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Colors and Markings of Pugs

Dog owners and breed enthusiasts may think that Pugs only have a white or black coat. While this is true for a large part of the breed, there are a variety of colors and markings that a Pug could exhibit. Depending on their parents and inherited genes, Pugs can have coats in colors such as fawn, white, black, apricot fawn and silver fawn. They can also show markings in various areas on their body. Learn more about the distinct colors and markings of Pugs in the details below.

  • Black – The black coat Pug was first seen in 1886 in Europe. The coat can be solid black or have a few markings. Markings are usually white and can run along the chest, tummy and other unique areas throughout the body. Solid black without markings is known as a rare coat color for Pugs.
  • White – Pugs with a solid white coat is often mistaken for an albino. This beautiful color variation often shows pigment down the back and on the face. Due to the white coat, may Pugs will experience tear staining near their eyes. However, this is easily solved with grooming.
  • Fawn – This color coat in Pugs ranges from light to medium tan. Other variations of fawn include Apricot fawn which has an orange hue and Silver fawn that appears to be a shiny light fawn. Pugs that have a fawn coat are rarely solid in color.
  • Markings – The mask which includes the muzzle is usually black. It is most noticeable in Pugs with a light color coat such as white or fawn.
  • Thumbprint – This has nothing to do with their paws or actual imprint the paw makes in dirt or soft surfaces. Pugs have wrinkled skin on their forehead are and face. This skin usually has black markings that are within the skin wrinkle or on the forehead. The shape of the thumbprint is often circular, diamond or oval shape.
  • Tracing – Depending on DNA some Pugs have a black line on their coat that runs along their back. This is most noticeable in Pugs that have a light coat such as fawn.
  • Smuttiness – The term smuttiness refers to fawn coats that have black hairs that overlay. These black hairs are thin and allow for the main undercoat to show through easily. At times, this thin black overlay is hardly noticeable unless looked at closely.

Pugs can be any of these colors and have distinct markings. When Pugs are puppies their coat may appear one color and as they age the coat can become a shade or two darker. This doesn’t always happen, but one of the best ways to learn if this is possible is by looking at the parents of the Pug puppy. It is important to learn the appearance of both the mother and father of the Pug puppy since the coloring is hereditary. Keep in mind that the color of the Pugs coat during puppyhood will not change drastically. For example, if you have a fawn Pug, it will not grow up to be solid black. Only subtle changes in color will appear in the coat.

Photo credit: wombatarama/Flickr