Chinese Shar-Pei Pictures and Information

The Chinese Shar-Pei is a dog that has a distinctive look. These dogs have massive heads which feature wrinkles.


The Shar-Pei features a coat that will come in three types, and these are a brush coat, a horse coat, and a bear coat. The Shar-Pei is a popular breed that is well known outside of China.

These dogs should have small ears that are directed forward, and their tails should be held in a curve. The colors of the Shar-Pei’s tongue should be black and blue. The body features a square shape, and the head is wide. Shar-Pei puppies will have a large number of wrinkles, but most of these will vanish as they become mature. It is believed that this breed is a descendant of the Chow Chow.

Chinese Shar Pei dogs are known for their abundance of wrinkles in their skin.  Wrinkles on puppies are more profuse than on adult dogs.  The bristly coat of a Chinese Shar Pei may be one of a variety of colors.  Some available colors are cream, apricot, red, black, sable, and fawn.  Some dogs in this breed have large heads with heavy wrinkles while others have smaller heads with tighter wrinkles.  This breed sports two coat types as well.  Horse-coats are rough to the touch.  They are unusual coats that are extremely prickly.  The brush-coats have longer hair that feels smoother to the touch.  These dogs are usually about 18-20 inches (46-51 cm) tall and weigh about 40-55 pounds (18-25 kg).  Males and females are roughly the same size.  

These dogs are friendly, well mannered, intelligent and loyal.  Chinese Shar Pei dogs are active, playful, and bond well with their families.  They are not totally unfriendly to strangers either.  Despite their frowning expressions, these dogs are surprisingly calm and easy-going.  They may show aggression toward other dogs and should receive obedience training at an early age.  With firm but gentle training, Chinese Shar Pei dogs can become great watchdogs and family companions.  They can be stubborn dogs but consistent training with positive reinforcement generally works best for them.  

As with most breeds, Chinese Shar Pei dogs require regular exercise to keep them fit and healthy.  Daily walks, play sessions, and opportunities to run will give them the activity they need.  Brushing their coats with a bristled brush each day will be sufficient to keep their coats in good condition.  Owners should watch closely around the eyes for mites and treat them immediately if detected.  Chinese Shar Pei dogs hate water and try to avoid it at all costs so bathing is not recommended unless dry shampoo treatments are used only when necessary.  

These dogs suffer from a multitude of medical problems and require a great deal of on-going medical attention.  Some dogs may require corrective eye surgery resulting from in-turned eyelids.  This condition is known as entropion and it may lead to blindness if the necessary surgery is not performed.  Allergies, chronic skin problems, infections and mites are other medical conditions that affect Char Pei dogs.  It is important to check out the bloodlines of a dog you wish to purchase because the dog’s health and personality will be dependent on these lines.  In the 1980s, these dogs were very popular and careless over-breeding diminished some of their qualities.  The average life expectancy for a Chinese Shar Pei is up to 10 years of age.

Chinese Shar Pei dogs are believed to be at least 2,000 years old but their ancestry remains a bit unclear.  Some people believe that they are descendents of the Chow Chow since both breeds have purple tongues.  Some people believe that these dogs were pictured on pottery dating back to the Han Dynasty around 26 B.C.  Whatever their original origin may be, they have been raised and used as work dogs in China’s countryside for many years.  The Chinese used them to hunt, protect livestock, and guard their homes and families.  Chinese Shar Pei dogs were bred for strength and intelligence but later they were bred to fight.  Today, these dogs are primarily raised as companions and family pets.  

Chinese Shar-Pei

Also Known As

  • Chinese Fighting Dog
  • Shar Pei


The Shar-Pei is a breed that is revered for its reliability. While it is a smart dog, it will not blindly follow the orders of its master. It is energetic, courageous, and humorous. They will quickly connect with those that care for them, and they have a tendency to be friendly with strangers. Because of this, they don’t make good guard dogs. As long as it is socialized while it’s young, the Shar-Pei will get along with children and other pets. When one first looks at the Shar-Pei, they may get the impression that it is an unhappy dog. However, they are cheerful and friendly.

Health Problems

This breed is prone to developing fevers or kidney problems. Many people have mistakenly believed that the Shar-Pei has skin problems because of its wrinkles. While these dogs may have skin disorders, it is not because of their wrinkles. In most cases, this is a problem that is caused by genetic issues within the line. To avoid these problems, owners will want to make sure they purchase a Shar-Pei from a good breeder. The Chinese Shar-Pei has a maximum life expectancy of 10 years.


While owners will want to make sure these dogs get reasonable amounts of exercise, they should not be unleashed in public places. The Shar-Pei will pick fights with other dogs. In addition to this, the dog should not be given excessive amounts of exercise in hot weather. These dogs can function well in apartments, and do not need to live in yards.

Special Grooming Needs

The coat of these dogs should be brushed consistently. Owners will also want to make sure the dog is bathed each week. These dogs may cause problems for people who have allergies.