How often you bathe your pug depends on the individual dog. Some pug owners wash their dogs every two weeks, especially if the dog sleeps in bed with them, while others find that quarterly bathing is sufficient. Bathe your pug any time he smells like Puppy LePew or devel-ops a dull coat. If your pug enjoys rolling in bird droppings or other stinky, dirty substances, you'll want to bathe him more frequently than if he's a couch potato that goes outdoors only to do his business.
When it's time for a bath, your pug will fit nicely in the kitchen sink, saving your back from the aches caused by bending over a bath-tub. Gather everything you need beforehand: shampoo, conditioner, towels, and cotton balls to place in the ears to help keep water out. Read the directions on the shampoo bottle; you may need to dilute it before use. Brush the dog to remove loose or dead hair.
When bathing your pug, take precautions to keep shampoo out of his eyes. A little mineral oil around them will help form a barrier. Afterward, make sure he's thoroughly dry. Leaving the skin — especially the wrinkles — moist can lead to hot spots and fungal infections.
In the Suds
Place a rubber mat in the sink to provide good footing, put your pug in the sink, and wet him thoroughly with warm water, starting at the head and working your way to the end of the body. Use a sprayer if your sink is equipped with one (test the temperature first so your dog doesn't get a blast of hot or cold water), or pour water over him from a large plastic measuring cup or other container. This ensures that he's not standing in dirty water during the bath.
Lather with a gentle dog shampoo, again starting at the neck and working back. Keep shampoo away from the eyes; instead, use a washcloth to clean the face and head. If you're using a medicated or flea shampoo, leave it on the skin for fifteen minutes, or as directed on the label or by your veterinarian. Rinse thoroughly with warm water to get all the shampoo out of the coat. The residue can make a dog's coat look dull and flaky. To help remove shampoo residue, use a fifty-fifty mixture of cider vinegar and water as a final rinse.
Towel-dry the dog thoroughly, removing as much water as possible. Your pug will assist you with this process by shaking frequently. (For bonus points, see if you can teach him to shake on command.) Now you can place him in a warm, draft-free place until he's completely dry. This prevents chills and helps ensure that he doesn't immediately run outside and roll in the mud or dirt.
If you want to speed the drying process with a blow dryer, use a low, gentle setting — never a hot setting. Hold the dryer at least a foot away from the dog so you don't burn the skin. As you blow the coat dry, brush with a bristle brush, in the same direction the coat grows. This helps remove excess hair, but only if you brush until the dog is completely dry, not damp-dry. Take special care to thoroughly dry the chest, the neck, and behind the ears. These are areas where the coat is thick or lies in folds and may retain moisture.