5 Fun Facts About the Chow Chow

By PetMD Editorial on Jul. 22, 2009

The Chow Chow is the dog breed so nice they named it twice. But even if you think you're a Chow Chow expert, these five fun facts about this curious breed should keep you entertained.

1. Purple People Eater?

Although the Chow is no way related to the blue-tongued lizard (or the Minnesota Vikings defensive line), it does have a blue-black/purple tongue. In fact, it’s the only dog breed to have a purplish tongue and lips. Perhaps the Chow was the world’s first Goth?!?

2. Distinctive Looks

Blue tongue and lips aren’t the only thing unique to the Chow Chow. Did you know that the blue-coated Chow usually has a blue or gray nose? You see, even dogs see the importance in matching!

The Chow also has a lovely thick mane with small, rounded ears, thus giving it the appearance of a small, cuddly lion. And one would be remiss to overlook a Chow's curly tail, which it carries on its back when walking. Speaking of walking, its back legs are straight as an arrow, which give it a stilted trot.

3. Old Money

This dog has been around for a long time. Originating in China some 4,000 years ago, the Chow is thought to be one of the oldest dog breeds. (You'd think they'd learn to use chopsticks by now.) Some experts even believe the Chow to be one of the first breeds to have evolved from the wolf. They don’t, however, howl at the moon. That’d be just silly.

4. The "Arnold Schwarzenegger" of Dogs

No, the Chow is most definitely not a bodybuilding dog. And, as far as we know, Chows have no inclinations to seek a career in politics. The Chow, however, does share a similar state of mind with Arnie of Austria.

If a strong-willed Chow is not paired with a dominant master, it'll do whatever it pleases and run amok (let's hope we don't have another Gremlins sequel on our hands). Some people think Chows are beyond training, but these people aren't as well read as your typical PetMD user.

Sure, Chows may be a little stubborn, but these herding dogs are also capable of completing tasks intelligently. Just make sure you train them young, socialize them young, and you enforce all house rules. Remember, you're the boss.

5. Foot Fetish

That’s right. The Chow has a fetish ... a foot fetish. The Chow is the perfect foot warmer on a cold winter day (they’re also great if you have a stingy landlord who doesn’t like to put the heat on). This is because Chows love to sit on your feet and kiss them. Just make sure all this lavish attention doesn't go unnoticed. Feed your Chows well and clean your feet. It's only polite.

So there you have it, five fun facts about the lovely Chow.

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