The Pekingese received its name from the ancient city of Peking, which is now called Beijing. They were considered sacred dogs regarded as a legendary Foo Dog that drove away spirits. They could only be owned by Chinese royalty and were regarded as semi-divine and if you stole one of these dogs you were put to death. People without noble rank had to bow to them.
When an emperor died, his Pekingese was sacrificed so that the dog could go with him to give protection in the afterlife. In 1860 the British overtook the Chinese Imperial Palace.
Chinese Imperial Guards were ordered to kill the little dogs to prevent them from falling into the hands of the "foreign devils." Five of the Pekingese survived and were given to Queen Victoria. It was from these five dogs that the modern day Pekingese descended.
In 1893 the breed was first shown in Britain.
The Pekingese was recognized by the AKC in 1909.
• Due to their short noses, Pekes snore, some quite loudly.
• The round bulging eye of the Pekingese can be damaged or "popped out" during excessively rough play; this is rare but can occur.
• Pekes have an excessive amount of wrinkling on face; this can cause problems with skin fold dermatitis, skin irritations, and infections. The folds should be kept clean and dry.
• Pekes have a tendency to gain weight if overfed.
• A Peke may go on a hunger strike just to prove a point over his owner.
• Pekingese tend to bark a lot.
• The breed can be difficult to housebreak.
• Pekingese tend to be one-person dogs.
• Because of their profuse coat and short noses, they do not tolerate heat well.
The Pekingese is stubborn and independent. He is courageous , despite his small size. He is a big dog in a small dogs body.
The Peke can be a loyal family member, friendly and outgoing, but wary of strangers. They will bark at anything that they feel is out of the ordinary, and can be excellent watchdogs when they feel the family or themselves ,are in danger. They can be very self-important at times.
Although they do get along well with children, they tend to prefer them to be older children. They are not always tolerate of others animals and should be well socialized at an early age. The Pekingese will often become attached to one person, and can become demanding and jealous of their "Human of choice ". They can be considered a lapdog, and are quite content to lounge in the lap of their master. Do not expect a Peke to come when called. This breed , at times, can develop selective hearing.
They will often only come on command, if they feel that there is something in it for them. Bribing with treats must be carefully monitored as Pekes love to eat, and can easily become overweight.
The Pekingese can be a loyal, loving and courageous friend. He also has a stubborn side, and can be jealous of anything or anyone , that he feels may veer the attention of his master away from his often self centered self.
Good grooming is a must for the Pekingese. Bathing should be done once or twice a month. The Peke is a double coated breed and should be brushed on a daily basis to keep mats from forming. Trimming should be done around the pads of the feet so that the feet can touch the floor without being impeded. A spray bottle of grooming spray or distilled water should be kept handy so that the coat can be lightly misted .This will help to cut down on the formation of mats and also help keep the coat healthy. A damp cloth should be used to wipe away excess dirt and moisture around the eyes and wrinkles.
Nails should be trimmed at least every two to three weeks. Ears should be swabbed out with a damp cotton swab. Any signs of redness or swelling in the ears should be a cause for concern. Contact a veterinarian if you notice anything unusual in your Pekes ears. Foul smelling ears could be a sign of a yeast infection. The anal glands should be checked and cleaned at each grooming session. If your Peke is scooting on his bottom,or emitting a foul odor, the anal sacs may need to be expressed.
If your Peke is scratching excessively, he may need a good flea treatment or it could be signs of an allergy. A vet can advise the best course of action to take for either of those problems. The Pekingese is a breed that requires alot of grooming. If you are not willing to devote the time and effort , either by doing your own grooming , or taking him to a professional groomer, then this may not be the right breed for you.
Most Pekingese do not like walks. They may tolerate them, but would much prefer spending the time napping. Never walk a Peke in the heat. They are a Brachycephalic breed and will overheat. A short evening walk is much more to their liking. They enjoy a little playtime with their human families.
Training is not an easy task with the Pekingese. they are stubborn and willful and do not do well adhering to authority. Basic obedience should be taught at an early age.
Puppy classes are highly recommended for this breed. They respond much better to praise than they do to being bossed. This breed is not a breed that will do well in agility. They are strictly a conformation breed. Softly strolling around a ring is a much better way for them to display their royal self. Jumping through hoops or running relays, is far beneath their dignity.
They prefer to be spectators rather than participants of such physical activity. Housebreaking must be consistent with this breed. They are stubborn and must be kept to the task at hand. Crate training is the preferred method . If you choose not to use the crate training method, then puppy pads and a training aid should be started at an early age. Consistency and praise are the best method of training the Pekingese. They respond well to a soothing voice and calm demeanor. Harsh methods will not work with this breed.