The Pekingese, or Lion Dog as it was once known, comes from China. They were bred by Buddhist Monks as stunning-looking lap dogs. In 1860, five Pekingese were taken to the UK and bred where they soon gained popularity. They are one of the oldest breeds around today, dating back some 2000 years. Much smaller Pekingese were called sleeve dogs as they would fit right into the sleeves of Emperor's robes. They are now kept as pets or showdogs.
The Pekingese is not your typical lapdog. They are an independent and stubborn breed. They can make good watchdogs as they will bark at anyone who enters the property. They are very brave and will stand up for themselves if they feel the need to, even against dogs much larger than them. They are loving but will only seek your attention when they are in the mood for it. They can be funny to watch and are usually happy to jump onto your lap for a cuddle. They can become possessive at times, so early training will be needed to prevent them becoming fixated on one person. Early socialisation will help this. Training takes time due to their stubborn nature, but rest assured, your efforts won’t be in vain and given the time they will learn.
They tend to be good with respectful children and will happily amuse themselves for hours with play and toys. Other pets don’t tend to be a problem if they are raised together. These dogs can overheat due to the shape of their nose. When you go on walks be sure to keep an eye on your dog for any signs of overheating. They aren’t that demanding when it comes to exercise and a short walk or a play session will be enough. They are the ideal dog for people with smaller living spaces such as apartments.
Their coats will need brushing a couple of times per week paired with occasional trimming to keep it looking good. The long fur at the back will need daily changing for ant “soiled” fur. The shape of their nose causes them to snore, snort and sneeze, though most find this an endearing quality of the breed. They don't really suffer from any major health concerns besides from overheating.
The Pekingese is a courageous and proud little dog. They enjoy lying on the couch and looking over their “kingdom”. The Peignese have an air of “dog royalty” around them - or so they’d like to think. This attitude of theirs can make them quite stubborn dogs. They are quite happy to meet other animals, but they will get snappy with any dogs they see as too boisterous to play with. They aren’t that fond of strangers.
Pekingese may be prone to chondrodysplasia (abnormal bones), brachycephalic syndrome (difficulty breathing), intervertebral disc disease (pressure on spinal cord that can cause paralysis), luxating patella (dislocation of the knee cap), canine hip dysplasia (CHD) and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA: degeneration of the retina which can lead to blindness).
- Status: Common
- Life Expectancy: 12 - 15 years
- Weight: 7 - 14 lbs
- Height: 6 - 9"
- Rare: No
- Coat: Long
- Grooming Requirements: Everyday
- Town or Country: Either
- Minimum Home Size: Flat
- Minimum Garden Size: No Garden
- Breed Type: Toy Dog
- Size: Small
- Energy Level: Low