The Chinese Crested is a toy breed of dog that comes in two varieties. It comes in the Powderpuff (the coated variety) and the Hairless (which only has hair on certain parts of its body: paws (socks), tail (plume), and head (crest). Both types can appear in the same litter, but the hairless gene is dominant.
The Chinese Crested stands between 11 to 13 inches tall, and they tend to weigh between 10 to 13 pounds. Lifespan is generally 12 to 14 years, although there have been cases where some of them have lived longer -- up to 18 years, in fact. They are generally considered companion breeds.
Scientists have recently discovered that Chinese Crested dogs can trace part of their lineage to dogs in the Americas from approximately 10,000 years ago. Researchers made this discovery by studying 1,346 dogs in 161 breeds. It should also be noted that some believe they came from Africa originally. Despite their name, they are not believed to have originated in Asia. The name, however, is believed to have descended from the fact that these dogs were popular with Chinese sailors on Chinese ships where they were used to capture vermin like rats.
Chinese Cresteds have an affectionate, lively, friendly, and alert temperament. Bred as companion dogs, they tend to love spending time with their owners. The Hairless variety can be a little clingy and snuggly, while Powderpuffs tend to have an independent streak. Both are intelligent and enjoy attention from their owners. They may even revel in the spotlight. Separation anxiety can be an issue, however.
Chinese Cresteds are small with generally thin, somewhat elongated bodies. These dogs can also come in a combination of colors, including gray, white, brown, and black (they can sometimes be speckled with pink as well). Powderpuff varieties have a double, straight coat that has no odor and tends to have little or no shedding. Hairless varieties have a single coat and hair on their tails, paws, and head. But there are also the "true" Hairless types that have little or no hair on the tail, paws, and head. Chinese Cresteds are also distinguished by their "hare foot," toes that are more elongated than most dogs. Moreover, the Hairless varieties don't have premolar teeth, though this is not considered a problem or flaw.
Chinese Crested essential facts
Personality: Lively, friendly, alert, affectionate
Energy Level: Medium
Trainability: Consistency required with a gentle, sensitive trainer
Good with children: Not well-suited for a home with small children
Good with other dogs: Yes
Shedding: Minimal to none
Grooming: Weekly bathing and regular brushing recommended
Barking level: Tend to bark often at anything (especially if left alone for long periods of time)
Height: 11 to 13 inches
Weight: 10-13 pounds
Life expectancy: 12-14 years