Japanese Chin Photo

Japanese Chin Dog Breed Info & Pictures

A member of the Toy Group, the Japanese Chin was once the favored companion of Chinese and Japanese royalty. This dainty dog has a square build that is compact yet refined. The Japanese Chin should never appear coarse nor should they be so lightly boned that their bodies seem excessively fragile. The skull is large and broad but should never be domed, only rounded between the ears. The face is similar to that of the Shih Tzu, with large dark eyes, a flattened face and a short upturned nose. Many dogs of this breed will have a slight underbite. The Japanese Chin has small triangular ears that hang down and are abundantly feathered. The tail is also heavily feathered with long silky hair, and carried over the back. The long silky hair is especially profuse around the neck, forming a ruff, and on the back of the rear legs. Males will have a more luxurious coat, but interestingly after being spayed females will eventually grow a thicker more masculine coat. The legs are fine boned and when in motion this little dog should have a lively proud gait. Coloring can be black and white, with or without tan points, or red and white.

Japanese Chin Fast Facts

10 - 12 years
4 - 7 lb
4 - 7 lb
8 - 11"
8 - 11"
Japanese Chen, Japaneese Chin, Japunese Chin or Japanese Chinn.
Japanese Spaniel


An intelligent little dog, The Japanese Chin is just stubborn and smart enough to rule the house if allowed....

It has been said that this proud breed can have a regal air reminiscent of its royal origins. Japanese Chins make for affectionate, loyal companions though they tend to be a bit reserved around new people or situations. Many have used the word catlike to describe this breed, and it is easy to see why: the Japanese Chin is an excellent climber and will perch on the backs of chairs and couches; and, this naturally clean little dog has even been known to lick himself clean, just like a cat. This delicate animal cannot tolerate rough handling so care must be taken when a Japanese Chin is around big dogs or small children.

Caring For a Japanese Chin

Surprisingly, the Japanese Chins coat is quite easy to care for....

This breed has no undercoat to deal with so a twice a week brushing should be sufficient. After a bath, a blow dryer set on low may be used to dry the coat and keep the dog from catching a chill. A short daily walk around the neighborhood is all the exercise this little guy needs. On hot days access to plenty of water is important, as dogs with short muzzles do not handle heat well. This dogs flattened face may also cause it to snore on occasion. Members of the Toy Group tend to have delicate necks; when walking the dog, it is advisable to use a harness instead of a collar to reduce the chance of injury. The Japanese Chin is not known to have any chronic health conditions; occasionally, however, the breed is known to suffer from patellar luxation, open fontanel, hypoglycemia, entropion, dental problems, portacaval shunt and hypothyroidism.

Japanese Chin History

Breed History

An ancient Toy breed, the Japanese Chin is historically tied to royalty, nobles, and strangely, China....

The Chin came to Japan in the last 1,500 years, but its ancestors have been present in China for much longer. So adored were these little dogs by the Chinese that a pair was eventually presented to the Japanese Emperor as a gift, probably during the 8th AD. The dogs caught on with astonishing rapidity among Japans favored classes, and it was not long before these dogs could be seen in the laps of noblewomen, and sometimes even in parlor cages, all over the country. In 1853 Matthew Perry, Commodore of the US Navy, introduced the Japanese Chin to the West when he gave a pair of the dogs to Queen Victoria. The American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1888. World Wars I and II cut off the supply of Chins outside of Japan and disrupted the activities of Japanese breeders to such an extent that the breed nearly disappeared. Thankfully, there were enough pure blood specimens in England and America that the breed was able to come back in ensuing years. The Japanese Chin is still wildly popular in Japan today, and enjoys modest popularity in the West.