by VALERIA ROSSI – GENERAL APPEARANCE – Well: wrinkled! Not always and not as much as the two most viewed and popular images on the web would suggest (which we put right at the beginning, so we don’t think about it anymore): but wrinkled, yes. Rather wrinkled, even though certain excesses have been achieved only by American dogs, while the Chinese (the breed is Chinese) are decidedly less extreme.
In any case, there is no doubt that the Shar Pei is known almost exclusively for wrinkles (which should only be present in puppies, as we will see later): which sometimes makes one forget that that under wrinkles is a dog. And what a dog! But let’s go in order. According to the official standard, this dog is «medium-sized, active, compact, with a short loin that can be written square.» The wrinkles on the skull, the folds at the withers, the small ears and the hippopotamus-like snout give it a unique appearance. Males are bigger and more powerful than females.» Because of this unmistakable uniqueness, the Shar Pei has always been the dog of choice: he got almost everyone. The strangest dog in the world, the rarest dog in the world, the most expensive dog in the world. It’s not that it has to have great concerns about the last two records, given that the breed has been very close to extinction: like other Chinese breeds, it has actually been used for food purposes, certainly not because the Chinese have always particularly enjoyed eating dogs, but because that between the 1300s and 1600s (the Ming Dynasty) and then again under Mao Tze Tung (the late 1940s), China went through periods of war and famine that were so devastating that you had to eat whatever you could find edible. The same fate of Chinese dogs befell countless cats – and probably some dogs too – Europeans (including Italians) during the war, so we should not be too shocked: hunger is hunger. The fact is that Ma’s regime os above all, who considered dogs an absolutely unnecessary luxury and had the brilliant idea of taxing his property, was a complete ruin for all Chinese breeds: very few Shar Pei specimens were alive (mainly used in battle) ) and it was only the discovery of the breed by Americans, towards the end of the 1960s, which started a recovery. In fact, the real turning point came in 1973, when breeder Matgo Law sent a letter to the American trade magazine «Dogs» describing the extremely difficult situation the breed was in. The paper then published a photo of the Shar Pei writing that it was probably the «last surviving footage» (it was more spectacular). At this point, the Americans set off in a rush to try to catch a few pairs (and fortunately «Dogs» had published a sensational lie, because with one dog you would have bred a little…): and the Shar Pei, rare» , quickly left to the role of «most expensive dog» in the world. Humans being stupid, this heralded the fate of what quickly became a coveted status symbol: in this case, human stupidity certainly played a part in saving the race.
Do you work all day and need a dog that is happy to be alone? Greyhound is definitely a suitable dog for you.
Despite being one of the fastest dogs in the world, this breed is also known as a «couch dog».