Completing your family with a dog can be both exciting and stressful at the same time. You need to be sure before committing yourself to this because it is no child’s play to care for a new, loyal companion for his entire life.
There can be multiple options on our mind, but not many consider the Pitchow mix. Some of you may still be curious about this cross and may not be sure about these cute pups getting along with your family.
Here is a guide that will help you choose Pitchow as your companion pet, and help you make your family complete.
The pitbull chow mix, or pitchow for short, are hybrid dogs created from the combination of its American Pitbull Terrier and Chow Chow parents. They are energetic dogs with a bunch of positive traits and tend to be friendly and obedient. By the end of this article, you will know anything and everything you need to know about Pitchow.
Pitchow: Pitbull and Chow Mix:
Here is a quick summary table that will help you know more about Pitchow:
|Weight||30 to 70 lbs|
|Lifespan||10 to 15 years|
|Colors||Black, White, Brindle, Fawn, Gray, Brown, Cream|
|Intelligence||Very intelligent and can learn tricks easily|
|AKC Breed Popularity||Is not ranked in it|
|Temperament||Very gentle and affectionate, and can sometimes be uneasy and wary around strangers.|
|Daily Food Consumption||2.5 cups per day of protein-rich dog food|
|Common Health Issues||Hip dysplasia, Entropion, Gastric issues, Ear, and Eye problems|
Want to know about Pitchow further? Here are some fun facts:
1. To understand how exactly your pup would look like you need to have a look at the parent dogs as they are two purebred dogs.
2. Some puppies inherit the classic blue Chow Chow tongue. Then there are those with dominant red-nosed pitbull genes.
3. These dogs are brilliantly skilled and learn many impressive tricks. Although they will usually ‘sing’ instead of barking when someone is at the door!
4. Known for fearlessness and intelligence, you can make excellent use of them for pulling skiers or sleds.
Pitchow – Essentials to Know Before You Buy:
Pitchow often tends to have a varying appearance as it can be born with physical traits from both American Pitbull Terrier and Chow Chow parents.
The parent dogs stand on the opposite ends of a pole when it comes to their personality, so their offsprings can have any combination of physical traits. But then a Pitchow can be turned into an American Pitbull Terrier by shaving it (Don’t try this at home!)
As lovely and obedient as a Pitchow is, it tends to be uncomfortable around strangers.
These dogs can cost you anything from $800 to $2,000. But the challenge here is to find a reputable breeder. And honestly, finding a reputable breeder is not easy.
You need to be sure that that the breeder has clean premises, and puppies are healthy and vaccinated. And that the breeder is open for assistance throughout the lifetime of the dog. Remember, a good breeder will not sell a puppy before it is eight weeks old.
Just like how you scan multiple websites before purchasing your favorite goodies, it is essential to have patience and keep your options open until you are satisfied with the match.
Physical Traits of the Pitchow:
Pitchows look like their American Pitbull Terrier parent, but also have certain traits from the Chow Chow parent.
As they tend to have both the personalities, Pitchows can have ears think and erect like that of the American Pitbull Terrier or can have floppy and thin ears like that of the Chow Chow. There may even be instances where the puppy has the ear of each breed!
Pitchows have muzzles slightly shorter than their Pitbull parents.
They have wide jaws, and they also inherit the famous blue or spotted blue tongue from the Chow Chow parent.
Their hind legs are like the American Pitbull Terrier’s, while the tails are curved.
They can inherit an American Pitbull Terrier coat, or maybe one that closely resembles the Chow Chow.
It is considerably simple to care and groom your dog when it has the American Pitbull Terrier coat. But if it has fur that is more like the Chow Chow, it can get tricky for you to clean in between the folds of its skin.
Their skin color can depend on the dominant genes. There are significant possibilities that the coat is of Black, White, Brindle, Fawn, Blue, Red, Gray, Brown, or even Cream in color. The fur can be of medium length with a straight texture.
Their eyes can have any color from Hazel to Brown or even Amber. And can have a nose of Blue, Black, Brown, or Isabella color.
Pitchows grow up to a height of 17 to 21 inches and weigh around 30 to 70 lbs.:
Here is the age-wise growth data of a Pitchow pup:
● 6 Months old: Height – 6 inches; Weight – 19 lbs
● 12 Months old: Height – 11 inches; Weight – 30 lbs
● 18 Months old: Height – 16 inches; Weight – 39 lbs
History and Origin of the Pitchow:
Now you know that the Pitchows are kind and obedient hybrid dogs that have American Pitbull Terrier and Chow Chow.
It would be interesting to see how these pups came into being and who exactly were their ancestors. Further, to know how your little pitchow companion would look like, you have to know about the traits of their parents.
Let us time travel back to the 1800s to see its origin.
The native of Chow Chow remains a mystery. But the breed is considered to be existing for quite a long time. Chinese pottery and cave paintings show their existence that dates back to at least millions of years ago. Some studies prove that the Chow Chow has ancestors dating back to 206 B.C. These cute little dogs are believed to be related to the Chinese Shar-Pei because of their distinctive blue mouths and origin from China. These dogs were used for productive tasks by the Chinese and are known to capable of hunting, herding, pulling sleds and carts in snowy areas, guarding boats of fishers, and protecting their home. It is also a sad truth that the breed was considered a delicacy, and their fur was used to make coats for humans. In the 1800s, they were brought to England by merchants.
The 1800s was a time in England when hunting was a universal sport, and men indulged in blood sports like bullfighting or dogfighting.
It was in this time that the American Pitbull Terriers came along. They are known to have their origin from diverse types of Terrier breeds. It is fascinating to understand that they are descendants of dogs such as the Fox Terrier, the White English Terrier, the Black Terrier, the Tan Terrier, and the English Bulldogs. This new cross was named as the Staffordshire Bull Terrier in those times and usually belonged to the butchers and the hunters. It was quite common for the butchers to use the Staffordshire Bull Terriers for controlling bulls and conducting the famous hunter’s games of that era. It was common for the Staffordshire Bull Terrier to be a part of blood sports like bullfighting and bear-baiting. They also used them for dogfighting. These disturbing games were, however, banned later on, and the Staffordshire Bull Terriers were brought to the United States by travelers. It was America that they got the name of the American Pitbull Terrier.
Thus came the Pitbull Chow, from two purebred dogs, the American Pitbull Terrier and the Chow Chow.
Is Pitchow Dog Good with Children?
Pitchow is an independent and playful dog. Although these are very loving and adorable, they can sometimes be uneasy around visitors. They are not the type of dogs that demand attention or affection, and so they may not be so fond of children, but they will get along with them. Pitchows must be trained in an early stage to ensure that the puppies get along with their owners and remain obedient to them.
Care of Pitchow: The American Pitbull Terrier & Chow Chow Mix:
The Pitchow’s Diet and Nutrition:
As energetic as Pitchows are, they need nutritious food with a lot of calories to boost their activities.
So when you want to ensure a healthy lifestyle for your pup, you need to focus on dog foods that are high in calories. But with high calories come great responsibility, and you have to ensure that your dog receives the right nutrition.
You may come across dog foods that might be rich in calories but low in nutritional content. So the key here is to look out for dog foods that have more fat and protein. That is because your pup grows fast, and its highly energetic nature needs some fuel to ensure its healthy growth.
As you begin to give them fat and protein-rich foods, ensure that they get their exercise for 30-60 minutes, as recommended.
Giving your dog a healthy snack is a good option, but do not overdo it with unhealthy treats. Healthy dog biscuits or dog sausage treats are options for your Pitchow. You can also go ahead and give them fresh crunchy vegetables. Vegetables will not be a healthy crunchy snack, but will also help in its metabolism by keeping its digestive system healthy.
Make sure you feed your puppy thrice a day to ensure its healthy growth. On average, you Pitchow can consume 2.5 cups of food every day, and this can cost you about $34.00 – $45.00 per month.
How Much Exercise Does a Pitchow Need?
Pitchows are dogs that love to run around in open spaces, splash into a swimming pool, or even roll about in your yard full of flowers!
Such highly energetic dogs need enough exercise throughout the day to cater to their growing needs.
Your pup will enjoy long walks every day and will get enough exercise when they get to run in a vast, free, and safe enclosed space. You can even help it into a swimming pool, so it can splash around and have complete exercise. It is best if you let it exercise for about 30-60 minutes every day.
So if you live in an apartment or have a home without a yard, you need to ensure that it gets its daily activity requirement.
Your Pitchow may not be as energetic as the American Pitbull Terrier as the Chow Chow parents are not very active breeds.
You may also notice that their preferred temperature and climate may vary from dog to dog as the American Pitbull Terrier prefers a tropical environment. In contrast, the Chow Chow prefers a cold one.
How to train a Pitchow?
Pitchows have a reputation for being fearless and super energetic. It becomes crucial for you to know how and when to train your pup to cater to its energy requirements.
Further, even though Pitchows tend to be friendly and loyal, there can be instances when they get uneasy around unfamiliar people.
Pitchows are not fans of children as well, so they can tend to be restless around them.
Many say that Pitchows are to be the only pet because they don’t fare well with other dogs or animals.
Here you need to understand that a dog such a Pitchow needs to be trained at an early stage. Pitchows have to socialize with the people around them when they are young pups so that they grow into obedient adult dogs.
As intelligent as they are, Pitchows can learn many impressive tricks in their training.
Overall, Pitchows can get along with their families provided they get their training and are taught obedience at an early stage. Such intense initial training will ensure that they follow your orders and don’t misbehave.
You may train your little pups on your own to have control over their behaviour, or you may even hire trainers to ensure professional training for them.
Grooming Requirements of Pitchow:
Now that you know that your Pitchow can look like its American Pitbull Terrier parent, but will also inherit the blue tongue from the Chow Chow parent. You must further understand that your dog can be born with a coat like that of an American Pitbull Terrier, or maybe one that resembles the Chow Chow.
You are in luck if your dog inherits the skin of the Pitbull parent. Cleaning and caring for its fur will be simple and easy for you.
Maintenance gets tricky when the pups are born with the Chow Chow fur. You will have to clean in between the folds of their skin, which is quite a task!
What becomes important here is the cleaning of ears. Ear infections are common, and cleaning is the only way to prevent them.
Though these tasks are simple, it is necessary to perform them at least once a week.
Another task is to clip your dog’s nails. Be prepared for all the drama that your dog may show while you are about to cut them!
The best practice is to maintain the nails at the right length and cut them at least once or twice every month.
Last but not least is brushing their teeth regularly.
Pitchows are always at the risk of tooth decay and gum infections, and so, just like humans, require regular brushing. You may do this every day or maybe even twice a week.
Pitchow Health and Conditions:
Many breeders stress on the point of taking good care of the coats of your puppies. Pitchows are prone to developing skin diseases like their Pitbull parents and need the right grooming.
You also need to watch out for some significant ailments like hip dysplasia, entropion, and gastric issues. Your pups may even be prone to some minor problems like ear infections or cataracts. Dog breeders also advise occasional diagnosis for the possibility of congenital heart defects, allergies, and hypothyroidism.
Once you visit your veterinarian, make sure you talk to him about occasional tests. Tests like complete blood profiles, radiographs, urinalysis, x-rays, blood electrolytes, ECG, blood gas analysis, and serum chemistry are necessary for your puppy.
Follow the vaccination schedules religiously if you don’t want any health complications in your puppy.
Your vet is the best advisor when it comes to immunizing your dog. He may advise you based on factors like the locality you live in, and the conditions in your home.
However, here is a schedule you need to follow:
- First vaccination: 6 to 8 weeks
- Second vaccination: 9 to 11 weeks
- Third vaccination: 12 to 14 weeks
- Fourth vaccination: 16 to 17 weeks
- Booster shots: 12 months
- First vaccination: 14 weeks
- Booster shots: 6 months
- First vaccination: 16 weeks (varies by state)
- Booster shots: 12-36 months
- First vaccination: 14 weeks
- Second vaccination: 17 weeks
- Booster shots: 12 months
- First vaccination: 14 weeks
- Second vaccination: 17 weeks
- Booster shots: 12 months
Final Thoughts on the Pitchow:
As impressive as Pitchow can be, these highly energetic dogs are a keeper when you have a small family. They are not the best pets, but they are still a playful companion.
Make sure you contact the right breeder and get to know about its parents and buy a dog that is healthy and vaccinated.
Many still think that they may attack people as they come from the Pitbull family, but this is not true when they get their training in the right way at a young age.
On the plus side, they make fantastic watchdogs as they get trained well.
So, don’t let the words Pit and Chow scare you. Unfortunately, incidents can happen, but it is all in how they grow up. After all, love is just a four-legged word.
Dr. Aram Baker has been with Santa Clarita Animal Hospital since 1995 and his special interests include behaviour medicine and dermatology. He graduated from the Cleveland Humanities Magnet Program in Reseda, CA and attended California State University at Northridge where he received a Bachelor’s degree in biology. He went on to pursue his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine at the University of California at Davis. He also spent time in the zoological medicine department at U.C. Davis during his Junior and Senior years. He is dedicated to caring for all pets big or small, young or old with compassion, patience, kindness, and love.