Black Chow Chows: Everything You Thought You Knew About Them!

Chow Chow Black, Black Chow Chow, Black Lions, Shadow Dogs – there are many nicknames for black Chow Chows. These amazing dogs are majestic, loyal animals and are ideal pets if trained correctly! But there is more to them than meets the eye. Here, we will cover the price of a black Chow Chow and what to look out for before buying.

Why is my Chow Chow black?

It is important to understand that Chow Chows come in various colours, predominantly black, red, blue, fawn, white, or cream. A Chow Chow’s colouration can stem from multiple reasons. The two most common reasons for your Chow Chow being black are:

  1. The breeder has specifically chosen to breed black Chow Chows as this colour is very popular in Chow Chow puppy sales.
  2. Due to a genetic variation within the litter of Chow Chow puppies, all it takes is for either of the Chow Chow parents to carry the black Chow Chow gene. Sometimes, this isn’t immediately obvious without a DNA test.

Before we move on, it must be emphasised why you should not buy any form of Merle Chow Chow. In brief, Merle Chow Chows have many health issues and breeding them will cause issues throughout their bloodline. More information about this can be found here.

What is the general appearance of a black Chow Chow?

It may be already obvious… but black Chow Chows are mainly black. However, they may have a slight tinge of grey within their coat. The impressive part is that a black Chow Chow’s mouth, mouth tissue, gums, and lip edges are all black! The UK Kennel Club and US Kennel Club agree that these grey tinges are permitted and do not have anything to do with a Chow’s health.

How much does a black Chow Chow typically cost?

The typical cost of a black Chow Chow is around £1,850–£2,250 in Great Britain and around $2,250–$2,700 in the United States.

Before buying a Chow, we recommend some basic checks be carried out on any potential breeders to ensure you are buying a healthy Chow Chow. This will save you time, money, and heartbreak in the long run!

Ensure they are KC registered.

 If the Chow Chow is Kennel Club registered (KC), you can ensure their breeding and care have adhered to the KC’s strict guidelines.

Word-of-mouth references.

It is essential to speak to Chow Chow owners to understand where they purchased their black Chow Chow. By doing this, you will get a good idea of whether the breeder is responsible and confirmation that there are no health problems within the bloodline or litter.

CHS hip & elbow scoring from the breeder’s parents.

Hip scoring is carried out once the parents are 12 months old. This involves simple sedation and an X-ray. Once the X-ray has been obtained, it is then sent to the British Veterinary Association (BVA) to be scored against the Hip Dysplasia Scheme for dogs. For a Chow Chow, you are looking for a low, equal score on the hips. Seven on each hip is the highest recommended score for breeding. Any higher and you are setting yourself up for potential future health problems. More information can be found here.

Elbow scoring is similar. Again, it is carried out when the parents are 12 months old with sedation and an X-ray. It is also sent to the British Veterinary Association, but this time to be scored against the Elbow Dysplasia Scheme. The scoring is different but simple to understand. You are looking for a score of 0 (Radiographically Normal). More information on elbow scoring can be found here.

CHS Hereditary eye examination certificate results.

The results of this examination will tell you whether your black Chow Chow has any eye conditions or is likely to have any in the future. This examination is usually conducted at both five and 12 weeks old. The CHS eye examination is carried out by an expert BVA-appointed eye panellist, and the result you are looking for is Clinically Unaffected (meaning they do not have a condition). More information on eye examinations can be found here.

Puppy endorsement by the breeder (controversial).

In short, this means that when the breeder registers the puppy with the KC, they provide an endorsement that prevents breeding the puppy in the future, and if this is done, they cannot be KC-registered. This prevents Chow Chows from being exploited and ruined and is usually done to protect the puppy, as you cannot guarantee that the puppy will always have good health. The endorsement can be lifted by the breeders, but it is worth checking the requirements within the sales agreement provided by the breeder.

Puppy sale agreement/contract provided.

You must ensure that a sales agreement is provided and signed before you obtain ownership of your Chow Chow. This protects both you and the breeder. Please read and understand this before you sign it.

Black Chow Chows are a treat to have around and have looks that few dogs can match. They will be great companions provided they are trained from a puppy and are socialised with other dogs, humans, and pets.

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