The Pekingese is an ancient toy breed originating in China. They derived their name from Peking, Beijing’s former name.

In the late 19thcentury the Chinese Imperial Palace fell to the British and the petite dogs were taken to England were they caught the eye of the Queen and other aristocrats.

They were officially recognised in 1902 by the American Kennel Club.

Today’s Pekingese is no longer just for royalty or the affluent they are common companion dogs around the globe.


  • Toy Breed
  • Strong Willed
  • Feisty
  • Vocal
  • Compact

Pekingese Temperament & Size

These dogs make excellent companions but are not suitable for households with very young children.

They are wary of strangers and will bark, making them great watchdogs.

As with most toy breeds they require correct, firm training and early socialisation to avoid behavioural problems.

Careful feeding and regular exercise is imperative as these dogs are prone to gaining weight.

Pekingese Life Span & Health Problems

Average lifespan is 13-15 years.

Common Illnesses include;

  • Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome (BAS) – A combination of anatomical features including narrow nostrils elongated soft palate and deformed throat result in breathing difficulties and require special management and sometimes surgery.
  • Urinary Stones – Excessive amounts of crystals forming stones in the urinary tract which can lead to infection or blockage.
  • Patella Luxation – Partial to full dislocation of one or both kneecaps.
  • Distachiasis – Extra eyelashes at eyelid margin which can rub against the corneal surface.
  • Entropion – Excess eyelid tissue causing the eyelashes to turn inward and rub against the surface of the eye resulting in corneal ulceration.
  • Cataracts – Clouding of the lens causing blurred vision to blindness.
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease – Compression of the spinal cord causing pain or weakness to paralysis
  • Skin Fold Dermatitis – Many breed standards require that the dog have excessive and wrinkled skin. This excess skin leads to folding and subsequent irritation, inflammation and infection.
  • Hydrocephalus – Excessive accumulation of spinal fluid around the brain causing seizures, blindness and eventual death.
  • Mitral Valve Disease (MVD) – Degeneration of the heart’s Mitral Valve leading to eventual congestive heart failure.

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