If you want a Chinese dog breed for your Chinoy household, we’ve got a list of 10 that can help you with your search. We’ve also added a few things to know about each breed to make sure that not only is your dog of Chinese heritage but that their personality will mesh well with the rest of your family.
Let’s get started!
The pug — one of the most popular dog breeds. They’re sweet and friendly – perfect for families! Pugs are one of the oldest breeds, believed to have originated in China, sometime around 400 BCE. They were said to have kept Buddhist monks company in Tibet. These dogs can be good watchdogs, but they aren’t really yappy so they’re safe for closed quarters. However, they do shed a lot, so make sure you have a vacuum cleaner if you decide to get this dog.
These dogs were said to be companion pets to Chinese royalty and were often cited in Chinese folklore. It is said these little dogs were lions that Buddha shrunk down to size. They’re good-natured and affectionate, but also opinionated and aggressive. They’re extremely loyal to their families. But they’re also protective, so they may not play well with strangers. They do have a tendency to bark, so training them early on to know when to stop is a good idea.
3. Chinese Crested
Clearly, this breed is Chinese. It’s assumed that toy dogs were bred with African hairless dogs to achieve their hairless appearance. What we do know is that these dogs were brought aboard Chinese trading vessels to hunt vermin. A great tiny dog for people that love to laze around with their dogs. They’re happy and affectionate, but also extremely needy. You’ll also need to properly train them as pups to prevent him from biting strangers later on.
4. Shih Tzu
Tiny dog, big personality! “Shih Tzu” literally comes from “shizi” which means “lion” in Chinese. They were treasured by the Chinese nobility and were crowned the noble dog of China. Their heritage places them more closely related to wolves than other dog breeds. Shih Tzus are friendly companions and love meeting new friends. They can live anywhere and enjoy their lives. These dogs are great for families with children.
5. Japanese Chin
Despite its name, it’s commonly believed that the Japanese Chin originated from China. These dogs became extremely popular among Japanese nobility around 1000 BCE, and when Japan began to trade with other countries, the Japanese Chin was commonly gifted to naval officers or sold to traders and sailors. These dogs are extremely sensitive and will shape their personalities according to the moods and emotions of their owners. They are extremely cat-like and can jump to great heights. They are also extremely loving and loyal.
6. Formosan Mountain Dog
Formosan Mountain Dogs originated from Taiwan and are actually considered wild. These small- to medium-sized dogs are kept as hunting dogs, guard dogs, rescue dogs, and family dogs. These dogs can thrive anywhere as long as they have firm and consistent training. These dogs may not be the best companions for young kids, but older children that know how to approach and deal with dogs properly may enjoy its company. If you have a cat in your household, the Formosan Mountain Dog may have a tendency to chase them as hunting is encoded into their DNA. They are also extremely active and need long walks incorporated in their day. If you’re active or have a lot of outdoor space, these dogs could be a great match for you.
7. Kunming Wolfdog
If these dogs look eerily similar to German Shepherds, that’s because they are relatives! They’re descendants of the German Shepherds that were introduced to China in the 1950s. The Kunming Wolfdogs are often trained as military assistance dogs, as well as fire and search-and-rescue dogs. These dogs are ready to serve. They’re inquisitive and intelligent, as well as protective and loving with their family. They’re more reserved with strangers, but they will get along with everyone as long as they’re exposed to them early on. But do note they’re also extremely active and will need long walks on a daily basis.
8. Xiasi Quan
Xiasi Quan is a lean, muscular hunting dog that originated from Guizhou Providence in China. It is believed that owning a Xiasi can bring wealth to the family. This breed is also typically used for hunting or guarding. In addition, they’re kind, faithful, affectionate, and easy to train. However, they are barkers. Yet, despite their tendency to bark, they’re not extremely territorial so they wouldn’t be the best guard dogs. They like to hunt though, so smaller pets in the household may be at risk.
9. Shar Pei
Wrinkles all over is probably what comes to mind when this breed is mentioned, and you’re not wrong. That, along with petite ears and blue-black tongues, are the distinct features of this unique and rare breed with roots in ancient China. It’s believed that Shar-Peis were bred as hunting and guard dogs back in 20 BCE. During the communist revolution in China in the mid-1900s, however, the Shar-Pei almost went extinct, but numbers rose once again in the ’70s when American breeders were rallied to propagate this wrinkly breed. Although they can get quite large, they’re extremely calm and may be suited to apartment living. It could make a great guard dog and watchdog, which means if you like having people over, you should socialize them early. Furthermore, they’re naturally clean dogs and require little grooming.
10. Chow Chow
Last but not least, the chow chow is one of the most ancient Chinese dogs, dating back to as early as 206 BCE. Originally serving as hunting and guard dogs, these dogs were once kept in imperial Chinese kennels. They’re not that fond of being hugged or fussed over, but will be patient about it from their favorite person. What’s more, their loyalty extends to other family members. Still, they’re usually not the best with small children who may play too roughly and earn their ire. While not the greatest jogging companion material, long leisurely walks are perfect for this breed and their excellent endurance.