Chow Chow | Dog Breed Information & Facts – Pictures

Chow Chow
Chow Chow

Chow chow are not usually sociable and outgoing dogs. They tend to be distant with strangers and can be aggressive with other dogs, although they give themselves up and protect their family.

It’s hard to believe that in the distant past the Chow Chow dogs were excellent guards. Also striking is the fact that the breed has remained unchanged for over two thousand years. The only thing that has changed is that modern Chow Chows have been retrained from guards into companion dogs.


Chow Chow photos

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Physical characteristics

The Chow Chow is a short, compact dog with a square profile. The tail curls over the back. The inner surface of the mouth and tongue is blue or black. The breed has two coat types (rough and smooth) and many colors.

The height of adult males is 48-56 cm, weight is 25-32 kg. The height of adult females is 46-51 cm, weight is 20-27 kg.


Distinctive features

  • Head: The head is large and broad. The skull is large, spacious and flat. The muzzle is of medium length, rectangular in shape with the same width throughout. The transition line from the forehead to the muzzle is weak.
  • Jaws: The jaws are strong and powerful. The teeth are straight and strong. Bite “scissors”.
  • Ears: The ears are medium in size with rounded, thick tips. The ear tissue slopes slightly forward and is virtually invisible in dense, fluffy wool.
  • Eyes: The eyes are small, oval, low, located closer to the nose. The color of the iris is different – from blue to dark brown.
  • Body: The body is well developed, powerful, muscular. The neck is short, strong, voluminous, slightly curved. The back is flat, spacious with a strong loin. The chest is fully developed, broad and deep with non-barrel shaped ribs.
  • Limbs: The legs are straight, compact in length, powerful. The paws are not very large, rounded, resembling a cat with dense pads and strong, curved toes.
  • Coat: The long-haired outer coat type is straight, characterized by increased density and roughness, and is noticeably separated from the body. The undercoat is soft. The short hair type is also straight and plentiful, not tight, much softer in texture, reminiscent of plush. The color is solid blue, black, red, white (or cream), red and cinnamon with different shades on different parts of the body.

Character and behavior

Due to the specific shape of the ears, the Chow Chow looks gloomy and fearsome, in fact, the animal is completely non-aggressive, but also not too timid.

The leader of the “pack” is chosen independently, and not necessarily the person who brought the puppy home. It is almost impossible to convince an animal that the owner is another member of the family.

He treats strangers with suspicion. Chow Chow cannot be suspected of cowardice, however, he shows aggression only in case of real danger to the owner.

With the children

He gets along very well with children, but it is necessary to explain to the child that a pet is not a stuffed toy, you cannot offend him. The animal will not tolerate excessive contractions and pain from the baby, so it can “fight back”.

With other animals

He treats animals neutrally, but is capable of chasing a neighbor’s cat or other small animals depending on the mood.

He treats other dogs differently. Immediately at the first meeting, he determines himself – a friend or an enemy, or just an “acquaintance”.


The health of such pets must be closely monitored, since they often suffer from hereditary diseases. The breed is prone to the following diseases:

  • Joint dysplasia – the joint is not formed correctly, as a result, it functions poorly. In an advanced stage, the dog may become immobilized.
  • Oral cancers – Treatment does not always bring complete recovery, but in many cases, it prolongs life.
  • Bloating – happens due to improper diet, can be fatal in a few hours.
  • Glaucoma is a genetic disorder that, even at an early stage, can lead to sudden blindness.
  • Diabetes mellitus is one of the most serious endocrine diseases seen in dogs.
  • Rupture of the anterior cruciate ligament of the knee – requires surgery.
  • Ectropion – eversion of the eyelid is removed surgically.
  • Hypothyroidism is a metabolic disease in which there is a lack of thyroid hormones.
  • Entropion is a volvulus of the eyelid that causes excessive tearing, severe pain. If left untreated, it leads to serious vision problems. You can eliminate it with surgery.

Life expectancy

With proper care and maintenance, Chow Chow can live 9 to 15 years, which is considered longevity, given the size of the dog.


The Chow Chow dog breed has a long, thick coat that should be brushed at least twice a week. In some cases, a haircut is also necessary. Bathe the animal about once or twice a month, trim the claws three times a month.

Always pay attention to the cleanliness of the ears and eyes – the eyes are cleared of mucus after sleep every day, if necessary, and the ears are usually cleaned two to three times a week. Also keep an eye on your pet’s diet, controlling excessive weight gain.


In the hot season, it is important to ensure that the animal is cool, because due to thick and dense long hair, it does not tolerate heat well.


The Chow Chow does not require a lot of exercise, just one hour a day, but they like to be outdoors, and they live happily enjoying being in the garden. If Chow Chow puppies exercise too much, they may suffer bone and joint problems, so you have to control the exercise they do.

History of the breed

In the history of the oldest Chow Chow dogs, you can find many interesting, unusual and even scary facts. The formation of the breed began in the steppes of Mongolia and Northern China. These dogs came from the polar wolf, at the moment the specified species of animals is extinct.

The breed has experienced many ups and downs in its popularity throughout its history. Dogs were used in sledding, in reindeer herding, as guards, hunters, pets and even meat delicacies. It sounds awful, but it’s true. The Chinese are sure that dog meat has medicinal properties; they shamelessly eat these cute animals.

During the rise in popularity at the court of the Chinese emperor, more than five thousand Chow Chow dogs were simultaneously contained. At the same time, there was a ruthless selection of puppies. Those who did not meet the requirements were killed and used as food for the owners.

The first breeders were Buddhist monks. It was in Buddhist monasteries that purebred dogs were bred. In order to preserve the purity of the blood, the exchange of producers was done between different monasteries. The monks even kept records in special journals about their breeding work. These records can be called the primordial pedigrees of purebred dogs.

When the Chinese watchdogs arrived in Europe, English dog handlers began work on the perfect exterior of the blue-tongued animals. Their labors were not in vain. Modern Chow Chow dogs have an unusual appearance, they are imposing, they cannot be confused with any other species. These dogs have gained popularity as a pet, companion and loyal friend.


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