Carpe Shar-Pei (Seize the Wrinkled Dog)

Breed Standards Comparison

Organization Name American Kennel Club (AKC)
The Kennel Club U.K.
CKC
Kennel Union of South Africa (KUSA)
General Appearance An alert, compact dog of medium size and substance; square in profile, close coupled; the well-proportioned head slightly, but not overly large for the body. The short, harsh coat, the loose skin covering the head and body, the small ears, the "hippopotamus" muzzle shape and the high set tail impart to the Shar-Pei a unique look peculiar to him alone. The loose skin and wrinkles covering the head, neck and body are superabundant in puppies but these features may be limited to the head, neck and withers in the adult. Alert, active, compact, short-coupled, squarely built. Dogs larger and more powerful than bitches.Relatively loose skin, frowning expression, harsh bristly coat. An alert, dignified, active, compact dog of medium size and substance, square in profile, close-coupled, the well proportioned head slightly but not overly large for the body. The short, harsh coat, the loose skin covering the head and body, the small ears, the "hippopotamus" muzzle shape and the high set tail impart to the Shar-Pei a unique look peculiar to him alone. The loose skin and wrinkles covering the head, neck and body are superabundant in puppies but these features may be limited to the head, neck and withers in the adult. Active, compact, short coupled and squarely built dog of medium size. Wrinkles over skull and withers, small ears and "hippopotamus" muzzle impart to the Shar Pei a unique look. Dogs larger and more powerful than bitches.
Proportion, Substance The dog is usually larger and more square bodied than the bitch but both appear well proportioned. The height of the Shar-Pei from the ground to the withers is approximately equal to the length from the point of breastbone to the point of rump.   The dog is usually larger and more square bodied than the bitch but both appear well proportioned. Proportion: The height of the Shar-Pei from the ground to the withers is approximately equal to the length from the point of breast-bone to the point of rump. The height of the Shar Pei from withers to ground is approximately equal to the length of the body, from point of shoulder to point of buttock, especially in males. The length from nose to stop is approximately equal to thelength from stop to occiput.
Height 18 to 20 inches at the withers. 46-51 cms (18-20 ins) at withers 18 to 20 inches (45-50 cm) at the withers SIZE 44-51cm at withers (17.5-20 ins.)
Weight 45 to 60 pounds.   40 to 60 pounds (18-27 kg).  
Head and Skull The head is large, slightly, but not overly, proudly carried and covered with profuse wrinkles on the forehead continuing into side wrinkles framing the face. Skull, flat and broad, the stop moderately defined. The head uis relatively large but not disproportionate to the body, skull flat, broad, moderate stop. Length from nose to stop approximately equal to length from stop to occiput. Moderate wrinkle on forehead and cheeks. Muzzle moderately broad and full with no suggestion of tapering. The lips and top of muzzle may be slightly padded. When viewed from front, bottom jaw appears wider than top. Flat and broad skull, the stop moderately defined. Head rather large in proportion to body. Wrinkles on forehead and cheeks continuing to form dewlap. Skull is flat and broad. Stop is moderate. Large, slightly but not overly, proudly carried and covered with profuse wrinkles on the forehead continuing into side wrinkles framing the face.
Eyes Dark, small, almond-shaped and sunken, displaying a scowling expression. In the dilute colored dogs the eye color may be lighter. Dark, medium size, almond-shaped with frowning expression. Amber and lighter colours permissible in paler shades. Function of eyeball or lid in no way disturbed by surrounding skin, folds or hair. Any sign of irritation of eyeball, conjunctiva or eyelids highly undesirable. Free from entropion. Dark, small, almond-shaped and deep set, displaying a scowling expression. In the dilute coloured dogs the eye colour may be lighter. Dark, almond-shaped with a scowling expression. Lighter colour permissible in dilute-coloured dogs. Function of eyeball or lid in no way disturbed by surrounding skin, folds or hair. Any sign of irritation of eyeball, conjunctiva or eyelids highly undesirable. Free from entropion.
Ears Extremely small, rather thick, equilateral triangles in shape, slightly rounded at the tips; edges of the ear may curl. Ears lie flat against the head, are set high, wide apart and forward on the skull, pointing toward the eyes. The ears have the ability to move. A pricked ear is a disqualification. Very small, rather thick, equilaterally triangular in shape, slightly rounded at tip, and set high on the skull with tips pointing towards eyes, set well forward over eyes, wide apart and close to skull. Pricked ears highly undesirable. Extremely small rather thick, equilateral triangles in shape, slightly rounded at the tips, edges of the ear may curl. Ears lie flat against the head, are set wide apart and forward on the skull, pointing toward the eyes. The ears have the ability to move. Very small, rather thick, equilaterally triangular in shape, slightly rounded at tip and set high on the skull with tops pointing towards eyes; set well forward over eyes, wide apart and close to skull. Pricked ears highlyundesirable.
Muzzle One of the distinctive features of the breed. It is broad and full with no suggestion of snipiness. (The length from nose to stop is approximately the same as from stop to occiput.) Nose large and wide and darkly pigmented, preferably black but any color conforming to the general coat color of the dog is acceptable. In dilute colors, the preferred nose is self-colored. Darkly pigmented cream Shar-Pei may have some light pigment either in the center of the nose or on the entire nose. The lips and top of muzzle are well-padded and may cause a slight bulge above the nose. Nose large, wide, preferably black but any colour conforming to general coat colour permissible. Padding of lower lip should not be so excessive so as to interfere with the bite. One of the distinct features of the breed. It is broad and full with no suggestion of snipiness. The length from nose to stop is approximately the same as from stop to occiput. Nose Large and wide and darkly pigmented, preferably black but any colour nose comforming to the general coat colour of the dog is acceptable. In dilute colours, the preferred nose is self-coloured. Darkly pigmented cream Shar-Pei may have some light pigment either in the centre of their noses or on their entire nose. The lips and top of muzzle are well padded and may cause a slight bulge at the base of the nose. Nose is large and wide, preferably black, but any colour conforming to general coat colour permissible. Wide opened nostrils. Muzzle is a distinctive feature of the breed. Broad from root to tip of nose with no suggestion of tapering. Lips and top of muzzle well padded. Bulge at the base of the nose permissible.
Tongue Tongue, roof of mouth, gums and flews are solid bluish-black is preferred in all coat colors except in dilute colors, which have a solid lavender pigmentation. A spotted pink tongue is a major fault. A solid pink tongue is a disqualification. (Tongue colors may lighten due to heat stress; care must be taken not to confuse dilute pigmentation with a pink tongue.) Tongue, roof of mouth, gums and flews: solid bluish-black is preferred. Solid pink tongue undesirable. Dogs with self-coloured pigment and amber or light brown eyes would be expected to have a lavender tongue. Tongue, Roof of Mouth, Gums and Flews Solid bluish-black is preferred in all coat colours except in dilute colours, which have a solid lavender pigmentation. A spotted tongue is a major fault. A solid pink tongue is a disqualification (Tongue colors may lighten due to heal stress; care must be taken not to confuse dilute pigmentation with a pink tongue). Tongue, roof of mouth, gums and flews - bluish black is preferred. Pink spotted tongue permissible. Solid pink tongue highly undesirable. In dilute-coloured dogs the tongue is solid lavender.
Teeth Strong, meeting in a scissors bite. Deviation from a scissors bite is a major fault. Strong, with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws Strong, meeting in a scissors bite. Deviation from a scissors bite is a major fault. Jaws strong with perfect scissor bite i.e. the upper teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws. Padding of lower lip should not be so excessive as to interfere with the bite.
Neck Medium length, full and set well into the shoulders. There are moderate to heavy folds of loose skin and abundant dewlap about the neck and throat. Medium length, strong, full; set well on shoulders, with some loose skin under neck permitted, but this should not be excessive. Medium length, full and set well into the shoulders. There are moderate to heavy folds of loose skin and abundant dewlap about the neck and throat. Medium length, strong, set well on shoulders. The loose skin under the neck should not be excessive.
Chest Broad and deep with the brisket extending to the elbow and rising slightly under the loin. Broad and deep, underline rising slightly under loin Broad and deep with the brisket extending to the elbow and rising slightly under the loin. Broad and deep, brisket reaching below the elbow.
Hindquarters Muscular, strong, and moderately angulated. The metatarsi (hocks) are short, perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other when viewed from the rear. Hind dewclaws must be removed. Feet as in front. Muscular, strong; moderately angulated; hocks well let down without excessive wrinkling or thickening. Muscular, strong, and moderately angulated. The metatarsi (hocks) are short, perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other when viewed from the rear. Hind dewclaws must be removed. Feet as in front. Muscular, strong, moderately angulated, perpendicular to the ground and parallel to each other when viewed from the rear. Wrinkles on upper thighs, lower thighs, rear pasterns as well as the thickening of the skin on hocks undesirable.
Coat The extremely harsh coat is one of the distinguishing features of the breed. The coat is absolutely straight and off standing on the main trunk of the body but generally lies somewhat flatter on the limbs. The coat appears healthy without being shiny or lustrous. Acceptable coat lengths may range from extremely short "horse coat" up to the "brush coat," not to exceed one inch in length at the withers. A soft coat, a wavy coat, a coat in excess of one inch at the withers or a coat that has been trimmed is a major fault. The Shar-Pei is shown in its natural state. Extremely harsh coat straight and off-standing on the body but flatter on the limbs. No undercoat. Length varies from short and bristly, under half an inch (1.25cm) or longer and thicker, between half an inch (1.25cm) and one inch (2.5cm), but still off-standing and harsh to the touch. N.B: no particular coat length within the accepted length should be preferred above the other. Never trimmed. The extremely harsh coat is one of the distinguishing features of the breed. The coat is absolutely straight and offstanding on the main trunk of the body but generally lies somewhat flatter on the limbs. The coat appears healthy without being shiny or lustrous. Acceptable coat lengths may range from extremely short "horse coat" up to the "brush coat", not to exceed one inch in length at the withers. A soft coat, a wavy coat, a coat in excess of 1" (2.5cm) in length at the withers or a coat that has been trimmed is a major fault. One coat type is not to be preferred over the other. The Shar-Pei is shown in its natural state. A distinctive feature of the breed is short, harsh and bristly hair. The coat is straight and offstanding on the body but generally flatter on the limbs. No undercoat. The coat may vary in length from 1cm to 2.5cm. Never trimmed.
Color Only solid colors and sable are acceptable and are to be judged on an equal basis. A solid color dog may have shading, primarily darker, down the back and on the ears. The shading must be variations of the same body color and may include darker hairs throughout the coat. The following colors are disqualifications: Albino; Not a solid color, i.e.: Brindle; Parti-colored; Spotted; Patterned in any combination of colors. All Solid colours except white are acceptable. Frequently shaded on tail and back of thighs with lighter colour. Only solid colours and sable are acceptable and are to be judged on equal basis. A solid coloured dog may have shading, primarily darker down the back and on the ears. The shading must be variations of the same body colour (except in sables) and may include darker hairs throughout the coat. A pigmented dog may have a darker mask on the face. All solid colours acceptable except white. Tail and rear part of thighs frequently of a lighter colour. Darker shading down the back and on the ears permissible.
Gait The movement of the Shar-Pei is to be judged at a trot. The gait is free and balanced with the feet tending to converge on a center line of gravity when the dog moves at a vigorous trot. The gait combines good forward reach and strong drive in the hindquarters. Proper movement is essential. Free, vigorous and balanced, rear single tracking is normal at a fast trot, stilted gait undesirable. The movement of the Shar-Pei is to be judged at a trot. The gait is free and balanced with the feet tending to converge on a centre line of gravity when the dog moves at a vigorous trot. The gait combines good forward reach and a strong drive in the hindquarters. Proper movement is essential. The preferred gait is trot. The gait is free, balanced, active with good forward reach and strong drive from the hindquarters. The feet tend to converge to a centre line when the speed increases. Stilted gait undesirable.
Tail The high set tail is a characteristic feature of the Shar-Pei. A low set tail shall be faulted. The tail is thick and round at the base, tapering to a fine point and curling over or to either side of the back. The absence of a complete tail is a disqualification. Rounded, narrowing to fine point, base set very high. May be carried high and curved, carried in tight curl, or curved over. Lack of, or incomplete, tail highly undesirable. The high set tail is a characteristic feature of the Shar-Pei. A low tail shall be faulted. The tail is thick and round at the base, tapering to a fine point and curling over to either side of the back. The absence of a complete tail is a disqualification. Thick and round at the root, tapering to a fine point. The tail is set very high, a characteristic feature of thebreed. May be carried high and curved, carried in tight curl or curved over or to either side of the back. Lack ofor incomplete tail highly undesirable.
Temperment Regal, alert, intelligent, dignified, lordly, scowling, sober and snobbish essentially independent and somewhat standoffish with strangers, but extreme in his devotion to his family. The Shar-Pei stands firmly on the ground with a calm, confident stature. Calm, independent, very affectionate, and devoted to people. Regal, alert, intelligent, dignified, lordly, scowling, sober and snobbish, essentially independent and somewhat standoffish with strangers, but extreme in his devotion to his family. The Shar-Pei stands firmly on the ground with a calm, confident stature. Calm, independent, loyal, affectionate to his family.
Feet Removal of front dewclaws is optional. Feet--moderate in size, compact and firmly set, not splayed. Moderate size, compact, toes well knuckled. Removal of front dewclaws is optional. Feet should be moderate in size, compact and firmly set, not splayed. Moderate size, compact, not splayed. Toes well knuckled. Hindfeet free from dewclaws.
Forequarters Shoulders muscular, well laid back and sloping. Forelegs when viewed from the front, straight moderately spaced, with elbows close to the body. When viewed from the side, the forelegs are straight, the pasterns are strong and flexible. The bone is substantial but never heavy and is of moderate length. Shoulders muscular, well laid and sloping. Elbows close to the body. Forelegs straight, moderate length, good bone; pasterns slightly sloping, strong and flexible. Forelegs completely wrinkle free when mature. Shoulders - Muscular, well laid back and sloping. Forelegs - When viewed from the front, straight, moderately spaced, with elbows close to the body. When viewed from the side, the forelegs are straight, the pasterns are strong and flexible. The bone is substantial but never heavy and is of moderate length. Forelegs straight, moderate length, good bone. The skin on forelegs shows no wrinkle. Shoulders : muscular, well laid and sloping. Metacarpus (Pastern) : slightly sloping, strong and flexible.
Topline, Body The topline dips slightly behind the withers, slightly rising over the short, broad loin. A level, roach or swayed topline/backline shall be faulted. Back short and close-coupled. Croup flat, with the base of the tail set extremely high, clearly exposing an up-tilted anus. Height at withers approximately equal to the length from point of shoulders to point of buttock. Depth of brisket approximately half of height at withers. Back short, strong. Topline dips slightly behind withers then rises over short, broad loin. Adult dogs should display moderate wrinkling over shoulders and base of tail. Excessive skin on body when mature highly undesirable. The topline dips slightly behind the withers, slightly rising over the short, broad loin. A level, roached or swayed topline shall be faulted. Back short and close-coupled. Croup flat, with the base of the tail set extremely high, clearly exposing an uptilted anus. Body: Folds of skin on body in mature dogs highly undesirable except on withers and base of tail, which show moderate wrinkling. Topline : dips slightly behind withers; then it rises slightly over loin. Back short, strong. Loin short, broad, slightly arched. Croup rather flat. Underline rises slightly under the loin. Hocks well let down.
Faults Major Faults
Deviation from a Scissors Bite
Spotted Tongue
A soft coat, a wavy coat, a coat in excess of 1" in length at the withers or a coat that has been trimmed.
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree.
SERIOUS FAULTS
  • Deviation from a scissor bite (as a transitory measure, a very slightly overshot mouth is permissible)
  • Snipy muzzle
  • Spotted tongue (except pink spotted tongue)
  • Large ears
  • Low set tail
  • Coat longer than 2.5cm
Major Faults
Deviation from a scissors bite.
Spotted tongue.
A soft coat, a wavy coat, a coat in excess of 1" (2.5 cm) in length at the withers or a coat that has been trimmed.
 
Disqualifications Disqualifications
Pricked ears.
Solid pink tongue.
Absence of a complete tail.
Albino; not a solid color, i.e.: Brindle; Parti-colored; Spotted; Patterned in any combination of colors
ELIMINATING FAULTS
  • Flat foreface with badly overshot bite; undershot bite
  • Solid pink tongue
  • Lower lip rolled in, interfering with the bite
  • Round, bulging eye. Entropion, ectropion
  • Skin, folds or hair disturbing the normal function of the eye
  • Pricked ears
  • Absence of tail; stumpy tail
  • Heavy folds of skin on body (except withers and base of tail) and limbs
  • Not a solid colour (albino, brindle, patches, spots, black and tan, saddled pattern)
NOTE: Male animals should have to apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.
REMARK: Any artificial physical alteration to the Shar Pei (in particular lips and eyelids) eliminates the dog from competition.
Disqualification
Pricked ears.
Solid pink tongue.
Absence of a complete tail.
Not a solid colour, i.e. Albino; Brindle; Parti-coloured (patches); spotted (including spots, ticked or roaning); Tan-Pointed Pattern (including typical black and tan or saddled patterns or shading that has a defined pattern i.e. distinct butterfly pattern on the chest).
 
Revision Approved January 12, 1998
Effective February 28, 1998
Shar Pei Breed Standard
15-May-06
INTERIM (Breed Standard under review until June 2009)
Last Updated - January 2009
Breed Standard effective January 1, 2006 as approved by the CKC.  


Cats are the ultimate narcissists. You can tell this because of all the time they spend on personal grooming. Dogs aren't like this. A dog's idea of personal grooming is to roll on a dead fish.

James Gorman

Credits:
Paper and canvas prints of "Growing Up Chinese Shar-Pei" by Barbara Keith are available online.

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