Japanese Spaniel Pictures and Information

The Japanese Spaniel or Japanese Chin is a toy breed. The breed is a companion dog or lap dog. They are known as the dog of Japanese Royalty.


Japanese Spaniel Description

They have long, straight hair that is silky. The most common color of coat for the Japanese Chin is black and white. The breed can also have a red and white coat. Their tails are curled and feathered. Their muzzles are very short and upturned. Their eyes are extremely large for their body size. A white blaze, or spot, can often be found in the middle of their foreheads. This spot is known as “Buddha’s Thumbprint.” The origin of the Japanese Chin is much debated. Some believe the breed first appeared in Japan circa 732, as gifts from Korea. Others disagree and say their origins are Chinese.  What is known is that they were introduced to Europe in the 1600s by Portuguese sailors. Commodore Perry, a naval commander, made the breed famous when he gave them to Queen Victoria in England and to the President of the United States.

Japanese Spaniel

Also Known As

Japanese Chin

Country of Origin



The Japanese Chin’s temperament is often compared to that of a cat. They are an independent breed. They have a tendency to be distrustful of new people. They are not recommended to households with small children. The do not react well to a change. A Japanese Chin will be fiercely loyal to its owner but have little need for the love and acceptance of others.

Health Problems

The Japanese Chin is predisposed to several health problems. Their short muzzles can make breathing difficult and can lead to heart problems. Heart murmurs are common is the breed as well. They are always commonly afflicted with luxating patellas (knee disorder). Because their eyes are so widely set and have little protection they can easily get scratched. Japanese Chins under six months are also prone to hypoglycemia.


Japanese Chins require very little exercise, making them an ideal pet for apartment living. Short walks outside a few times a day will suffice.

Special Grooming Needs

The Japanese Chin requires a great deal of grooming. Daily brushing or combing is necessary. If their coats are not maintained they will mat. Japanese Chins shed year-round as opposed to a few months out of the year. Regular brushing and bathing can help control the shedding. In addition to brushing, Japanese Chins need to have their faces clea