and health. An average dog can reach speeds of 15-20 mph easily. But some dog breeds will not be able to do so. 

What separates a top-class running dog is mainly its features:

  • Feet that have a good grip.
  • Lots of musculatures.
  • Large lung capacity.
  • Being able to reach a wider area.
  • They should have a lean body.
  • They should have lean legs.

Dogs that are fast like deerhounds can reach speeds up to 40 mph. It’s safe to say, pugs cannot reach that speed. Some other speeding dog breeds are:

Dog Breed  Speed
Greyhound 42 mph
Deer hound 40 mph
Saluki 42 mph
Afghan Hound 37 mph
Dalmatian 35 mph

Some short dogs who do not run fast but are faster than pugs:

Dog breed Speed
French Bulldog  10-15 mph
Toy Poodle 10 mph
Bulldog 10-15 mph
Bassett 10 mph

Can Running Fast be Healthy for Your Pug?

Brachycephalic dogs are advised not to run. They suffer from many biological problems. But that does not mean pugs cannot run at all in their entire life. Long-distance running can be bad for your pug. Your pug can run and jog but only in moderation. Make sure you do not overexert your pug to run. 

Your pug can get tired. If this happens, slow down a bit. Let your pug catch its breath. Monitor your pug’s breathing. Wait for the breathing to turn normal. Pugs have a narrow respiratory tract which can lead to problems in the future. Pugs can suffer from overheating and breathing facilities. 

You would see your pug struggling to breathe. If this happens, stop what you are doing immediately, and offer your pug some water to drink-

Some signs of trouble in breathing will be right in front of you:

  • Panting uncontrollably
  • Salivating
  • Fast heart rate
  • Gums can turn red and pale
  • Vomiting

Make sure that the breathing difficulty does not persist for longer durations of time. If it does, please contact your vet immediately.

Can You Train to Make Your Pug Run Faster?

Like humans, you can also make your pug run faster. It won’t make your pug run fast like a greyhound. But, it can surely beat other short dogs, if trained well of the same size. 

If a pug is running 200 m at 20 seconds, you can get it down to 5. But the magic here is through proper training. With adequate training, such a cutdown is very much possible. Make sure not to overtrain your pug. And, also be sure that your pug can enjoy the training. Do not let them do things that pugs do not want to do. 

Not all pugs love to run. Some pugs want to go for small walks

How Will You Know Your Pug Can Run Fast?

Smoke signs will be evident for you to know that your pug runs faster than other dogs:

  • Just see if they can outrun you.
  • Can you catch your pug when they outrun you?

However, getting to know about your pug’s running time should not be a big deal. Just accompany your pug to a race track. Record how long it takes for them to run the entire track?. That way you will have a good idea about how fast your pug is?

Keep your pug safe while on a run

Your pug can love running to its heart’s content. Just make sure your pug is safe when going out for a run. Some tips and tricks you might want to use on your pug to keep a watch while they run-

Do a medical checkup of your pug

Take your pug to the vet for a round checkup. Your vet will give you a rough idea about whether your pug is capable enough to do some light running on the side. If you want your pug to run faster, make sure to add some good dietary supplements to your pug’s diet. For your pooch to remain healthy, remember they need good food. 

Tie your pug with a harness

Use a harness on your pooch to not let them run away. This will avoid their running habit. You can keep watch on your pooch making sure the harness is important. 

Also, remember your pooch can also have trouble breathing with a bad leash. As you know your pug belongs to brachycephalic dogs. They can get choked up with a hard pull

Start with small

Do not overburden your pug with hard assignments. Their bodies are fragile. With little effort, they can get extremely good at running. If by any chance your pugs breathe heavily just by walking, they should not run. Make sure you start small, start with building the fitness foundation. After that, you can start to align the foundation in a much better manner.

Pugs cannot tolerate extreme heat and cold

It is true pugs do not have an effective mechanism to regulate body temperatures. They can overheat quickly. They can feel cold very quickly as well. Take your pug out for running when the weather is a little moderate and milder. The early morning and dusk time is extremely cordial for your pooch. 

Get your pooch treats and water on the run

While going for a run session make sure you take some water and treats with you. You both might want to have something after a good run. It’s better to accompany some sweets and water after running with your pooch. 

Be prepared to take your pooch in a lap

Your pug will get tired very easily midway. Remember, they cannot run very fast. Be prepared to take them in your lap in the middle of the run. Do not hesitate to take your pooch. They get tired pretty soon.

Final Words

Your pug is not the fastest dog in the world. But, it sure can be the kindest and the loveliest pooch in the entire world. They care about you deeply. You can train your pug and increase its speed. But you have to be content with the fact that pugs are not running dogs. If you want running dogs there are plenty like the Deerhound and the Greyhound

If your pug is not able to run because of a health situation, take them to a vet. Do watch out for their health situation when running. Your pooch is a brachycephalic dog. They can have breathing issues when running. Make sure your pug does not face it. 

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