• Overview

    These little lapdogs look like fluffy ottomans, but they were originally bred as watch dogs who protected the royal palace in China and held out the ends of their owners' royal robes with their teeth to announce their entrance. The Pekingese is a dignified, affectionate little lap dog who fits best into a family who will enjoy relaxing, petting and grooming their opinionated companion.

  • Personality

    Throughout history, the Pekingese has known nothing but a life spent in the lap of luxury. Although they worked as palace guard dogs, announcing visitors and proclaiming their royal owners' entrances with their noble appearance, these dogs spent most of their time being pampered indoors. These dogs love to bark — they were bred to announce visitors, after all. Training can be somewhat of a challenge because Pekingese are self-confident and independent dogs who will have to be convinced that their good behavior benefits them. They are extremely loyal and protective and often prefer to bond to one person. They will have to be socialized with other dogs and humans to remove some of their guard dog instincts and make them less stand-offish around others.

    The short nose and flat face are more pronounced on some dogs than others, but the Pekingese is still a brachycephalic dog, so they will snore and wheeze and become uncomfortable in hot temperatures. Pekingese also have tiny bowed legs, which is why their strut is so pronounced. They have some trouble moving, so they aren't going to want a lot of activity. They prefer to curl up at their master's feet or in their laps and enjoy some non-stop petting. Even though they shun more vigorous athletic pursuits, make sure to exercise your little dog with some entertaining play, either indoors or outdoors. Pekingese have a tendency to become overweight, but they should not weigh more than 14 pounds or they will begin to have a difficult time moving.

  • Coat Care

    The Pekingese's thick double coat is insulating. In China, their owners kept their little dogs stashed in the sleeves of their long robes to help warm their arms and bodies. The coarse, straight over coat stands off from the Pekingese's body and gives the coat its waterfall appearance. The under coat is thick, soft and abundant. The Pekingese's lion-like appearance comes from the thick mane surrounding their necks and shoulders. The fringe on both their ears and tails gives them their comical appearance as they scurry around, because their front end usually looks just like their back end. Their coat comes in all colors. It is frequently seen with a black mask and a fawn, tan or auburn body.

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If you keep your Pekingese's coat full, he will require about an hour of brushing a week. Use a metal brush on the legs, ears and tail to prevent these feathered areas from tangling. Brush the body from the body to the end of the hair with a soft bristle brush to remove mats. Make sure to mist the coat with water first to prevent breakage.

Unless you want to trim your dog frequently into a puppy clip, prepare to spend significant time brushing and grooming your Pekingese. They will require about an hour of brushing a week. Use a metal brush on the legs, ears and tail to prevent these feathered areas from tangling. Brush the body from the body to the end of the hair with a soft bristle brush to remove mats. Make sure to mist the coat with water first to prevent breakage.

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Pekingese need frequent shampooing, so they will need to be bathed more often than other heavy-coated dogs - about once a month. Be careful to clean and dry the eyes and folds of skin around the face to prevent any infections or discomfort.

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Hair Clipping

Clipping or trimming your dog’s coat is far easier than you would ever imagine. With the right clipper, trimmer and scissors, giving your dog a haircut is easy on your wallet and your schedule.

Dogs with heavy coats generally require routine trimming around the face, ears, feet and behind to help them stay comfortable. You do not need to clip or trim the body hair because it acts as insulation for your dog in cold weather and helps cool him off in warm weather.  It’s a good idea to take your dog for a short walk to calm him down before you groom him. Thoroughly brush the coat to remove any tangles and mats. Use trimmers to trim excess fur off the dog's body, choosing the appropriate clip attachment to achieve desired length. Trim around the tail, paws, sanitary areas and chest, if needed. Groom the head and face last, being watchful for sudden movement. Trim with the flow of the fur, away from the eyes and nose.

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Many dog owners are apprehensive about trimming their dog’s nails because they are nervous about cutting into the quick. But with the right conditioning and careful cutting, nail clipping can be a simple, stress-free activity for you and your dog.

Provide your dog with plenty of positive reinforcement and even treats to help associate nail clipping with a positive experience.  As you start to clip, gently press on your dog’s paws to help him become accustomed to the feeling of having his nails clipped. Then, work gradually, shaving down just a thin portion of the nail at first to make sure you don’t reach the quick. Clip one nail, reward your dog with a treat, and stop to give him some positive reinforcement before moving on. Gradually increase the number of nails you clip in one sitting to help your dog get used to the process. Never trim extremely long nails down to a short nail in one sitting, because this is an excellent way to accidently quick the dog’s nail. Instead, work gradually, shaving small portions of your dog’s nails off each time.

You can tell if you’re getting close to the quick by the texture of your dog’s nail. The nail is hard closer to the surface and becomes softer as you get closer to the quick. If your dog’s nail starts to feel softer, that’s a good indication that you’re getting close to the quick.

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Eyes / Ears

Not all breeds and coat styles require routine trimming in and around the eyes and ears but all should undergo regular inspection and cleaning around these sensitive areas. Doing so will help prevent the development of infections that could seriously damage these amazing organs.

It is always important to routinely clean your dog's eyes and ears, and examine for potential infections. Small dogs, like Pomeranians, and dogs with extremely profuse coats, like Newfoundlands, American Eskimo Dogs and Keeshonds, have ears that need to be checked weekly for infection and cleaned with a cotton ball. Gently wipe a cotton ball moistened with mineral oil, olive oil or witch hazel in your dog's ear, being careful to avoid the ear canal. Never use a Q-Tip, which could cause damage to the inner ear if your dog suddenly shakes or jerks his head. Bushy hair growth within the ear can be thinned with tweezers or blunt scissors. Use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around the eyes, ears and face. Small dogs like Pomeranians and Pekingese, and dogs with white coats like American Eskimo Dogs and Samoyeds, are prone to developing tear stains around their eyes, so clean around their eyes with a cotton ball or soft cloth and use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around their eyes.

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Many owners do not realize how important it is to brush your pet’s teeth on a regular basis. Some dogs are prone to dental problems and sensitive teeth, especially small dogs with tiny teeth and dogs with special diets. These problems can be easily combatted with frequent brushing.

Cavities are rare with dogs but gum disease caused by tartar buildup is not, which is why they require regular brushing with toothpaste and a toothbrush formulated specifically for dogs. While daily brushing is ideal, doing so on a weekly basis will be a big help in avoiding the need to bring your dog to a veterinarian for a cleaning, which usually has to be done under sedation.