Mishamai Japanese Chins

Welcome to my wonderful world of Chins!

Advice for potential owners

Thinking about getting a new puppy or dog  often brings many questions, so please feel free to ask me or someone else. I think it would be wise to go to www.AKC.org and check out what they have as well as www.japanesechinonline.org about Japanese chins. Buying from a reputable breeder is always the best for your own protection, an Honest breeder will not lie to you  about the papers or the parents.  Always when checking on getting a dog make sure the papers are AKC and not one of the pop up groups who will give you meaningless papers from some unknown registry. Most breeders who raise many breeds for profit spend little if any time to socialize their puppies whereas in a show home we must get our puppies socialized, because should we have a nice show puppy we want him to be happy well adjusted fellow. I spend a great deal of time working with my babies, they are allowed outside when the weather is good, I invite my neighbors children over to set on the ground and play with them so they get used to children, I allow then out time in the house with the "pack" so they get used to other dogs as they grow I put a leash on them and let them lead me around. They get to go to the park and ride in the car.


Buying a puppy from someone who raises only one breed or even two and keeps them in their home shows in the puppies. Often my puppies are litter box trained because I keep them in the house. I have learned that especially with puppies if you litter-box train first you will be much happier during the house breaking process, keeping them confined in a small area and giving them a place to go while you work to the ultimate goal, may really come in handy during inclement weather or illness.

( I have been litter-box training my babies and this has been very rewarding, I highly recommend this method, makes new owners very happy!)

To set up litter-box training, use a large low sided litter-box like the ones sold at dollar stores or a sweater-box from walmart, and feline pine litter or pine pellet bedding for horses sold in most feed stores, Tractor Supply or Atwoods, Ace Hardware. The litter kept scooped is biodegradable and can be used around your plants. 

Please print this page and share with your Vet!

    As no individual can possibly be totally familiar with the quirks of every breed, here are some Japanese Chin peculiarities you might like to share with your veterinarian.

1. Chin puppies often have slightly pinched nostrils that generally open with time. The bubbly discharge from a chin puppy's nose is NOT serious if the discharge is clear and watery and the dog is otherwise thriving. This problem is most acute during the teething stage. Even the nostrils of a dog that has difficulty simultaneously eating and breath-ing or is lethargic at this time may open satisfactorily as the dog matures, but a few dogs this severely affected may require surgery later on.

2. Small umbilical hernias (a bubble-like protrusion of fat at the navel through an opening no larger than the tip of your little finger) are common in Japanese Chin and are often due to excess stress on the umbilical cord during delivery. Such hernias often close naturally over time, although you may want to have them surgically closed while your pet is being neutered. Unlike inguinal (groin-area) hernias, they are not a reason to avoid breeding a dog.

3. Chin quite often cut their teeth relatively late and lose them relatively early. Undershot bites (lower jaw protruding beyond the upper one) are characteristic of this breed, and crowded, poorly aligned, and missing incisors are common.

4. Reverse sneezing describes a condition in which the dog seems to be unable to get its breath and begins to honk or snort. It is most often caused by a slightly elongated soft palate that ?sticks? until the dog takes a deep breath through its mouth. The most effective way to stop this is to put a finger over the dog?s nostrils, thereby forcing it to breathe through its mouth. Sometimes just a hug and some reassurance will do the trick! Unlike more serious problems found in brachycephalic (short-faced) dogs, reverse sneezing in Japanese Chin is quite common and is not life-threatening.

5. Eye injuries are common in short-faced, large-eyed breeds, and require immediate veterinary attention. If your dogs eye is red, or if it is squinting or pawing at one eye, take it to the vet at once.

Finding a Vet

The first thing anyone should do is find a vet, I recommend that any new dog should be seen by your vet within the first few days. Regular check ups should be a part of their lives just like yours. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! Some ideas to look for if you are knew to this is top ask if your vet takes er calls, some no longer do and refer you to a er clinic and unfortunately my experience with these clinics in my area has not been good. So please try to find one who would see you in an emergency. Toy dog experience is always good too.

Leash training

Even toy breeds need to learn a few simple commands, like stay, no, to walk on a leash, this one can be hard sometimes and oh yes to come when called this is very important and very easy!

1. Come when called, using treats call them and reward them they will usually learn this one really fast!

2. Teach them to stay by telling them this as you walk thur the door, tell them no, stay repeated a few times they begin to understand, that way they will not run thur the door every time you open it.

3. Telling them firmly no every time they do something you do not want them to do, they will soon learn to stop whatever they are doing.

4. Allow the puppy to walk where ever he wants on the leash to begin with and after a few weeks slowly lead him your way. I recommend that you use a soft harness, walmart carries a cloth one with a ring on the back, I am sure the pet stores do also, this will not injure your babies neck.

All of the above could someday save your precious babies life.

Feeding your Baby

Offer your baby dry food at least twice a day if he is a little baby, in this way you can be sure whether he eats are not. Some people leave food out all the time but sometimes you cannot tell if they have eaten or not. I sometimes mix a little canned food in the dry so that they will eat better but only a tiny bit enough to stir the appetite. Always offer plenty of water. Toy breeds are often prone to hypoglycemia, low blood sugar from not eating enough or often enough, if I suspect a problem I will tell you to feed this baby small meals 3-4 times a day especially till he is older.


Dog food can be very confusing, there are so many brands all claiming to be the best, some are easy to get like grocery store brands, some have to be ordered. You will be given a sample by me of what I am feeding your baby with instructions, but I wanted to offer advice in this area as well. Should you decide that you want to feed a different food. The first ingredients in any dog food are very important, there should be meat as the first ingredient, preferably meat meal, like chicken meal or beef meal, I prefer to feed a food that does not contain corn as it causes skin allergies. I would also not want to see rice listed more than once.

Brand names I feel are appropriate are Diamond Small Breed Puppy, Chicken Soup for Puppies, Innova, Evo, Bil Jack, Purina One, Cannadia Lifestages, Wellness , California, Nutro max, Royal Canin. I have probably left some good ones out, but this is a wide variety. Brands I do not approve of are store brands,science diet, certain eukanuba's, purina brands except O.N.E. pedigree, Beneful, as these foods list corn in their first 5 ingredients and corn is a know allergy antagonist as well as being undigestable. It is simply a filler, The best piece of advice I can give is to remember that dogs are meat eaters and the main ingredients of their food should be meat.

I am currently feeding Royal Canin and have been so pleased with this food cannot say enough about it!!! My coats look better my dogs teeth look better, I have no skinny adults!!!

Crate Training

Where to sleep?

Babies are just like 2 yr olds, they all want to sleep with you!!!!!!! I think for safety sake if they cannot sleep in your room they should have their own "bedroom" in the form of a crate, and believe me they become very protective of their crates and will put themselves in their "rooms" when they want to. If you cannot bring yourself to lock your baby in a crate please confine them to a safe area just in case of emergency then you will know right where your dog is! Suggestions on crate size would be large enough to allow for room for a bed, food dishes and a litter box or bathroom, a plastic under the bed storage box or sweater box lined with paper or feline pine makes a good bathroom and my puppies are used to this so they will be right at home. some people use a child's porta crib, I have not tried this, so I cannot attest to the appropriateness of it's use nor its safety. I use crates and puppy playpens because some chins climb and my most recent litter all climbed to the top by 7 weeks!!!! Using a crate makes it easier to move them as they can take their room with them!!! Then they feel right at home.

More than One?

Thinking of adding  a new puppy when you already have one or more dogs? I say yeah, for me anyway but this is not for everyone. Chins love each other and form great attachments to each other. If you are working and gone from home this may help keep your single guy happy. But remember double the expense.

Double the love to! Each dog is different and special in their way!


This is always an individual prefernce, but here are my thoughts on this,

As there are advantages to both.



2. BOYS ADORE YOU                                                                                                


4, BOYS FOLLOW YOU AND WAIT FOR YOU                                                       












Old age, Death and Disease

Chins do not seem to live as long as some smaller dogs like Chihuahuas who often live to be in their late teens. But that being said they do live longer then they use to, In the old days 30 years ago they lived 8 -10 years now they live 12 -14 yrs. All living things must die unfortunately, so like us they are prone to heart disease( so much for cholesterol) cancer organ failures of all kinds, Our bodies simply wear out. So do theirs.  It has been found that teeth decay and infections related to them are the major cause of Heart Failure? I know right you never heard a Doctor tell you to take care of your teeth that was not a dentist, never mind that it would protect your heart! Your baby is in mid life so should be fine but I do see he has grayed some,and that is seen in some lines early graying but as far as I know it means nothing towards their health.  As long as he is healthy and eating well receives his regular check ups he should be fine, If he should develop a cough that would be a sign that he needed to see the Dr. But even if they develop CHF they will live many years most of the time with care. You hear all this about health testing and it is great but the truth is we must all die some sooner then others. I hope this helps to answer your questions.

 And on a side note health testing does not prevent much if we did not use a single animal that tested for something we would have a whole new set of things to worry about soon as we would reduce the gene pool from which to pull from.

An old vet of mine believed in survival of the fittest, he said God set things up so that  when disease came along it would wipe out the weak and unfit, leaving behind stronger animals in the wake of it. I believe he was right.Chins are prone to heart disease, and in my opinion, kidney failure and spinal problems involving the neck this is my opinion only but having raised chinfor many years these are the problems I have seen the most, the spinal being the worst as it can be there unknown and then there it is and it is too late. Longer necks might help to prevent this problem.



At my house we have a doggie door on a screen door so I can shut it or have it open. I also use disposable peepads. I love this idea best as when the weather is bad we have a solution for those who refuse to get there tootsies wet and believe me I have a few that will not step foot in the rain!LOL!  I also use a plastic under the bed storage box to help housebreak my babies while they are confined to a pen. So this helps to identify the "bathroom". I am including an article that chin rescue uses to help housebreak I hope that with both these methods you will be successful!

Potty Training your Chin:

Why do dogs potty in the house?

If you can understand WHY your Chin potties in the house will help you find the patience to hang in there through potty training.

Joan Donaldson, in her book Culture Clash, tells this story:

Imagine there is a race of superior beings from outer space who keep humans as pets. You live in one of there homes and are well loved and well cared for but you do not understand their language or culture. Around the house are white porcelain vessels that have, what looks to you, like a seat on the top. You find yourself in need of going potty so you decide to utilize the white porcelain vessel. All of a sudden, your benevolent keeper comes storming into the room, angry, yelling and punishing you for doing, what appeared to you to be a normal part of your life. This would be very confusing to you.

Dogs are programmed to potty on something that is soft and absorbent (grass, dirt?). Carpet certainly falls into that category. To them, pottying on carpet makes perfect sense. They are not trying to be bad ? they are just doing what they are programmed to do.

So, as you are potty training, remember, you are teaching your Chin to behave in a way contrary to their biological programming. Be patient. You can be successful but it will take some time.


Why are toy dogs harder to potty train than large dogs?

I hear quite often how hard it is to potty train a toy dog and I?ve wondered why that is. A friend who trains dogs professionally told me this? First, every time the dog is able to make a mistake, it has a positive experience. She potties in the house without getting corrected so, in her mind, pottying in that spot is ok.

A small dog makes a small mess. It is easy to not even notice if she piddles behind the couch. But every time you don?t notice, the incorrect behavior is reinforced.

Sometimes people notice but figure it?s not a big deal because it is not a big mess. Same result. Incorrect behavior has been gone uncorrected and then has been reinforced. Every mistake positively reinforces the incorrect behavior.

Correcting behavior:

Dogs have great memories. Don?t let anyone tell you "dogs only remember something for 30 seconds". That is incorrect. The truth is that dogs only understand cause and effect relationships between events that happen in a 30 second time frame.

If you catch your Chin pottying in the house and can correct her within 30 seconds, she will understand that you are unhappy with her pottying in the house.

If you find an accident, you do not catch her in the act but you proceed to correct her, she will understand that you are unhappy and she will know that the potty is hers but she will NOT be able to connect the 2. She will not know that you are angry BECAUSE OF her potty.

Keep that in mind at all times. As angry as you feel, if you do not catch her in the act, correcting after the fact can, at best, work to make you feel better. It will not communicate information to her.


Important info about praise:

Dogs like to make you happy but they LOVE food. Use both of those facts to your advantage. Be ready with lots of happiness and LOTS of special treats. You should have one very special treat that the Chin only gets when pottying correctly.


Now ? ideas for potty training:

1. Don?t let her make a mistake:

Until your Chin is potty trained, don?t let her fail. As mentioned previously, every error is positive reinforcement. Prevent mkistakes with the following ideas?

Use diapers until your Chin is reliable. Boys can use belly bands. For girls, use regular new born diapers and cut a whole for her tail. Again, you don't want to give your Chin a chance to be unsuccessful.

Keep your Chin on a leash in the house until she is reliable. Any sign of needing to potty and rush her outside. Don't let her out of your sight. Take her out every hour and see #1 regarding praise.

When you are not home and cannot watch her, keep her in a part of the home that will clean up easily and not hold scent (some place without carpet). Use a baby gate or xpen. If you have carpet in every room of the house, consider buying a small piece of linoleum to use under an xpen.

There is nothing wrong with crating the Chin overnight until she is reliable. Granted, Chin hate being crated but a little short term pain might be better than having to give up the dog you love. Make sure the crate is just large enough to sleep in, get up, turn around - but no larger. A dog typically will not potty where he sleeps. If the crate is large enough to potty in one place and sleep in other place, that won't help.

When you are not home and cannot watch her, keep her in a part of the home that will clean up easily and not hold scent (some place without carpet). Use a baby gate or xpen. If you have carpet in every room of the house, consider buying a small piece of linoleum to use under an xpen.

2. If she has a mistake, clean it up so she can?t smell it. Keeps lots of Nature's Miracle (or other similar scent remover) on hand and clean up accidents asap.

3. And, when she gets it right? PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE: Every time the Chin potty's outside, you have to behave as if she has just won the lottery! You clap, praise her, make a HUGE deal out of it and have treats ready to shove in her mouth when she finishes. Use very high value treats that she can only get when pottying outside.

4. Help her succeed?

Know the Chin's potty schedule. Plan to potty her first thing in the morning and last thing before bed. CARRY her outside in the morning - don't let her have a chance to make a mistake. (see #1 regarding praising success)

Take previous "output" and put it in a place in the yard where you want her to potty. She will smell it and recognize that as an appropriate place to potty.

Potty training is not easy but you can succeed!

Standard and note by Sari Brewster Tietjen

General Appearance
The Japanese Chin is a small, well balanced, lively, aristocratic toy dog with a distinctive Oriental expression. It is light and stylish in action. The plumed tail is carried over the back, curving to either side. The coat is profuse, silky, soft and straight. The dog's outline presents a square appearance.

When first seeing a Japanese Chin, words which come immediately to mind are those describing a pretty, attractive toy dog with a balanced, square body; a dog that is well-coated and moves jauntily and proudly. The "distinctive Oriental expression" is a large, flat head with big, dark, lustrous eyes, which traditionally have a small amount of white showing in the inner corners. This dog is mischievous, sometimes stubborn and arrogant, and always a challenge.

Size, Proportion, Substance
Size - Ideal size is 8 inches to 11 inches at the highest point of the withers. Proportion - Length between the sternum and the buttock is equal to the height at the withers. Substance - Solidly built, compact, yet refined. Carrying good weight in proportion to height and body build

There is a three-inch spread allowed in the ideal size. Traditionally, Chins are large, small, and inbetween. The key is substance - the bone is not heavy nor so light that the dog lacks a solid build. The dog should not look as though it would "blow away" with the first breeze. Squareness of body is one of the most overlooked attributes; yet the dog must be square to present the proper haughty, proud, compact appearance. An old-fashioned word often used to describe the balance between proportion and substance is cobby. This was deleted with the new standard in 1992. However, cobby in its traditional sense of representing a square-bodied animal with substance is an apt description. For the Chin, however, the bone is not heavy or thick as with a Cob horse but properly proportioned for the size of the dog. It is helpful to recall that the Chin is square-bodied; the Pap slightly longer than tall; the English Toy square, albeit heavier boned; and the Peke long-bodied, pear-shaped, and heavier boned. These are key breed features and helps keep all the relatives separate.

Expression - bright, inquisitive, alert, and intelligent. The distinctive Oriental expression is characterized by the large broad head, large wide-set eyes, short broad muzzle, ear feathering, and the evenly patterned facial markings. Eyes - set wide apart, large, round, dark in color, and lustrous. A small amount of white showing in the inner corners of the eyes is a breed characteristic that gives the dog a look of astonishment. Ears - hanging, small, V-shaped, wide apart, set slightly below the crown of the skull. When alert, the ears are carried forward and downward. The ears are well feathered and fit into the rounded contour of the head. Skull - large, broad, slightly rounded between the ears but not domed. Forehead is prominent, rounding toward the nose. Wide across the level of the eyes. In profile, the forehead and muzzle touch on the same vertical plane of a right angle whose horizontal plane is the top of the skull. Stop - deep. Muzzle - short and broad with well-cushioned cheeks and rounded upper lips that cover the teeth. Nose - very short with wide, open nostrils. Set on a level with the middle of the eyes and upturned. Nose leather is black in the black and white and the black and white with tan points, and is self-colored or black in the red and white. Bite - The jaw is wide and slightly undershot. A dog with one or two missing or slightly misaligned teeth should not be severely penalized. The Japanese Chin is very sensitive to oral examination. If the dog displays any hesitancy, judges are asked to defer to the handler for presentation of the bite.

The Chin is a head breed with about one-third of its standard devoted to describing the head. In simplifying some of this description, it is easiest to remember that the ideal head is large for the size of the dog. When viewed from profile, its shape resembles a "3" - the foreskull and muzzle meet on the same diagonal line with the nose set inside the middle; ideally, this nose is slightly tipped back; a rule of thumb to use is that if the nose ever looks like something can be hung from it, it is wrong. When viewed from the front, the Chin head is basically square-shaped with a slight rounding of its topskull caused by ears which are set just beneath the crown; the nose sets between large, round, dark, lustrous eyes. When looking straight ahead, a small amount of white may be seen in the inner corner of each eye; the eyes should never appear to be bulging or protruding; the muzzle is short and balances in width with the forehead; the cushions are broad and wide; the cheeks are sometimes referred to a bubble-gum cheeks; the teeth are covered by the cushions; and the bite is slightly undershot. It is vital to remember that the Chin head is not rectangular shaped as in a Peke, nor rounded as an English Toy, nor snippy as a Pap. Since these are all related breeds, each particular head shape is a key breed characteristic.

Additional comment - It is not necessary to count the teeth in a Chin, and some missing teeth are not considered a penalization factor in the breed standard. When examining bite, it is not necessary to pry open the jaw. Instead, running a thumb over the teeth should tell a judge what kind of a bite the dog has; if in doubt and not sure how to best open a flat-faced dog's mouth, ask the exhibitor to do it. Also, beware of wry mouths, which can be detected when looking at a jaw line that appears to be crooked; a hint of a possible wry mouth is a tongue protruding out of the corner of the mouth - in such a case, always checks the bite. Note: Chins do have extremely long tongues - this is a breed characteristic - and when they pant, they will roll those tongues upward!

Nose color in a Chin is black for the black & white and black & white with tan points and black or self-colored for red & white. A pure lemon & white (which is what the lighter shade of red is called) with true color gene will have a pale self-colored nose. This is acceptable.

As a personal preference, I would rather not see the whiskers trimmed. The standard does not address the question, but dogs with their whiskers in place are in keeping with the cat-like characteristics of the breed. Furthermore, whiskers enhance the necessary broadness of the cushions.

Neck, Topline, Body
Neck - moderate in length and thickness. Well set on the shoulders enabling the dog to carry its head up proudly. Topline - level. Body - square, moderately wide in the chest with rounded ribs. Depth of rib extends to the elbow. Tail - set on high, carried arched up over the back and flowing to either side of the body.

Again, a proud dog must have good carriage. The neck needs some length to carry the head proudly. Topline is level; body, compact and square, with a moderate chest. The tail is set high and proudly carried up arched over the back and flowing down on either side. Chins should not have tails carried at "half-mast," nor should they be tucked between the legs. When stacked, the tail should be arched over the back and downward on either side of the dog and not placed level across the backline as in a Pekingese.

Legs - straight, and fine boned, with the elbows set close to the body. Removal of dewclaws is optional. Feet - hare-shaped with feathering on the ends of the toes in the mature dog. Point straight ahead or very slightly outward.

Chins are fine-boned dogs compared with a Peke or English Toy; however, they are not fine-boned when compared with a Papillon. A Chin has more bone and substance than a Pap and less than a Peke or English Toy. Its legs are straight - they should not bow nor be fiddle-fronted. When standing, it is proper for a Chin's front feet to point ahead or slightly east/west. They must not, however, move with their feet heading in an east and west direction! Long feathering on the toes is a breed characteristic and adds to the illusion of daintiness; such hair should never be trimmed. In gaiting, care must be taken to be sure that the front feet feathering does not give an illusion of east/west action. It is important to look at the feet themselves, not the feathering, to ascertain proper movement.

Legs - straight as viewed from the rear and fine boned. Moderate bend of stifle. Removal of dewclaws is optional. Feet - hare-shaped with feathering on the ends of the toes in the mature dog. Point straight ahead.

Chins are not over-angulated, and their rear legs balance with the front. Again, trimming on the ends of toes is against a breed standard which specifically calls for feathering on the toes of mature dogs.

Abundant, straight, single, and silky. Has a resilient texture and a tendency to stand out from the body, especially on neck, shoulders, chest areas where the hair forms a thick mane or ruff. The tail is profusely coated and forms a plume. The rump area is heavily coated and forms culottes or pants. The head and muzzle are covered with short hair except for the heavily feathered ears. The forelegs have short hair blending into profuse feathering on the back of the legs. The rear legs have the previously described culottes, and in mature dogs, light feathering from hock joint to the foot.

A Chin is a wash-and-wear dog - one of the beauties of owning a Chin is its care-free coat. Therefore, it should be single-coated with a texture providing enough substance to avoid matting. The hair should be straight, not curly, kinky, or wooly. In the sunlight, the hairs will glimmer like silk. The standard uses the word profuse, but this should not be confused with a mop-like coat. A shape must be distinguishable, which is why there is emphasis on fringes, manes, feathering, and culottes. The feathering which appears from the hock to foot on back of the rear legs should not be trimmed. It is important to note that bitches (unless spayed) do not carry as much coat as males, and judges should not penalize a bitch if she does not have the profuse coat of her male counterpart.

Either black and white, red and white, or black and white with tan points. The term tan points shall include tan or red spots over each eye, inside the ears, on both cheeks, and at the anal vent area if displaying any black. The term red shall include all shades of red, orange, and lemon, and sable, which includes any aforementioned shade intermingled or overlaid with black. Among the allowed colors there shall be no preference when judging. A clearly defined white muzzle and blaze are preferable to a solidly marked head. Symmetry of facial markings is preferable. The size, shape, placement or number of body patches is not of great importance. The white is clear of excessive ticking.

This section of the standard is basically self-explanatory. Black & white and red & white (in all shades) are the breed's historical colors. The Black & white with tan points is the traditional tri-patterned color. It is preferred that facial markings be harmonious and there be no excessive ticking anywhere on the dog.

Stylish and lively in movement. Moves straight with front and rear legs following in the same plane.

Here the standard is simply calling for a dog that is sound in movement with no crossing or weakness detected. The words stylish and lively denote a proud, mischievous, regal dog.

A sensitive and intelligent dog whose only purpose is to serve man as a companion. Responsive and affectionate with those it knows and loves but reserved with strangers or in new situations.

The Chin is a precious breed which has no function other than to be a lap-dog. It was not born to hunt, guard, or carry things. It was born to be a particular object of beauty and love. Chins are not always showdogs. They can be a bit apprehensive and require a gentle touch. Once they are acclimated to a person or situation, they quickly respond and take charge. They are extremely catlike in deportment and like nothing better than to rule their household and those whom they let share that home. They are more comfortable on a sofa or a bed than a crate and do not do well in a kennel environment. They can be a handful of stubbornness and need a quick mind to outwit them. They are a delight to live with and a beauty to behold. When judging Chins, it is good to keep in mind their particular quirks and idiosyncrasies as well as those special key breed characteristics which separate them from their cousins.

Note: words appearing in italics are taken from the Japanese Chin standard as copyrighted by the American Kennel Club. The explanatory statements thereof are the sole property of the author herein.

Interpretive Standard in PDF format