/Breed Introduction: Chinese Crested Dog

Breed Introduction: Chinese Crested Dog

The Chinese Crested dog breed was created to be a companion. They can almost read your mind and will lie in bed for hours without moving a muscle. The Chinese Crested is an exotic-looking small dog that does not actually hail from China. They are found in two variants: the Hairless, with silky hair on the head, tail, and feet and the genetically recessive Powder-puff, who has a full coat. Both variants can be found in a single litter. Regardless of variation, the Crested is a slender, finely boned dog who is elegant and graceful. They are a beauty, although they tend to win the Ugly Dog Contests more often than other competitors. They are your basic big dog in a small, sometimes naked-looking body. They don’t accept strangers easily.

Breed Origin


Chinese Crested dogs don’t really come from China. They evolved from African or Mexican hairless dogs that were reduced in size by the Chinese. The Crested is believed to have accompanied Chinese sailors on the high seas as early as 1530. Hunting vermin during and between times of plague today they can still be found in port cities worldwide. By the middle of the 19th century, Crested began to appear in numerous European paintings and prints.

The Chinese viewed the Chinese Crested as having magical healing powers, and used them as living heating pads. They were kept by Chinese emperors as well as by sailors.

It is unclear when the breed officially arrived in North America, but the first breed club here was founded in 1974. In China, the breed has become rare.

Breed Characteristics


The average height for a Chinese Crested is between 11 to 13 inches for both sexes. They generally weigh up to 12 pounds.

He makes an excellent companion and is extremely intelligent. Be aware, however, that many dog trainers unfairly rate them low on the intelligence scale because they do not fit the typical dog personality profile. The Crested is not a good breed for insensitive trainers.

Cresteds are generally healthy, but like all breeds, they are prone to certain health conditions. Not all crested will get any or all of these diseases, but it is important to be aware of them if you are considering this breed.

Chinese Cresteds are generally easy to train but they have a stubborn streak, which means you need to have patience. Positive reinforcement is the only route, and correction needs to be handled sensitively, because the breed can be naturally timid.

Powder puff coats are seen in all colors and in combinations of mahogany, blue, lavender, or copper. They can be solid or spotted. The skin tones of the Hairless are pink and black. Perhaps it’s the Hairless essential nakedness that made stripper Gypsy Rose Lee a breeder.

The Hairless Chinese Crested is bald except for soft, flowing hair on the head, feet, and tail. Hair on the body should be shaved to protect the skin.