The Shar Pei Dachshund mix, also sometimes called a Peiweenie, is an unusual cross between the Chinese Shar Pei and the Dachshund. This mixed breed combines the wrinkled, dignified appearance of the Shar Pei with the long and low profile of the Dachshund for a truly one-of-a-kind hybrid dog.
While this mix is still quite rare, the Shar Pei Dachshund is growing in popularity among those looking for an affectionate and devoted pet. As with any crossbreed, traits from both parent breeds can appear to varying degrees. Understanding the history and characteristics of both foundation breeds is key to appreciating the endearing Peiweenie.
Tracing the Origins of the Peiweenie
To better comprehend this unusual blend of two purebreds, let’s take a brief look at where the Shar Pei and Dachshund originated.
The History of the Chinese Shar Pei
The Shar Pei hails from the southern provinces of China, where it served as an all-purpose farm dog and guard of family and property. Its name translates to “sand skin” in English, referencing the hallmark rough, sandpaper-like coat.
Over centuries, Shar Pei were bred for some unique physical traits, like the abundant wrinkles, straight hips, small ears, and trademark blue-black tongue. Sadly, the breed nearly went extinct in the 20th century until a Hong Kong businessman gathered the remaining specimens to save the Shar Pei from vanishing.
Today’s Shar Pei comes in three coat varieties:
- Horse coat: Short and bristly
- Brush coat: Longer, straight hair
- Bear coat: Soft, fluffy, and very wrinkly
No matter the coat type, all good Shar Peis should display the alert expression, hippo-like muzzle shape, and colorful tongue that make them stand out in a crowd.
The Background of the Dachshund
In contrast to the exotic Shar Pei, the Dachshund has a more familiar European background. Short-legged scenthounds have existed in some form across the continent for centuries, used by hunters mainly to track, chase down, and flush out badgers and other den-dwelling quarry.
In Germany, such dogs were specially bred to create the ideal “badger hound,” becoming the Dachshund we know today. Their elongated bodies, short legs, loud, deep voices, and enormous courage made them perfectly suited to braving vicious badgers in tight underground tunnels.
Modern Dachshunds primarily come in two sizes:
- Standard: Usually 16-32 pounds
- Miniature: 11 pounds or less
Both sizes share the same long, low proportions, loud barking, and earnest hunting spirit that have made Dachshunds favorites as family companions.
What Results When You Mix a Shar Pei and a Dachshund?
Now that we’ve covered some background on the Peiweenie’s parent breeds, let’s look closer at these hybrid dogs themselves.
Since crossbreeding is a fairly random process, Shar Pei Dachshund mixes can vary greatly in physical traits and temperament. Most pet owners and breeders aim to produce dogs with the best qualities from both lineages.
Appearance of Peiweenies
The most prominent features of a Peiweenie will generally include:
- A medium length, wrinkled muzzle
- Semi-prick, triangular ears
- An athletic but stocky body on short, stubby legs
- A brush coat in various colors like cream, red, brown or black
Depending on whether mom or dad was the purebred, pups may take after one parent more in their build. For instance, some Peiweenie litters contain more leggy and long-bodied puppies resembling Dachshunds. Other littermates appear heavier-set with drooping faces nearly engulfed by wrinkles, similar to Shar Peis.
Since designer breeds have become popular, responsible breeders are working to produce uniform Peiweenie generations that reliably inherit the best physical and behavioral qualities. Through selective breeding programs, more consistent Shar Pei Dachshund mixes are being achieved.
“One endearing aspect of Peiweenies is their comical appearance which never fails to make people smile.”
Temperament and Personality
Besides their unique physical blend, Peiweenies also combine attitudes and temperaments from their parent breeds:
- Shar Peis are known for being loyal, affectionate guard dogs but also stubborn and wary of strangers.
- Dachshunds have lively, clownish personalities and make devoted, fun-loving companions.
How these traits mix in a Peiweenie is not completely predictable. With early socialization and training, most mature into trusted watchdogs that are gentle and protective with family. They can be lively and mischievous, enjoying lots of playtime and interaction.
Caring for a Shar Pei Dachshund Mix
Before deciding if a Peiweenie is the right pet for your home, make sure you can provide for all the unique care one will need. Since they are a blend of two purebreds with some significant health considerations, owning a Shar Pei Dachshund is not for novice pet parents.
Here is what responsible owners can expect in caring for one of these hybrid hounds:
Exercise and Activity Level
Thanks to their long Dachshund bodies but short legs, Peiweenies have exercise needs that fall somewhere between both parent breeds. Most enjoy at least 30-60 minutes of daily activity through:
- Short walks
- Free play in a safely fenced yard
- Fun training games indoors involving hiding toys and treats
A Peiweenie will be eager to accompany you on most outings but cannot handle long hikes or runs. Take care not to over-exercise them, as their long backs are prone to spinal issues.
Provide steps for couches and beds so they don’t risk injury jumping on and off high furniture. Avoid activities involving lots of stairs or rough play to prevent harm.
Depending on which parent breed’s coat type they inherit most, grooming demands will differ. Smoother, horse coat Shar Pei mixes will require only weekly brushing and occasional bathing. Long-haired Peiweenie brush coats need daily combing to prevent painful mats and tangles.
All will shed moderately year-round. Use a de-shedding tool like an undercoat rake weekly during heavier molting periods. This helps remove dead hairs trapped in the dense coat before they spread over your home. Trim nails monthly and clean ears of excess buildup as part of regular care.
Ideal Home Setting
Peiweenies adapt well to most living situations. They can thrive in city apartments or rural farm homes equally. Having access to a securely fenced yard for play and exercise is ideal. But they will enjoy daily leashed walks regardless.
Their moderate activity level and small-to-medium size make them suitable for homes and families of all types. They enjoy kids but require supervision due to their tendency to herd or nip at little feet. Proper socialization and training can curb this behavior.
With strong guarding instincts from their Shar Pei parent, Peiweenies may not tolerate other pets initially. But they usually warm up to respectful dogs and cats they are raised with.
Both parent breeds are known to be stubborn, so early socialization and training is vital for any Peiweenie. Begin reinforcing commands using positive techniques as soon as possible.
Be firm yet patient with these intelligent mixed dogs. Harsh punishment or scolding will only make them shut down. Make every lesson upbeat using their favorite treats to keep them engaged. Practice basic cues like sit, stay, come, down, and heel in various settings.
Once they respect you as the leader, Peiweenies become obedient and quick learners. Attending puppy kindergarten and intermediate obedience classes with them is highly recommended. This allows essential socialization and gets all family members actively involved in their ongoing education at home.
The ideal Peiweenie diet will provide balanced nutrition suitable for their small-medium size and moderate energy level. Most do well on high-quality commercial kibble formulated specifically for hybrid dogs. Look for a recipe containing:
- 25-30% protein
- 15-20% fat
- Fiber, probiotics, antioxidants
- Omega fatty acids
Feed approximately 1⁄2 to 1 cup divided into two smaller meals. This may vary depending on your Peiweenie’s age, metabolism and build.
Health Issues to Know
Crossbreeding dogs can result in hybrid vigor where mixed breeds are hearty and less prone to genetic conditions affecting their purebred parents. But Peiweenies can still be at risk for certain health problems common to Shar Peis and Dachshunds, including:
- Intervertebral disc disease
- Hip dysplasia
- Skin fold infections
- Eye issues like glaucoma
- Patellar luxation
- Autoimmune thyroid disease
Reputable Peiweenie breeders screen for many of these conditions to produce healthier puppies. But it’s still important to stay alert for symptoms and have your vet examine them regularly throughout all life stages.
Finding a Responsible Peiweenie Breeder
With any popular crossbreed dog, disreputable breeders may try to cash in by producing Peiweenie puppies in poor conditions purely for profit. Always steer clear of pet stores or those advertising on online retail sites.
The best way to find a Peiweenie is through adoption centers or foster-based rescue groups. Adoptable mixes often come from backgrounds where health and temperament are largely unknown. But fees typically cover initial vetting and vaccines to ensure they go to new owners in good shape.
If purchasing from a breeder, be extremely selective and do plenty of research first. Visit facilities in-person and ask many questions about parent dogs, genetic testing procedures, temperament assessments, etc. A quality breeder will welcome such inquiries to ensure their Peiweenie puppies go to informed, responsible new homes.
Is the Unique Peiweenie Right for You?
For experienced dog owners seeking a devoted, entertaining pet that is truly one of a kind, the Peiweenie can make for a top-notch companion animal. Their wrinkly faces and joyful attitudes never fail to delight. When properly socialized and cared for, they thrive in homes with people of all ages.
Of course, the Shar Pei Dachshund mix is not ideal for everyone. Those unable to dedicate lots of time to training and exercise should probably seek out lower maintenance breeds. And remember that crossing two purebreds with significant health issues could still result in unhealthy offspring.
Still, Peiweenies demonstrate how beneficial careful, selective hybrid pairings can be. At their best, these unusual dogs have fantastic temperaments retaining only the most favorable qualities of both parent breeds. For the right pet parent, adding one of these special mixes to your home may be extremely rewarding.
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