Non-sporting Breeds

Chow Chow

Chow Chow
Pedigree Points
Recognized: AKC, ANKC, CKC, FCI, KC (GB), KUSA
Height: Dog: 19-22 in (48-56cm) Bitch: 18-20 in (46-51 cm)
Weight: 45-70 lb (20-31.5kg)
Coat: Rough, abundant, dense, and coarse, with pronounced ruff around head and neck, and feathering on tail; or smooth, dense, and hard, with no ruff or feathering
Color: Solid black, red, blue, fawn, or cream; blue-black tongue

The Chow Chow is the only dog with a black tongue, a characteristic it shares with some small bears. This lion-like member of the spitz family has been known in its native China for more than 2,000 years. It was bred variously for its flesh, its fur, and as a hunter of game, its name possibly deriving from the Chinese Choo Hunting Dog. The Chow Chow is said to have been the original "Mastiff" of the Tibetan Lama, and is also referred to in early Chinese writings as the Tartar Dog and the Dog of the Barbarians. The first Chow Chow imported into Britain in 1760 was exhibited in a zoo. In 1895, the Chow Chow Club was formed there, and in 1905 the first member of the breed was exported from Britain to America. This was Mrs Garnett Botfield's Chinese Chum that, in 1905, became the first American Chow Chow champion. In 1936, Mrs V.A. Mawnooch's Champion Choonam Hung Kwong won the Best in Show title at Crufts Dog Show. He was the recipient of 44 British Challenge certificates and was valued at the then immense sum of US$8,400. The Chow Chow has always had a reputation for ferocity, but although a formidable opponent, it is unlikely to attack unless provoked. It is a faithful, odor-free dog that makes a good pet, but prefers to look to one person as its master and needs firm but gentle handling. A good daily walk will suffice, but the full coat requires considerable attention with a wire brush.
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