Pekingese pictures
Pekingese suitability

In my own words


“Zzzzz...Zzzz...WOOF! WHO IS THAT OUTSIDE... a next door neighbour? I don’t like the look of them…Grrrr… FINE, fine I’ll come down. I’m a bit of a keen watch dog you see. I alert you to unfamiliar sounds and am ALWAYS on the lookout, even when I’m sleeping! You can count on me. It’s looking a bit damp outside, maybe we should skip the walk today and I’ll just play in the garden later if it clears up. I don’t fare well in certain temperatures due to my flat nose; my breed can easily pick up breathing problems. I’m not really an outdoor kinda dog anyway; I like the odd walk but am also happy sitting here on my purple cushion, being pampered. There is NOTHING I love more than being pampered, it dates back to my ancestors who were exclusively owned by royalty, which means I am royalty as well, right? I like to have your attention and if I don’t get it I can be a bit, erm, moody. Yes, I can be a bit of a diva and throw the odd strop, but you always know how to worm me round! See it as a good thing, I love your attention cos I love YOU and it means I’m an easy crowd to please once I am your main focus. If you want to sit on the couch and watch TV, I’ll do that with you. Want to play? I’d love to. I’m good with children if they want to join in also. Wanna go shopping? I’ll do that with you too, just as long as presents are bought for me… Only joking. Sort of.  People will admire me on the street when we go out, they can’t help it. I’m gorgeous. I can be wary of strangers and also protective of you. I may be small but I am dignified with an intelligent and sometimes feisty personality, but you’ll learn to love me for it!”

My ideal owner(s)




Apartment dwellers

Couch potatoes

What they say about me







Fabulous right? Read on to see if we can be the ultimate duo!

Is this Pekingese for you?

Test your knowledge about the Pekingese

Information essential about the Pekingese


Kennel Club Group: Toy


Size: small

Weight Male 7 – 11 lb. (3– 5kg) Female 7 – 12 lb. (3 – 5.5 kg)

Height Male 6 – 9” (15 – 23 cm) Female 6 – 9” (15 – 23cm)



As well as being the subject of many fascinating Chinese legends, the Pekingese has been owned by many celebrities such as Shirley Temple, Betty White and Elizabeth Taylor. A Pekingese was almost amongst one of the only two dogs to survive when the great ship Titanic went down, he was owned by Henry Sleep Harper.

Breed History:


The Pekingese is considered to be one of the oldest dog breeds, originating in China over 2000 years ago. During this time they were only permitted to be owned by members of the Chinese Imperial Palace. Due to their lion like appearance, they were considered to be a guardian spirit amongst the Chinese and also named the ‘Lion Dogs of China’.

During the second opium war in 1860, the Emperor fled the Old Summer Palace leaving his elderly aunt behind. When the British and French troops entered, she committed suicide. She was found with her five Pekingese surrounding her, mourning her death. The dogs were taken by the western soldiers, and brought back to Europe. Queen Victoria was given one of the Pekes, alongside other Lords and Duchesses, boosting their exposure and popularity.

There is a legend that describes the Pekingese as the offspring of a lion and a marmoset. They fell in love and went to the patron saint of animals to see if he could help them. The saint allowed the Lion to marry the Marmoset as long as the Lion sacrificed his size and strength, becoming closer to the size of the Marmoset but retaining his heart and courage.

The AKC registered the Pekingese breed in 1906.



The Pekingese were originally considered royalty, and they haven’t forgotten it! They are independent and dignified, with a naughty streak. The Pekingese considers itself royalty, and expects and demands to be pampered. Despite their small stature, they make excellent watchdogs as they will give alarm to any unusual noise. Very much a one person pet, they are wary and suspicious of strangers, and typically do not get on with other pets. They can be jealous and try to dominate over their master which is why a firm hand is needed. Pekes are extremely loyal and devoted; they can be sensitive, loving and extremely affectionate. They are good pets for all the family and do well with older children.




Although haughty with an air of arrogance, the Pekingese is a sensitive soul which craves your attention.  They also have a tendency to become jealous and will compete for your attention. Without your attention be prepared for a peeved growl!

Tact is often required when owning a Pekingese. They sometimes get the idea they are bigger than they actually are and will try and show a dominance over bigger dogs by picking on them, and dominance over you by refusing food, games or affection. Without spoiling them, figure out what they really want and they will snap out of it. As you become closer to your Peke you will get to know their little strops and just how to entice them out of them!  In no means are they aggressive, and will not pick a fight easily, but are just not to be bossed around as they can more than stand their ground.

Not the most active of dogs, Pekes enjoy exercise but won’t hassle you for a walk every evening. They are also accustomed to a snuggle on the sofa and are ideal for people who live in apartments or without yards.



Beautiful and regal, the Pekingese is a small compact long coated dog with a characteristically short, flat face and an abundantly feathered tail curled over the back.

The Pekingese is a double coat breed. The coat should be long and straight with an ample mane extending over the shoulders and round the neck. The topcoat should be coarse, extravagant, long and flowing with profuse feathering. The undercoat is soft and plush in texture.

The Pekingese should have a large head, being wider than deep. The skull should be broad and flat with good width between the eyes and a wide muzzle. The nose, which is well set between the eyes, should be short and broad with large open nostrils. The large sized eyes should be round and dark in colour. The ears are heart shaped, set level with the skull and carried close to the head. The neck is very short and thick. The chest is short and broad. The front legs should be short, thick and slightly bowed; the back legs should not be as heavily boned as the front legs. The feet should be large and flat; the front feed should turn out slightly. The long feathered tail should be high set and carried over the back. The feathering is also abundant on the ears, back of the legs and toes.

Overall, Pekingese have a mini lion appearance with a dignified air.



All colours and patterns are allowable. Pekes come in a wide variety of colours and markings.



Like other canine companions, the Pekingese does not respond well to harsh, loud or overly bossy masters. They require small, varied sessions of basic obedience and socialization. They can be difficult to train as they can be stubborn, but patience is key.

Pekes have loads to say, and will bark and bark. This makes them a good watch dog as they will alert you to intruders. With training and socialization you can reduce the barking a little, but be warned this will never cease completely.



Being a small dog, the Pekingese can have the majority of their exercise needs met indoors with play sessions. They enjoy a few short walks a day for 20-40 minutes per day. This isn’t much in comparison to other larger breeds who require a lot more. They can also occupy themselves when left in the garden or in the company of toys.



The Pekingese requires daily brushing due to their elegant coats. This prevents tangles, knots and mats. They are average shedders. They will also need to be dry shampooed regularly. Their faces and eyes need to be cleaned daily and delicately with a damp soft cloth. Special care must be given not to overfeed as they can gain weight easily.



The Pekingese has been known to suffer mainly from breathing and sight issues due to their flat faces. They can also suffer back problems due to their long back and older dogs may not be able to go up and down stairs unaided.  To ease the breathing problems, Pekes should not be left outside as they cannot regulate their body heat in overly hot or cold weather. The risk of eye infections can be reduced by cleaning the dogs face with a damp flannel every day. Pekes have an average lifespan of 11.4 years.


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Advice on choosing your breed »

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The following grid gives a fast track review which covers all breeds. You can apply it to help you decide if a Pekingese is suitable for you, the environment where you live, your personality and your lifestyle. On the grid, 1= strongly disagree, and 5= strongly agree. For example, if you are looking for a dog that is good for older people, scroll down and you will see in red the Pekingese score is 5, this means he is very good for older people. You might like to save or print off this section and keep it for reference while you check some other breeds before making your final choice

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Noahs Breed Rating | Community Breed Rating

Good jogging companion3/5
Good walking companion3/5
Likes water/swimming1/5
Likes learning new tricks4/5
Likes to hunt2/5
Likes to fetch3/5
Good gundog/retriever1/5
Barks a lot5/5
Gets easily jealous5/5
Friendly with strangers3/5
Expensive to insure1/5
Expensive to feed1/5
Happy to sleep outside1/5
Prefers countryside5/5
Suits urban environment5/5
Prefers temperate climate3/5
Prefers hot climate1/5
Prefers cold climate1/5
Moults a lot3/5
Requires lots of grooming5/5
Role and Suitability
Ideal for elderly5/5
Ideal for singles5/5
Ideal for couples with no children5/5
Ideal for family with children5/5
Good watch dog5/5
Good guard dog3/5
Good with other pets1/5
Good with other dogs2/5
Time and Energy
Happy being left alone for 4hrs1/5
Happy being left alone for 2hrs1/5
Requires lots of exercise3/5
Training and Obedience
Good for first time owners4/5
Good for experienced owners5/5
Good recall3/5
Easy to train3/5
Good jogging companion0/5
Good walking companion0/5
Likes water/swimming0/5
Likes learning new tricks0/5
Likes to hunt0/5
Likes to fetch0/5
Good gundog/retriever0/5
Barks a lot0/5
Gets easily jealous0/5
Friendly with strangers0/5
Expensive to insure0/5
Expensive to feed0/5
Happy to sleep outside0/5
Prefers countryside0/5
Suits urban environment0/5
Prefers temperate climate0/5
Prefers hot climate0/5
Prefers cold climate0/5
Moults a lot0/5
Requires lots of grooming0/5
Role and Suitability
Ideal for elderly0/5
Ideal for singles0/5
Ideal for couples with no children0/5
Ideal for family with children0/5
Good watch dog0/5
Good guard dog0/5
Good with other pets0/5
Good with other dogs0/5
Time and Energy
Happy being left alone for 4hrs0/5
Happy being left alone for 2hrs0/5
Requires lots of exercise0/5
Training and Obedience
Good for first time owners0/5
Good for experienced owners0/5
Good recall0/5
Easy to train0/5

*PLEASE NOTE: All our breed profiles are general, and all dogs are individuals. Always talk to the breeders and meet the owners you are buying from. Try to meet the dog and its parents if it is a puppy in their home environment.

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