Shar Pei need appropriate nutrition to suit this breed's specific
needs. Ideally, I advise feeding a Raw Diet for adults and Whole
food (home-cooked) diet for puppies under 6 months of age (recipes
below). If this is not an option I advise a premium quality adult
formula kibble that is either low-grain or no-grain (list below).
Shar Pei puppies should not be fed puppy formula kibbles as these
do not contain appropriate nutritional balance for this breed.
Probiotics should be added to their diet on a regular (every day
or few times a week) basis...plain yogurt, acidophilus, enzymes or
green tripe. Occasional table scraps of plain meat, veggies and the
like are fine to add in....avoid giving highly seasoned, processed
or highly sweetened foods. Avoid refined products, breads, "junk"
foods, etc. (Also see list of toxic foods below). Virgin coconut
oil is a great additive in small amounts (couple tsp a day) to
improve the coat/skin. Instead of commercial canned dog foods we
mix in a few sardines or some canned salmon or some canned tripe
(Solid Gold brand) daily....much healthier than regular canned dog
Premium Food Brands:
Natural Balance (no grain formulas)
Taste of the Wild
Eagle Pak Holistic (holistic ONLY)
Recipes for home cooked:
Simmer until all is tender...let thicken, cool and serve.
Whole chicken (boiled & de-boned) (2-3 pounds when deboned)* (2-3
pounds pork, lamb, duck, venison, beef...muscle meat)
2 qts of broth (stock) from boiled chicken
12-16 oz offal (liver, heart, kidneys)
3 tins Sardines (or 1 can Salmon)
1 can or 2 cups fresh pumpkin**(or equiv. amt. yams, potato,
1/2 cup fresh (or frozen) cranberries or blueberries (optional)
1 1/2 to 2 cups dried peas
1/2 cup broccoli*** (or equiv. amt. green beans, zucchini, spinach,
Brussels sprouts or other green veggie)
1-2 tbsp steamed bone meal (food grade)**** (or powdered egg shells)
1-2 tbsp virgin coconut oil (optional)
**Vitamin D3 & Vitamin K2 need to be supplemented.
We also add 1/4 (per serving) yogurt and 1-2 tbsp lecithin
With home cooking it can be mixed up as long as grains are kept to a
minimum and toxic foods are avoided (list below). There are also a
variety of recipes available in books and on the internet. For those
who are interested in feeding a Raw diet (as we do) there are numerous
books available & articles online and I can answer most basic questions
on this subject for you.
Avocado - leaves, fruit, seeds and bark contain a toxic principle
known as Persin. The Guatemalan variety, a common one found in many
stores, appears to be the most problematic. Other strains of avocado
can have different degrees of toxic potential.
Garlic - Even at low levels of exposure to garlic, some changes in
red blood cells is likely
Onions destroy red blood cells and can cause anemia, weakness, and
breathing difficulty. Even small amounts can cause cumulative damage
over time. This includes onions or chives - raw, powdered, dehydrated,
Grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs. As little as a
single serving of raisins can kill him. Even if the dog doesn't eat
enough at one time to be fatal, he can be severely damaged by eating
just a few grapes or raisins regularly.
Tomatoes in high quantity can be fatal to dogs in Tomatoes (plant
and fruit) contain tomatine, an alkaloid related to solanine. As the
fruit ripens, the tomatine is metabolized. Therefore, ripe tomatoes
are less likely to be problematic for animals. Clinical signs of
poisoning include lethargy, drooling, difficulty breathing, colic,
vomiting, diarrhea or constipation, widely-dilated pupils, paralysis,
cardiac effects, central nervous system signs (e.g., ataxia, muscle
weakness, tremors, seizures), resulting from cholinesterase inhibition,
coma and death.
Nutmeg can cause tremors, seizures and death.
Macadamia nuts can harm dogs. Macadamia nuts can cause weakness,
muscle tremor and paralysis. These symptoms are usually temporary.
Walnuts - When dogs eat the seed hulls, they can get an upset stomach
and diarrhea. The real problem is the fungus or mold that attacks
after they get wet (from rain or sprinklers), which produces toxins.
If the fungus or mold is ingested by your dogs, they can become very
ill and possibly die. Signs that should alert you to walnut poisoning
are vomiting, trembling, drooling, lack of coordination, lethargy,
loss of appetite, and jaundice indications such as yellowing eyes and
gums. Severely affected dogs can produce blood-tinged vomit or stools.
Dogs can take several days to exhibit serious signs of illness.
Chocolate can cause seizures, coma and death. Bakers chocolate is the
most dangerous. The darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is. But
any chocolate, in large enough amounts, can kill a dog
Apple seeds, cherry pits, peach pits, pear pits, plums pits, as well
as apricot pits contain cyanide, which is poisonous. While a few apple
seeds may not cause a problem, the effects can accumulate over time if
they are given to dogs regularly.
Xylitol, a sweetner used in some sugar free gums & candies (as well
as other "sugar free" products) and some toothpaste brands is highly
toxic to animals. This is especially dangerous as gum or candy that
contains this can easily fall out of one's pocket or handbag and, being
sweet, is very tempting for dogs to eat. If tooth paste containing this
gets in reach it can also be consumed. Very dangerous.
TREATS to AVOID:
Rawhide, Greenies, cooked bones, etc. Avoid treats with wheat gluten,
soy, sugars, onion/garlic added or lots of preservatives.....read the
labels before you buy. Be cautious with the following: Pig's ears,
cow hooves and any treat when it is chewed down to size they can choke
on it should be thrown away.
Raw Marrow bones
Home baked livers (chicken or beef)
Dehydrated meats (jerkies) the less additives the better.
Dehydrated fruits or veggies (no sugar added)
Strawberries, blueberries, apple slices (no seeds), watermelon
(fruits in small amounts only)
Shar Pei are fairly easy to maintain in regards to grooming. The
shorter coats require no trimming and just occasional brushing
and bathing most of the time. If the skin is healthy, as it should
be if one is following appropriate diet and suggested medical care,
the bathing procedure is pretty straightforward. Wet, shampoo with a
gentle, unscented shampoo, rinse THOROUGHLY (rinsing of all traces of
soap is essential) and then simply towel dry afterward. Generally the
most challenging part of bathing a Pei is getting them to willingly
tolerate being wet. Most Pei despise water in it's liquid form. Be
patient, firm and consistent with a regular bathing routine and they
will learn to tolerate bath times and be more cooperative. Since most
Peis (especially puppies) tend to be messy drinkers and eaters, keeping
some wet wipes or a dampened hand towel handy to wipe muzzle & flews
after meals will keep them cleaner between baths.
Peis don't generally enjoy having nails trimmed. Getting them into
a weekly routine of trimming at a young age will help get them used
to this and more tolerant. Be persistent, patient and firm. Be careful
not to cut behind the quick. If you do some "Quick Stop" or powdered
Alum can be used to stop bleeding. Many find using a dremmel on the
nails is much easier and there is less risk of injuring the quick. They
may not like the sound of this device at first but will get used to it
with repeated use.
Pei ears can be problematic if not maintained and/or if they are not
on an appropriate diet (See yeast section f the "Skin Issues Overview"
under the Health Issues page here). Proper maintaining of the ears is
weekly cleansing. We suggest using Zymox ear cleaner (available OTC).
We simply apply several drops ( a squirt or 2) into the ear, massage
the ear for 30 seconds then let them shake their head to their little
heart's content. After about 30 minutes we go back and wipe the waxy
substance from the top of the ear canal area and inner ear flap. We
do not dig into the ears with Q-Tips. If there is an abundance of wax
we simply repeat the application as outlined above the next day. If
the ear is inflamed/red or if it seems to be bothering them (repeated
head shaking, ear drooping, etc.) I use Zymox Otic solution for a few
days (until it resolves). If an ear issue is not resolving this is quite
often a sign of a bacterial or a yeast issue. These will usually clear up
with regular cleaning, using the Zymox Otic and consistently maintaining
an appropriate diet to prevent systemic yeast issues. On some occasions
with persistent infections they may need to have medication prescribed
by a Vet.
SOME "RULE OF THUMB" BASICS:
1) Feed a premium, grain-free diet. Add proboitics (yogurt, enzymes or
green tripe) daily. Add a couple/few sardines (packed in water) daily.
2) Use a conservative vaccine protocol. Avoid combo shots that contain
more than 2 or 3 components. Use single disease vaccines and give 10 days
apart whenever possible. DA2P (Distemper, Adenovirus & Parvo) is the
maximum combo shot I would advise ever be used at any given time. Ask
your Vet to order single dose vaccines or minimal combo vaccines if
they do not carry them. If they refuse find a Vet who will. For those
who give their own vaccines, these can be ordered online.
3) Avoid allowing any use of systemic steroids unless absolutely
necessary and as a last resort. Too many Vets administer steroids for
minor issues or relief of symptoms. Steroids, being immunosuppressive,
can (and often do) create more issues than they resolve.
4) If you have any issues or questions with your Pei, CALL ME. I am
here to assist/advise in any way I can. Your Blessing's Pei is one of my
babies, OF COURSE I will want to know if something is wrong and have the
opportunity to help you to help them.