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Chow Pei

Nicole Cosgrove

Chow Pei - Chow Chow and Shar Pei Mix
The parents of Chow Pei. Left: Chow Chow, Right: Shar Pei

The Chow Pei is a mixed dog the result of breeding a Chow Chow with a Chinese Shar-Pei. He has a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years and commonly takes part in guarding and competitive obedience. The Chow Pei is a dignified and calm dog and is best suited to single or couple owners rather than large families with children.

Here is the Chow Pei at a Glance
Average height 15 to 20 inches
Average weight 40 to 60 pounds
Coat type Often Long, soft, thick. Sometimes can be short
Hypoallergenic? No
Grooming Needs Moderate
Shedding Moderate to high during shedding season
Brushing Daily
Touchiness Not very sensitive
Tolerant to Solitude? Very good
Barking Rare
Tolerance to Heat Low to moderate
Tolerance to Cold Depends on coat, low if like the Shar Pei, good to very good if like the Chow Chow
Good Family Pet? Moderate – best with a single or a couple
Good with Children? Low to moderate – needs socialization
Good with other Dogs? Low – needs socialization
Good with other Pets? Moderate – needs socialization
A roamer or Wanderer? Moderate
A Good Apartment Dweller? Good
Good Pet for new Owner? Moderate
Trainability Difficult to train
Exercise Needs Fairly active
Tendency to get Fat Quite high
Major Health Concerns Eye problems, Hypothyroidism, Cancer, skin problems, bloat, patellar luxation, OCD
Other Health Concerns Joint dysplasia, Swollen hock syndrome,
Life Span 10 to 15 years
Average new Puppy Price Unknown
Average Annual Medical Expense $485 to $600
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $920 to $1020

Where does the Chow Pei come from?

We do not have any origins known for the Chow Pei. It is likely he was first bred in the USA as many of the designer dogs are but by whom, if there was a purpose is not known. Most designer dogs do not have anything known about their beginnings. Designer dogs is the term used for when usually two purebreds are bred and the offspring, the first generation is the intended result. A lot of these dogs have names that blend the parent names. There is a big market for designer dogs at the moment, they are hugely popular and have been for a number of years now. This has attracted bad breeders and puppy mills looking to make money and having no care over their animals at all. If a designer dog is what you want make sure you buy from somewhere respectable or adopt from a shelter even.

Genetics can not be predicted or controlled in this kind of breeding so the designer dog could end up with any of either parent’s looks and temperament. Here is a quick look at the parents of the Chow Pei to see what goes into him.

The Shar-Pei

This is a Chinese dog, bred to fight, guard, hunt and herd. It is not known how old he really is. When the People’s Republic of China was formed the whole dog population in the country nearly disappeared including the Shar-Pei. However thanks to some being bred in Taiwan and Hong Kong and to Matgo Law for bringing some to America in 1973 this breed survived.

Today the Shar-Pei is a protective, devoted, independent and strong willed dog. He is aloof with strangers but loves the company of people he does know. He prefers spending all his time with his owner, is calm and can be intuitive. Sadly he was once used in dog fighting and he can sometimes still be aggressive towards other dogs so good socialization and training are important

The Chow Chow

This dog has been proven to be one of the oldest there are. It is thought he comes from North China and Mongolia and moved south with Mongolian nomads. He was used to hunt and guard possessions. He became the Chow Chow when British sailors took some as cargo home with them. Back then miscellaneous cargo items were called chow chow and that stuck with him.

Now he is often compared to a cat in temperament as he is reserved, clever, independent and often quite stubborn! While it may appear he is always scowling in fact he is not aggressive. He will play with you but he is equally happy doing his own thing. He needs socialization to get along well with different pets, children, strangers and situations.


The Chow Pei is a calm and intelligent dog. He comes from two independent parents, both from China. He himself can be aloof or dignified as well, some might call him regal even. He is alert and protective so is good as a watchdog and guard dog. He tends to bond more closely with one or sometimes two people, and for that reason, and the fact he does not easily get on with children or other pets or dogs, he is best suited to a single or couple adult owner. To them though he can be loving and affectionate.

What does the Chow Pei look like

This is a medium to large dog weighing 40 to 60 pounds and standing 15 to 20 inches tall. He can have wrinkles or loose skin especially around the head and neck. His ears tend to be more like the Chow Chow’s whereas his head is more shaped like the Shar-Pei. His coat is straight and some can have long, thick and soft hair while others can have short. Common colors are brown, black, white, chocolate, gray, cream and golden.

Training and Exercise Needs

How active does the Chow Pei need to be?

He is a fairly active dog so will need some regular walks outside each day as well as additional activities like play time and trips to the dog park. It is important you give your dog the exercise he needs to avoid health and behavioral issues. He can adapt to apartment living but is best where he has some room and access to a yard. Make sure he has mental opportunities also.

Does he train quickly?

He is not an easy dog to train because he is very independent and believes he knows best! For that reason he is not a good dog for new owners and is recommended for owners who have more experience in training. You need to be firm and clearly established as pack leader but without resorting to negative techniques. Stay consistent and positive and be patient. Reward and praise his successes and stay calm when he is being more difficult. There are professionals who can help and obedience schools to consider if you think you will need help or if things are not going well. Early socialization and training for the Chow Pei is very important.

Living with a Chow Pei

How much grooming is needed?

The Chow Pei’s grooming needs may depend somewhat on the coat he has. The shorter coat is easier to brush and take care of. The longer coat will need professional grooming on a regular basis. He is not hypoallergenic and sheds a moderate amount throughout the year but that goes up to frequent shedding when it is shedding season. He will need daily brushing and you will be doing plenty of clean up after him from the hair. Bathing should happen just when he needs it using a dog shampoo only. Cut his nails when they get too long or have the groomers take care of them at the same time they do his coat. He should also have his teeth brushed at least two to three times a week and his ears checked and wiped clean once a week.

What is he like with children and other animals?

This is not a great dog to be around children, other pets or even other dogs. He needs a lot of socialization to get him to be accepting of them, if he is raised with them he may be more relaxed then. Children need to be taught to respect him though and not to push him too far. He should be supervised around younger children who do not know better and around children who are strange to him. Socialization and training is also key in having him behave well with other dogs at the dog park or when out walking.

General information

He is alert and makes a good watchdog who will bark to alert you to an intruder and he can also act as a guard dog protecting you. He should be fed 2 1/2 to 3 cups of good quality dry dog food each day, divided into at least two meals. He barks rarely.

Health Concerns

As with any dog there are conditions that can be passed from the parents to their offspring. For the Chow Pei those concerns include Eye problems, Hypothyroidism, Cancer, skin problems, bloat, patellar luxation, OCD, Joint dysplasia and Swollen hock syndrome. To lessen the risk always ask for health clearances on both parents. You should also visit the puppy at the breeders before purchase to see the conditions they were bred in and the health of the other animals.

Costs involved in owning a Chow Pei

A Chow Pei puppy seems to be a hard thing to find and at the time of writing this article no puppies for sale could be found to get a range of prices from. Other costs apart from the puppy himself will be a crate, collar and leash, micro chipping, neutering, blood tests, deworming and shots. Yearly costs for medical basics like check ups, shots, insurance and flea prevention come to between $485 to $600. Yearly costs for other needs like grooming, food, training, treats, license and toys come to between $920 to $1020. If you have a short haired Chow Pei that amount can be lessened with fewer trips to the groomers needed.


Looking for a Chow Pei Puppy Name? Let select one from our list!

The Chow Pei is not a dog for everyone, he has is own needs and quirks. He needs owners with experience and ones who understand the importance of early training and socialization. He will be loyal and protective of you despite his dignified aloofness with others. He is certainly not a clingy dog if that is something that annoys you!

Featured Image Credit: Pixabay

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.