by Ian D.

(Hong Kong)

Cookie (with Bandana)

Cookie (with Bandana)

We adopted Cookie from the SPCA, he was a rescue dog (he had been thrown out as garbage and left in a bin to die) and as we had previously owned a Pekingnese dog we knew of the pros and cons. It was not however an instant choice and we had to visit him in the kennels several times before we could make the decision to adopt.

Pekes are active "food guarders" - in other words never approach or make eye contact with it when they are eating! Drinking water is fine but we once made a mistake of putting apple juice in his bowl and he became very aggressive when we approached - almost as if there was food in the bowl! Incidentally, we only feed Cookie dried dog food such as Science Diet or Eukanuba as meat seems to make him more irritable and also increases dental problems.

Pekes can be adorable and affectionate, but I find it's only when you play by THEIR have to read the signs of when to and when not to approach the breed. Mostly, we alert Cookie verbally then allow him to come to us, not the other way around. We discovered this early with our last Peke, the saying "let sleeping dogs lie" could never be so true as in a Pekingnese's case!

They are sensitive to sudden noises or movement, so always move slowly and quietly when in close proximity of a Peke. They may lash out, even bite the owner if suddenly disturbed from sleep - however I try to relate this to somebody violently shaking me from slumber and would probably react the same way.

They are excellent watch dogs, but are not prone to learning "dog tricks" as with other breeds, the best we've ever achieved is to get Cookie to roll over, although we're not sure if he does this for our or his own pleasure!

Keep away from small children who tend to play with them as toys and might end up getting a severe bite...when we had a family with small children stay with us, we mostly kept Cookie on a raised surface so that both the dog and the baby could not make physical contact. Placing a Peke on a higher surface like a spacious table seems to calm them down, plus doesn't allow them to jump about as they are afraid of falling.

Obviously this wasn't a permanent situation, only when the baby was present...otherwise Cookie was allowed to roam freely through the house. Peke's are "royalty" and have served kings and emperors alike and deserve a certain amount of respect, but must also be punished when acting badly.

We have never hit or beaten Cookie, our punishment takes the form of being tied up for certain periods or "ignored" (Pekes hate this). Cookie is unusual in that he is white haired and has an unusually long body for his breed.

Always keep Pekingnese dogs in a cool, if possible air-conditioned, space as they tend to overheat easily and clean their eyes carefully daily with a soft damp cloth or tissue as they accumulate eye-sleep easily.

Hope any or all of the above helps you in choosing a Peke as a pet; if you're looking for a dog that does cutesy tricks, this isn't for you, but for a loyal companion and avid watchdog, they're the best!

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Peke problems!

by: an D.

Hi Nicole, Unfortunately Pekes are very guarded and territorial. We just took in a local mutt which we took pity on, but we keep it outside in the garden as Cookie would never allow it inside! The mutt would probably chew the furniture up anyway.

The best thing I can suggest is to keep the cats outside as Pekes need either cool weather or air conditioning. It's easier to retrain the cats to live outdoors, like say in the garden area (if you have one), than to teach your Peke about cats.

Failing that I would try to wrap a light leash around your Peke, being the aggressive tykes they are, it's the only way to grab them quickly enough before they do any serious harm to your cats. A light tug on the leash backwards then release and relax teaches the Peke to respond to commands (learnt that from the Dog Whisperer).

Hope this helps - Ian.

Handsome Pekingnese Pup

by: Pat

Hey Ian,
Great picture and helpful information. Thanks for taking time to write such an in-depth explanation of Cookie's personality and the Pekingnese temperament in general.

As you said, every dog breed is different and every dog within a particular breed group will differ depending on how they are raised, socialized, etc. But, it's great to have personal insight from someone who has experienced the Pekingnese dog breed first hand.

Thanks, again. Have fun with Cookie!

Please help!

by: Nicole

I have recently taken in an adult Peke who despite being well-trained (house as well as sitting and going to his basket when told to) doesn't seem to have had much experience of other animals.

I have 2 adult cats of my own and he has just yesterday attacked one and she has gone into hospital for stitches. I would like to find out if there is a way to get him to adjust and not constantly bark at them (or hurt them in future).

Most of the time they avoid him as much as possible, sitting on tabletops etcetera, but I think he must have bitten one while she was under the bed, because I never saw it happen.

My cats were raised with a big dog who died a few months ago and I don't want to shunt or palm this poor guy off on someone else now, but I can't afford to wait until he inflicts an even more serious injury on my other pets before seeking advice. Can you offer any?

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