The Chinese Crested is a lively and graceful member of the toy dog breeds. There are two varieties of Chinese Crested – The Hairless and the Powder Puff. The Hairless Chinese Crested has a fine grained smooth skin that seems warm to the touch. These Chinese Hairless have a crest of hair on their heads, tufted feet and plumed tails.
The Powder Puff Chinese Crested has a soft silky and abundant coat. All colors and color combinations are allowed for both varieties of Chinese Crested. This breed is approximately 9 to 13 inches tall at shoulder height and generally weighs less than 13 pounds.
The Chinese Crested is a member of the American Kennel Club (AKC) Toy Dog Group.
The origin of this breed is unknown but was said to have been discovered by Chinese traders in Mexico or possibly Africa. Both Hairless and Powder Puff varieties can be found in the same litter and the two Crested varieties are often interbred. The Crested has evolved to be a perfect apartment dog.
The Crested was ranked 57th out of 154 dog breeds in 2004 AKC registrations.
The Chinese Crested is a happy and animated dog that needs a lot of personal interaction with its owner. These agile dogs are very good climbers and jumpers and can even grip objects and toys with their paws. The breed loves its owner and family and gets along well with older children and other pets. The Cresteds are very active and inquisitive indoors and need early training while puppies to control these activities.
This breed is intelligent and fairly easy to train except when it comes to housetraining. Housetraining can be very difficult and a cat litter box might be considered in winter weather. The Chinese Cresteds make ideal companions for elderly apartment dwellers that can’t get out to exercise their dogs. Cresteds are suspicious of strangers and make good watchdogs. This breed does fine with a novice or first-time dog owner.
The Crested gets sufficient exercise chasing a ball indoors in inclement weather but does enjoy a romp outside in a safe enclosed area. Cresteds need sweaters in the winter when they go outside. In the summer this toy breed needs a T-shirt to prevent sunburn.
The Chinese Hairless needs regular baths, moisturizers and even sun-block. This toy’s skin should be kept supple and smooth and prevented from drying out. The Chinese Powder Puff needs regular brushing, trimming and bathing. The Cresteds sweat through glands in their feet and skin so daily sponge and weekly baths are recommended. This breed is a very light shedding dog if properly groomed and is often referred to as ‘hypoallergenic’.
This breed has a life expectancy of 13 to 15 years and is generally quite healthy. The Chinese Hairless suffers from soft teeth and early tooth loss. This variety of Crested can also sunburn easily and become susceptible to skin cancer.