Chinese Crested dogs are small, unique-looking dogs that belong in the toy group. Like a lot of toy dog breeds, Chinese Crested dogs are lively and alert dogs. There are two varieties of the breed – hairless and coated – with both types showing a fine-boned and elegant dog.
If you want an exotic-looking dog, the Chinese Crested might be for you. However, do note that this breed can also be challenging to handle. He has a very playful personality, and you can expect to spend a lot of time following him wherever he goes. You also need to shower a lot of attention and care, so if you go out a lot, these dogs may not be the right fit.
Chinese Crested Statistics
|Dog Breed Group||Toy|
Chinese Crested Ratings
|Friendly with family|
|Friendly with kids|
|Friendly with strangers|
|Friendly with other dogs|
Chinese Crested History
Despite their name, it is believed that Chinese Crested dogs didn’t come from China. No documented proof pinpoints that these dogs originated from the country. Instead, it is thought that the dogs originated from African or Mexican hairless dogs reduced by Chinese.
Crested dogs were originally called Chinese Hairless, the Chinese Edible Dog, the Chinese Ship Dog, and the Chinese Royal Hairless. They are made to hunt rats on Chinese ships, and it is believed that Chinese Crested dogs have been accompanying Chinese sailors as early as 1530.
These dogs were viewed to be magical, that they can heal those who are sick. They were even used as heating pads.
Records of the Chinese Crested Dogs were only found in the late 1800s. It was only during this time that the dog breed was known to many, and this continued until the early 1900s.
When the breed arrived in the US is unclear. It is known though that the dogs only became known through the efforts of two women who promoted the breed throughout the US.
By 1979, the American Chinese Crested Club was formed, and the American Kennel Club officially recognized the breed in 1991.
Now, the breed is believed to be rare in China. But in the US, they still rank 79th as the most popular dog breed for families.
Chinese Crested Temperament
The American Kennel Club describes the Chinese Cresteds as affectionate, alert, and lively. These dogs are very sweet, and they love people, so don’t be surprised if they can easily capture your heart.
With a Chinese Crested as your pet, you can expect a lot of kisses and snuggles. You need to be careful with the way you raise them, or they can grow to become very spoiled dogs.
A Crested dog is not for you if you always leave home and not bring him along. These dogs thrive for human companionship and interaction. They are called velcro dogs for this reason. Being left alone for long periods may trigger separation anxiety, which will lead to their destructive behavior.
These dogs are not very welcoming of strangers. They are naturally suspicious, and they will bark if someone they don’t know comes to your home. This makes them excellent watchdogs.
However, Chinese Cresteds are known to be playful with other pets, especially those they grow up with. But, like any other breeds of this size, toddlers should be kept away.
Training may come to be very challenging because of their independent and willful behavior. You need a lot of patience and make sure not to hit them. Treats and praises will highly help.
Early socialization is crucial, too, if you want a more well-rounded dog. This will also help them control their behavior well and will help keep bad temperaments at bay.
Chinese Crested Care Requirements
- Nutrition: A high-quality and well-balanced meal is essential to keep your Chinese Crested healthy and happy. It is recommended that their diet consists of fish, white rice, and soy products, as these are what was fed to them in their native land. But other than those, the Crested dogs must also have calcium, vitamins, and minerals in their food. With this, adding some vegetables and fruits in their diet would greatly help. It will also improve their digestion. If you’re going to buy dog food, make sure only to buy the premium ones. It must not contain fillers and other harmful additives. The amount of food you feed should also be something you monitor. It’s not good if your dog gets overweight, as this could make them more susceptible to diseases.
- Grooming: Chinese Crested dogs come in two types – hairless and coated. For the hairless variation, you can expect that you would have very little to no grooming needed. However, with his skin exposed, they may be prone to allergies and irritations. So, it’s vital to use skin treatments such as lotions and sunscreens made specifically for their skin. For the coated version, daily brushing is needed to maintain the dog’s fluffy coat. This will help prevent any mats and tangles from forming to your dog’s hair. Baths shouldn’t be given frequently, especially if the weather is cold. Chinese Cresteds are very sensitive to cold, so regular baths are not highly recommended. However, ears should be checked and cleaned regularly to prevent infection. Nails should be checked and trimmed too to keep them free from pain and discomfort.
- Exercise: Exercise should be kept moderate but regular for the Chinese Cresteds. These dogs are happy to just go out on daily walks with their owner. Doing some play sessions is a great idea too, but make sure that you do this in a fenced yard. If you take him outdoors and it’s too hot outside, place some protective clothing on him or rub in some sunscreen. These dogs have very sensitive skin, and heat can cause them pain.
- Health: There are a few health conditions that you, as a Chinese Crested dog owner, should watch out for. These dogs are prone to dental issues, progressive retinal atrophy, Legg-Calve-Perthes disease, and keratoconjunctivitis sicca. It’s best to research the symptoms of these diseases and regularly monitor any changes in your dog’s behavior. Regular check-ups are highly recommended, and if there are screening tests that your dog can take, then it’s highly recommended to have him take one.
- Lifespan: The life expectancy of the Chinese Crested is 13-18 years.
Famous Chinese Cresteds
- Fu Man Chu: The Chinese Crested dog of Gypsy Rose Lee, a dancer
- Sam: A Chinese Crested Dog who won the World’s Ugliest Dog contest three years in a row
Fun Facts About Chinese Cresteds
- Chinese Crested Dogs didn’t come from China.
- These dogs are descendants of the now-extinct African hairless dogs.
- They come in two varieties – hairless and powderpuff (coated).
- They are the smallest hairless dog breed.
- They were developed as ratters for ships; they used to accompany Chinese sailors.
- They have elongated feet that people describe as “hare-like.”
- They come in a wide range of colors – from slate to pink and chocolate.
- Crested dogs are prone to skin diseases because they don’t have hair.
- They don’t do well in cold temperatures.
- They have sweat glands; these dogs can cool down without panting.
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