Chow Chow

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(101 Reviews)

Is the Chow Chow right for you?

Species group:

The basics:
The ancient Chow Chow probably dates back more than 3,000 years and may be one of the first recognizable dog breeds to emerge from the wolf. In old China they were bred for food and pelts, as well as being developed into powerful working dogs that guarded temples and pulled carts, among their other duties. To this day, they seem to have a different personality from other breeds-- aloof, somewhat serious, demanding careful training so that they don't become one-person dogs. If they aren't socialized early, their aggression and territoriality could result in a problem animal. This breed is probably best left for the experienced dog owner who can calmly and patiently establish dominance without offending the Chow's dignity.

Appearance / health:
Chow Chows are small stocky dogs with a lion-like mane or ruff. The skull is broad and flat. The muzzle is short and broad. The ears are small and rounded. The almond-shaped dark brown eyes are deep set and placed wide apart and obliquely. A unique feature of these dogs is that they have blue-black tongues though at birth the color is pink. The broad nose is black with well-opened nostrils. The body is strong and muscular. The tail is fluffy and carried closely to the back.

Regular grooming is necessary to keep the coat in good condition. Brushing with a pin and rake brush is done two or more times a week. The ruff of the Chow Chow must be handled with care.

They require regular exercise in the form of short jogs and walks.

Chow Chows are prone to entropion, a turning-in of the eyelashes. Skin problems and allergic reactions are common. Hip dysplasia, a condition marked by abnormal hips, occurs in a significant number of dogs.

Behavior / temperament:
Chow Chows are quite different from other breeds, displaying a set of behaviors similar to a cat. They are as reserved and intelligent as cats. They may not always enjoy cuddling by children or strangers. They may bark at unfamiliar people and situations. Some Chow Chows may be extremely aggressive or timid though these behaviors are less desirable. They are not destructive or disobedient. Most problems arise due to lack of proper training and socialization.

Chow Chows are generally well behaved giving the impression that they do not need training. However, as they grow up, they may become more difficult to control. Early training and socialization is necessary. Training needs to be consistent, firm, and patient. They are average learners.

They are not very noisy though they like to bark.


protective dog, excellent guard dogs, proud beauty, wonderful pets, cold weather, tremendous strength


hip issues, aggression, dominant dogs, adult strangers, constant grooming, warm climate


independent thinker, dominant character, purple tongues, dangerous dog list, consistent training

From shelters/rescues



Chow Chow

Sulphur Springs, TX


Puffy Girl


Chow Chow

Marina del Rey, CA




Chow Chow

Clinton, MO


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