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Chinese Shar-pei breed Info

Description
Shar Pei is a breed of dog originating from China, whose distinctive feature is deep wrinkles. The name (??, pinyin: sha pí) itself translates to "Sand Skin," not because of their colors, but because of their texture. As young puppies, they have lots of wrinkles, but as they mature, the wrinkles disappear as they "grow into their skin". They were not recognized by the American Kennel Club until 1991.

Coming in many colors, it has the same characteristic blue-black tongue of the Chow Chow. The loose skin and wrinkles covering the head, neck and body are superabundant in puppies, but adult Shar Pei grow into their skin and these features should be limited to the head, neck and withers. Improper breeding (detrimental to the health of the Shar Pei) produces adult dogs with wrinkles covering all of the body. Small ears, a hippo muzzle shape, and a high set tail also give the Shar Pei a unique look.
Proportions
18 to 20 inches.
40 to 55 pounds.
Background
The Shar Pei breed comes from the Guangzhou province of China where it was well-known as a fighting and guard dog. It is suspected that due to the laid-back nature of the Shar Pei, the dogs had to be drugged to induce them to fight. Originally, the intense loyalty of the Shar Pei defined its work -- guarding the Chinese royal family. The dogs are ideally suited for defense; the small ears and deep-set eyes are tough to grab and if grabbed on the skin, the wrinkles enable the dog to turn around and bite back. Once Mao took over, he killed everything that had to do with the royal family, including the Shar Pei. At one point they were close to extinction, and were listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as "The rarest dog in the world". Since then, however, the Shar Pei has begun to thrive in many parts of the world as an excellent family dog, due to their loving and devoted nature, which shows that they were originally a utility and companion breed rather than a fighting breed.

Recent DNA analysis has concluded that the Shar Pei is one of the most ancient dog breeds.
Points of Interest
A common problem caused by irresponsible breeding is a hereditary and painful eye condition, entropion, which turns the eyelashes inward, thus irritating the eye. Untreated, it can cause blindness. This condition can be fixed by surgery ("tacking" the eyelids up so they won't roll onto the eyeball for puppies or surgicaly removing extra skin in adolescent and older Shar Peis). Allergy-induced skin infections can be a problem in this breed caused by poorly selected breeding stock. One of the serious problems that a Shar Pei can have is Shar Pei fever. The disease causes short fevers lasting up to 24 hours, after which there may be no recurrence; alternatively they may recur at more frequent intervals, becoming more serious. There is also a possibly related disease called amyloidosis, caused by unprocessed amyloid proteins depositing in the organs and most often in the kidneys or liver leading to renal failure. At this time there is no test for either of these diseases and they seem to be prevalent.
Special Talents
Watchdog, guarding, and competitive obedience.