Chinese Crested


It’s no easy task to trace the origins of the Chinese Crested, but the breed appears to have evolved from African hairless dogs, which the Chinese bred down in size as early as the 13th century. Chinese Cresteds are thought to have sailed with Chinese mariners, serving as ratters during times of plague. By the late 1800s, a handful of American breeders had begun to popularize the Chinese Crested with dog show enthusiasts; the AKC recognized the breed in 1991.


Small, 11 to 13 inches, about 10 pounds.


Any color or combination of colors.


A devoted companion; alert, gentle, playful, and sensitive. Agreeable with dogs, other pets, and strangers.

Energy level:

Medium to high.

Best owner:

Someone with dander allergies.


Hairless varieties require regular skin care (including sun block) and protection from cold; dogs with a powder-puff coat require normal brushing.

Life expectancy:

15 to 16 years.