Chinese Crested Dog
Chinese Crested dogs were around hundreds of years ago, maybe looking the same as today. The Chinese Crested is one of oldest dog breeds in the world. It is thought that the hairless breeds started in Africa and were gradually scattered all over the world as tribes crossed the masses of lands. It is also thought Mexican and Chinese sailors brought them over in clipper ships from the mainland and traded the little dogs for other useful things. It is not known when hairless dogs arrived in China, but for some hundred years they were bred by people of the Han Dynasty.
In the Mexican Museum There is evidence of figures of tiny hairless dogs being found in Ancient Mexican tombs, before the Aztecs arrived. The dog represented 'LOVE', it was one of the ten symbols of 'GOOD BELONGING' to the kingdom of Quetzalcoatl this was during the toltec period of 900AD - 1200AD. The Aztecs later took over the Toltecs and the spiritual image of the dog was destroyed. It was then bred for food.
The first Chinese Crested was exhibited at Crystal Palace in 1896 by Mr WK Taunton (a collector of rare breeds of dogs). However they were not properly introduced to the UK until 1965 when Mrs Ruth Harris imported a dog from Mrs Deborah Wood of the Crest Haven kennels in Florida. The early imports failed to produce puppies that survived and it was when Mrs Harris imported some dogs from the famous Gypsy Rose Lee (who accompanied her dogs to England) and bred them to her Crest Haven dogs that the breed started to establish itself here. The breed started off on the Kennel Club Import Register and by 1982 was granted CC status. However the Powder Puffs were not allowed to be shown until 1986.
A small active toydog, with two distinct types : Deer type - fine and racy; Cobby type - heavier in body and bone.
The Hairless has smooth skin with no large patches of hair on the body, except on the feet, head and tail. The Powder Puff has a coat that consists of an undercoat with a soft veil of long hair, the veil coat is a feature. Both hairless and powder puff should have hare - feet, dark almost to appear black almond shaped eyes and large erect ears (drop ears are permissible in powder puffs).
Chinese Cresteds are a happy dog (never vicious) very affectionate and very loyal to their owners. As with all breeds good handling and training is vital, crested's are a highly intelligent breed who certainly know how to get their own way. Chinese Crested's have the same body temperature as any other dog, the hairless just feel warmer to the touch.
Crested's are over all a healthy breed.
Over the past few years some eye problems have come to light in the form of PRA and Glaucoma. There are many breeders now testing their dogs prior to breeding for both of these plus PLL and Optigen DNA.
Skin care is important in this breed as they can suffer with acne. Like humans the hairless' skin darkens up in the summer and fades in the winter. Always use a good sunblock on your Crested during the summer months as they can burn.