Adult Shar Pei dog outside
Young Shar Pei Puppy isolated on white

Shar Pei

The Chinese Shar-pei is an ancient and rather unusual breed of dog with a distinctive appearance.. With its characteristic facial wrinkling and folds of loose skin, it gives the appearance of being a very old dog. This is not surprising since this breed dates back as far as 202 B.C. This unusual dog breed was originally bred in China to be a fighting and protection dog. The Shar-pei first appeared in the United States in the 1960’s and has served as a popular pet since that time. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of owning a Chinese Shar-pei dog:

Advantages of Owning a Shar-Pei

Shar-peis have a distinctive appearance. Once you’ve seen a Chinese Shar-pei, you’ll never forget his unusual appearance. Their body is covered with loose wrinkly skin folds and they have a rather distinctive coat with a prickly feel to it. The loose skin folds are most pronounced in puppies although they retain some of the skin folding as they grow into adulthood. If you want a dog that attracts attention, they Shar-pei is a good choice. People can’t help but stare when they see such an unusual dog walking down the street.

Shar-peis are quiet dogs. The Shar-pei dog breed on the whole is a rather quiet one. They are not known to be excessive barkers even though they are quite protective and will bark at strangers. They don’t rank high on the nuisance barking scale.

Shar-peis are easy to housebreak. Chinese Shar-peis are clean dogs by nature and have the reputation of being very easy to housebreak. They tend to be intelligent and eager to please their owners, which makes housebreaking an easy task.

Shar-peis are intensely loyal and protective. Shar-peis tend to be extremely devoted and affectionate towards their family. This also makes them excellent guard dogs.

Disadvantages of Owning a Shar-pei

Shar-peis may be aggressive. Chinese Shar-peis have a tendency to be aggressive towards strangers if not socialized properly. This breed was initially bred for protection and fighting and some of these traits are still ingrained in the Shar-pei. Usually with good socialization this tendency can be curbed. Shar-peis are also known to be aggressive towards other animals and may not be a good dog for a home with other pets.

Shar-peis have health problems. The Shar-pei is a dog breed known to have a variety of serious health problems. Medical conditions that are common in the chow range from serious eye problems to hip dysplasia, allergies, skin problems, ear problems and more. Health care for a Sha-pei could be very costly.

They may not be good with children. Due to their dominant nature, the Chinese Shar-pei may not be an ideal choice for families with young children.

A Shar-pei can be costly. Shar-peis can be expensive to purchase from a breeder and when you combine this with the potential cost of their medical care, you could be looking at quite an investment in the long term. In addition because the Shar-pei dog is considered to be a potentially aggressive breed, some insurance companies may not insure you or may charge you a premium fate.

Shar-peis can be noisy. Many Shar-peis are quite noisy when they sleep with frequent snorting and snoring which can be disturbing to a person with sensitive ears. Some people grow to find this sound endearing over time. The Chinese Shar-pei is a dog with lots of traits that make him a good pet, although his dominance and tendency towards aggression may need to be tempered with good training and a show of strong leadership on your part. Could the Shar-pei be the pet for you?


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