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  • Writer's picturePug Welfare

Oscar Story

Let me start off by saying that I never intended to get a pug, but as is sometimes the case in life things often happen for a reason.

I had had dogs as a child and a Dalmation some years ago but vowed never to get another dog, preferring cats, easier to care for and not needing walks. However, while visiting a patient one day, the family had a pug in a cage. He had been bought as a present for there new baby to play with!. I don't think he was particularly mis-treated but certainly neglected. He was small for his age and had already had three owners. He had had his nails painted red, white and blue for the football and sat been sat on a pub bar before owner number three bought him but he was wriggly and the new mum was afraid he would scratch the baby. So I was to be his fourth.

We called him Oscar and as is the case with ALL pugs we loved him straight away.

As a new pug mum I learnt very quickly that they have little teeth like razors and love to bite toes. It really hurts and would often draw blood and I would be in tears. I remember someone telling me in Pets at Home to get a carrot from the fridge and try that for teething........ it worked, but he is nearly four now and still bites my toes when I come downstairs, bigger teeth equals more pain !!!

I noticed when Oscar came to live with us that he had a very red eye. I took him to two vets for a consultation. The first vet frightened me by going onto Google Images ,and showing me photos of ulcerated and inflamed eyes that could result in loss of his eye. I was heartbroken.

The second vet suggested acting fast, using drops but ultimately Oscar needed to have surgery for Cherry Eye. This is common in Pugs, Shitzu s and King Charles Spaniels. It happens when a dog's third eyelid slips out of place and bulges out. The inside corner of the eye will have a rather large pink or red bump that then covers the normal sclera (the white part of the eye). It is thought that this develops due to a weakening of connective tissues. It very rarely happens to both eyes at the same time, however once it happens to one eye, it is common for it to happen to a Pug's other eye within a few months. We were lucky, it was only ever one eye. At this point I would say that it is really important to take out Pet Insurance when you have a pug but make sure that you do your homework and read the small print. As I was to find out with my second pug, pre-existing conditions are NOT always covered and if you have a pug that is prone to eye problems it can be a very expensive business. My second piece of advice is to find a vet who is familiar with the breed and who you feel confident with. I was more than confident that the vet who was going to operate on Oscar knew what he was doing, and although I cried when I took him to the vets I knew that the vet had carried out the procedure many times before and trusted him. I was not only worried about the actual procedure but the anaesthetic as pugs are often difficult to intubate with such a small airway. Ask your vet questions and also the estimated cost of the operation AND extras such as eye drops and antibiotics. It cost £575. Oscar has never needed another operation and is the most laid back chilled pug you could meet but NEVER EVER take chances with pugs and there eyes.

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