11 Amazing Chinese Dog Breeds

China is known for producing some of the most adorable dog breeds known worldwide. Asia represents 60% of the world’s population and their fluffy adorable dog breeds have made their way to homes throughout the United States.

Research has discovered that Chinese dog breeds were domesticated about 33,000 years ago and many of them were pets to Asian royalty. Most of the popular dog breeds that are chosen as companion and family pets in the United States originated in China.

Yes. That means you might already own a dog breed that originated in China without realizing it. Most of them are excellent lap dogs and companions. Asian royalty throughout history often had lap dogs that never left their side.

Are you looking for a loyal, adorable dog that will bring joy to your life and household? If so, consider a Chinese dog breed. A popular choice is the Pug. This adorable breed features big soulful eyes and a smushy little nose that you will adore.

This popular dog breed is originated in China and is known as a lovable companion that was bred in ancient times. Continue reading to find out about more Chinese dog breeds that make excellent pets.

Chinese Dog Breeds

Shih TzuShih Tzu on grass

This adorable little lap dog kept the Chinese emperor company but its origins began in Tibet. Since lions are associated with Buddhism, these precious dogs were bred to resemble tiny lions. They are outgoing, playful, affectionate, and exude a sweet personality. Their beautiful long coat makes them look regal and requires frequent grooming.

Key Information

  • Height – 9 to 10.5 inches
  • Weight – 9 to 16 pounds
  • Physical Features – Toy breed, short legs, and small overall stature with a tiny nose, mouth, and eyes.


As mentioned earlier, the Pug was bred for emperors and the breed dates back to 206 B.C. and the Han dynasty. Some reports say they lived like royalty enjoying fancy surroundings and even had their own guards. The Pug is loving, mischievous, charming, and always hungry. Their coat is easy to care for and they are great loyal family pets.

Key Information

  • Height – 10 to 13 inches
  • Weight – 14 to 18 pounds
  • Physical Features – They are a small dog breed that features a strong sturdy body, curly tail, big eyes, floppy ears, and a small snout.

PekingesePekingese dog

This tiny dog breed was known to be a Chinese imperial family favorite. History reveals this dog breed was brought to England during the 1860s by British invaders. A popular Chinese legend says this breed was considered to be lions that were shrunk down which is the reason they have a fierce attitude.

Key Information

  • Height – 6 to 9 inches
  • Weight – up to 14 pounds
  • Physical Features – This breed stands short and low to the ground. They have a long fluffy coat, small snout, brown eyes, and floppy ears.

Shar Pei

This dog breed almost became extinct in the mid-20th century when Chairman Mao Zedong condemned the public from owning dogs. They survived and the breed lives on to this day. They have excessive wrinkles that are caused by the production of hyaluronic acid. Their personality is calm, independent, and loyal.

Key Information

  • Height – 18 to 20 inches
  • Weight – 45 to 60 pounds
  • Physical Features – They have long legs, a tail that curls upward, wrinkles on their face and some areas of their body, and floppy ears.

Chinese Imperial

This dog breed is another favorite of the Chinese royal families. History reveals this adorable breed was a pet throughout the dynasties. They are playful, happy, intelligent, loving, and affectionate. They also have a bundle of energy as well as have the ability to take a long nap and be an excellent lap dog.

Key Information

  • Height – Up to 9 inches
  • Weight – 9 pounds or less
  • Physical Features – Cute facial expression, wide-eyed, short square muzzle, sturdy build, and floppy ears.

Japanese Chinjapanese chin dog

The history of this dog breed is debated which is why the name is Japanese Chin. However, research reveals the breed was brought to Japan from China, which makes its origin Chinese. While the history is debated this little cutie loving, charming, noble, and is a great companion pet.

Key Information

  • Height – 8 to 11 pounds
  • Weight – 7 to 11 pounds
  • Physical Features – They have dark eyes, a short muzzle, and a plumed tail that arches over the back. They have an elegant posture and appearance.

Chinese Chongqing

Their name comes from the city of Chongqing and is considered rare in China today. They date back to the Han Dynasty. A sculpture of the breed was found in a tomb in 1987 that dates back 1700 years ago. They were originally bred to hunt wild boars and rabbits. This dog breed is good with children and is a loyal family pet.

Key Information

  • Height – 12 to 18 inches
  • Weight – 33 to 54 pounds
  • Physical Features – They have a well-proportioned body, slim build, ample chest, pointed tail, and erect ears.

Chow ChowChow dog

Fluffy and cute, this hairy breed features a blue tongue and was a popular pet for imperial families. They are aloof, serious-minded, and intelligent. It’s easy to socialize and train this breed quickly. While they are aloof, they are extremely loyal to their loved ones.

Key Information

  • Height – 17 to 20 inches
  • Weight – 45 to 75 pounds
  • Physical Features – They are deep-chested, muscular, have a tail that curls upward and lies on the top of the back, pointy ears, a wrinkly face, and a square snout.


This breed is the ultimate police dog in Hong Kong. They are often confused for a German Shepherd because their appearance is similar. However, the Kunming enjoy being active and are ideal family pets as long as the home has a fenced-in yard. Pet parents who live an active lifestyle will find the Kunming dog breed to be their best friend and exercise partner.

Key Information

  • Height – 25 to 27 inches
  • Weight – 66 to 84 pounds
  • Physical Features – They stand tall, have a curly tail, a long muzzle, and pointy ears.

Xiasi Quan

This dog breed was specifically bred to be a guard or hunting animal for the royals. Chinese legend says their owners consider them to be good luck charms that are known to attract wealth into the home. This long wiry-haired dog breed is suitable for living in a home that has a spacious yard for exercise and play. They are intelligent, easy to train, kind, and affectionate.

Key Information

  • Height – 17 to 20 inches
  • Weight – 32.5 to 42.5 pounds
  • Physical Features – They have pointy ears, a long snout, small eyes, long legs, and a long pointy tail.

Chinese Crestedchinese crested dog

They have a striking appearance. They typically have hair on their face, tail, legs, paws, and ears while the rest of their body is bare skin that often features spots. This toy breed is loving, playful, and completely devoted to its owners. The Chinese Crested dog breed is ideal for apartment dwellers and those who suffer from allergies.

Key Information

  • Height – 11 to 13 inches
  • Weight – 8 to 12 pounds
  • Physical Features – They fine bones, a medium-size snout, soulful eyes, a long tail, and erect ears. Some dogs of this breed are capable of growing a full coat.

Bottom Line

Finding the right Chinese dog breed for you and your family is easy to do. The first thing you need to consider is your lifestyle. You need a dog that will fit perfectly into your daily schedule whether it’s active or relaxed.

You also need to establish if you want a lap dog or a larger dog. Many of the breeds mentioned on the list have long hair that requires grooming, so make sure you have enough time in your schedule to accommodate their frequent grooming sessions.

An excellent way to determine the size dog you should choose is to consider the size of your living space. If you live in a small space it’s wise to choose a toy or small breed but if you live in a large house that has access to a yard, you can choose any size dog you wish. Choose wisely and welcome a Chinese dog breed into your life today!

A pet parent herself, Shellie knows the ins and outs of caring for a furry bundle of joy. She has been researching, reviewing and sharing her findings for the best dog products available for a number of years. A valued team member, Shellie's first-hand experience is invaluable.

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