Chow Chows are a medium-sized dog and are one of few breeds in which both males and females are the same size. These dogs are known for their distinct look, fluffy coats as well as their blue-black tongues. They are also known for being headstrong and stubborn. But how do they typically behave around children? Is this a breed that you can even consider if you have young kids? With these questions in mind, I spent some time researching the breed to find out exactly what owners can expect.
So, are Chow Chows good with kids? Chow Chows are independent and somewhat bossy dogs; they are not generally very good with children. However, if they have been socialized properly and brought up around kids, they are much more tolerable of them. Equally, if a Chow Chow is brought into a home as a puppy, there is a higher chance that they will get on with children – even if these are kids that do not live in the household.
Thankfully, Chow Chows are not an aggressive or dangerous breed; so they are unlikely to ever pose a threat to young children.
Instead, they are much more likely to be aloof and quiet – unlikely to want to play and partake in all of the activities young kids are known to love.
Taking this one step further, Chow Chows are not fond of rough play and simply will not spend time around any child that comes on too strong.
For this reason, Chow Chows will do best in families with older children, especially those who know how to look after and treat a dog.
With these things in mind, let us know explore some of the most commonly asked questions about this breed alongside children.
We will be covering how to teach your children how to act around a chow chow along with some practical ways to train your dog to behave around kids also.
So be sure to keep on reading; particularly if you have just gotten or plan to get one for your young family!
Are Chow Chows Kid Friendly?
As a breed, Chow Chows are independent, aloof, and not very intelligent. Even though they look cuddly with all that fur, they’re not particularly fond of this form of affection.
In most cases they don’t like strangers. However, they are fiercely loyal and protective of their owners and those whom they are most familiar with.
Chow Chows are not considered to be kid friendly, especially younger children as this breed do not appear to tolerate how children act towards them. Being loud, active, and perhaps a bit of abusive is not seen as fun or entertaining by this breed.
Chow Chows are not aggressive dogs, but they will be aloof around what they see as strange and overly enthusiastic children.
The Chow Chow will do much better with older children who know how to behave around dogs and will treat them properly.
If a Chow Chow is raised with children, then they will be able to get along with them with no issues. The same holds true for other pets that may be in the household.
Teaching Your Children How to Act Around Your Chow Chow
Children do not automatically know how to act around dogs, and they can unknowingly put themselves in danger. So it’s important to ensure that they are taught how to act appropriately in the company of dogs. This is especially important for breeds like the Chow Chow, who are not kid friendly by nature.
With all their fur, Chow Chows are almost inviting people to hug and cuddle with them, and of course, this is usually a kid’s first instinct when coming across a dog.
I get it, I’m that person who will approach a stranger and ask if I can pat their dog. I just love them so much and naturally just want to get closer.
Kids need to be taught not to just go up to a dog and start interacting with them. This is important as you never know how a dog will react.
Even dogs that are known can show bad behavior, or act in defense if they perceive a threat to themselves or their owner. So, it’s always best that children ask an adult if they can interact with a dog.
Kids are kids, and sometimes they will need to be taught something a few times before it sticks. Do not be surprised if you have to remind them a few times before they remember not to just run up to a Chow Chow, or any other dog breed.
Children should not be left unattended with Chow Chows, or other dog breeds, as even smaller dogs can cause injuries to children, big and small.
Kids tend to run around and their interactions with dogs tend to be more of a hit than a pat.
This is not with the intention of hurting them, they just don’t know how to properly pat a dog.
The Chow Chow does not accept this behavior as some other breeds will. With some breeds they are so patient and will allow your children to do just about anything. The Chow Chow is definitely not one of those breeds.
While teaching your children about proper behavior around dogs, and specifically your Chow Chow, some particular items you may want to go over include:
- Don’t run-up to a dog and start interacting with them, even dogs you may know.
- Always ensure there is an adult around and get their permission before interacting with the dog.
- Leave a dog alone while they are eating, sleeping, or fully focused on a particular toy or treat as they can show aggression with these activities
- Learn how to read a dog and take visual and audio clues from them as to how they are feeling at any particular moment.
With both your children and your dog receiving proper training, they can live a very happy life together in one household.
While your Chow Chow will be aloof, or just indifferent, to most strangers, they are more apt to accept children more if you have children yourself.
Are Chow Chows Dangerous To Kids?
Chow Chows may be considered medium-sized dogs, but they can still get up to 70 pounds, which can cause damage to a small child, even if it is unintentional.
While Chow Chows are not kid-friendly, they are not dangerous or aggressive dogs, especially when trained and socialized properly.
If your Chow Chow shows any type of aggression, then you’ll want to take a deeper look into the potential causes and triggers. This can differ between dogs and it may not be entirely obvious.
Firstly, you will want to consider where you got them from. Was it a reputable breeder or have you adopted an elder dog?
Secondly, you will want to rule out any health conditions. Be sure to inspect and examine your dog closely. Pay special attention to any signs that they are in discomfort or pain as this can cause aggressive behavior in any breed.
If you suspect that something is not quite right, ensure you consult a vet at the earliest opportunity.
Beyond this, make sure that you enroll your Chow Chow into training classes from the moment you get them. This will ensure they learn what behavior is to be expected, and what will not be tolerated.
Equally, you will want to get your dog socialized from a young age. This means introducing them to plenty of new people, sights, experiences, sounds and circumstances in a safe and calm setting as much as possible.
You need to build your dogs confidence and this will help them becoming anxious; where aggression sometimes occurs as a defensive mechanism.
Training Your Chow Chow For Kids
Chow Chows are not easily trained, are stubborn, not very intelligent, and want to be the one in charge of every situation.
This isn’t to say that your Chow Chow can’t be trained, it’s just to let you know that it’s not going to be as easy as it would be with a Labrador Retriever for instance.
You will need patience and to understand that it could take a little longer than with some other breeds.
Chow Chows are not unique when it comes to needing training and socialization when they are younger. It is recommended for all dog breeds, but for some, like the Chow Chow, it is essential.
Your Chow Chow needs to first start off with learning that they are not the one in charge, you are.
Once they understand that you are in charge and they need to listen to you, they will need to be taught acceptable vs unacceptable behaviours.
Socializing with other dogs will have the other dogs teaching your Chow Chow another set of behaviors that are acceptable with dogs.
Not only does your Chow Chow need training, but so do you. Many dog owners need to be taught to be dog owners.
Having interactions with other dogs is not the same as owning one yourself, so you’ll need to be trained to help your Chow Chow succeed with their training.
The younger you have your Chow Chow enrolled in training classes the better and more likely they will be able to coexist peacefully in your household with children.
Things To Consider When Owning A Chow Chow And Having Kids
When owning a Chow Chow and having kids, especially younger and smaller children, is to always know where both your children and Chow Chow are. Never leave your kids and dog alone, unattended.
Your Chow Chow may inadvertently knock your child over, or hurt them in another way, and you wouldn’t necessarily know that your child was in need of your help.
Another reason is that if your child is manhandling your Chow Chow, you can’t guarantee how they will react, even though they are not an aggressive breed.
Your Chow Chow isn’t going to want to run around and play with your children and most likely will actually want to leave the situation and just not want to be around the kids anyhow.
When both the children and Chow Chow have received training how to act around each other, things will be much better, but still wait until your children are older before leaving them alone together.
Getting your Chow Chow from a reputable breeder is important to knowing their history and their parents.
Meeting your Chow Chows parents and being able to get their history will help to ensure you get a dog that is not aggressive and has the potential to be great around kids.
If you are getting an adult Chow Chow, you may want to test them around kids before committing to getting them and bringing them home.
If they show any unfavorable behavior towards your children, then you may want to reconsider bringing them home. Older dogs can be harder to train then puppies.
Chow Chows are a loyal breed and make great guard dogs. However, they don’t necessarily get along with children, especially smaller kids.
While Chow Chows aren’t aggressive, they don’t like children or strangers, and can act aloof around them. They are not happy to be the center of attention, especially if this means being continuously poked and prodded by an over-excited child.
Early training and socialization are essential when it comes to teaching your Chow Chow how to behave around children. You and your kids will each need to receive different training as well.
It’s important for dog owners to know how to be dog owners and it’s maybe even more important for children to be taught how to act around dogs, and not just Chow Chows.
While Chow Chows may not like children, they are not aggressive dogs, and therefore are not overtly dangerous to your kids.
However, they could end up hurting them inadvertently.
Your kids, and other household pets, can cohabitate harmoniously with little to no issues when everyone is taught how to behave properly.
Are Chow Chows Good For First Time Owners?
Chow Chows are not considered to be the best breed for first-time owners. This is because they are difficult to train, stubborn, and are not the fastest learners.
They require more persistence with training than other breeds.
The Chow Chow breed is also relatively high maintenance, with grooming needs and requirements that must be undertaken frequently.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.