Is a Chow Chow the right dog for You?Don't panic--its a Chow Chow! A dog with a blue-black tongue would normally cause any owner to freak out. But, when its a Chow's tongue, it's perfectly normal. This, and its distinctive stilted movement, makes these beautiful dogs totally unique in the canine world.
The Chow Chow originally comes from China, where it was bred as a guard and hunting dog. Chinese merchants arrived in England with these dogs towards the end of the 18th century, and their exotic good looks quickly found a host of fanciers.
Their popularity soon spread to the United States, and the American Kennel Club classified the Chow as a member of the Non-Sporting group. The Chow Chow weighs between 45 to 70 pound and stands 17 to 20 inches high. Some people have commented that its down turned lips can give this breed an almost angry appearance.
Combine this with its lion like mane, and it would be easy to jump to the conclusion that this dog is somewhat unfriendly. But the truth is, that they are often devoted to their families, and usually adore children, but they can have a bit of an attitude problem towards strangers, or other pets.
The Chow Chow has a profuse, thick double coat. Red, is the most common coat color, but blue, cream and cinnamon are also popular. They need regular grooming to keep that fluffed up look that is so characteristic of this breed. Your going to need strong wrists, as the Chows dense undercoat is quite difficult to brush out.
Chows are not a particularly active breed. Apartment life suits this breed. They can be rather lazy, so you need to be prepared to take him for a brisk, daily walk, even if you have a fenced yard that he can explore. If you are taking him to the park, be wary of letting him run off of the lead, since Chows are a dominant breed, they can be aggressive towards other dogs.
They are probably not a good choice for the 1st time dog owner. If you decide that this breed is for you then you should concentrate on training your puppy right from day one.
Puppy obedience classes can be a very good method to socialize your puppy. Meeting new dogs and people will definetly help your Chow become a well-balanced adult. And give you the opportunity to meet newbie owneres and their puppys.
This breed is inclined to be aloof towards people outside of their immediate family. Independent and often willful, they also have a tendency to dominate people if they are allowed to. Inexperienced dog owners can find themselves being bullied, so it essential that you are firm, but fair with your Chow. Consistency is paramount with this breed.
Since they are not a high activity breed, they do not need lots of food. Just feed your Chow a nutritious puppy food, and move on to a good adult dog food as he grows older.
This breed can suffer from hip dysplasia and often have problems with their knee joints. Summer heat can be a problem, as their dense coats do not protect them from heat sensitivity.
Yes, Chows are a unique breed. They can be very loyal and loving family pets. So, if you think that you can handle a dog that needs to be thoroughly socialised, and well trained, then the beautiful Chow Chow might just be the right breed for you.