The Chinese Shar Pei is easily recognized by its wrinkled appearance. Shar Pei’s are medium-sized dogs that reach nearly 20 inches tall and weigh around 50 pounds. They have a bristly coat that is usually sable colored and the dog has a lifespan of about 10 years. The breed was almost wiped out during the communist regime, but some Hong Kong breeders managed to keep the breed alive. Like all breeds, the Sharp Pei has some unique characteristics, here’s what you should know before getting a Shar Pei.
Shar-Pei Grooming Basics
Grooming needs depend on the individual Shar-Pei. Weekly brushing can meet the needs of both the «horse-coated» (short-haired) breed and the «brush-coated» breed (slightly longer), but some Shar-Pei of either breed can be prone to skin problems. A Shar Pei with skin problems may need a weekly bath and daily brushing. All Shar-Pei need regular anti-wrinkle treatment. Wipe the wrinkles with a damp cloth and then dry well to prevent infection. Do not lubricate the skin. Shar-Pei’s have small, narrow, triangular ears that predispose them to chronic ear problems because there is not enough air circulating in the narrow ear canals. While cleaning a Shar-Pei’s ears is not as easy as it is for most breeds, regular cleaning should be done to prevent recurring yeast or bacterial infections. Bathe your Shar-Pei as often as you like or only when it gets dirty. With the mild dog shampoos available now, you can bathe your Shar-Pei weekly if you want without damaging his coat. The rest is basic care. Trim your nails as needed, usually every few weeks. Brush your teeth for good health and fresh breath.
Where did the Shar-Pei come from
Exact information and proof of the origin of the Shar-Pei is lacking, but there is evidence to support the breed’s existence around 200 BC.
One theory? The breed is a descendant of the Chow Chow due to the similar characteristics of the dogs.
Historically they were bred as hunting dogs in China before they were banned as pets.
Keep an eye out for deals on tissue boxes, wipes and mops – this unique, wrinkled breed drools a lot. They are suitable for apartments, but you have to install air conditioning. Shar-Peis are sensitive to heat because of the wrinkles on their heads. They don’t need a yard if you promise them a daily, sunny walk. Fill their water bowl often. They are quite active indoors so keep fine china locked away. Shar-Peis shed little or no hair.
Scheduled six-monthly check-up visits with your veterinarian are important to ensure your dog is healthy and happy throughout his life. Clubbed feet, joint dislocations, and kidney disease are some of the conditions that affect this breed. Together with your veterinarian, you can determine and maintain a preventive health care plan based on your canine companion’s needs.
The Shar-Pei puppies…
Fall into the category of non-sporting dogs and the theory is that they share some DNA with a now extinct wolf species found in a high altitude area within China itself.
So, don’t make a mistake about it…