The Chow Chow
The Chow Chow or Songshi Quan which means “puffy-lion dog” is a very distinct breed, recognisable by its almost bear like appearance. They are of a sturdy build, with a broad skull and tiny little neat triangle shaped ears with rounded tips which stand erect. Their eyes are a very pretty almond shape, and they have an almost unique purple tongue. They have a double coat and masses of fur around their neck which gives them a lions mane like appearance. They are very much a “puffy lion dog”.
Due to their long fur and double coat, they are not a breed of little maintenance. Frequent grooming is required to prevent matting. Fleas can fast become a problem if not treated, a monthly bath wouldn’t go amiss. They have delicate skin so care should be taken in choosing appropriate grooming tools.
The Chow Chow is fiercely protective of its family and home. Its not unusual for them to bond excessively with one or two specific family members, to whom they may become overly protective and even show signs of aggression, socialisation from an early age is needed to prevent such behaviours. They are naturally discerning of strangers and somewhat hesitant to interact with them. They will not take orders from those who have not earned their respect. Its important to establish the pecking order quickly, although given the stubbornness of the Chow Chow, this is no easy task.
Chow Chows are not a very active dog, however they do require their daily walks to provide enough exercise to counter boredom and restlessness. They have very strong hunting instincts so its not recommended to exercise them off of the leash. Even in their gardens care should be taken to make sure fences are of a suitable height and there is no escape route for them to give chase of the neighbours cat!