A small, naked bodied dog with hair only on their head, ears, paws and tail lies elegantly on the grass, relaxing in the sun.

Chinese Crested Dog

22 February 2023

Let’s talk about… Chinese Crested: what are they?

  • The Chinese Crested is a unique and charming breed known for its hairless appearance.
  • However, there are also varieties with a full coat called the Powderpuff.
  • Chinese Crested are friendly, affectionate, and make great companions.
  • They have a distinct appearance with their hairless bodies, except for their plumed tail and a crest of hair on their head, feet, and tail.
  • They come in a variety of colours and patterns.
  • The average height of Chinese Cresteds ranges from 25 to 33 cm, and they weigh between 3.2 and 5.4 kg.
  • They have a relatively long lifespan of around 12 to 14 years.
Chinese Crested  Exercise Needs 3/5 Grooming Ease 4/5 Trainability 4/5

What is the temperament of Chinese Cresteds like?

  • Chinese Cresteds are known for their affectionate and loving nature.
  • They are often described as being devoted to their owners and enjoy being lap dogs.
  • They are generally good with children and other pets if socialised from a young age.
  • Chinese Cresteds can be a bit reserved with strangers, but they warm up quickly with proper introductions.
  • They thrive on human companionship and make excellent family pets for those seeking a loving and loyal companion.
Arnie, the Chinese Crested Dog

How much exercise do Chinese Cresteds need?

  • Chinese Cresteds have moderate exercise needs and require up to an hour of exercise per day.
  • Daily walks, interactive play sessions, and mental stimulation activities are beneficial for their overall well-being.
  • While they enjoy some outdoor time, it's important to protect their skin from excessive sun exposure due to their hairless or partially hairless bodies.
  • They also appreciate indoor play sessions to keep them mentally stimulated and physically active.
Bowie, the Chinese Crested

Do Chinese Cresteds need a lot of grooming?

  • Chinese Cresteds have unique grooming needs depending on their coat type.
  • Hairless Chinese Cresteds require regular skincare to protect their delicate skin.
  • Moisturising lotions, sunscreens, and protective clothing can help shield their skin from the sun and harsh weather conditions.
  • The Powderpuff variety has a long, soft coat that requires regular brushing to prevent matting and tangling.
  • Like any dog, regular tooth brushing with a dog-specific toothpaste twice daily is ideal. If you can’t manage that often, just do it as often as you can.
Toola, the Chinese Crested Dog

Are Chinese Cresteds easy to train?

  • Chinese Cresteds are generally intelligent and eager to please, making them relatively easy to train.
  • They respond well to positive reinforcement methods such as treats, praise, and rewards.
  • Early socialisation and consistent training from a young age are essential for shaping their behaviour.
  • Chinese Cresteds can excel in various dog sports and activities, including obedience, agility, and therapy work.
Winnie Woo, the Chinese Crested Dog

What do Chinese Cresteds eat?

  • A balanced and nutritious diet is crucial for the overall health and well-being of Chinese Cresteds.
  • High-quality commercial dog food formulated for small breeds is recommended.
  • Ensure the food provides the necessary nutrients and is appropriate for their age and activity level.
  • Most adult dogs do well being fed twice daily.
  • Puppies should be fed 3-4 times a day until 6 months old when this can be reduced to twice daily.
  • They should be given a specially formulated puppy diet until they reach approximately 12 months of age.
  • At 12 months they can be transitioned to adult dog food gradually.
  • Your vet can advise on the dietary needs of your Chinese Crested.

Are Chinese Cresteds healthy?

Chinese Cresteds are generally a healthy breed, but they can be prone to certain health issues, including:

Bones and Joints

  • Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease: a hip condition that affects the blood supply to the head of the femur bone, leading to breakdown of the bone, pain and lameness.
  • Luxating patella - this is when a dog’s kneecap moves out of where it should normally be


  • Periodontal Disease - a buildup of plaque and tartar on a dog’s teeth leading to  inflammation, infection and tooth loss


  • Cataracts - a common cause of blindness due to a clouding of the lens of the eye
  • Primary Lens Luxation - the lens of the eye shifts from its normal position, which results in glaucoma and  inflammation
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) - this is when the retina of the eye breaks down, leading to blindness


  • Atopy - when the immune system overreacts to an allergen and results in skin irritation
  • Sunburn - inadequate protection from the skin can result in burns from sun exposure

This list is by no means comprehensive. If you have any concerns about the health of your Chinese Crested or want to discuss further if this breed is right for you, consult with your veterinarian.

BorrowMyDoggy loves Chinese Cresteds

BorrowMyDoggy has 379 Chinese Crested members.

Information on this page should never replace advice given by your veterinarian. Potential health issues presented are given as a guide only and are not meant to be comprehensive. If you ever have any concerns about your dog’s health, contact your local vet.

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