How Do I Know If My Pug Is Happy? 13 Signs To Look For

When I had my Pug, I constantly wondered “how do I know if my Pug is happy?” I’d be so much easier if a dog could talk and tell us they love the life you are giving her. Your dog will never verbally tell you they are happy, but here are 11 signs that will help you determine whether your dog is happy.

How Do I Know If My Pug Is Happy?

Even though your dog will NEVER come out and say it, there are certain signs to watch for such as their body position, tail wag and position, soliciting attention, overall health, sleeping habits, and some other bodily signs can spot easily. (We’ll cover each one in complete detail below.)

According to the ASPCA, dogs will have relaxed normal-looking eyes when they are relaxed. Unfortunately, Pugs don’t have normal eyes. Their big bulging eyes can make it challenging to know what they are feeling.

how do I know if my Pug is happy

In fact, Mindy my black Pug had eyes that always made her look sad. So, don’t base their happiness on their eyes.

Instead, look for some of these other body signals to help you determine whether your Pug is happy.

Your Pug will NEVER be able to tell you they are happy. However, they will communicate their feelings through their body language. Every dog is unique and NOT every dog will demonstrate the same behaviors and actions.

I’ve listed some of the signs that you may notice you’re Pug trying to tell you they are happy! If you just got a Pug, then it may take some time to notice their behaviors and body language.

#1 Facial Expression

Pug facial expressions
Pay attention to your Pug’s facial expressions.

According to Dog Grooming Board, dogs have over 100 facial expressions. Personally, I tend to believe that Pugs only have a few, happy, sad, and curious. I’m sure they have more, but those were the ones that I got from my Pug.

Pay attention to your Pug, they will show you a happy face expression to let you know they are content and happy with their life.

#2 Panting

Pug panting
As long as they are not panting excessively, it can be a sign of happiness.

Pugs are known for panting. As long as they are NOT hot and aren’t having trouble breathing, you may notice a small soft panting sound when they are around you. Especially, if they are getting attention such as belly rubs or being pet.

If they are breathing heavily and their mouth is open, it could be a sign that your dog is hot or stressed, which is NOT a happy dog.

#3 Relaxed Body Position

Pug relaxed body position
A relaxed Pug will lie down and sleep anywhere because they are comfortable.

If your dog is comfortable and happy, their muscles will be relaxed when they are lying down. According to Healthy Pets, dogs will hold their body in a relaxed posture that won’t look stiff.

Pay attention to your dog’s body if you notice they are tight, stiff or uncomfortable, this means they are not happy.

#4 Tail Wag

Pug tail wag from excitement
A happy pug will wag their tail or their entire body.

Most people don’t think that Pugs can wag their tail. However, a happy Pug will wag their tail, sometimes they will even wag their whole body.

Mindy used to wag her tail, it was so cute.

#5 Curl of The Tail

curl of the tail
A happy Pug will have a nice curled tail not straight.

Pugs naturally have a curly tail. Most dog breeds will raise their tails when they are happy and confident. Pugs, on the other hand, will have a tight curly tail to express their happiness and health.

#6 Enjoys Playtime

Pug playful bow
A happy Pug will have a playful bow waiting to play with you.

Happy Pugs love playing and going for walks with their humans. Of course, as your Pug ages, they won’t be as active as a younger dog.

If your dog doesn’t look forward to playing with you, the kids, or just lounge around. You may want to consult with your veterinarian to ensure they aren’t sick or have an injury.

#7 No Signs Of Destructive Behavior

destructive habits
A happy dog will not have any destructive behaviors like chewing.

Puppies are known for destructive chewing as a sign of stress or boredom. A happy dog is less likely to destroy your home.

If your pooch is showing signs of destructive behavior, it means they are not getting enough physical and mental stimulation. This can lead to boredom, unhappiness, and separation anxiety.

Make sure you have plenty of toys to keep your dog busy, especially, when you are not home to give them the attention they need.

#8 Enjoys Eating

Pug has a healthy appetite
Pugs love to eat and will get so excited at mealtime.

Pugs love to eat! If your Pug has a good appetite and eats without you having to hand feed them, they are most likely happy.

My Pug used to get so excited at mealtime. If you notice your dog’s appetite decreasing, it could be a sign that something is wrong. It could also mean that they don’t like the food that you’re feeding them.

#9 Seeks Attention

Pug seeks attentions
Happy Pugs love attention from their human companions.

Pugs love attention and this is why so many people call them “velcro dogs.” This breed loves attention and will follow you around like a shadow.

Related: Why Does My Pug Stare At Me?

In fact, don’t be surprised when your Pug rolls over wanting you to rub their belly. This is a sign of submission and satisfaction. If you see this, you should know they are happy.

#10 Playful Bow

Pug playful bow
Looks similar to the Downward Dog pose.


Pugs have a playful bow where they stick their rear up. The dog lowers her chest to the ground, while their rear is in the air. (similar to the downward dog pose)

When Mindy did this, it was a sign that she wanted to play and interact with me.

#11 Sleeping Habits

Pug sleeping habits
Happy Pugs love to sleep a lot!

Healthy happy adult Pugs love to sleep, in fact, they sleep a lot. If you have a puppy, they may take some quick naps. As your dog ages, they will spend more time lounging around napping.

Make sure you get them a nice comfortable bed because they’ll definitely be spending a lot of time in it!

#12 Excited To See You

Pug excited to see you
Your Pug will be excited to see you and will jump and lay on you.

A happy Pug will greet you at the door, get excited when you wake up in the morning and watch you as you walk around the house.

Pugs thrive on human companionship and they’ll let you know when they missed you. If they are happy, they will try climbing up on your lap or just lay beside leaning up against you.

#13 Is Healthy

Pug is healthy
A happy Pug is healthy and can run, jump and move without issues.

Like you, when your dog is healthy, they are happy. They can move around freely without any aches and pains and don’t suffer from any sicknesses or diseases. If your Pug does have something that is ailing them, make sure you take them to the vet to find out what’s causing them problems.

Final Word On Is My Pug Happy?

As a pet parent, we all want our Pugs to be happy. Start paying attention to the signs that Fido is showing you.

Pugs are NOT hard to make happy, regardless of what you think. This is a generally content and attentive dog. If you pay close attention, they seem to be happiest when they are getting ready to eat!

Related References and Further Reading

Healthy Pets – 10 Ways To Tell If Your Dog Is Happy

Black Pug Site