Breed Organization Pekingese Club of America Website: http://thepekingeseclubofamerica.net Native Country China. Sponsorship: Great Britain Other Names Peke, Pekingese, Sleeve Dog, Sun Dog, Imperial Dog of China, Peking Lion Dog, Chinese Spaniel, Pelchie Dog, Peking Palasthund Life Expectancy Approximately 10-13 Years Litter Size Average 2-4 Puppies Breed Group AKC Toy
Breed Appearance The Pekingese is a small, well-balanced, compact dog. It has a stocky, muscular body that is slightly longer than it is tall. The
head is large in proportion to the rest of the body, with the top of the head being massive, broad and flat. The front of the face is flat. The muzzle is
broad and flat, thicker below the eyes, separating the upper and lower areas of the face. The skin on the muzzle is black. The black nose is broad and short.
Teeth meet in an under bite with a broad jaw bone. The large, prominent, round eyes are set wide apart with black eye rims. The heart-shaped ears are set on
the front corners of the top of the skull, lying flat against the head. They are well feathered so that they appear to blend with the head, giving it a rectangular
look. The neck is short and thick. The legs are short, thick and heavy-boned. The tail is high-set, slightly arched and carried over the back. The outer coat is
long and coarse in texture with profuse feathering. The undercoat is soft and thick. The coat comes in all colors, sometimes with a black mask.
Breed Description Head: Massive, wider than it is tall, flat. Wide, flat skull. Pronounced stop. Short, wide nose. Tight-lipped. Ears: Heart-shaped, carried flat against the head. Long, abundant feathering. Eyes: Large, round, dark. Edges of eyelids are black. Body: Wide forequarters, narrower near the abdomen, short. Thick, very short neck. Wide chest. Well-sprung ribs. Pronounced
flank. Straight back. Tail: Set on high, carried firmly, curved loosely on one side of the back. Long feathering. Hair: Long, straight, with an abundant mane forming a collarette around the neck. Long, abundant hair on the ears, backs of the
legs, tail, and feet. Dense undercoat. Coat: All colors and markings are allowed and equal in value, except albino and brown (liver). In the multi-color variety, markings
are evenly distributed. Size: 15 to 25 cm. Weight: 2.5 to 5.5 kg.
History This dog of Chinese origin is one of the worlds oldest breeds. He is depicted on bronze objects over 4,000 years old. For
centuries, the Pekingese was bred, maintained, and honored in Chinas Imperial palace. Believed to protect the emperor in the
afterlife, the Pekingese was sacrificed at the emperors death. After seizing Peking and pillaging the Summer Palace in
1860, British soldiers brought Pekingese dogs back to England. There, they were given to Queen Victoria, the Duchess of
Wellington, and the Duchess of Richmond, who established the first strain of "sun dog" from Imperial China. The Pekingese became very
popular between World Wars I and II. Although limited, the breed's population remains stable.
Behavior This lively, independent, strong-willed dog is very attached to his owner and does not always tolerate children. Distant toward
strangers, the Pekingese barks often and is a good watchdog. He needs firm but gentle training.
Health The leading cause of death for Pekingese, as for many other Toy breeds, is trauma. Top leading causes of organ systems include neurologic and
cardiovascular, e.g., congestive heart failure. When diagnosed early and successfully treated with medication, a Peke with this problem can expect to live many years.
A heart murmur is a potential sign of a problem, and must be evaluated by a veterinary cardiologist. Very often, the problem does not surface until the dog is 6 or
more years old, so it is very difficult to screen the problem in a pup.
The other main problems of the breed are eye issues and breathing problems, resulting from its tiny skull and flattened face(see Brachycephalic syndrome), and skin
allergies (and hotspots). An especially common problem is eye ulcers, which may develop spontaneously. Some other eye problems that Pekingese can suffer from are
Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca (Dry Eye) and Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA).
The Pekingese should not be kept outside, as having flattened faces and noses can cause them to develop breathing problems, making it difficult for them to regulate
their body temperature in overly hot or cold weather. Their long backs, relative to their legs, make them vulnerable to back injuries. Care should be taken when picking
them up to give adequate support to the back: one hand under the chest, the other under the abdomen. Short legs give some Pekingese difficulty with stairs; older dogs
may not be able to go up or down stairs alone.
In an effort to address the breathing difficulties caused by the breed's flat face, the Kennel Club (UK) significantly changed the breed standard in October 2008, removing
the clause that the "profile [should be] flat with nose well up between eyes" and adding instead that the "muzzle must be evident". This was in response to public opinion
following the BBC programme, Pedigree Dogs Exposed. The breed standards of two other flat-faced breeds, the Pug and English Bulldog, were soon also changed.
Advice He is happy living in an apartment. Not highly athletic, he needs only short daily walks. He requires daily brushing and combing,
and his eyes and the folds on his face must be checked regularly.