Chow mix dogs/puppies?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by mamahen, May 24, 2005.

  1. mamahen

    mamahen Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A relative is looking for a puppy, & I've been helping with this. I've posted on the barter board looking for pups. But, we found an adorable little puppy at the local shelter. Approx. 12 weeks old.

    I know, all pups are wonderful! When I first saw her, I thought hmmm spaniel, border collie mix. According to the shelter she is chow & springer spaniel. She is smart as a whip (from what little I could test her with). BUT I just told them, never pick a pup that is either chow or shar-pei. They aren't exactly dog savy, oh they've had them before, but not dogs that are dominant or independant. They want a family dog, laid back, not barky, good when company comes & trains quickly. No aggressive dogs! I did tell her to make sure they take her everywhere, with all kinds of people & noises. I think that works really well to make a pup well adjusted.

    THe springer in the mix really seems to shine thru. I just want all to go well with this little girl & her new home. Any one else ever had a chow & spaniel mix? OR a chow mix?

    The pup will not be around any type of livestock, only another dog & cats. It will live in the country, with lots of property, but never any chickens or such (and none in the area either).

    I hope I didn't steer her wrong. If I was picking a pup, I definatley would've considered this bright girl.

    tricia
     
  2. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

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    As a rule, I avoid anything with chow in it. Nasty dogs with a great tendency to bite. Usually bond to a single person and are generally considered to be very poor with children. They are in the top 10 for dog bite fatalities. Mixed breeds are more likely to bite than pure-breeds (I did not know that before).

    "The Center for Disease Control (CDC) considers Pit Bulls, Rottweilers, German Shepherds, Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, Doberman Pinschers, Chows, Great Danes, St. Bernards, Cocker Spaniels, Collies and Akitas to be the highest risk dogs. However, statistics show around 30 breeds of dogs have been involved in dog bite related fatalities. Almost any breed of dog is capable of inflicting serious, even fatal, damage. "

    Training and socialization is incredibly important, but it helps to start with a good canvas.
     

  3. Steph in MT

    Steph in MT Well-Known Member

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    I do know all dogs are different but we have a 12 yr old pit/chow mix that has always been an absolute delight. She loves all dogs, cats, big and little humans... She has always loved meeting new people and loves to nibble ears. She was a shelter pup from Southern CA where there is a lot of indiscriminate breeding and dog fighting and has had some major surgeries to correct genetic defects in her back legs. Even with all her surgeries she still absolutely LOVES to go see her vets. (We've recently moved and she loves her new vet just as much). At both offices she's known as the "World's sweetest pitbull". Just had to put in my two cents as the proud owner of a loveable pit/chow mix. :)
    Take care~
    Steph
     
  4. Pa funnyfarm

    Pa funnyfarm Well-Known Member

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    I'm typing this while trying to avoid the leash from DDs pup. Her pup was adopted from a shelter in WV thru petfinders. The shelter lister her as chow/boston terrier. The adorable factor is what caught us, and honestly I'd have wondered if bc was in there somewhere from her markings. It seems that a large number of pups are listed as chow mix thru shelters, wondering if they "know" that is the mix or educated guess. This little girl is smart as they come, at 5 months she is doing great in obedience training classes. The vet said to be on the safe side chow mix needs a firm guiding hand, no chance to think they are top dog. He suggested "gentling" excersizes from day one (she was about 3 months when came home). The main one involved holding her under her front legs in front of you at eye level (hard to describe, kind of let her "dangle" back legs not touching the floor) for a few seconds. The good response is she looks down while being held that way. They also said to in play and snuggling, roll her gently on her back and rub tummy then take hand up and kind of cradle her face (non aggressively just to show who is alpha) The last ones involved teaching her "drop" when playing with a toy (as in never let her "win" tug game) and opening her mouth and "checking" teeth and tongue with fingers so she learned to allow her mouth to be looked in without aggression. He also doubted the chow, thinks maybe because her tail is curly they guessed chow, she does not have a dark tongue or the boxy build of a chow. (the way she vocalizes we wondered about basenji for awhile, but boy does she have a ferocious sounding deep bark as she's growing) These were his just in case suggestions. His opinion was that chows can be a handful if not raised with an approach of watchfullness for any aggression and not allowing it to become habit. Hope they have good luck with the pup. This one thinks she is top dog over the cats DD has and occasionally has to get a "water bottle spritz" to remind her not to get too rough. She is a really neat pup tho.
     
  5. mamahen

    mamahen Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm hoping that the shelter is wrong about the mixes, as they sometimes are. It is hard to tell the breed of pups when they are small. Sometimes the owners even have no idea. I'm hoping for the best & am going to try to work with her.

    Hope this works, here's a pic of her,

    http://www.petfinder.org/fotos/PA37/PA37.4450725-1-x.jpg

    This is her brother, the boys were easily twice as big as her!! They were huge boys!

    http://www.petfinder.org/fotos/PA37/PA37.4450725-2-x.jpg

    This girl was a really sweet, outgoing puppy, but it's so hard to tell with all the comotion going on around. Very attentive & observant for a pup.

    tricia
     
  6. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Used to volunteer at a shelter, and then worked for a few years as a veterinary technician.

    Most of the time, you're getting a "best guess" when it comes to mixed breeds. Unless the people who dropped off the animals actually know who bred whom, it's unlikely you're going to be 100% sure. But who cares, if you get a good dog?

    As for chow-chows, I have had only negative experiences with them. When I see that black tongue, I get REAL cautious. Not to say that some people haven't had good experiences with them, but any dog should be suspect when the breed standard states that it is "aloof with humans." You want a dog who lives to please you, not a dog who couldn't care less.

    I'd be willing to bet that those who've had good experiences with chow mixes are those who are conscientious animal owners who take the time to train, train, train that animal.

    Pony!
     
  7. kentuckyhippie

    kentuckyhippie Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have a chow mountain cur mix that is one of the smartest, sweetest dogs I've ever had in the family. He's always been a good watchdog as far as barking to let me know if someone strange was on the property but the only time he will bite is if I sic him on a prowler, hes getting pretty old now and has arthritis bad but even when he is hurting and the kids get a little too rought with him he just gets up and gets away from them, I've never seen him nip or growl at the family. of course he has never been treated mean either. I suppose if he had been kicked or hit when he was a puppy he would have a different personality
     
  8. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Chows are popular in my area, and chow mixes (hairy dogs with black tongues and chow builds) are everywhere.

    My chicken coop is a fortress. Chain link kennel panels, 5ply plywood & woven wire roof, buried wire -- plus a perimeter fence of 5' horse fencing with 2 lines of electric top and 1 line at the bottom. Plus a guard dog .

    Had a 150-200 pound chow mix (dunno what the cross was, but this dog had the biggest feet I've ever seen on a dog) go OVER the perimeter fence, beat the snot out of my 70 lb dobie-x-heeler guard dog, then proceed to go THROUGH a chain link kennel panel and kill some birds. The dog actually pulled the chain link off the pipe, broke the heavy steel clips that held the chain link in place. This was a panel designed for kennels!

    A neighbor lost some goats to a 40 lb chow mix. I've had my guard dog beat up several times by various chow mixes, sometimes winning and sometimes losing. The chows are hairy -- unless they touch their nose to the electric, they usually don't get shocked. I used to ride a horse all the time and chows were the worst offenders when I was riding, for trying to chase the horse. It was usually chows who tried to stand their ground when I turned the horse around and chased them with her. (old broodmare -- she hated dogs with a passion and knew she was bigger than they were. And meaner!) We trampled a few that were attacking us because they were too stubborn or too stupid to run when Desi put her ears back and lowered her head and went into "stomp the dog" mode!

    Bottom line? I've had problems with other breeds, but the worst offenders by far tend to be chows, as far as attacking livestock goes.

    You can take a chow, of course, and socialize it and work with it EXTENSIVELY and probably have an okay dog. It takes experience and a lot of responsibility and a lot of dog knowledge. I'd be cautious around children and livestock, tho. On the other hand, you can get another breed and have much better odds of having a good dog, with a lot less worry and work.

    Leva
     
  9. Jane in southwest WI

    Jane in southwest WI Well-Known Member

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    I have a lab/chow mix, 8 years old now. I found him at 8 weeks and decided to keep him instead of giving him to animal control to be put down. I knew he had some Chow in him because of the thick fur and black spots on his tongue. Other than that, he looks like a lab.

    I thought even as a bitty pup he played kind of rough. At the suggestion of my vet at the time I took him to puppy kindergarten, then when he was about a year old I hired a professional trainer to help me learn how to obedience train a dog with stubborn tendencies and agression to other people/animals.

    I tried to socialize him but then we moved to the country and don't get many visitors. We have to keep Fritz on a leash and have complete control over him when people do come over. It's difficult, but we are attached to him now. He is a good dog for me and my husband, but not to anyone else. Fortunately, no kids are ever around, we don't have any. I wish I could invite family and friends over but then what to do with the dog?

    Long story short, I love this dog because he is so bright and is my personal body guard, office mate, and hiking/jogging buddy. He is very well trained for all commands except "come" (shows some stubborness) and I need to use a pronged collar to keep him in a sit if there is a stranger at the door. I tie him on a rope to go outside because if he saw an animal like a deer or squirrel he would chase it into the next county. I wondered if I was a failure as a dog trainer but now I believe that agression/hunting is just part of his genes. I now think I can train any dog after this one. I may still adopt another mixed breed stray someday, but I don't think I ever want another dog like Fritz.
     
  10. Corgitails

    Corgitails Well-Known Member

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    I'll be honest, I don't like chows, but chow MIXES can be WONDERFUL. My first dog was a shepherd/chow x and she was wonderful. Aussie x chow, golden x chow, thse are some of my favorite shelter dogs from the past. Depending on her individual personality, she will probably need regular sociailzation and obedience. The pigmented tongue- if hers is solid- is a dominent trait and can carry down multiple generations if she's a real heinz 57. I don't see too many PB chows any more, so that's a possibility. Also, if she's just got black SPOTS on her tongue? That happens in quite a few breeds, including labs, BCs and ACDs, dalmatians, most of the spaniels and setters and Newfs.

    In short, I wouldn't let the breed guess scare you off. I'd just be aware that you probably want to be careful to socialize her with a wide group of people and animals, and realize that you may have to be pretty creative with training if she takes after the chow-side of her personality. Chows don't respond well to physical force in training, are not terribly motivated by treats and only sometimes by praise or toys, so they can be a real challange to train.
     
  11. kathy H

    kathy H kathyh

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    My neighbor had a black chow named Sammy and she was great, One of those people in a dogs body typ.
     
  12. hisenthlay

    hisenthlay a.k.a. hyzenthlay

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    I know at least one really nice chow mix that is a perfect angel around even the tiniest, noisiest, grabbiest kids. Generally, though, I do try to avoid chows for all the usual reasons.

    But, why do they think she's a chow mix? If it's because of black SPOTS on the tongue instead of an entirely black tongue (or actual knowledge about the parents) then it could be very misleading. MANY purebred non-Chow dogs have black spots on their tongues. I copied a list below. My doberman (mix?) has black spots, for example.

    Just by looking at pics of your girl, chow would not have been my first guess. How big is she at 12 weeks? She looks more like a Newfie or retriever-type mix to me. To help you gauge how big she will be, an 8-10 week old Newf puppy will weigh 15-20 lbs. She's adorable! The shelter told me that my doberman (mix?) was a shepherd husky cross. I don't know if they got that from her very short, 100% doberman looking coat, or her smallish, non-upright ears, or what, but it made me doubt everything else they said :no:.

    "The following is a list of known purebreds with black pigmentation on their tongues...
    Labrador Retriever, Golden Retriever, Newfoundland, Samoyed, German Shepherd, Akita, Belgian Sheepdog, Collie, Tervuren,
    Malinois, Fila Brasileiro, Cairn Terrier, Great Pyrenees, Keeshond, Airedale, Doberman Pinscher, Bouvier de Flandres, Australian Shepherd,
    Australian Cattle Dog, Pug, Shiba Inu, Dalmatian, Flat-coated Retriever, Gordon Setters, Shar-Pei, Cocker Spaniel, Siberian Husky,
    Rottweiler, Rhodesian Ridgeback, and of course the Chow."
    From:
    http://www.geocities.com/cttnwds/health/wddisorders.htm
     
  13. MTNwomanAR

    MTNwomanAR Well-Known Member

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    I have to admit, that before I got Punkin[a rot/chow mix], that I didn't like chows either. And I still wouldn't want a full blood chow. But she was one of the smartest, kindest, and best kids dog that I ever had. My ex acted like he was going to smack his youngest daughter, and punkin got between them, looked up at him as if to say 'I don't think so.'....it was kinda cool.... but yeah, I do think all dogs[really all animals] should be judged on their individual merits. I've heard all the horror stories about rotts and my sister owns two of the gentlest dogs I've ever seen, both full blood rotts.... I think ANY dog can be MADE mean....just as any other animal can... a lot of the animals disposition depends on breeding, but one must also consider the way the animals are raised/trained.............
     
  14. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    We had a WONDERFUL Shepherd/Chow mix stray that lived with us 8 years. She was gentle, loving, clean, well behaved, and talked like a Wookie.

    Miss her still.
     
  15. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    re: the black tongue thing...

    In my experience, "black pigment" on chow tongues looks almost bluish. If you have a full-blooded chow anesthetized on the table, you have to make sure it's not cyanotic!

    I've had other breeds, as some have mentioned, who have black spots on their tongues. Different thing entirely.

    Pony!
     
  16. mzzlisa

    mzzlisa Well-Known Member

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    I have a Chow/Black Lab mix that I adopted from a shelter last August. She is the Best Dog!! The Chow in her makes her a bit protective ( she sleeps in my son's room and if anyone ever tried to break into his room, they wouldn't last long!) but at the same time, the Lab makes her very agreeable. She's gentle, and always in a good mood. She is just a bit food protective with my other dog, but that may be from living on the streets for awhile. She isn't that way with me however. I can pet her while she is eating and she just wags her tail.

    When you adopt a shelter dog, its almost as if they are grateful to you for choosing to give them a second chance!
     
  17. puglady

    puglady Well-Known Member

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    As others have said, I wouldn't trust the pound's guesstimate on parentage. I wanted a watchdog for my dog-loving 90-year old mother who is barely five feet tall. She has bred dogs and trained dogs all of her life, so she is very dog-savvy. I bought her a pound pup, said to be border-collie/German shepherd mix, and would only grow to be a medium-sized dog.
    Mickey was the most lovable mutt in the world, but we had to give him away when he topped 100 pounds (at only 1 1/2 years old) and came up past my waist. (I am 5'10") I am guessing Australian shepherd from the bluish spots, and Irish wolfhound from the build and the way he loped when he ran. Hard to describe, but very distinctive. He went to a farm family with boys that could handle him, and I got Mom a shihtzu/poodle mix. :no:
     
  18. mamahen

    mamahen Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I agree on the tongue comments. I didn't see anything on her tongue, but one brother had a few spots. I do think a lot of people think, him blue, black or spotted tongue, chow dog.

    Her brothers are HUGE, and seeing them first, I would think newfie cross. They're probably about 20 lb! She is more petite, but still a big girl, probably 10-12 lb?Her coat is fluffy, but it is still a puppy coat.

    She's being spayed on Friday & comes home on Tues. (holiday weekend). Luckily ball season just started, so she can be at lots of games with lots of kids, smells & people around. I hope they take my advice & take her to every game! :D

    tricia
     
  19. Terry - NW Ohio

    Terry - NW Ohio Well-Known Member

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    We have a Chow mix we got from the local pound and she's great. She looks as if she might be mixed with retriever. She's three years old, very smart and loves people and is good with children. We rarely hear her bark. The only problem we have had with her is that she loves being with us so much, she demolished a gate, trying to get to us :D . We have a better gate now and all is fine. She's in the house part time and outside part time.
     
  20. januaries

    januaries Well-Known Member

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    I have a shepherd/chow puppy. He's 5 months and nearing 50 lbs. He's anything but aloof--the goofiest, most huggable sweetie I've ever known. Very smart and practically house-trained himself. He responds much better to routine and praise than to scolding. I was upset when I found his mother--my shepherd--with the chow down the road because I'd heard so many negative things about chows. But I discovered that folks around here prize chow mixes, and there were more good homes than I had puppies to place. Here's a site on chow/shepherd mixes.
    http://www.familyeducation.com/whatworks/item/front/1,2551,1-16755-6064,00.html
    As the others pointed out, it's difficult to be certain of a mixed breed unless you know both parents. I'd not worry too much about possible breeds and, instead, evaluate the puppy as an individual.