HONG KONG KENNEL CLUB SHAR PEI BREED STANDARD

GENERAL APPEARANCE
Strong, compact, active and agile, Shar Pei means " Sand Skin". The skin must be tough and rough, while the coat must be short and bristly. Tight wrinkles over the body at puppy stage. In the adult dog pronounced wrinkles are only allowed over the forehead and withers. As to temperament, the Shar Pei is a calm, independent dog who is loyal and affectionate to people.

HEAD AND SKULL
The skull is round and big at the base, but flat and broad at the forehead. Muzzle and skull are near to equal length. Muzzle moderate in length, broad from the eyes but narrowing slightly towards the nose. Moderate stop. Wrinkles on the forehead must be apparent but must not to obstruct the eyes. The Chinese description of the head is " Wu Lo Tau", meaning " Calabash" shaped head.

You can see here the shape of a single Calabash

used to carry water or chinese medicine in Guanzhau market.

The wrinkles on the forehead form a marking which resembles the Chinese Symbol for Longevity. This is essential to the breed.

EYES
Medium sized, almond shaped. As dark as possible. Light colored eyes are undesirable. 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
Small, thick, equilaterally triangular in shape slightly round at tips. Tips pointing toward eyes and folded to the skull. Wide apart and close to skull. Erect and standing ears are permissible but less desirable.

MOUTH
Bluish-black tongue and gum preferred, pink or spotted only permissible in lighter colored dog, for example light fawn or cream. Jaws strong, teeth with a perfect, regular and complete scissors bite, i.e. the upper teeth closely overlapping the lower teeth and set square to the jaws. Over large size mouth or over padding of lips are not acceptable. The shape of the mouth when viewed from top should either be in the shape of a drain pipe commonly known as "Roof Tile Mouth" or with a wide jaw in the shape of a toad's mouth, commonly known as "Toad mouth".

A Typical chinese roof and the Rooftile.

NOSE
Large, wide. Black color preferred lighter color permissible in lighter colored dogs.

NECK AND THROAT
Strong, muscular with slightly loose skin around the throat. The loose skin should not be excessive.

FOREQUARTERS
Shoulders muscular, well laid and sloping,. Forelegs moderate length, slightly longer than depth of body. Good bone.
Pasterns slightly sloping, strong and flexible.

BODY
Very strong and straight back. Chest broad and deep. Slight fold of skin on withers. Excessive skin around the body in adults is most undesirable. Very strong back bone. Length of breastbone to rump is almost the same as height at withers. Bitches can have a slightly longer body length. Low saddle and high pommel desirable.

HINDQUARTERS
Strong and muscular. Moderately angulated. Hocks well let down.

FEET
Moderate size, compact, well padded, toes well knuckled.

GAIT AND MOVEMENT
Free and balanced, vigorous.

TAIL
There are several types of tail. The most common are the curl, and double ring. The tail must be firm and lightly over the hip. Any dropped tail is a serious fault.

COAT
Short, hard, bristly and as straight as possible. No undercoat. Length must not be over 2.5cm (1 inch) long. Never trimmed.

COLOUR
Solid colors black, blue black, black with a hint of rust, brown, red, fawn. Cream is acceptable but less desirable.

WEIGHT AND SIZE
19-23 inches at withers and 40-65 lbs. A dog well up to this size and weight is desirable, but if a dog is not, it should not be heavily penalized. Over 23" is to be penalized.

FAULTS
Mixed color of black and tan, spotted body. Overshot or undershot teeth. Splayed feet. Low set saddle and high pommel. Excessively heavy head and jowls. Excessive wrinkles on body, forequarters and hindquarters of adult dog. Large ears that flow down side of head and do not point to eyes. Coat over 1 inch long. Dropped tail.

NOTE
Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.