Chow Chow

Description:
The Chow Chow has a lot of unique characteristics such as the frowning expression, its big head, which is wide and flat, its big nose, which is accentuated by its tongue, which is blue and blackish. The build of a Chow Chow is square and should not be longer than its height. The front legs should be slightly angled and the hocks and metatarsus directly underneath the hip articulation, which is what makes it walk the way it does. There are two varieties of Chow Chows one has longer hair and the other has shorter, both have overcoats and the quality and texture of the hair is more important than the actual length. The long hair should look abundant, straight, protruding and is relatively rough to the touch; the varieties with shorter hair have hair that is rougher and thicker without fringes. The head of the Chow Chow is big in comparison to its body however it shouldn't look disproportionate and its skin shouldn't be too loose on its body. The ears of this dog are small, triangular, and somewhat thick, have a rounded tip, stand up and are inclined slightly forward. The nose must be big and black as well as the tongue, which is blue black. Their coats come in a variety of colors such as reddish, black, blue, cinnamon, white, and crème. An adult chow chow is about forty-three to fifty centimeters from the wichers down. It should look well proportioned; its body should be heavy and muscular, but not too heavy, and it shouldn't look too fine and lightweight.

Ideal owner:
Chow Chows are very sociable and affectionate dogs. A lot of breeders have successfully gotten this breed to trust in people and they are well intentioned. If a chow chow has a bad character it is most likely the owners fault and it only means that the dog has been a victim to a lack of training and socialization. This breed once had a bad reputation of being uneducated and very stubborn. Nowadays these dogs are very docile, affectionate and always very dignified. However it is good to keep in mind that it isn't extremely fond of caresses and is still somewhat dominating and stubborn. Although it looks like a lion, you don't need a whip to dominate and train it; the best way to educate it is by using a convincing tone of voice and to have a lot of patience. Chow chows have a lot of impressive characteristics and are very beautiful dogs, but they aren't made for everyone. If you have a puppy chow chow make sure to put it into contact with other dogs, people and new environments so that it learns to socialize well. Socialization must begin at a young age. If this dog has not been taught to socialize as a teenager, it will become pretty difficult to handle. It has a very independent personality so it will want to do things its own way. One of the most demanding things about this breed is the amount of care its coat requires especially when its adult hair starts growing in. During this stage it will be necessary to brush and bathe it frequently to facilitate the growth of its adult coat.

Growth:
The litter of a chow chow is usually around four to six puppies and their weight can vary from 280 to 580 grams. The difference of size in adults comes from different sizes and growth of the puppy. The tongue, which is pink when it is born, usually turns completely bluish black at six weeks of age. If it has not become pigmented at eight weeks the chances of it being able to become a show dog are very slim, although sometimes it takes up to nine weeks for its tongue to become pigmented. The coat darkens with age; the darker the coat is at birth, the darker it will become as it becomes an adult.

General health:
Unfortunately hip dysphasia is very common in Chow Chows. You need to make sure to acquire one from a reputable dog breeder to insure you get a healthy one. Elbow dysphasia is also common, however this is frequently caused by the loosening and subluxations of the scutum to which the chow chow is prone due to its straight hind legs. Some of the lines of breeds are also prone to dwarfism. There have been cases with congenital ectropion, Collie eye, glaucoma, and hypothyroidism. Fleas, allergies, and shampoo that are left on its body can all cause skin problems. It is also very important to be very careful with its stomach. Some chows are sensitive to anesthetics. The life span of a chow chow is around ten to twelve years.

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