Updated 07-06-2023

Chinese Shar

There have been Chinese Shar-Peis in existence for hundreds of years, even though they are only one of 134 dog breeds officially recognised by the American Kennel Club. Unfortunately, they were originally designed to protect, hunt, herd, and fight. Nowadays, they're well-known for their characteristic short-haired coat as well as their wrinkly skin.

The Shar-Pei is a treasured companion in modern times. They can adjust to living in an apartment. It's possible that your neighbours won't enjoy your dog's barking habits. Because of their natural stubbornness, these dogs require a lot of rigorous, continuous training from their owners. The importance of early socialisation cannot be overstated. A protective watchdog and a devoted best friend can be yours as long as you can meet the breed's specific requirements.

Dog breed characteristics and facts about Chinese Shar-Peis may be found below!


  • The Shar-Pei was originally used as a guard dog and pit bull. 
  • He's more of a friend these days, but he's still strong as nails when it comes to combat. You must begin socialising and training him at a young age because he can be hostile against other dogs or people.
  • The Shar-Pei has a tendency to overheat because of his short nose. Use fans or air conditioning to keep him cool throughout the sweltering summer months. He snores and wheezes like other short-nosed breeds, and he's a poor jogger.
  • The Shar-Pei has a dark tongue, like the Chow. Dog show fans see this as natural and even desired.
  • The Shar-Pei doesn't need to be bathed frequently, but if you do, be sure to completely dry him. Fungal infections thrive in the folds and wrinkles of the skin.
  • The Shar-Pei, despite his devotion to his family, may be difficult and headstrong. He needs to find out who the pack leader is as soon as possible, or he'll have to compete for the position.
  • A healthy dog should never be purchased from an unreliable breeder or puppy mill. If you're looking for a puppy that's free of hereditary illnesses and has a healthy disposition, you should look for a respected breeder.


Social Appearance 


It's a common misconception that a little dog is better suited to living in a limited space. Many tiny dogs have too much energy and are too yappy to live in an apartment building. An apartment dog's best attributes include being quiet, low energy, somewhat peaceful indoors, and respectful to the other inhabitants. Your dog's personal space in your apartment can be improved by purchasing one of these fantastic dog cages.

Sensitivity Level

Depending on the dog, a strong rebuke can be taken in stride by some, while others regard even the tiniest hint of disapproval as a personal attack. If you have a loud or pushy owner, a chaotic home, or a routine that is unpredictable or variable, your low-sensitivity dog, often known as "easy-going," "tolerant," "resilient," or even "thick-skinned," will be able to handle it better. Do you have young children, host a lot of parties, or have a hectic lifestyle? Choose a dog that isn't overly sensitive.


You can't tell from looking at them whether or not they're hyperactive, but when they do anything, they do it vigorously. They tug at their leashes (unless you teach them not to), they push their way through barriers, and they down their meals in huge, gobbling gulps. A home with young children or an elderly or feeble person may not be the best place for these dynamos to learn proper etiquette. On the other side, a dog with poor vitality adopts a more reserved demeanor.

Potential for Playfulness

The playful nature of certain dogs never fades away, and they're always ready for a game, whereas the reserved and serious tendencies of other dogs develop through time. Think about how many times a day you want to play fetch or tag with your dog, and whether or not you have children or other dogs who can act as substitutes.

Personality Appearance


In the same way as working dogs, such as those that herd sheep, are bred for intelligence and decision-making, working dogs like those who run all day need to exercise their bodies. The two most common activities that a bored pet engages in are digging and chewing, both of which require mental stimulation. There are several ways to keep a dog's brain active, including obedience training, interactive dog toys like tug of war, and dog sports like agility and search and rescue.

Energy Level

Energy-draining dogs are always on the lookout for a new activity. There are several jobs that require a lot of stamina from dogs, such as herding livestock or recovering prey for hunters. Children are more likely to engage in activities such as jumping, playing and exploring new sights and smells as a result of this change in their environment

A low-energy dog is more like a couch potato than a dog that needs a lot of exercise. Think about your level of physical activity and whether or not you find a hyperactive dog irritating before making your final choice.

Easy To Train

Easy to train dogs can more easily form associations between a cue (like "sit"), an action (like sitting), and a reward than dogs that are more difficult to train. Dogs that require more time, patience, and repetition are more difficult to train.

Getting your dog interested in training will require incentives and games because many breeds are intelligent but have a "What's in it for me?" mentality when it comes to learning new things.

Family Affection Level

Affectionate With Family

Since puppyhood, some breeds remain aloof and independent; others form deep bonds with one individual but are uninterested in the rest of the family; still other types shower their entire family with affection. Canines raised in homes with people tend to be more open to human interaction and develop stronger ties, regardless of their breed or upbringing.


Kids-friendly dogs are calm, strong enough to bear the hefty hugs and pets kids can dish out, and have an unfazed attitude about rushing, scream-inducing children. There are several names you may not expect to see on the list: Fierce-looking Both Boxers and American Staffordshire Terriers are regarded as family dogs (which are considered Pit Bulls). Chihuahuas, which are small, sensitive, and potentially sharp, are not always family-friendly.

Dog Friendly

Dog friendship and human friendship are two entirely different things. The fact that a dog is friendly with humans doesn't mean it's immune to aggression or aggression from other dogs; some canines choose to play rather than fight; others will just run away. The type of animal isn't the only consideration. Dogs who have spent a lot of time playing with their littermates and their mother at the age of six to eight weeks are more likely to be socially competent.

Physical Appearance

Amount of Shedding

Having a dog in the house means that you'll have to deal with some level of dog hair on your clothing and in the home. It's worth noting, however, that shedding varies widely among breeds. Some dogs shed all year long, while others ``blow" just during specific times of the year, and still others don't shed at all. If you're a stickler for cleanliness, you'll need to choose a breed that sheds less or lower your expectations. You can use a deshedding tool to keep your house a little cleaner.

Drooling Potential

While greeting you, some dogs may cover their arms with ropes of drool and create large, wet patches on your clothing. If you don't mind a little drool, go for it; but if you're a stickler for cleanliness, you may want to look for a dog with a low drool rating.

Easy To Groom

Some breeds of dogs can simply be brushed and left alone, while others require frequent washing, trimming, and other grooming in order to maintain their health and appearance. If you don't have the time or money to take care of a dog that requires a lot of grooming, you may want to look into hiring a professional.

Exercise Needs

Evening walks around the neighbourhood are perfectly acceptable for some breeds. Others, particularly those trained for physically demanding vocations like herding or hunting, require regular, rigorous exercise.

They can gain weight and release their pent-up energy in ways you don't like, including barking, chewing, and digging, if not given enough exercise. Those looking to train their dog for an energetic canine activity, such as agility, should consider getting a dog that needs a lot of exercise.

Average sizes and life expectancy of the breed


40 to 55 pounds


8 to 12 years


18 to 20 inches tall at the shoulder


Shar-pei dogs have a long and distinguished history. The exact era of the earliest recorded occurrence of this breed is unknown, but there are some statues that look quite similar to those from China's Han Dynasty, which lasted for more than 2,000 years.

They were supposed to have been bred for hunting and combat, and their wrinkled skin and rough coat would have prevented their opponents from acquiring a grasp. The Cantonese version of the phrase "sand skin" is shar-pei.

Their population was decimated so severely by China's communist revolution in the mid-20th century that they were close to extinction. In the 1970s, a Chinese breeder appealed to dog lovers in the United States for help in preserving the breed through an emotional letter. There was a revival of interest in the breed as a result of the shipment of a few dogs to the United States.

As a result, they were featured in numerous high-profile commercial campaigns, including LIFE magazine's cover story and the cover of Vogue. In the 1970s and 1980s, shar-peis were so sought after because of all the attention that the breed was overbred.

In the late 1980s, the (AKC) officially recognised the breed. Since then, the breed's popularity has dropped a bit, which has been good for the breed in terms of responsible breeding programmes becoming more frequent, but the impact from that time is still evident.

Personality & Temperament

When it comes to their owners, Shar Peis are incredibly loving and affectionate. Due to the fact that their activity needs aren't excessive and they love the excitement of living in close proximity, these animals are well-suited to indoor living. Loyal and brave, they are always ready to defend their masters. In the presence of outsiders, however, they are wary and reticent, preferring to keep their distance and resenting the attention they receive.

In order to avoid aggressive difficulties, patience and positive reinforcement must be used throughout the dog's entire existence. When confronted with another dog, the vast majority of canines are abrasive and will respond with aggression at the first opportunity. When out on a stroll, most Shar Peis should avoid encounters with other dogs they don't know. Their preference is for adults or older children, rather than smaller children, whom they may perceive as unpredictably dangerous. Because of this, they are not a good choice for families with young children.


The upkeep of a shar-pei is rather straightforward. It doesn't need as much activity as other medium-sized breeds, and it isn't well-known for its loud nature. There is a good chance you won't discover your dog having fun in a dirty puddle because the dog is a naturally clean one. The breed is noted for its headstrong and wilful disposition, and patience and commitment are necessary to ensure training success.


Shar-Peis are susceptible to a variety of health issues, including skin disorders. If you're thinking of getting a Shar-Pei, it's crucial to know about these diseases, even if you don't plan on getting one.


The thyroid gland is affected by this condition. Epilepsy, alopecia (hair loss), obesity, lethargy, hyperpigmentation, pyoderma, and other skin problems are all thought to be caused by it. Medication and a healthy diet are used to treat it.

Elbow Dysplasia

Is it a degenerative illness, much like hip dysplasia? It's thought to be the outcome of a weak or misfired joint as a result of aberrant growth and development. Symptoms might range from a simple case of arthritis to a full-blown case of lameness. Surgery, weight loss, medical supervision, and anti-inflammatory medication are all options for treatment.


In this case, the skin is flaky and smells foul. In most cases, it's a result of a more serious illness, such as an allergy, infection, or disease. Bathing in medicated shampoo and addressing the underlying condition are two components of treatment.


One of the Shar-most Pei's prevalent ailments is a bacterial infection of the skin. If you have an allergy or hypothyroidism, you may be infected with a secondary illness. Antibiotics are used to treat pyoderma.

Shar-Pei Fever

When the hock joint (or both joints) become swollen, a condition called "swollen hock syndrome" develops, resulting in symptoms such as a reluctance to move, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea, as well as shallow breathing. Temperatures in dogs can rise to 103 to 107 degrees without any apparent cause. At 18 months, the dog is most likely to suffer from the illness, but it can develop at any time in its life. The fever lasts between 24 and 36 hours, and treatment includes decreasing the fever and alleviating the pain.


Swelling of a sore or lump that is abnormally large, sores that don't heal, and bleeding from anybody opening are all symptoms of necrotizing fasciitis. Chemotherapy, surgery, and medication are all forms of cancer treatment.

Patellar Luxation

Slipped stifles, a common condition in tiny dogs, are also known as slipped stifles. The patella (kneecap) is its name. Dislocation of an anatomical component is called luxation (as a bone at a joint). One of the most common causes of knee pain is patellar luxation, or a knee joint that moves in and out of alignment. As a result, it is possible for dogs to spend normal lives despite having this illness.

Hip Dysplasia

For certain people, the hip joint may not fit securely around thighbones. Some dogs show signs of pain and lameness on one or both of their back legs, while others do not. To be sure, an X-ray screening is the most reliable method of diagnosis. As the dog ages, he or she may acquire arthritis. Ask the breeder for documentation that the parents of the dog have been tested for hip dysplasia and are free of any issues before purchasing a puppy.

Gastric Torsion

Large, deep-chested dogs are particularly vulnerable to this illness, which is also known as bloat. A heavy meal, eaten quickly, followed by a lot of water and hard exercise are all factors that contribute to this. It is more usual in older dogs to suffer from bloat. It occurs when the stomach is inflated by gas or air and then twists. GDV is the result (torsion).

Inability to belch or vomit prevents the dog from removing gas from the stomach, causing a disruption in the normal flow of blood to the heart. The dog's heart rate lowers and it enters a state of shock. The dog could die if not given quick medical assistance. If your dog has a bloated tummy, increased salivation, and retching without vomiting, you should be on the lookout for bloat. Also, he may feel agitated and depressed, and he may be weak and lethargic, and his heart rate may be accelerated. If you notice any of these symptoms, you should take your dog to the clinic immediately.


One of the most common causes of glaucoma is a reduction in eye fluid as a result of other eye illnesses. There are two basic kinds of the disease: inherited and secondary. Symptoms include vision loss and pain, and therapy and prognosis vary according to the kind of retinopathy. ' In the case of glaucoma, the only options for treatment are surgery or topical eye drops.


Each eye has this inward curling of the lower lid; it occurs in both eyes. It usually happens before a dog reaches the age of a year and causes discomfort and loss of eyesight. When a dog reaches adulthood, corrective surgery is a successful treatment.

Osteochondrosis Dissecans (OCD)

The elbows are the most common site for this orthopaedic ailment, which is caused by abnormal cartilage formation in the joints. However, it has been observed in the shoulders as well. To the point where the dog is unable to flex his elbow, it causes a painful stiffness of the joint; it can be diagnosed in dogs between the ages of four and nine months. Using "growth formula" puppy diets or high-protein foods to overfeed your puppy may be a contributing factor.

Cutaneous Mucinosis

Wrinkles in the skin are caused by a protein called mucin. When a dog is injured, the clear and stringy substance works like glue. However, certain Shar-Peis have an overabundance of mucin, resulting in clear skin bubbles that can burst and ooze. Steroids are used to treat it, which may be linked to allergies.

Recommended Health Tests 

  1. Patella Evaluation
  2. Hip Evaluation
  3. Elbow Evaluation
  4. Ophthalmologist Evaluation
  5. Thyroid Evaluation


With any dog, feeding them a high-quality, precisely portioned diet and providing them with a constant supply of fresh water is essential.

If you are feeding a wet or raw diet to your shar-pei, extra care should be made to remove any residue from the mouth area after eating.

Using a slow-feeding dish may be a good idea if your pet is prone to stomach torsion, which can cause vomiting and diarrhoea.


The shar- Pei’s regimen is rather simple. They don't require a lot of attention to their coats, requiring only a weekly brushing to eliminate dead hair. They do shed, but it's not a lot of it.

If they do need a bath, the most important thing is to dry them well between the folds if they are extremely wrinkled. Skin infections can be a problem for them. After a meal, they may also want to brush their teeth.

As a result of their small ears, they may also be more susceptible to infections. Using a high-quality cleanser is a common recommendation for cleaning them.


In general, the shar-pei is a low-energy breed. Agility is something you're unlikely to see them participate in. Dogs that get at least an hour of exercise each day and are well-cared for at home are frequently considered suitable for apartment living.


From the beginning, a shar-pei puppy needs to be properly socialised and trained. A high predation drive can make them suspicious of other canines or strangers. A single pet is best for them because of these considerations.

It's crucial to use positive reinforcement strategies when training them because they don't like roughhousing. If you try to coerce a shar-pei into doing something, it usually doesn't go as planned.

Children and Other Pets

Dedicated to his family, the Shar-Pei protects his family members, including children. If he doesn't live with them, he should be exposed to children as he grows up in order to learn how to get along with them. He's best suited to households with children 10 and older who know how to treat a pet responsibly because he's an independent breed.

For the safety of both the dog and the child, it's important to educate youngsters on the proper way to approach and touch dogs, and to remain vigilant during any encounters between dogs and children to prevent any biting or ear- or tail-pulling. You should teach your youngster the importance of respecting dogs' privacy and not to disturb them while they are having a meal or napping. A dog should never be left alone with a child, no matter how affectionate the dog is.

The Shar-Pei should be introduced to other dogs and animals at an early age in order to give it the best chance of getting along with them. In order to keep an eye on him, you'll need constant surveillance.


Shar-Pei puppies should be cared for in the same manner as an adult dog. When working with Shar-Pei puppies, it's important to keep a few things in mind.

For example, Shar-Pei puppies should be fed smaller portions of food. They must also be educated earlier in life in order to instill positive habits in them.

Dogs Similar to the Chinese Shar-Pei

Although the Chinese Shar-Pei is not for everyone, it's fine. If you're looking for a dog that's comparable to the Chinese Shar-Pei, here are a few options.

Chow Chow

Their calm demeanor makes them excellent guard dogs. As a result, they will require a lot more grooming time.


Although they are smaller than the Chinese Shar-Pei, these dogs are loyal and sociable and have a strong personality.


There is very little shedding from these dogs, which makes them excellent family pets. In addition, they can be simply taught.