The Chow Chow breed is one of the oldest dog breeds and dates back to pre - awhile commune. It is believed that a combination of European dogs combined to create the dog we know today as the Chow Chow. They were originally raised for hunting and loyal companions. A few of their more distinguishing attributes are their young age, dark pigmentation and slightly lacking blue or fawn fur. They are noted for their "chok choy" or tongue, which resembles the way a wolf or wild dog would tinge its tongue. Their closeness to humans is also why so many people identify them so easily with the Chow Chow. Description of the Chow Chow Breed It really is hard to miss the thickly furred muzzle that is the hallmark of the breed. His head is always one inch or so bigger than his shoulders and he is usually between 12 to 16 inches long. He has great strength for his build and he is ideal for both the city and the country. There is only one problem that is commonly raised by owners of the Chow Chow. They are indeed very affectionate animals but they are also independent and manipulative. They have a tendency to be very jealous of other animals and can be quite snappy. The Chow Chow comes in a variety of colors such as red, blue, cinnamon, cream, black, cream, black and tan, and red and white. They are of medium height and love to play and if you have kids, this is the dog for you. They are a direct ancestor to the original Apso and they still retain much of the characteristics of their ancestors. This dog makes a wonderful watchdog. They are a very social dog and need to spend a lot of time with their human companions. The Chow Chow can withstand both rough handling and gentle affection but they definitely have a mind of their own. They are not a dog that will be happy to be held in a pet shop or to be left alone in a back yard. Health Issues Chows are more susceptible to hip dysplasia then other dogs and they are also more prone to various infections. They suffer from eye problems and hearing problems. They are also predisposed to bronchitis and can sometimes be prone to pneumonia. It is important that you take your dog for regular veterinary checkups. When your dog is young, he should receive yearly checkups. It is the breeders who should be breeding this breed long term rather than just putting their puppies in pet shops. Proper attention should be given to the puppy and the pup should be held for the vet during the vet visit. Caring for your Chow Chow Just like any other dog, chow chows will eat anything and this can lead to obesity. Chows must always have a high quality diet. Chows are a featured scavenger and they also enjoy rummaging through garbage and trash.