Japanese Chin

Dignified, gentle, and fastidious


Dignified, gentle, and fastidious

The Japanese Chin is one of many short-faced toy breeds with deep roots to Chinese and Japanese royalty dating back more than 1,500 years ago. In Japan, people valued the dainty and stylish Chin far more than other breeds.  Until 1977, the breed’s name was the Japanese Spaniel.

A breed of contrasts, Chins can be noble and haughty one minute, and good natured and playful, the next. These dogs reflect the personality of their people. With catlike attitude, the Chin can climb to high perches and grooms themselves by licking their paws and rubbing their faces.

Chins like to amuse their families, and their goal is to make everyone around them laugh. Always entertaining, the Chin also shows off his vigilant side and makes a superb watchdog.

A member of AKC’s Toy Group, this happy, cheerful breed isn’t always content to be a lap dog. He enjoys exercising outdoors but doesn’t care for rain or severe cold weather. ~Elaine Waldorf Gewirtz

Breed Standard

Official Standard of the Japanese Chin

Japanese Chin Club of America

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.

Size, Proportion, Substance: Size – Ideal size is 8 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.

Head: 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.

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.

Forequarters: 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.

Hindquarters: 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.

Coat: Abundant, straight, single, and silky. Has a resilient texture and a tendency to stand out from the body, especially on neck, shoulders, and 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 backs of the legs. The rear legs have the previously described culottes, and in mature dogs, light feathering from hock joint to the foot.

Color: 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. Disqualification – any color not listed.

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

Disqualifications: Any color not listed.

Approved October 11, 2011 Effective November 30, 2011

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