Flatulence In Pugs: Why They Fart So Much! (And How To Fix It)


When a pug enters a room, they’ll usually brighten everything up with their playful mood and infectious smile. Just as quickly, they can undoubtedly clear a room with a bit of flatulence. Passing gas is a very common complaint amongst pug owners. Whether it’s silent, abrupt, or startlingly loud, a pug’s fart won’t be very pleasant to smell. But why is this so common with pugs?

Pugs are classified as a brachycephalic breed, which means they have flat-faces. Without a snout in the way, their genetic makeup allows them to eat a lot faster, but they will inhale a lot more air in the process. Unfortunately, farting is the only way to clear them of this excess air.

The features of a pug make them beautifully unique, but it does come with its consequences. While genetics play a big role in their flatulence, a pug’s diet is just as, if not more, important to managing their stinky farts. Let’s explore this in more detail.

Genetics: Techniques To Manage Excessive Swallowing Of Air

Similarly to humans, food is broken down for nutrients in a dog’s intestinal tract. Any excess air that’s trapped here or in the colon will need to be expelled by farting. Pugs are known as speed eaters, mainly due to their genetic makeup. Their flat-faces allow them to inhale food much faster than other breeds of dogs. Farting in pugs is expected as a result of this.

There are “slow feeder” bowls that can slow down the pace of their eating. These bowls are constructed with obstacles that will forcefully stop your pug from inhaling large amounts of food. This helps reduce the amount of excess air from entering into their system, thus resulting in fewer farts from your dog.

Additionally, feeding your pug with smaller portions but more frequently can help reduce flatulence. Rather than providing them one big meal for the day, try breaking it out by feeding them twice or three times a day with lesser amounts. Pacing their meals out throughout the day can help control the amount of excess air that’s inhaled. It’s important to note that their total daily intake of food should remain the same regardless of the frequency in which they’re fed. This is to ensure that they get the energy required for a healthy and happy pug.

How Diet Will Affect Flatulence In Pugs

As you can imagine, the food they eat will play a significant role in how much gas your pug will pass. Lower-quality ingredients in dog food like grains, cereal, corn, artificial fillers, and certain meats will will have an impact on their digestion. Instead, you’d want to look for something premium that has a good mix of proteins and healthy fats. Doing so will also help you maintain your pug’s weight for optimal living and longevity.

To avoid fillers, look for actual meat proteins, poultry, or fish, first and foremost. You may notice “meat meal” also listed, and this is completely fine as it’ll tend to consist of 65% protein and only 10% water. Avoid buying any dog food if you see “whole meat” listed, as that’s primarily made up of water (up to 70%) with only about 18% protein at the most. This filler is made up of moisture and unhealthy fats, which is terrible for a pug’s digestion. If this has convinced you to change what you’re currently feeding your pug over to something more optimal, make sure you gradually introduce it to them. This is because pugs have sensitive gastrointestinal tracts, so that a drastic diet change may upset their stomach. I’d suggest mixing the new food in with the old mix, and increasing the ratio every time until their meals only consist of the new kibble mix.

Here is a helpful chart breaking out ingredients and foods to look for and avoid:

Superior IngredientsIngredients to avoid
High-quality proteins
(beef, chicken, fish, meat meal)
Extracts from meat, including
“whole meat”
Complex and fibrous carbohydrates
(fruits, vegetables)
Simple carbohydrates
(sucrose, fructose, and lactose)
Healthy fats
(fish oils, omega-3, omega-6)
Preservatives (BHA & BHT)
Vitamins & mineralsArtificial colors
WaterGluten and dairy

Besides just avoiding certain ingredients within their food mix, you’ll also want to be wary about the types of treats they consume. Liver treats, for example, have a tendency to trigger more farts in a pug. Leftovers or table scraps should not be fed to your dog either, as it’ll usually contain high amounts of sugars, sodium, and fats – all not great for your pug’s stomach. It can also be dangerous if they consume something that they shouldn’t. This may also trigger behavioral problems like whining at the dining table and not eating their own bowl of food.

Finally, regular farts may be an indication that they may be intolerant to a particular food. When this happens, their gastrointestinal tract may get upset, causing bloating, flatulence, and even diarrhea. Eventually, these types of issues can even lead to skin issues with symptoms, including rashes and itching. While common for a pug to pass a bit of gas each day, it shouldn’t be that consistent. And if it’s only started happening recently, combined with diarrhea or blood in their stool, it may indicate that there is a more severe problem at hand. Please seek advice from your vet as they’ll be able to diagnose the problem with a series of tests. They may potentially put your pug on an elimination diet to figure out and weed out the offending ingredients.

Other Factors To Consider

Exercise and keeping your dog active will help improve your dog’s digestion and reduce farting. Pugs only require about 20-30 minutes of light-moderate exercise each day. Just be wary of high temperatures as their flat-faces don’t provide the most optimal breathing, so they are susceptible to overheating. Besides weight management, exercising your pug is excellent for their overall health and a great way to keep them stimulated.

Farting can also be the result of poor gut health. An imbalance in their digestive tract can cause excessive gas, an upset stomach, and diarrhea. Canine probiotic supplements can be given to improve the balance of good bacteria against the bad, which will help reduce their farts and settle their stomach against other issues. Prozyme is another supplement that can reduce excessive farts. It’s a supplement that helps improve the digestion of their food. Hint: for a cheaper alternative, add pumpkin to their food as a natural aid for digestion. With all things similar, seek professional advice from your vet to ensure that these options will work well for your dog.

Puppies require a completely different diet in order to meet their nutritional needs during their “growth” phase. Again, the same notion applies here – stick to high-quality brands that use the best ingredients. For recommendations, please speak to your local vet as they’ll be able to give suggestion on what’s most suitable based on your puppy’s needs. On the other end of the spectrum, senior dogs will inevitably fart more. As they age, their body and organs will find it harder to process certain foods, so it’s imperative that you only feed an older dog with high-quality foods.

Related Questions

How long can pugs hold their pee? A healthy pug should pee every 6 to 8 hours and between 3-5 times a day. Avoid making them hold it in for more than 10 hours to avoid issues like urinary tract infections.

Are pugs hard to toilet train? Pugs are highly intelligent dogs, but they also have a stubborn temperament. Thankfully they’re no more difficult to train than other breeds but will usually need extra motivation in the form of treats.

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