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Chinese Shar-Pei – Fun Facts and Crate Size

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Chinese Shar-Pei

Chinese Shar-Pei

Quick Facts:

  • AKC recognized in 1992
  • Lifespan: 8-12 years
  • Size: Medium
  • Energy: Medium
  • Recommended Crate Size: 36” dog crate*

Return to main Dog Crate Size Breed Chart.

In 1978, the Guinness Book of World Records and TIME magazine named the Chinese Shar-Pei as one of the rarest dog breeds. It wasn’t recognized by the American Kennel Club until 1992. According to the AKC, as of 2017 it is the 61st most popular dog breed.

The Shar-Pei was smuggled into America by a businessman. It is believed that these Shar-Pei are mostly the offspring of these initially smuggled dogs. The Chinese differentiates the original Shar-Pei with the breed that is popular in the west and there is a difference in their look.

This breed was originally bred in Canton as watch dogs to guard the Chinese imperial palace. They can be aggressive and territorial towards strangers and other dogs. Their features also contribute to their effectiveness in fights; with folded ear flaps and their small eyes deep in their sockets, it’s hard for the opponents to hurt vital organs.

The combination of their aggression and defensive features can be lethal. Socialization and obedience training should be done as early as possible when they are still cute, friendly pups. Training is best done with a clear, effective reward system, as Shar-Pei dogs don’t respond well to violent training.


The American Kennel Club formally recognized the Chinese Shar-Pei in 1992. These medium energy dogs are known as independent, calm, and loyal. They are loving and loyal to its family but tend to be cautious when encountering strangers, a characteristic that made people in China realize their value as a watchdog. 


This strong and sturdy medium-sized breed weighs between 45-60 pounds and stands as tall as 18-20 inches. The ears are small and triangular and the tail is high-set. It has a blue-black tongue and a harsh coat. The most distinctive feature is the wrinkled, loose skin covering its head, neck and body. Chinese Shar-Pei have abundant wrinkles as a puppy, which eventually tame as it grows into an adult, where it becomes limited to the head and neck.


It is recommended to provide feed formulated to medium-sized breeds. It is highly recommended to discuss your dog’s feed with your veterinarian and/or breeder in order to determine size and frequency of meals in order to ensure a health, long life. It is also important to ensure that clean, fresh water is always available.


An occasional bath is sufficient to keep a Chinese Shar-Pei’s body clean. To maintain its dental health, brush the teeth regularly. It grows nails pretty fast so regular trimming should be done in order to avoid cracking and overgrowth. Its ears are folded; therefore a regular check is a must to remove earwax and debris that could lead to infection.


Walking them once or twice a day will be enough to keep them healthy. They are calm and not as active in nature. While walking them in public areas, be cautious when encountering strangers or other dogs as the Chinese Shar-Pei tends to be suspicious towards them. Again, it is important that this breed benefit from obedience training and proper supervision.

Pet Crate Size

Pet Crates Direct recommends 36” dog crates* for most adult Chinese Shar-Pei.

* Links for crate sizes will bring you to the most appropriate Amazon page.

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