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Lab/Chow Mix - Will he act chow?

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 5:21 pm
by conner
I just adopted a black lab "mix" and just found out the "mix" is a chow. I am extremely concerned, because although I have read through many of your discussions on how wonderful chows are, I have PERSONALLY known a chow who was well brought up in a loving family who attacked another dog and it's own owner. My whole purpose of wanting a labrador was to have the loving, "cudding" personality. As I read up on chows, I am finding out they are "independent, aloof, and like cats but only smarter."
He is only 4 months old and I'm hoping he takes on more of the lab personality (sorry chow lovers). :-) So far he seems to enjoy bitting, but I'm praying it's only because he's teething. Is there anyone who has this mix, or knows more about the temperment of a chow/lab mix?

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:09 pm
by Jeff&Peks
Were you PERSONALLY standing there and watched the whole attack take place? if not then it's just another Chow myth or the Chow was sick or abused, not a chance in hell a Chow would turn on someone like that unless extremely provoked or sick.

There is no way for anyone to tell what personality your puppy will have when it gets older so If I were you and you have all these doubts and dislikes for Chows I would try to rehome him while he is still a puppy and not wait until he is older and winds up at a shelter being euthanized.

As for the supposed attack, I have been walking a Chow 2 times aday for nine years so far on our walks and for no reason my Chow has been attacked by 2 German Sheppard's, 2 Dalmatians, 1 lab (labs are developing aggressiveness lately due to poor breeding) 1 boxer, 1 large black extremely aggressive poodle and 1 akita, so good luck in your search for the perfect never attack lap dog. Never happen there is no such thing.

Actually there is a Lab two doors down from me that is so mean the owners can't trust him outside the yard but as always its the owners fault, the lab has been locked in the back yard it entire life.

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:10 pm
by Victory
You'll have to wait and see how he behaves and frankly some labs these days have nasty personalities caused by over breeding. He could be more lab like and he could be more chow like, he will have characteristics of both. I believe AuddyMay has a lab/chow mix Pippy, who is a good girl.

On the biting, stop it now! There is an entire thread about training for bite inhibition. He needs that. In two months when he has his full adult teeth it won't be a good thing.

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 6:24 pm
by sweetpea
Princess is a lab/chow mix. She has the stubborness of a Chow, will not play fetch, She loves the cold. It's never to cold for her. She is little miss social, every stranger is her newest best friend (like that of a lab, or how labs use to be). When company comes she grabs a toy, piece of paper or whatever is close to go greet the person. If she gets loose, she's a runner, puts on the deaf ears like a Chow. If she wants something, she whines more like a lab would I guess. She plays and wrestles in a Chow way, zoomies like a Chow. She shows a little of both breeds. You'll see the same kind of thing.

Princess was socialized to the max. We took her to work with us and everywhere we went. She started off being shy but soon came out of her shell and thought customers came to see her. Educate yourself on the truth of Chows. If I were you, I wouldnt freak out over the thought of this dog having Chow in it. Princess has enough Chow in her (other than a few traits, she's all Chow) that all it did to me was make me long to experience having a pure bred. And now, I want no other breed except a Chow. They aren't the unstable monsters people say they are.

Posted: Tue Feb 13, 2007 10:32 pm
by Princess
Ok, lets assume you witnessed this alledged attack and the chow just turned on this individual for no reason (WHICH I HIGHLY DOUBT) I can think of a million circumbstances that could have occured, it's always easier to blame the dog then the people involved and just say it attacked for no reason at all just like things don't fall apart on their own, dogs (especially well behaved dogs) also don't attack for no reason because they feel like it that day. Why do you choose to generalize that one bad experience to all chows that exist, eventhough you have said that you have read about how great they are. I'm sure every breed or a mix of all kinds have gotten aggressive at one point in time, from this it would follow that ALL dogs are bad.. but that's absurd.

I'm a firm believer that it is not the dog, no matter what breed it is, it's the owner. If you are a terrible owner you will not have a good dog, and if you are a good owner you will have a great dog no matter what breed it is or what it's a mix of.
As far as biting, yeah he's teething there's a whole thread on that now, so he doesn't mouth you instead of his chew toy... :)

Best of luck

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 6:39 am
by chris
It really depends on what traits are going to be dominate over the other. I too had a lab/chow mix. and he was the most wonderful love I ever had. He was very protective when he had to be, but very goofy too and loveable. He liked everyone, but liked to hunt for small animals and bring them home as tropheys. He actualy looked like a Neuphanland (sp?).
As far as the bitting goes.. all puppies do that no matter what breed they are. But as victory said.. you need nip that in the butt... or is it bud... anyway....

If you are so concearned at how he is going to turn out, I would adopt him out to another family. IMO when you bring someone into your family, human or anmimal, it is forever. Say you adopted a baby and that baby at age 3 is way to much for you to handle... are you going to give it back to the adoption agency? I think NOT. I know thats extreme but think about it. They have feelings and fall in love with their humans too. They do go through depression too. SO, it doesn't matter if you are a chow lover or not... do what you think is best for you and your family and figure it out NOW, not later.

Also.. IMO, your pup will be fine as long as you are devoted and dedicated in that you are going to take proper care of him and treat him like a family member.

Good luck.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 7:05 am
by mytwodoxies
I would not be concerned. If the dog had a personality that attracted you to adopt him, then I wouldn't worry. He is looking to you to find out what is appropriate behavipr and what isn't.

I have known several chow mixes who were chow/retriever.
Some acted totally retriever but had a different textured coat. Some were more playful than the chow, friendly like the lab, but were a little more independent minded as far as being less dependent.

The key with any puppy is socialization no matter what the breed. He is what you make of him. With a purebred lab, if you don't socialize him, he could get too excited when meeting the rare few and far between person and not listen to you at all. And not know how to interact properly with dogs. If a purebred chow never has interaction with other dogs, they will act more withdrawn.

I would introduce your dog to at least 1-2 friendly people per week and try to get him to meet a new dog every week if you can. Whether those are dogs in a puppy class, a dog you meet at the park, or a prearranged meeting with your friends dog. Make sure he meets big dogs, little dogs, young, adn old.

My friend had a chow when we were in 5th-7th grade (then i moved away). if we were sitting on the floor playing a board game, her chow would plop down on the little rug maybe 5-10 feet from us. And when we changed rooms, she would change positions, "with us", but doing her own thing. With my sister's lab, she would have been ON the board game :) Cute, but totally inapropriate to expect guests to come back!

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 7:10 am
by bubba
I have read a scientific study on the subject Mixbreeds and personality traits , can not find it on net just now .

the study involved mix breeding pure bred "herding type" with a "water Dog" type , chow have displayed some herding tendcy but are not considered herders, i think labs are water dogs .

the appearance and personality traits are not gene linked and one can not "expect" to get the same result on every cross, this is why i worry about " labradoodles and pekeapoos and all the other so called designer dogs.

in the case of the herder x water dog one group of results was a herding appearing dog that loved to swim .. and a lab appearing dog that herded things..
when one rolls the genetic dice.....

it has been well established that the genetic code chows have is older than the code of most other breeds, , i wonder if older code would tend to dominate

i think the pup will be OK it's you i worry about , the question is if you can get over a knee jerk reaction" Fear Chow " if you can besure and keep this list posted , look for a Blue Tounge to develope , only Chow and Sharpei display blue tounge ..


Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 7:20 am
by mytwodoxies
bubba wrote: i think the pup will be OK it's you i worry about , the question is if you can get over a knee jerk reaction" Fear Chow " if you can besure and keep this list posted , look for a Blue Tounge to develope , only Chow and Sharpei display blue tounge ..

Actually, Chows aren't the only dogs that can have speckled tongues. Many mixes have speckled versus the blue/black solid tongue but other dogs do too...

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 8:16 am
by bubba
chow and sharpei have blue tounge

if any other dog show blue spot then i think its just that old chow in there coming out [ purebred or no]
chows are a breed older than modern man ,

The tree was rooted using wolf samples. The
deepest split in the tree separated four Asian
spitz-type breeds, and within this branch the
Shar-Pei split first, followed by the Shiba Inu,
with the Akita and Chow Chow grouping

Genetic Structure of the Purebred Domestic Dog SCIENCE VOL 304 21 MAY 2004

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 8:50 am
WHY didn't you just adopt a FULL BLOODED LAB. if you are SOOOO WORRIED ABOUT WHAT IT IS MIXED WITH??????????DAAAA
The shelters are FULL OF THEM!!!!!I WONDER WHY THAT IS?????
I'm NOT SURE if you DESERVE to have a CHOW/MIX, THe Chow in it PROBABLY WON'T LIKE YOU EITHER.........they are the SMARTEST AND MOST PERCEPTIVE BREED I have EVER been around, SOOOOO. I'm SURE it won't like you, find it a BETTER HOME!!!
Even if you keep it everytime it acts like a puppy which they ALL do, you will IGNORATELY think it is the Chow in him........{BEST PART IF YOU ASK ME}

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 12:00 pm
by chris
Doughhhhh.... :? WOW vicster605... no need to get all wriled up now.

breath... in.. out.. in.. out... :D Feel better?

I know where you are coming from Vicster, but take it easy on the guy... he's a little nervouse because obviously he hasn't been around that many Chows to really get to know them and know that the Stories behind them are not true.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 12:40 pm
by mytwodoxies
Conner, please ignore vicster. thank you for adopting your baby :) You did a wonderful thing. I think adopted dogs somehow "know".

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 12:48 pm
by Jeff&Peks
Why ignore vicster? It is great that the person adopted the dog but now they are having second thoughts because its a Chow/lab mix. going to the shelter and adopting a dog because of it's looks and then finding out its not what you wanted because you have a ridicules opinion about a certain breed is not something you thank someone for doing. Don't just look at the adopting part, read between the line.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 4:56 pm
by mytwodoxies
Jeff&Peks wrote:Why ignore vicster? It is great that the person adopted the dog but now they are having second thoughts because its a Chow/lab mix. going to the shelter and adopting a dog because of it's looks and then finding out its not what you wanted because you have a ridicules opinion about a certain breed is not something you thank someone for doing. Don't just look at the adopting part, read between the line.
its the tone.

We have a real opportunity to educate someone here and encouraging someone to rethink and possibly return a puppy to a rescue or shelter for no fault of the dog is not something we want to encourage. The pup has done nothing wrong and its very hard to determine sometimes what a dog is mixed with - its a guessing game. We have a choice to scare this person off that they are not worthy of owning a chow mix, or we can show how chows are intelligent and loving dogs, welcome them as a poster here, and help them through the puppyhood and young adulthood of their dog and watch the dog grow up like so many others have here.. And remember - nobody knows how the pup will grow up but Conner can help mold the pup on what manners it will have and give him a sense of security that will help him be the best dog he can be no matter what he takes after.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 5:14 pm
by Jeff&Peks
"My whole purpose of wanting a labrador was to have the loving, "cudding" personality. As I read up on chows,I am finding out they are "independent, aloof, and like cats but only smarter."

I guess we all read something in a differant way but to me they don't want to be educated about Chows they wanted a lab.

"I am finding out they are "independent, aloof, and like cats but only smarter."

Thats exactly right, no educating needed.

This all should have been thought about before even bringing the puppy home, you want a lab then get a lab, If the Chow part does take over which is the usal case, when the Chow/lab dosn't chase the ball or follow her around the house wanting constant attention then what? back to the shelter? you are not going to turn a Chow into a lab no matter how hard you try and no matter how educated you are.

THe tone i'm sure is frustration, not meanness.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 5:25 pm
SORRY ABOUT THE TONE GUYS :oops: :oops: Connor, there really are many different Chow personalities, just as there are lab. I just didn't understand why you came to a Chow Chow web. site to say you don't like the Chow Chow's. Or WHY you adopted a pet before you knew about the pet?? Shouldn't you do that first??

YES, maybe an education is in order..........My Chow loves to play fetch, most don't, some love water others don't, some love to be groomed others don't, many many different personalities..........Very smart, yes, independant,but VERY LOVING at other times........ I'm sure with a mix you wouldn't be able to tell what part of a personality came what breed????Would you??? If you love the puppy and train it and socialize it like you should, it will NO MATTER the breed or MIX be a GREAT PET.......Like I said, SORRY for the tone...............

One Bad Apple doesn't spoil the Whole Barrel!!! Personally I think you should LISTEN and read on this web site to ALL OF THE HAPPY CHOW OWNERS!!! And forget about the one BAD incident you know of...........GOOD LUCK

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 6:34 pm
by chris
Your not a bad apple.. your a Honey Crisp Apple.. My favorite. :D :wink:

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 6:59 pm
by kingalls
Shiloh is a mix - we think she might be part Keeshond...not sure. Her Chowness includes: aloof, intelligence, and rarely barks. She has a bluer tongue than my full Chow Chow. She also jumps around in circles like a puppy - which I attribute to the Keeshond in her.
I think you will enjoy a Lab/Chow mix - maybe the Lab to give you that lovey-dovey personality but with the intelligence and loyalty of the Chow Chow.
I personally think that depending on what you want to read - you'll find something to support your ultimate decision in keeping your rescue....I can almost bet that if you do your research you'll find disturbing instances where you might think a Lab is not what you want....just like you might find stories where you will have doubts about the Chow Chow.
You have a rescue that needs a forever home - please give him a chance. Don't short change yourself or your rescue.

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 8:16 pm
by jerryo
This whole discussion reminds me of a story about George Bernard Shaw. He was approached at a party by an actress considered one of the outstanding beauties of the day. She suggested, "Mr Shaw, we should have a child together, so that it could have my looks and your intelligence!" GBS replied, "That would be very well, Madame, but what if it had my looks and your intelligence?" You just never really know. :lol:

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 9:37 pm
by Princess
Ahhh... genetics... my favourite....

Just because Chow genes are older doesn't mean that it will be conveyed more in the dog. It's all up to independent alleles within the individual genes within the genome, some from lab will be more dominant, some from the chow. However, the nature/nurture debate still rages on, genes may predetermine phenotypic attributes (stuff you can see such as coloration), but the temperment is more nurture then genetics (in my opinion and from some twin studies that were done) depending on how he was brought up since he was just a little puppy and what you do with him as he grows.

Don't be harsh on vicster, she's the lady who got told by everyone and their dog that her chow is going to grow up and eat her and everyone else in the neighbourhood.. remember....
people rarely have an open mind or are willing to change their beliefs, so if she wanted a lab (lapdog) and got something else i'm not sure if us persuading will change this.. we can just hope... we did succeed with one that guy who got a puppy from mexico and then was having second thoughts but kept her in the end.. i wonder where he's been....

Posted: Wed Feb 14, 2007 11:28 pm
by Jeff&Peks
"but the temperament is more nurture then genetics (in my opinion and from some twin studies that were done) depending on how he was brought up since he was just a little puppy and what you do with him as he grows."

I totally disagree with that, it may appear on the outside that way but on the inside genetics are genetics

I've seen allot of Chows mixes in my life and times (Leon Russell) and from what I have seen the Chow part is always the dominant part.

I watched a show about Wolfs on TV last week, it was about the Wolf rescues in Oregon and allot of what they said could be related to a Chow, No matter how domesticated a wolf is, A wolf is a wolf, it will play with humans, it will love humans, it will tolerate allot (Some more then others) but push it to far, raise your voice to it, scold it, abuse it you will have a deadly wolf on your hands. A wolf is not a dog (they said that, not me) and that's the same way I feel about Chows, they will play, they will love but deep inside there are traits that a Chow is just born with, no matter how much of a lap dog you think you have trained your Chow to be there is still always precautions you have to take when owning a Chow. You take any Chow and remove it from its home and owner put the Chow in a situation its not comfortable with watch how fast those hidden traits that some refuse to believe their Chows have come out.

There is no better breed then a Chow but if you want a Lab then get a lab and not get a mix then hope and pray it turns into what you want. a Chow is a Chow no matter how many obedience classes it goes to. The only difference between any of the Chows on this site that I have seen is some are spoiled more then others. With a Child it's called a brat, with a Chow its called temperment problems.

Posted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 5:16 am
by redangie24
Well, can't believe I am going to say this, but I agree with jeff. When you get a mix you can never tell exactly what it will be like. I perfer purebred dogs because you can get a pretty good idea what your pup will be like, except thier individual personalities.

Like Ivana, she is way more affectionate than any other chow I know. She is always following me around the house, licking my hands to get me to pet her and trying to make me believe she is a all around sweet heart. Which she is, but her chow traits are also very strong, her need to protect us, laziness, does not bark unless someone new comes to our house or a strange animal, loves to wonder, when someone new is playing with her and she gets tired of it she will walk off mid pet. So ya know she is a chow first. When it comes to personlity though each chow can be as different as night and day.

Posted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 11:26 am
by Princess
I guess for an animal that acts on instincts genes would be important, since the dominant ones produce proteins that will down the road create a response such as a neurochemical signals.. maybe increase in agression, increase lovability, what have you, but we cannot diminish the importance of nurture, like Jeff was saying about the wolf, it will love you untill you treat it poorly... good example of nurture...
I think that is like that with all species even humans, that supposedly are smart and can control themselves, an individual that has been abused has a potential for increase of becoming abusive themselves and it's not like your genes are telling them to do so, it's how they were brought up and values that they have instilled...

However I will have to say that I think ALL dogs are great and have individual characteristics... so if you are aware that you are getting a mix no matter what it is, you should still love it because they'll be great, BUT if you want a specific personality then go for a purebred.. but don't expect a mix to turn into a purebred...

Posted: Thu Feb 15, 2007 11:50 am
by Judy Fox
I think Vicster you said what you felt! :) As for bad apples, anyone who sticks up for chows is certainly not a bad apple!
As far as you are concerned Connor, it is a bit insensitive to rescue a chow/lab mix then come on to a chow site and say you were hoping for more of a lab temperament.
We are chow people and we love our chows better than anything in the world and they are aloof and don't make a great big slobbering fuss of their owners like labs do and personally, I would not want a lab.
So there you go - get to know your dog. You adopted him! He did not have too much say in the matter. Love him, take care of him, feed, walk, pet, bath and play.
Then when you look into his eyes you will see the love - even if he is more chow than you would like.
Also, take a few lessons on tact! :)