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The Shar Pei: Love You or Hate You

Jun 7, 2008
The Shar Pei is thought to share common ancestry with the Chow Chow because both possess a blue-black tongue. The Shar Pei is also known for his deep wrinkles. Throughout history, this breed has been known as the Chinese Fighting Dog because the Shar Pei was used as a palace guard in Chinese Dynasties and also later as a fighting dog. The name, "Shar Pei" is translated to mean "sand skin". This correlates with its coat, which is of a short texture and rough to the touch. The Shar Pei is known for their many wrinkles, especially as a baby, but as they grow older the wrinkles go away as they grow into their skin and smooth it out.

The Shar Pei has a very unique, exquisite look with ears that are triangular shaped and small. They also have a muzzle that looks like that of a shape of a hippopotamus. The Shar-Pei is anywhere from eighteen to twenty inches at the shoulder and can weigh anywhere from forty to fifty-five pounds.

The Shar Pei's coat varies in type and can either be horse, bear or a brush coat. The horse coat is very unusual in that is very prickly. It is rough to touch and it is thought to be the coat that is the closest to the original Shar-Pei in the way that it feels and looks. If one would pet this coat the opposite direction that the fur is going, it is very prickly and can hurt or be irritating to the skin if pet in an opposite direction. If the breed has a brush coat, this texture is smoother and softer and the hair is a little longer. Because of the unique texture of the coat, it only requires brushing from time to time. This breed's coat color varies and can be seen in any of the following: cream, fawn, black, chocolate or a reddish brown color.

The Shar Pei, although known for his numerous wrinkles come in two kinds with various wrinkle patterns. One variation is that they are covered in numerous, large folds of wrinkles all over, even when they are an adult. In contract, the other kind just has wrinkles on the face and the skin isn't a loose-looking on his body. It looks tighter all over his body.

This breed can be fed either three cups of a dry dog food with complete vitamins and minerals or about one and a half cans of a meaty product that is high quality.

The Shar Pei, originally known as a guard dog, is very often suspicious of strangers and does not warm up to them easily if not properly trained. However, overall, this loving breed has shown that he is capable to being a very devoted dog and a good family dog. Known as being an independent breed, they are also often reserved. However, they are also very affectionate and devoted to his family and as long as they are trained at a young age, is wiling to accept stranger with time to warm up to them and some introduction. If these dogs are no trained properly or are not socialized properly, they have a tendency to be very aggressive and territorial. Intrinsically, they have watch-dog qualities, even if they are the most friendly and well-mannered dog around. They will bark at strangers if not with their owner and remain protective of their family and home.

This breed needs to be trained early on and should not be spoiled. The breed also does well with training, but the trainer would do best to keep the activities varied, as they get bored with repeated activities very easily.
About the Author
Written by Kelly Marshall from Oh My Dog Supplies - the largest provider of dog car seat covers online
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