The Chinese Shar Pei: A Complete Guide

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The Chinese Shar Pei was developed to guard, hunt, herd, and fight. He is known for his characteristic devotion to his humans.

He is happy enough to live in an apartment or a small home. He’s also an independent thinker. His heritage as a guardian and a fighting dog makes him an excellent watchdog and guard dog.

The Chinese Shar Pei needs an owner who can establish leadership firmly and kindly. He’s a quick study, so training is easy as long as he’s not showing his stubborn streak.

Chinese Shar Pei Puppies – Before You Buy…

A grey Chinese Shar Pei looking away
The Chinese Shar Pei is independent and strong.

What Price are Chinese Shar Pei Puppies?

The price of Chinese Shar Pei puppies is $1,000 to $1,200.

How to Find Reputable Chinese Shar Pei Breeders?

In your search of a puppy, you will need to find a reputable breeder first. It’s important to do your research before you part with your cash.

Visiting each breeder is highly recommended. You need to check the condition of the puppies and whether they are kept in a clean, comfortable, and safe place.

Take a look at the breeder’s home or place of business. Talk with the breeder about the dog that you want to have.

A reputable breeder will have nothing to hide and will gladly talk to you or show you around the premises.

They should also interview you to make sure you can provide a good home for their dogs.

3 Little-Known Facts About Chinese Shar Pei Puppies

  1. The Chinese Shar Pei was once a guard dog and pit fighter. Today he is primarily a companion.
  2. Due to his short nose, the Shar-Pei is prone to overheating. During hot summer days, keep him inside the house with the electric fan or air conditioning on.
  3. The Shar-Pei has a dark tongue. This is considered normal, even desirable, by dog show enthusiasts.

Physical Traits of the Chinese Shar Pei

Two small Chinese Shar Pei playing together
The Chinese Shar Pei is very affectionate and devoted to all family members.

The Chinese Shar Pei is a typical medium-sized dog of square shape. Its body is compact and muscular, covered with a unique short coat.

This prickly coat has a harsh texture similar to sandpaper. It is one of the most distinctive characteristics of this dog.

This is a dog with moderate grooming requirements. Apart from weekly brushing, you will have to occasionally bathe him and dry his wrinkles afterward.

It’s also important that you start with the grooming routines at an early age because this dog can be a bit non-cooperative.

Main Shar Pei colors are pale grey, sable, cream, blue, apricot, brown, black, tan, red fawn, fawn, and red.

The Chinese Shar Pei has a padded muzzle. It has a moderate stop that’s broad and short. The skull is flat and broad. The jaws are very strong, and the teeth meet in a scissors bite.

The nose is large and broad with wide nostrils. The bluish-black tongue is also one of this dog’s unusual characteristics.

The almond-shaped eyes are relatively small and deep-set. They are usually dark brown but can be lighter in dogs with lighter coats. Overall, the Chinese Shar Pei looks strong, bulky, and sturdy.

It is worth noting that Chinese Shar Peis tend to be very messy eaters because of their thick lips and jowls. The same can be said when they drink any water, which they do rather messily.

They like to keep themselves and their environment clean. They like their folds and creases kept nice and clean, which is why they rarely have that doggy smell about them.

How Big is a Full-Grown Chinese Shar Pei?

Male and female Chinese Shar Pei dogs stand 18 to 20 inches tall and weigh 40 to 55 pounds.

What is the Life Expectancy of the Chinese Shar Pei?

The life expectancy of the Chinese Shar Pei is around 9 to 11 years.

Intelligence, Temperament and Personality Traits of the Chinese Shar Pei

A light brown Chinese Shar Pei looking at you
The Chinese Shar Pei is happy to live in an apartment or a small home.

The Chines Shar Pei is an alert and independent dog. He is extremely devoted to his family but aloof with people he doesn’t know.

He enjoys the companionship of people more than dogs, and he likes to be with his owner all the time.

A calm and confident dog, he develops an intuitive understanding of his owner or family.

The Chinese Shar Pei is also independent and strong-willed. He is protective of his family, making him an excellent guard dog.

Because he once was used as a fighting dog, he can be aggressive toward other dogs.

The Chinese Shar Pei is best suited for families with older children, but that is not to say he cannot be owned by families with younger children.

In fact, this dog can be a wonderful playmate for every child, but only if he is raised with that child.

If you don’t have children, it is recommended to socialize your Chinese Shar Pei as soon as possible with children of all ages.

This way you will be sure your dog will become more tolerant and will never hurt any child without serious reason.

A poorly socialized Chinese Shar Pei can be downright aggressive towards strangers. He might attack and even bite unknown guests if they ignore his loud warning.

The Chinese Shar Pei is a powerful and agile dog with strong hunting instincts. This dog is not an ideal companion for cats and other smaller pets and animals.

He will instinctively chase and attack every one of them that comes into his territory. This can end pretty badly. This is why you must raise or socialize him with other pets.

The good thing is once he gets used to other animals and become friendly, he will not only enjoy their company but will also defend them like every other member of the family.

The Chinese Shar Pei’s Diet

The Chinese Shar Pei can be fed a good quality adult food diet and does not need to be on a puppy formulation.

Feeding one cup of food per six pounds of puppy weight, split between three feedings daily works well.

At about six months of age, start feeding your Chinese Shar Pei puppy twice a day and continue twice daily feeding as an adult.

It is convenient to feed him dry food as it is less palatable, and he will not overeat on it. It also gives him something to chew on besides the furniture.

How Much Exercise Does a Chinese Shar Pei Need?

This is a moderately active dog that can do well with a fair amount of daily exercise. Usually, it will be enough just to take your dog for a short walk once or twice a day.

While outdoors, try not to let him off-leash too often, especially if he is not properly socialized. Also, never let him lead the way.

This is a dog that will always strive for a leadership position, which is why it’s necessary to remind him that his attempts to be a leader will not be successful.

Proper exercise is especially important if your Chinese Shar Pei will spend a lot of time indoors. This is a calm and sensitive dog that will do well in an apartment or a house without a yard.

Chinese Shar Pei Health and Conditions

The Chinese Shar Pei can suffer from various health problems.

Among the major concerns are ciliary dyskinesia, allergies, seborrhea, pyoderma, skin fold infections, renal amyloidosis,  hip dysplasia, and entropion.

Other not so common health issues include hypothyroidism, cancer, bloat, demodectic mange, cutaneous mucinosis, retinal dysplasia, glaucoma, osteochondrosis dissecans, patellar luxation, and elbow dysplasia.

However, there is one unique illness that is only seen in this breed. The Shar Pei Fever manifests with swollen hock joints and periodic fever.

My Final Thoughts on the Chinese Shar PeiA Chinese Shar Pei dog lying down

The Chinese Shar Pei is an independent, strong, and dominant dog that cannot be mistaken for every other breed, thanks to its unique wrinkled skin.

This is a very special dog that has many great qualities.

He is noble, determined, protective, brave, calm, loyal, confident, and more than eager to please his humans.

He is a lovely companion as well as a good watchdog and guard dog. He is truly a wonderful family dog.

The Chinese Shar Pei is very affectionate and devoted to all family members and prefers to be around them all the time.

In fact, this dog would rather spend time and have fun with people than with other dogs, which tells a lot about his loyalty and dedication.

However, even though he is usually affectionate to all members of the household, he might be too stubborn for those who spend the least time with him.

You also need to be a pack leader. Otherwise, he will try to play this role himself.

The Chinese Shar Pei has a strong stubborn streak, which means he needs to be handled and trained by someone familiar with this type of dog.

It takes a lot of patience and consistency to train a Chinese Shar Pei. This is why he is not the best choice for novice dog owners.

He might show a more dominant side to his character, making him harder to handle and live with.

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