One of the many facts that the American Kennel Club offers interested parties about the Shar Pei breed is that ownership is something that should be considered with careful thought. This is a breed that is wonderful with its family but can be very aloof and untrustworthy around strangers. Additionally, the AKC states that while this dog is highly intelligent, it’s also a breed that is very stubborn. What this can mean is that families who choose to take on a Shar Pei puppy might find it difficult to train the anima. This is not to say you cannot train your new dog, only that the challenge might be a bit more than you expected. These are dogs that are very stubborn, which is why so many people do find that it can be more challenging to train this breed than some other breeds. If you and your family are in the market for a Shar Pei, however, you will be very happy with this breed provided you do the necessary research so that you know what you’re getting into. These adorable and very distinct dogs can be a lot of fun, they make great family members, and they’re unfailingly loyal. But are you ready for one of your own?
It’s a Commitment
One of the most important things to learn about the Shar Pei (okay, any and all dogs) is that they are animals. What does this mean, you ask? This means that they’re animals; they need love, time and attention. They need you to make a commitment to them that’s going to last their entire life; not just until you decide that you cannot or do not want to care for the animal anymore. All dogs deserve a loving home filled with people who care for them and make them feel comfortable and happy. If you cannot make that type of commitment, a Shar Pei is not right for you.
Training is Required
If you go with a puppy, you’re going to need to train the puppy. We don’t like telling people what to do, but we think it’s safe to assume you do not want your new puppy using your shoes and baby toys as chew toys or your carpet and rugs as its own personal toilet, so we assume that you will want to train your dog. We’ve already discussed that the AKC states that Shar Pei’s a stubborn and can make training a bit of a challenge. Before you become discouraged about his, understand that you don’t have to train the dog alone. There are people who you can pay to help you train the dog, to modify behavior that’s inappropriate and even camps you can take the dog to where he or she will learn all that it needs to know to make it the perfect animal to have around the house. Professional training is always an option for those who can afford the fees.
You must be consistent. It is not possible to train a dog using methods that are irregular. When you don’t follow through, when you allow behavior you do not want to occur and when you do not use proper discipline or stick with a schedule, it becomes very difficult to train any dog – especially one that’s stubborn enough as it is. For this reason, consistency is going to make you feel much more successful in the process of training your new pup.
Strangers Make these Dogs Nervous
It’s very important that you begin to socialize this dog as early as possible considering the fact that it is very wary of strangers. It can be very nervous around people it does not know, and it’s one that needs socialization from the start to help ease it’s nervousness around others. The good news, however, is that this breed is nowhere near nervous around you and your family. It’s a very friendly, very loyal and very loving breed that will show frequent affection and happiness when around the family. This is one of the biggest reasons so many dog owners love this breed so much.
Do you have the Time to Care for a Dog?
Like any animal, the Shar Pei does require a great deal of time as far as care is concerned. It’s not a cat that you can allow to take care of itself when you’re not around and when you are. This dog must be taken outside, take on walks, exercised and engaged. If you haven’t the time to devote to that kind of ownership, a dog might not be for you. On a good note, you can look at exercising and walking your dog as a great excuse to get out of the house and do the same for yourself. There is a reason that many experts believe dog owners live longer lives that are filled with good health. Owning a dog requires exercise and it relieves stress. Both are beneficial to you, so it might be work making the time to get a dog so that you can also improve your own health.
Find the Right Breeder
Now that you’re convinced you want a Shar Pei and that this is the right breed for you, it’s time to find a breeder that’s reputable. This is someone who will raise their dogs in nice conditions. The dogs will not be skittish, they will be healthy and they will have proper documentation. You should never purchase a dog from a breeder if you cannot visit the breeder’s home or breeding location, or if you see the location where the dogs are being kept and find that it’s unacceptable. You should ensure that the dog has all its paperwork, including its most recent vet visits. Dogs that have not been taken to the vet are not being raised by a real breeder, which means that you are not going to get what you are paying for. Check with the AKC for reputable Shar Pei breeders in your particular area.
Photo by Stephen Chernin/Dockers via Getty Images