Chinese Crested Dog Breed at a Glance
The Chinese Crested dog breed, also known as the Crested or the Puff, is an adorable small dog that loves pleasing its owner and thrives when around people. Often described as “cat-like,” Chinese Crested dogs can sometimes be found resting in high places, much like cats, such as on the back of a couch. There are two varieties–the Hairless and the Powderpuff. The Hairless Chinese Crested dog breed needs special care with regards to sun exposure, as well as to cold temperatures. The Powderpuff Chinese Crested variety has a full coat that requires minimal daily brushing. This breed is right for you if you’re a new owner, and don’t want to add more work to your housecleaning routine. It doesn’t require much exercise, so it’s a good breed for those who are busy.
Breed Group: Toy Group
HISTORY of the Chinese Crested Dog Breed
Though the origin of the Chinese Crested is not fully known, it’s believed that the breed we know and love today is the result of African Hairless dogs reduced to toy or small dogs by the Chinese. They were used to hunt vermin and were known to accompany Chinese sailors. Once the favored pets of the Mandarin people, they are no longer found in China.
Even today Cresteds are easily found in port cities around the world. They began appearing in European prints and paintings by the middle of the 19th century.
The Crested is a breed of dog that loves pleasing its owner, but at first, could pose numerous challenges with regards to training. Patience is required! These dogs are affectionate, playful, and alert. They are considered active to a degree with respects to their energy level. Although they are good with children, given their small size, it’s best that they are supervised by adults when around kids. The same is true for other dogs in the home–it’s best when supervised, for safety’s sake.
Expect occasional barking with the Cresteds, but considerable mouthiness, which can be corrected with chewtoy training. These are highly sensitive dogs, so they don’t respond well to reprimanding. They are cat-friendly dogs, and they have a moderate hunting drive, so it is advisable to keep yours on a leash when out and about.
Physical Characteristics of the Chinese Crested Dog Breed
The graceful Chinese Crested is the smallest of the hairless breeds in the world. Although it is known as “Hairless” it is adorned with fringes on its face, feet, and the tip of its tail. Though it is “hairless”, it can still be colorful as the skin may be spotted, lilac, pink, blue, and more!
Furthermore, the skin shades may become lighter during the winter months and more intense during the summertime. The Powderpuff is fully coated and can be born to an entirely hairless litter.
The common colors of the Chinese Crested acceptable are virtually any color or combination of colors. According to the AKC, there are 11 colors from white through black and 2 markings–spotted or white.
The Puff and the Hairless Chinese Crested typically weigh between 8 and 12 pounds, and they stand between 11 and 13 inches tall.
Shedding is minimal with either variety. Also, the Cresteds are hypoallergenic dogs and do not tend to drool.
HEALTH and CARE of the Chinese Crested Dog Breed
The Life Expectancy of either variety of the Chinese Crested dog breed is between 13 and 18 years, which is the average for small dogs.
Common Health Concerns
Each dog breed is susceptible to certain health issues. The Chinese Cresteds may be at risk of developing the following:
- Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease
- Patellar Luxation
While these dogs have a low potential to gain weight, it is important to provide them with a brisk walk each day. The physical and mental stimulation is a must for optimal health.
Feed your dog a high-quality dog food to ensure health and longevity. With Cresteds living 15 years on average, they require between 1/2 and 1 cup of kibble each day.
The Powderpuff requires daily brushing to ensure its coat is clean and in good shape. No trimming or stripping is required. This variety has different hair than other breeds as its outer coat is a veil overlay while its undercoat is short, resulting in an easier to care for dog. However, the Hairless variety needs protection from the sun, and can be prone to numerous skin irritations and allergies. When out on sunny days, be sure to keep your Crested in the shade or dress her in protective clothing or use sunscreen. Should your dog get a sunburn, treat it with aloe lotion but see a veterinarian if you’re concerned. Also, dog owners should be aware that Hairless Chinese Cresteds can develop acne or blackheads, which can be treated with products used on people. However, frequent or severe breakouts would be best treated by the vet.
The AKC officially recognized the Chinese Crested dog breed in 1991.