Non-sporting Breed
Chow Chow photo from Wikipedia
Average Height(“‘s)
Average Weight (#’s)
Notes for owners
Double coated. Rough or Smooth. Twice weekly
Can be self-willed and aggressive.  Need early socilaiztion and training.

Although Chow-Chows were hunters in China around 150 B.C., it is believed they’re much older than that.  Chows may be one of the oldest recognizable breeds of dogs.  It was used for hunting, herding and protection.  The most prominent characteristic of the breed is its blue-black tongue, or “black-mouthed dog”.  The name Chow-Chow was probably imposed by ship’s captains who recorded knick-knacks brought from the Orient.  Such knick-knacks included porcelian, ivory, and black-tongued dogs.

The eyes of a Chow are deep set giving them little peripheral vision.  So it’s best to approach this breed from the front.  Chows have an aloof and independent nature, and they tend to be reserved and discerning with strangers.

Chows come with two types of coats — rough and smooth.  Both types are double-coated — the undercoat is soft, thick and wooly.  The “rough” outercoat is abundant, dense, straight and stands off the body.  The “smooth” coat is even, hard an feathering or ruffing does not occur on legs or tail.

The Chow is a medium sized dog standing 17-20 inches at the withers.  The overall appearance is of a strong muscular development and heavy boned animal.  The head is large in proportion to the body without giving appearance of top heaviness.  The head is accentuated by a ruff of thick, longer hair growth around th neck.  Chows do look like little lions.

The Chows permanent expression is a scowl.  The correct placement of eyes should suggest an Oriental-look.  The nose must be large, broad and black, except in blue Chows where a blue or slate-colored nose is allowed.

These dogs move with a short, stilted gait unique to the breed.  To accomplih this gait, the hind legs have little angulation with the hock joint diectly below the hips.

Relevant Web Sites

AKC Breed Description

The Chow Chow Club, Inc.

Chow Chow Rescue Volunteer Directory

Chow Chow FAQ’s

Life In The Cat’s Lane  A website about an unusual book focusing on a Chow bitch which has supposedly been written by the cat who had to live with her, based on a true story. In fact, the real dog character, the cat’s nemesis, has been a so-called “pin-up pooch” for The UK Kennel Club. The website features several videos with the Chow dog in it, including one recording the real dog’s 5th birthday party which was attended by her Chow boyfriend. It’s fantastic and the book itself is hilarious!



We STRONGLY recommend that you get your dog from a respectable breeder or rescue organization.  Pet store puppies may get their dogs from Puppy Mills that normally breed only for profit, not quality or concern for the puppy or its eventual owner.
If you would like help locating a breeder or rescue agency near you please E-Mail PGAA (, and let us know your city/state and the type of dog you are looking for.  Do not assume that PGAA has qualified all of the breeders or rescues on this site.  Do your own check of each breeder or rescue — be sure that you are comfortable with the organization before you buy, adopt or turn-over a dog.