Are you considering getting a Chow Chow as a pet? If so, you’re in for a treat! The Chow Chow is a unique breed with a fascinating history and distinct appearance. Known for their lion-like mane and independent nature, these dogs are a popular choice for those seeking a loyal and protective companion. However, before committing to this breed, it’s important to understand their temperament, exercise needs, and potential health issues. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about the Chow Chow breed, so you can make an informed decision about whether this dog is the right fit for you and your family.
Breed Category: Non-Sporting
Country of Origin: China
Average Size:46-56 cm (at the shoulder)
Average Weight:20-32 kg
Average Life Span: 9-15 years
Grooming Requirements: High
History and Origin
The Chow Chow is a breed of dog that has a rich history and a unique appearance. This breed is believed to have originated in China over 2,000 years ago, making it one of the oldest dog breeds in the world. The Chow Chow was originally bred for hunting, herding, and guarding, and was also used for food and fur.
The exact origin of the Chow Chow is not known, but it is believed to have descended from the Tibetan Mastiff. The breed was developed in northern China, where it was used for a variety of purposes. The Chow Chow was highly valued for its strength, loyalty, and protective instincts, and was often used as a guard dog for temples and palaces.
The Chow Chow was first introduced to the Western world in the late 18th century, when British traders brought the breed back to England. The breed quickly gained popularity among the wealthy, and was soon being bred for its unique appearance rather than its working abilities. The Chow Chow was recognized by the Kennel Club in 1895, and was later recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1903.
The Chow Chow is known for its distinctive appearance, which includes a thick, fluffy coat, a blue-black tongue, and a lion-like mane. The breed comes in a variety of colors, including red, black, blue, cinnamon, and cream. The Chow Chow is a medium-sized dog, weighing between 45 and 70 pounds, and standing between 17 and 20 inches tall at the shoulder.
The Chow Chow is a unique breed with a strong personality. The breed is known for its independence and aloofness, and can be stubborn and difficult to train. However, with proper socialization and training, the Chow Chow can make a loyal and loving companion. The breed is also known for its health issues, including hip dysplasia, eye problems, and skin allergies.
In conclusion, the Chow Chow is a fascinating breed with a rich history and a unique appearance. This breed has been valued for its strength, loyalty, and protective instincts for over 2,000 years, and has played an important role in Chinese culture. While the Chow Chow can be a challenging breed to train and care for, it can also be a loyal and loving companion for those who are willing to put in the time and effort.
Size and Breed Category
The Chow Chow is a medium to large-sized breed of dog that originated in China. They are known for their distinctive appearance, with a thick, fluffy coat that comes in a variety of colours including red, black, blue, cinnamon, and cream. The breed typically weighs between 20-32 kg and stands at a height of 46-56 cm at the shoulder. They have a broad, flat head with small, triangular ears and a short, broad muzzle. The Chow Chow has a sturdy, muscular build and a unique gait that is described as “stilted” or “pacing”.
The Chow Chow is classified as a “non-sporting” breed by the Kennel Club in the UK. They are known for their independent and aloof nature, and can be reserved with strangers. However, they are also loyal and affectionate with their owners. The breed requires regular grooming to maintain their thick coat, and they are prone to certain health issues such as hip dysplasia and eye problems. Chow Chows are not recommended for first-time dog owners, as they require a firm and consistent hand in training. With proper socialisation and training, however, they can make excellent companions for the right owner.
Fur Length and Colour
The fur of the Chow Chow is one of its most distinctive features. It is thick and dense, with a soft undercoat and a coarse outer coat. The fur is longer around the neck and shoulders, forming a mane-like ruff, and shorter on the legs and tail. The fur can come in a variety of colours, including black, blue, red, cream, and cinnamon. Some Chow Chows have a solid colour, while others have a combination of colours, such as black and tan or blue and cream. The fur is also known for its slight curl, giving it a unique texture and appearance.
The length and colour of the fur can vary depending on the season and the individual dog. During the winter months, the fur may be thicker and longer, providing extra insulation against the cold. In the summer, the fur may be shorter and lighter, allowing for better heat dissipation. The colour of the fur can also change over time, with some Chow Chows developing a lighter or darker shade as they age. Overall, the fur of the Chow Chow is a defining characteristic of the breed, adding to its regal and majestic appearance.
Termperament and Trainability
Chow Chows are known for their independent and aloof temperament. They are not typically a breed that seeks constant attention or affection from their owners. However, they are fiercely loyal to their family and can be protective of them. Chow Chows can be wary of strangers and may require proper socialization to prevent any aggressive behavior. They are also known for their stubbornness, which can make training a challenge. It is important to establish yourself as the pack leader and use positive reinforcement techniques to train a Chow Chow. With patience and consistency, they can learn obedience commands and even excel in activities such as agility and obedience competitions.
Chow Chows have a moderate level of trainability. They are intelligent dogs but can be independent thinkers, which can make them difficult to train at times. They respond best to positive reinforcement techniques such as treats and praise. Harsh training methods or physical punishment can cause a Chow Chow to become defensive or aggressive. It is important to start training a Chow Chow at a young age and to be consistent with your commands and expectations. They can be trained to perform a variety of tasks, including basic obedience, agility, and even therapy work. Chow Chows require mental stimulation and exercise to prevent boredom and destructive behavior. A well-trained and socialized Chow Chow can make a loyal and loving companion.
Known Health Conditions
Chow Chows are a breed of dog that are known to be prone to certain health conditions. One of the most common health issues that Chow Chows face is hip dysplasia. This is a condition where the hip joint does not develop properly, leading to pain and discomfort for the dog. It can also cause arthritis and mobility issues. Chow Chows are also at risk of developing elbow dysplasia, which is a similar condition affecting the elbow joint. This can cause lameness and pain in the affected limb. Other joint issues that Chow Chows may experience include patellar luxation, where the kneecap dislocates, and osteochondritis dissecans, which is a condition where the cartilage in the joint does not develop properly.
Another health condition that Chow Chows are prone to is entropion. This is a condition where the eyelid rolls inward, causing the eyelashes to rub against the eye. This can lead to irritation, infection, and even vision loss if left untreated. Chow Chows are also at risk of developing skin allergies, which can cause itching, redness, and hair loss. They may also be prone to ear infections, particularly if their ears are not kept clean and dry. Finally, Chow Chows may be at risk of developing bloat, which is a life-threatening condition where the stomach fills with gas and twists on itself. This can cause a range of symptoms, including vomiting, restlessness, and difficulty breathing.
Openness to Strangers
Chow Chows have a reputation for being reserved and aloof towards strangers. This is partly due to their history as guard dogs in China, where they were bred to protect their owners and property. As a result, they can be wary of unfamiliar people and may take some time to warm up to them. However, with proper socialization and training, Chow Chows can learn to be more accepting of strangers and can even become friendly and affectionate towards them. It is important for owners to expose their Chow Chows to a variety of people and situations from a young age to help them develop a more open and accepting attitude towards strangers.
Despite their initial wariness towards strangers, Chow Chows can be fiercely loyal and protective of their owners. They are known for their independent nature and can be quite stubborn at times, but they are also very devoted to their families. Chow Chows are not typically aggressive towards strangers, but they may bark or growl to alert their owners of potential threats. With their thick, fluffy coats and distinctive blue-black tongues, Chow Chows are a unique and striking breed that can make wonderful companions for those who are willing to put in the time and effort to properly socialize and train them.
The Chow Chow is a breed that is known for its unique appearance and independent nature. When it comes to playfulness, this breed can be quite reserved and aloof. They are not typically known for their high energy levels or desire to play fetch or other games. However, this does not mean that they are not capable of having fun.
Chow Chows tend to have a more subtle sense of humor and enjoy playing in their own way. They may enjoy a good game of hide and seek or a leisurely walk in the park. They are also known to be quite content with simply lounging around the house and observing their surroundings. Overall, the playfulness level of the Chow Chow is unique and may not be suitable for those looking for a highly active and energetic companion.
Suitability as a Pet for Children
Chow Chows have a reputation for being independent and aloof, which may not make them the best choice for families with young children. However, with proper socialization and training, they can make loyal and affectionate companions. They are known for their thick, fluffy coats, which require regular grooming to prevent matting and tangling. Chow Chows are also prone to certain health issues, such as hip dysplasia and eye problems, which should be taken into consideration before bringing one into a family with children.
Chow Chows require a moderate amount of exercise to maintain their physical and mental health. As a medium-sized breed, they need daily walks of at least 30 minutes to an hour. They also enjoy playing games such as fetch or tug-of-war, which can provide additional exercise and mental stimulation. Chow Chows are known for their independent nature, so it’s important to keep them on a leash or in a secure area during exercise to prevent them from wandering off. Additionally, they are sensitive to heat and should not be exercised during the hottest parts of the day.
In addition to physical exercise, Chow Chows also benefit from mental stimulation. They are intelligent dogs that enjoy learning new things and solving puzzles. Training sessions can be a great way to provide mental exercise and strengthen the bond between the dog and owner. Chow Chows also enjoy spending time with their owners, so activities such as hiking or going to the beach can be a fun way to provide both physical and mental exercise. It’s important to note that Chow Chows can be prone to joint problems, so it’s important to avoid high-impact activities such as jumping or running on hard surfaces.
Suitability for a Multi-Pet Family
Chow Chows have a reputation for being independent and aloof. They can be territorial and may not get along with other pets, especially if they are not socialized properly. However, with proper training and socialization, Chow Chows can coexist peacefully with other pets in the household. It is important to introduce them slowly and supervise their interactions to ensure everyone’s safety.
Chow Chows require a spacious living area that allows them to move around freely. They are a breed that enjoys their own space and can become territorial if they feel cramped. A minimum of 30 square meters of living space is recommended for this breed. It is important to note that Chow Chows are not suited to living in apartments or small homes as they require ample space to exercise and play. Additionally, they need access to a secure outdoor area where they can run and play. A well-fenced garden is ideal for this breed to prevent them from wandering off and getting into trouble.
Chow Chows require a comfortable and warm sleeping area that is away from any drafts. They are a breed that enjoys their own space and will appreciate a cozy bed to curl up in. A bed that is raised off the ground is ideal for this breed as it allows them to keep an eye on their surroundings. Additionally, they require a clean and dry area to sleep in, so regular cleaning of their sleeping area is essential. It is also important to provide them with access to fresh water at all times, and their food should be placed in a clean and easily accessible area. Chow Chows are a breed that enjoys routine, so it is important to establish a consistent feeding and sleeping schedule for them.
Chow Chows have a reputation for being independent and aloof, which may not make them the best choice for first-time dog owners or those seeking a highly affectionate pet. However, they are known for their loyalty and devotion to their families, making them a good fit for experienced dog owners who are willing to put in the time and effort to build a strong bond with their pet. They also have a relatively low exercise requirement, which may make them a good choice for those with limited mobility or living in smaller homes.
Chow Chow Dog FAQS
Chow Chows can be stubborn and independent, making them more difficult to train than some other breeds. Consistent and patient training is necessary.
Chow Chows can be good with children if socialized properly, but they have a strong protective instinct and may not tolerate rough play.
Yes, Chow Chows are prone to hip dysplasia, eye problems, and skin allergies.
Chow Chows can adapt to apartment living as long as they get enough exercise and mental stimulation.
Chow Chows are not excessive barkers, but they may bark to alert their owners of strangers or other animals.
Yes, Chow Chows have a thick double coat and shed heavily twice a year.
Chow Chows need moderate exercise, around 30-60 minutes per day.
Chow Chows should be groomed at least once a week to prevent matting and keep their coat healthy.
The average lifespan of a Chow Chow is 9-15 years.
The average weight of a Chow Chow is between 20-32 kg.