If your thinking of getting a Chow Chow or already have one you may be wondering do they get along well with other dogs? This is a good question to ask as all Chow Chow owners love their dogs but will probably be the first to admit that they can be difficult at times. This noble and illustrious breed can have a reputation for surliness both with humans and canines. It’s only natural for a dog who once was owned by emperors. After all, no owner wants their Chow Chow to get into a terrible fight with another dog, that would be a nightmare.
Chow Chows can get along with other dogs but they must be well socialized. Special training may also be needed, as chow chows can be very territorial. They often have clear lines that other dogs shouldn’t cross and if crossed could lead to aggression. Despite that Chows can make some of the closest dog friendships as it is hard to earn their trust but once you have it their very loyal.
There are many factors involved in whether a dog will get along with others of their kind. Most of it has to do with training and socialization. Where a dog has had a bad experience with another canine expect a lot of distrust, which will increase the risk of an altercation. But if you can raise your Chow from a puppy giving them lots of positive exposure to other dogs then things will be easier when they’re older.
The breed also of course plays a key role. Each breed of dog has its own particular personality. While not all dogs of that breed will act within the same template many will do. When it comes to Chow Chows their personality tends to be very territorial. This includes toys and food, as well as their people. Jealousy is very possible with Chow Chows and must always be taken into account when interacting with other dogs around them.
It’s important that your Chow Chow is around dogs who are capable of respecting their space. Even seemingly friendly dogs who make the Chow Chow feel invaded will potentially face consequences. Chows also have a very strong will. Which any owner can attest to. This means that when it comes to a power struggle between the Chow Chow and another dog expect the Chow to probably take things too far. Especially if they feel extra challenged.
Of course, while these things can make doggie friendships more difficult for a Chow Chow. Close friendships are still very possible for these dogs. In fact, once over the shallow ice breakers, a Chow Chow can share a bond with another dog from their very heart. I have seldom seen as strong of a reaction from any animal as my Chow Chow Katie had when her older brother Bear died. She was obviously distraught and remained that way for several days.
While that is a sad example there are many happier ones. But it’s important that you do your research to ensure the best possible outcome of any interaction between a Chow Chow and another dog.
Do Chow Chows Need Another Dog as a Companion?
This is a popular question amongst dog owners. After all, every owner wants the best for their dog. Many people if they thought their dog would be happier with a companion would immediately seek one out. The truthful answer to this question is that it really depends more on the abilities of the owner then the dogs in question.
Do you have the resources, time, and patience to have both a Chow and another dog? If you do then many chows will in the long term be very happy with a canine brother or sister. Of course, they will actually be perfectly okay by themselves too. I mean, after all, that means they get all the love and attention. But the problem is if your like normal people then you probably have a job that often leads you away from the house.
During that time it’s easy for a Chow Chow to become lonely and bored. Having a friend to play with and keep them company could brighten up their day. With my own Chows, they would play with each other constantly. It actually made my life easier as they didn’t demand as much attention from me. They were easily able to entertain each other with games of chase, tug of war, and wrestling. They did get into some fights occasionally but they weren’t very bad and no one got hurt. Except for me when I tried to stop them and got bit once. It wasn’t very bad just a bit of Neosporin and all was well.
What Kind of Dogs Make the Best Companion for a Chow Chow?
Since Chow Chows can be quite stuffy and have very strong distinct personalities. It becomes more important than with other dogs to ensure you get another dog that matches. While the biggest influencer upon their relationship will be the training you provide them. There are some good tips we will give you to help you choose the right dog companion for your Chow Chow.
- Getting two Chow Chows can be a great idea: Another Chow will better understand your current Chows personality. Most Chows I’ve owned have been in pairs. They were easily able to surmise each other’s red lines and their playstyle was the same. This can go along way to helping to create a good relationship.
- Dogs of the opposite gender: With Chow Chows being so territorial introducing two males or two females can sometimes set up a perfect storm of aggression. The reason lies in them attempting to dominate the other. This becomes especially true for two males. Sometime they will spend a lot of time trying to prove whos stronger which can make your life quite hard.
- Two girls: While I would say two girl dogs isn’t as good as two dogs of the opposite gender. It is however a lot better than two males. Simply put female dogs will be much less aggressive and territorial then a male will be.
- Neuter or spay both of the dogs: Dogs that have been fixed are generally much calmer and easier going. This can be important with a dog like the Chow Chow that is already pretty tough, to begin with. If you neuter a male though it’s important that it be done before their 2 years old. After that, the calming influence of the operation becomes much weaker.
- Raise both dogs together as puppies: The best doggie bond hands down is born out of two dogs that grew up together. Puppies are very innocent and playful. This allows them to form strong bonds with their pack mates. Even though they will become more aggressive and territorial as they age, the bond they formed in their youth should be strong enough to ride over the rough obstacles they may face in the future.
Do Chow Chows Get Along With Small Dogs?
Chow Chows would be considered to be about middle size as far as dogs go. They generally are going to range from about 40 to 60 pounds. I have met a Chow Chow that weighed over 70 pounds but I think she was a bit overweight though she would have been very large for a Chow even if she was at her proper weight.
So some dogs will be larger than a Chow, some smaller and then a whole lot will be the same size. But even with Chows not being that large their are a lot of popular dogs that they would tower over. Some smaller dogs can be as little as 5 pounds. Whenever your Chow Chow interacts with a dog that small it is only right to be a bit nervous. Here are a few tips so that you can help ensure the interaction is fun and safe.
- Give the small dog a safe space: Its important that the smaller dog has a place they can get away from the Chow Chow to. This can be done in a lot of ways. From giving them a separate room to blocking off a section of the hallway with a child’s gate. Be free to get creative, so long as its a place your Chow Chow can’t go.
- Make sure your Chow Chow and the small dog don’t get stuck in close quarters: Space is very important to a Chow Chow, especially the personal kind. This could lead to an unfortunate consequence if they and a smaller dog get stuck somewhere tight. Discourage or disallow your dogs from going anywhere tight and awkward like a small laundry room. This will help prevent negative incidences.
- Consider separating them when you leave the house: It’s important that your Chow Chow and the small dog get used to each other. They should always be encouraged to interact. This is best done though when you’re around to supervise them. At least until your confident that your Chow Chow and the small dog get along well. But when your gone theirs no one around to stop something from getting serious. So it might be a good idea to keep them in separate rooms when you leave the house.
- Feed them separately: With Chow Chow’s high-level territoriality, feeding them separately from your small dog can be smart. Most dog aggression occurs around food it’s just the way that they’re wired. You can help keep the peace by separating them during this time.
How to Train Your Chow Chow to Get Along Well With Other Dogs
With chow chows as with most dogs, it’s important to train them in a positive manner. By this, I mean using praise and treats as opposed to punishments. Chows in particular tend to respond to punishment in a hostile manner. Get around that by avoiding it. Instead, use redirection with lots of love. Trick them into thinking the training was their idea. This style fits much better with the Chow’s strong will and inherent stubbornness.
It’s best if you start socializing your chow with other dogs straight out of puppyhood. Puppies learn faster and more easily. Plus their natural innocence of youth makes it easier to correct them. Of course, this doesn’t mean that once you’re Chow is older that they’re a lost cause. Older dogs can learn new tricks. It just takes them a bit longer, you have to use more repetitions.
Here is a very simple training blueprint of how you can get your Chow Chow to get along with other dogs better. It’s not foolproof and you will need to add in your knowledge of your dog with a bit of creativity to make it fully work.
- The first step you want to find a good place to practice and good partners to practice with. training will be best with someone else and their dog that you trust. But will assume you don’t have such a person and so are training alone. For your training area, a local park can serve the purpose well. You want enough dogs to give your chow practice but not too many that they get overwhelmed.
- Find an area off the beaten path where the other dogs are visible but not very close. Just sit down comfortably with your Chow Chow and relax. Let your Chow just soak in the vibe of the area and be peaceful. Any time a dog passes your Chow’s line of view and they respond positively give them praise and a treat.
- Repeat this step a whole bunch. really let it get ingrained to your dog. Where having a positive reaction seems completely natural to them. Don’t forget lots of praise and treats though. In fact, you’ll probably want to bring a whole bag of treats.
- Once you’ve had lots of success then move your location closer to the other dogs. Once again look for your dog to be peaceful around them. A little barking is okay as long as their happy and not deeply upset. Keep praising positive responses.
- Once they’re comfortable with that then try walking your dog parallel to the main thoroughfare. This can be a bit more challenging so be patient with your Chow Chow. Anytime another dog passes or you pass them and your Chow Chow doesn’t get upset then give them a treat. The whole idea here is where just slowly acclimating our Chow Chows to the presence of other dogs. Nothing fancy yet.
- When all the previous steps have been successfully completed many times. Only then move on to the final step. This is where we ask a friendly-looking dog owner if it’s okay if our Chow approaches and sniffs the other dog. It is in this way that dogs say hello.
Good Ways to Introduce Your Chow Chow to Another Dog
Wit their effortless noble bearing it shouldn’t be surprising that Chow Chows believe in a certain etiquette when introducing another dog to them. The Chow should be allowed to take stock of the newcomer. Getting a good whiff of their scent as well as their body posture. Chows can make great friends but only once they know something. Any newcomers will be distrusted at first. So the biggest part is just giving your Chow Chow the space to realize that this new animal is not a threat to their peaceful home.
- Use a see-through barrier: One way of allowing to Chow Chow to acclimate to another dog is to introduce them through a barrier. Best that it be one where both animals can see each other. This allows you to gauge both of their reactions without having to worry about a fight breaking out. You could use something like a chain-link fence or maybe even a glass barrier.
- Using scent: Here you would focus on the dog’s sense of smell as opposed to eyesight. You could take one of your old t-shirts and put them in your Chow Chows usually sleeping area. Let it soak up their scent then move it to the other dog’s area. Last but not least move it back to your Chow Chow. This lets the dogs fond feelings for your and their nap time integrate with the smell of the other dog. Its a trick of a sort, where you transfer their good feelings to the scent of the other dog.
Signs That Your Chow Chow Could Be About to Display Aggression
It’s important to understand your Chow Chows mood, especially where other dogs are concerned. You need to know the different steps of their escalation from being okay all the way to be raging mad. By knowing these signs it gives you signposts to allow you to intervene before things get really bad.
- Watch out for a stiff body posture: This warning sign takes place when your chows eyes deadlock on the other dog. Following this their whole body becomes incredibly stiff. this means your Chow Chow feels threatened by the other dog. Its often the first warning sign that the dogs might be about to enter an escalation cycle.
- Fur raised: Look out for the fur along your chow chows shoulder blades and rear raising up straight. It might kinda look like those goofy old cartoons where the animal gets shocked by electricity. It won’t be as obvious but it will be something sorta like it.
- Your Chow Chow baring their teeth: This is not a good sign at all. If your Chow Chow shows their teeth to another dog then prepare for things to get worse. At this point, it would probably be best to remove your dog from the situation. Better safe than sorry.
- Snapping at other dogs: Usually, this will occur after the dog has already bared their teeth but it can happen first though. Especially if the other dog surprises the Chow Chow in someway. Once again probably the best thing to do here if you can safely is to remove the dogs from the situation. This will give them some time to cool off.
- Growling: This will usually occur after their body has already stiffened. Though it’s not guaranteed. This means that things might escalate into teeth showing or snapping. It’s possible you might be able to smooth over the situation with a few calming words. Just try not to panic as they could only further upset your Chow Chow.
Chow Chows while being wonderful dogs are harder to teach to get along with other dogs than many other breeds. It’s not that they’re incapable of canine friends its just they require longer to trust them. Once that trust has been earned however they can make some of the most loyal and beautiful dog friendships amongst the breeds.
The key lies in ensuring that the interactions are positive and using a lot of patience. You have to give your Chow Chow the space that they require to decide that they like the other dog. Forcing and cajoling them will be in the long run counterproductive.