Native Chinese Dog Breeds | All dogs of China‎‎ | Dog breeds originating in China‎


China is home to a wide variety of dog breeds, each with its unique characteristics and traits. Native Chinese dog breeds have gained popularity in China and worldwide. This article will explore the importance of native Chinese dog breeds and their intriguing history.

A. Importance of native Chinese dog breeds

Native Chinese dog breeds are essential due to their distinct qualities and contributions. Here are a few reasons why they are treasured:

  • Cultural significance: Native Chinese breeds are deeply rooted in Chinese culture and history. They often symbolize loyalty, protection, and good luck, making them highly regarded by locals.
  • Adaptability: Many native Chinese dog breeds have evolved alongside China’s diverse climates and terrains. Their adaptability makes them suitable companions for different regions and lifestyles.
  • Preservation of biodiversity: Supporting native Chinese dog breeds helps preserve biodiversity in the dog population. Individuals contribute to conserving genetic diversity within the canine species by choosing these breeds.

B. Brief history of Chinese dog breeds

Chinese dog breeds boast an ancient lineage tracing back thousands of years. The historical significance of these breeds is compelling:

  • Guardians and companions: Throughout history, Chinese dog breeds have served as loyal guardians for ancient palaces, temples, and homes. They were also cherished companions for emperors, nobles, and ordinary people.
  • Breed diversity: From the regal Chow Chow to the agile Shih Tzu, Chinese dog breeds offer a diverse range of physical appearances, temperaments, and skills.
  • Cultural influence: Some Chinese dog breeds influenced the development of other popular dogs worldwide, such as the Pekingese, which played a role in creating the Japanese Chin and the English Bulldog.

Native Chinese dog breeds continue to leave their paw print on the dog world, capturing the hearts of many enthusiasts and pet lovers worldwide.

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Chinese Dog Breeds: Shih Tzu

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. Origin and history of the Shih Tzu

The Shih Tzu is an ancient breed that originated in China. With a history of over 1,000 years, the Shih Tzu was initially bred as a companion dog for Chinese royalty. This breed was highly regarded and often kept in palaces and temples.

B. Physical characteristics and temperament

Known for their distinctive appearance, the Shih Tzu has a flowing double coat, which requires regular grooming to maintain its luxurious appearance. They have a friendly and outgoing personality, making them excellent family pets. Shih Tzus are known for their playful and affectionate nature and thrive on attention and companionship.

C. Popular use and roles of the Shih Tzu

Today, the Shih Tzu is primarily kept as a companion dog. Their small size and friendly demeanor make them well-suited for apartment living. They are excellent with children and get along well with other pets. The Shih Tzu’s adaptability and affectionate nature have also made them popular therapy dogs, bringing comfort and joy to patients in hospitals and nursing homes.

In conclusion, the Shih Tzu is a beloved breed with a rich history and delightful temperament. Whether as a loyal companion or a therapy dog, the Shih Tzu continues to bring happiness to those who have the pleasure of owning one.

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Chinese Dog Breeds: Chow Chow

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. Origins and ancient Chinese history

The Chow Chow is a native Chinese dog breed with a fascinating history of over 2,000 years. It is believed to be one of the oldest dog breeds in existence. Originally bred for various purposes, including hunting, herding, and guarding, the Chow Chow was highly revered in ancient China. They were even considered sacred and often found in Chinese emperors’ palaces.

B. Physical features and distinct traits of the Chow Chow

One of the most distinctive features of the Chow Chow is its dense coat, which can come in different colors ranging from red, black, blue, or cream. They have a sturdy build, a stocky frame, and a characteristic lion-like mane around their necks.

Their unique blue-black tongue and straight hind legs are other defining traits of the breed. Chow Chows also have a unique gait that gives them a dignified and regal appearance.

C. Temperament and care requirements

Chow Chows are known to be independent and confident dogs. While they can be aloof towards strangers, they are loyal and protective of their families. Early socialization and training are crucial to ensure they develop good behavior.

Their dense double coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and keep it healthy. Daily exercise is also essential to keep them mentally and physically stimulated.

Chow Chows are generally not recommended for first-time dog owners despite their majestic appearance due to their strong-willed nature. They require a firm but gentle hand in training.

Overall, Chow Chows make excellent companions for experienced dog owners who can provide them with the care, attention, and guidance they need to thrive.

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Chinese Dog Breeds: Tibetan Mastiff

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. Background and significance in Tibetan culture

The Tibetan Mastiff is a native Chinese dog breed that originated in Tibet and has a rich history in Tibetan culture. Known as “Do-Khyi” or “home guard,” Tibetan nomads traditionally bred these dogs to protect livestock and guard monasteries. They were highly valued for their strength, loyalty, and protective instincts.

In Tibetan culture, the Tibetan Mastiff holds significant spiritual and cultural importance. They are believed to possess spiritual qualities and were often considered sacred. These dogs were also used in religious ceremonies and believed to ward off evil spirits.

B. Size, appearance, and unique attributes

Tibetan Mastiffs are large and powerful dogs known for their impressive size and majestic presence. They have a thick double coat, which helps them withstand harsh weather conditions in their native mountainous region.

One of the unique attributes of the Tibetan Mastiff is its strong protective instinct. They are highly territorial and instinctively guard their family and property. This makes them excellent watchdogs.

In terms of size, these dogs can reach heights of up to 30 inches (76 cm) at the shoulder and weigh between 70 to 150 pounds (32 to 68 kg). Their distinctive appearance, with a lion-like mane around the neck, adds to their majestic aura.

Overall, the Tibetan Mastiff continues to be cherished as a loyal companion, guardian, and symbol of strength and protection in both Tibetan culture and worldwide.

Chinese Dog Breeds: Crested Dog

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. Origins and cultural significance

The Chinese Crested is a small breed of dog that originated in China. Despite its name, it is not truly a “crested” breed, as it does not have a crest of hair on its head. The breed has a long history and is believed to have been bred as a companion dog for Chinese sailors. In ancient times, these dogs were considered sacred and said to bring their owners good luck.

B. Appearance variations and grooming requirements

The Chinese Crested comes in two distinct varieties: the hairless and the powder puff. The hairless variety has smooth skin with tufts of hair on the head, feet, and tail, while the powder puff has a full coat of soft fur. Both varieties require regular grooming to keep their skin and coat healthy.

The hairless Chinese Crested is prone to sunburn and requires sunscreen when spending time outdoors. They also need regular moisturizing to prevent dryness and skin irritation.

On the other hand, the powder puff variety has a dense, double coat that requires daily brushing to prevent matting and tangles. Regular bathing and trimming of the fur are also necessary to maintain its appearance.

The Chinese Crested is a unique and charming breed that makes an excellent companion for those looking for a small, affectionate, and low-shedding dog.

Chinese Dog Breeds: Pekingese Dog

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. History and association with Chinese royalty

The Pekingese is an ancient toy breed that originated in China and has a rich history of over 2,000 years. These small dogs were regarded as sacred companions and were owned exclusively by Chinese royalty. They were highly esteemed and often treated as good luck and prosperity symbols. It is said that they were even carried in the sleeves of emperors and empresses!

B. Physical appearance and specific traits

The Pekingese is known for its distinctive appearance: its flat face, large eyes, and a luxuriously dense double coat. They have a sturdy build and a lion-like appearance with their flowing mane-like neck ruff.

These dogs are well-known for their independent and self-assured nature. Despite their small size, they are fearless and make excellent watchdogs. The Pekingese is also known to be affectionate, loyal, and devoted to their family.

Due to their unique appearance and delightful personality, the Pekingese has gained popularity worldwide as a beloved companion dog. They require regular grooming to maintain their beautiful coat, but their loving nature and regal charm make them.

Chinese Dog Breeds: Shar-Pei Dog

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

The Shar-Pei is a native Chinese breed known for its distinctive wrinkled appearance.

A. Ancient origins and historical role in China

The Shar-Pei has a rich history that dates back thousands of years in China. They were originally bred for various purposes, including hunting, herding, and guarding livestock. Their keen intelligence and loyalty made them invaluable companions to Chinese farmers and fishermen.

B. Wrinkled appearance and key features

One of the most recognizable features of the Shar-Pei is its wrinkles. These wrinkles result from excess skin that creates a unique and endearing appearance. The breed’s loose and wrinkled skin served a practical purpose in ancient China as it helped protect them during fights with other animals.

In addition to their wrinkled skin, Shar-Peis have a distinctive blue-black tongue and a short, bristly coat that requires minimal grooming. They have a stocky build with a broad head and small, sunken eyes that give them an alert expression.

With their loyal and protective nature, Shar-Peis makes excellent family pets. They are known for their calm demeanor and love for their owners. However, early socialization and consistent training are essential to ensure they grow into well-behaved dogs.

Overall, the Shar-Pei is not only an iconic native Chinese breed but also a cherished companion known for its unique appearance and loving nature.

Chinese Dog Breeds: Kunming Wolfdog

Native Chinese Dog Breeds
Native Chinese Dog Breeds

A. Background and development of the breed

The Kunming Wolfdog, also known as the Chinese Wild Dog, is a native Chinese dog breed developed in the 1950s by the People’s Liberation Army. The breed was created by crossing German Shepherds with wild wolves to produce a highly trainable and loyal working dog. The goal was to develop a breed to assist in military and law enforcement tasks, such as search and rescue, tracking, and guarding.

B. Physical characteristics and working capabilities

Kunming Wolfdogs are known for their strong physique and powerful presence. They have a wolf-like appearance, muscular body, erect ears, and thick coat. Their intelligence and trainability make them well-suited for various working roles. They are often used as police, search and rescue, and service dogs for individuals with disabilities.

These dogs have a strong sense of loyalty and protectiveness towards their owners and territories. They are highly trainable and obedient, making them ideal companions for those who require a reliable and versatile working dog. Despite their wild heritage, Kunming Wolfdogs can be gentle and affectionate towards their family members.

In conclusion, the Kunming Wolfdog is a unique native Chinese dog breed that has been purposefully developed for its working capabilities. With their physical strength, intelligence, and loyalty, these dogs excel in various working roles and make wonderful companions for those who appreciate their distinct qualities.



Native Chinese dog breeds are not unique and beautiful but also hold significant cultural and historical value. They have been loyal companions and working dogs for centuries, playing an integral role in Chinese society. These breeds are a testament to Chinese culture’s deep connection between humans and animals.

A. Summary of native Chinese dog breeds

China has several native dog breeds, including the Shih Tzu, Chow Chow, Pekingese, Shar-Pei, and Tibetan Mastiff. Each species has its distinct characteristics, appearance, and temperament. From the small and affectionate Shih Tzu to the regal and independent Chow Chow, these breeds offer dog lovers a wide range of options.

B. Appreciation of their heritage and cultural significance

Native Chinese dog breeds have a long history intertwined with Chinese culture and traditions. They were often kept as royal companions or guard dogs, highly valued for their loyalty and protective nature. These breeds also hold symbolism in Chinese folklore and art, representing courage, strength, and good luck.

These native Chinese dog breeds are cherished worldwide for their unique qualities and cultural significance. Whether as a family pet or a show dog, they are admired for their beauty, intelligence, and devotion. Owning a native Chinese dog breed is a choice based on their physical attributes and a way to honor their rich heritage.

Chinese Dog Breeds

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