The pugs' first human interactions were as pets of Buddhist monks in Tibet. British raids in 1860 of the Chinese Imperial Palace in Peking took a large number of breeding stock as part of the booty.Today, pugs are loved worldwide -- and some by famous people. Paula Abdul, Woody Harrelson, Ted Danson, Andy Warhol, Jenna Elfman, Lou Ferrigno, Sammy Davis Jr., Paris Hilton, Debra Messing, Denise Richards, Tommy Hilfiger, Hugh Laurie and Billy Joel are some of the celebrities who have shared their lives with pugs.
This actor is well-known for sharing his Hollywood Hills home with Max -- a Vietnamese pot-bellied pig -- for nearly two decades. Yet George Clooney is also a canine lover. His two bulldogs Lou and Bud died in 2005 and 2006, respectively. In December 2010, a photo of Clooney holding a pug puppy made its round on the internet causing the hearts of pug-loving Clooney fans to skip a beat. Trouble is, nearly every posting of the photo is captioned with the same question: What is the pug's name?
Here's another heart throb with a soft spot for pugs. According to a report on Cele|bitchy, Butler doesn't mind sharing his bed and breakfast with his pug, Lolita. While staying at a West Hollywood hotel in October 2011 to promote the movie, "Machine Gun Preacher," Butler told room service staff to put breakfast on the bed where he and Lolita were snuggled up. Lolita, a light fawn-colored pug with a dark face, quickly gobbled up one plate of scrambled eggs, according to the report.
She's the daughter of Aaron Spelling, a Hollywood producer who made his fame producing daytime dramas. Tori built on her family's legacy with the help of her now deceased pug Mimi LaRue who played a leading role in Spelling's two reality television shows, "So noTORIous” and “Tori & Dean: Inn Love" in the mid 1980s. Mimi LaRue died in June 2008 due to complications from long-term hip and neck medical problems. Spelling's pug was one of the original canine fashionistas often sporting an outfit matching her human companion.
Alba made her acting debut in at age 13 in "Camp Nowhere" but earned her spot as an acting mainstay via television's "Dark Angel" series from 2000 to 2002. With more than 40 titles to her credit as of 2013 and two children with husband Cash Warren, Alba is more focused on her home life. This includes two dogs -- one a pug named Sid. A Modern Dog article details Alba's search for a Los Angeles home with a large yard. She partnered with Kari Whitman, a designer who renovates homes to create a more canine-friendly environment. For Alba's home, that included removing Spanish tile with a synthetic material made from recycled tires.
Historical Pug Owners
In 1572, a pug named Pompey owned by Prince William of Orange of The Netherlands thwarted a Spanish attempt to kill the prince as he was on his way to England to be crowned king of that nation as well. In 1790, Napoleon Bonaparte's wife Josephine put secret messages under the collar of her pug Fortune. The canine was the only visitor Josephine was allowed during her imprisonment.
Winston Churchill, the United Kingdom's Prime Minister during World War II, is rumored to have signed letters to his wife, Clementine Hozier, with a hand-drawn picture of the family's pug next to his signature. Queen Victoria of England was the human companion of six pugs named Bully, Olga, Pedro, Minka, Fatima and Venus, according to a Daily Mail article.
- Celebrity Dog Watcher: Celebrities Owned By Pugs
- Daily Mail Online: Beloved By Royalty And One Of Our Most Fashionable Pets
- Pug Village: Famous Pugs
- datSplat: Famous Pugs And Famous People And Celebrities Who Own Pugs
- The Fun Times Guide: Dogs: Since George Clooney Is The Sexiest Man Alive
- Cele|bitchy: Gerard Butler Treats His Pug Lolita Better Than Any Girlfriend
- People: New YorkMan Accuses Gerard Butler Of Hitting His Dog
- Dog Channel: Tori Spelling's Pug Dies At 11
- Modern Dog Magazine: At Home With Jessica Alba
- Guys And Dogs: George Clooney
Amy M. Armstrong is a former community news journalist with more than 15 years of experience writing features and covering school districts. She has received more than 40 awards for excellence in journalism and photography. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Washington State University. Armstrong grew up on a dairy farm in western Washington and wrote agricultural news while in college.