Pitchow (American Pitbull Terrier & Chow Chow Mix)

Height: 17-21 inches
Weight: 30-70 pounds
Lifespan: 10-15 years
Colors: Black, gray, blue, red, brown, brindle, fawn, cream and white
Suitable for: Moderately active families with older children, who can offer firm and consistent training
Temperament: Loyal and playful with immediate family, suspicious of new humans and animals, intelligent but sometimes stubborn

Are you looking for a Chow Chow cross, but a mix that isn’t as serious as the Chow Chow? Or maybe you are looking for an American Pitbull Terrier (Pitbull) with a difference? Well, the Pitchow might just be the dog for you!

The Pitchow is the curious cross of the Pitbull and the Chow Chow. Both of his parents are very different from one another, but their differences have created a well-balanced pooch that makes a wonderful family companion for most.

With a little bit of seriousness crossed with a sociable and fun nature, you can be sure that there is plenty of entertainment to be had with this guy around. He will be a bit unsure of newcomers at first, but once you have welcomed them into your home, he will want to be the center of attention in no time. Bring on the belly rubs for this good boy!

Here in this Pitchow breed guide we will walk you through everything you need to know about him and discover whether this guy might just be the one for you and your family. So, let’s jump straight in!

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Pitchow Puppies – Before You Buy…

The Pitchow is not as energetic as his Pitbull parent, but much more energetic than his Chow Chow parent, and you can expect that you will need to exercise him between 30 to 60 minutes a day. Dependent on which parent he takes after, he may need a lot of interactive play with his family throughout the day, or he might be partial to an afternoon snooze or two! But being a tenacious and intelligent dog, if he does not get the proper exercise, he will return the favor in destroyed furniture.

The Pitchow is a very loyal dog and combining that with his Pitbull intelligence and eagerness to please, he will be, for the most part, easy to train. But (and this is a big but!), if he inherits the Chow Chow’s stubborn side, he will rule the roost when it comes to training. So, you need to be equally as stubborn and make sure he partakes in all his training sessions.

The Pitchow is an affectionate and loving dog with his family, so if it is a canine hot water bottle that you are after, he will be up to the job. But (again, another but!) only when he feels like it, and some nights you might find that he prefers the comfort of your feet, so do not be surprised if he likes his own company, too. Some families find his less intense character appealing.

He will be a little suspicious of strangers at first and will bark at anyone who comes to your house that he does not know. But he will trust your judgment, and if you welcome them into your home as a friend, he will quickly warm up to them too!

His loud barking is something you need to bear in mind if you live somewhere with noise restrictions. And as with any Pitbull mix, you also need to check your local laws and tenancy agreements, because sadly, some people still wrongly judge Pitbull mixes as being dangerous.

His Pitbull parent is a very healthy dog, and hopefully the Pitchow will inherit his healthy genes. Thankfully, the Chow Chow is a relatively healthy dog, too, so you can expect this guy to be with you for 10 to 15 years.

Energy
Trainability
Health
Lifespan
Sociability

What’s the Price of Pitchow Puppies?

The typical price of a Pitchow starts at $800 and can reach anywhere up to $2,000 depending on the reputation of the breeder you choose to work with.

Be sure to do your research before you commit to working with a breeder. Make sure you research them online and look for any reviews from previous customers. The most important thing is to meet the breeders in person, and their puppies and parents.

Get a feel for their breeding business, ask to see health certificates and living conditions. If you get a bad feeling about them, or they refuse any of the above, see this as a warning sign that you should find another breeder!

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3 Little-Known Facts About Pitchow

1. He might inherit his Chow Chow parent’s blue tongue

One of the Chow Chow’s most distinctive features is his blue tongue, and the Pitchow often inherits this unique canine trait. It is adorably cute and looks like he has drunk way too much blue soda!

Chinese legend has it that his tongue became this color when he licked up the blue drops as Buddha painted the sky. Whether you believe in this legend, it is a fun story to tell the kids!

2. You never know which parent he will take after more

Being a mixed breed, he could take after one parent more than the other or be an equal mix of the two. Before you commit to getting one of these guys, you need to research both of his parents, and be sure that whatever the puppy outcome, that you love all their traits.

But playing the mixed breed gene lottery is all part of the charm and be sure to expect the unexpected!

3. Chow means ‘puffy lion dog’ in Chinese

So, this makes this guy the puffy lion Pitbull mix, one that you would not want to mess with if you are up to no good!

PitChow - Pitbull and Chow Chow dog mix
The parents of the PitChow. Left: Pitbull, Right: Chow Chow

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Temperament & Intelligence of the Pitchow

The Pitchow is a very loyal and loving dog with his immediate family and he will make a fantastic canine companion. If he is more like his Pitbull parent, he will demand plenty of cuddles and belly scratches, but if he is more like his Chow Chow parent, he will be much more independent and would prefer to lay by your feet than on the sofa with you (many people describe the Chow Chow as being more like a cat than a dog). So, the Pitchow’s loving side could fall anywhere in between!

He is nowhere near as serious as the Chow Chow, and inherits his Pitbull parent’s fun and silly side, which is great if you are seeking an entertaining canine!

He is a very intelligent dog who needs mental stimulation throughout the day. This can take the form of interactive games with his family or brain games with edible rewards. Because he is a loyal dog who likes to please his master, he should be relatively easy to train, but (there are a few buts with this guy!) if he inherits the Chow Chow’s stubborn streak, he will only train when he wants to, not when you want to. Consistency is key when it comes to training dogs like the Pitchow!

His Chow Chow parent is very territorial, so you need to expect a protective streak with this guy. This is great if you are after a guard dog, albeit a less intense one compared to the Chow Chow. But not so great if you do not want a protective pooch. This trait is another reason why he needs firm training.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

The Pitchow makes a great family pet because he is a great balance of friendly and protective, fun, and calm, independent and loving. However, if he takes after his Chow Chow parent more, he would be more suited to a family with older children. He might not be very tolerant of young overzealous children who are not yet familiar with how to interact with dogs.

He needs to be with a moderately active family that can guarantee him between 30 to 60 minutes of exercise every day. Being independent, he is happy to spend time alone, so you should not have to worry about him suffering from separation anxiety.

The Pitchow is a headstrong dog who needs an equally firm master who will keep him in line. He needs constant socialization down at the local doggy park so that he can remember his manners!

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

The Pitchow and his potential to be territorial means he might not take kindly to another dog being welcomed into the family. However, if he is socialized well as a puppy and brought into a family who already has another dog, then he should get along with them just fine.

The same also applies to other pets unless we are talking about pet rodents. His ancestors were used as ratting dogs, and therefore his Pitbull genes will probably make him an unsuitable housemate for hamsters, mice, and guinea pigs, etc. This would take sibling squabbles to a whole new level!

As always, if you are thinking about welcoming him into your life and there are other animals about, be sure to have a controlled pre-meet with everyone included so that you can be sure everyone gets along.

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Things to Know When Owning a Pitchow:

Owning any dog is a big commitment and one that you should not take lightly. Here, we will talk you through everything that the Pitchow will need from you as his owner.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

The Pitchow should be fed a high-quality kibble that meets the standards suggested by the MSD Veterinary Manual. For puppies, this means a protein content of at least 22%, and for adults the protein content should be above 18%. His Pitbull genes mean that he is a muscular dog, so a protein content higher than this would be beneficial.

A well-balanced diet with identifiable meats, wholesome healthy carbohydrates, prebiotic fibers, and a variety of vitamins and minerals is the key to keeping this guy healthy. Feed him 2 to 3 meals a day, and follow the package instructions according to his weight, age, and energy levels.

The Pitchow is at risk from hip dysplasia and patella luxation, and because he is sometimes considered to be a large dog (when over 50 pounds at maturity) he should be fed a kibble that is specifically designed for large breeds. These kibbles will have the optimized calcium and phosphorus levels to control rapid bone growth and can decrease the chances of him developing these health issues.

The Chow Chow parent is known for his HUGE appetite, so if he inherits eyes bigger than his belly then you need to keep all food and treats under lock and key! Do not allow the Pitchow to become overweight, and treat him moderately no matter how much he tries it on with his gorgeous puppy dog eyes!

A healthy Pitchow is a happy Pitchow, and nutrition is one of the easiest ways to keep him healthy.

Exercise 🐕

As we have already said, the Pitchow needs anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes of exercise every day for his mind and body to be happy and healthy. Because he is an intelligent dog a variety of activities will help to keep them interested, so be sure to mix it up!

When bored the Pitchow can become very destructive and unhappy, so unless you want him to make a meal out of your furniture you need to keep this guy stimulated. Provide him with toys for when you have to leave him home alone, and play with him in the garden throughout the day.

After his exercise sessions, he will happily laze around in the garden or patrol it, just make sure that your garden is secure so that he cannot escape or chase the local cats and rats.

Training 🎾

The Pitchow needs a headstrong master who is just as tenacious as he is. Whilst he is very intelligent and trainable, he has the potential to be independent and stubborn. His training needs to be consistent, and never give in to a Pitchow because he’ll soon have you wrapped around his paws!

Potentially protective and territorial dogs like the Pitchow need to be socialized as much as possible during puppyhood. This means mixing him with as many dogs as you can and other animals of all shapes and sizes, as well as other humans. Not only will this turn him into a polite pooch, but it will also build his confidence and happiness.

This socialization training needs to be continued throughout his life, otherwise, he will forget his manners and could become over-protective no matter how well trained he was as a pup. This is a life-long commitment!

Positive reward training is crucial with the Pitchow, because stubborn dogs tend to sulk and withdraw when they are told off. Find out what he likes as a reward, and it is almost certain food will play a big part in the Pitchow’s agenda, so use treats to your advantage!

Grooming ✂️

If the Pitchow’s coat is like his Chow Chow parent’s coat, then he will need a thorough brush down 2 to 3 times a week to prevent matting. If he inherits the shorter coat of the Pitbull parent, then he will only need a brush once a week to remove any dead hair and dirt.

The Pitbull parent is prone to skin conditions, so if you notice any rashes or him scratching his eyes, skin, or paws, you should take him to the vet. These can be affected by pollen, food, or products, so it is best to use a natural and gentle shampoo that is designed for sensitive dogs. Dependent on his coat, he will need a bath once every 8 to 12 weeks.

Just like any other pooch, he will need his teeth brushing at least once a week with doggy toothpaste, and his ears and eyes will need cleaning once a week too. Pay close attention to his eyes, as he is prone to several eye conditions.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Most mixed breed dogs tend to be healthier than their parents because their resilience is a little tougher! However, they will still be prone to health conditions that both of their parents are known to suffer, so you must be aware of certain conditions and their symptoms. The Pitchow’s lifespan is 10 to 15 years.

Minor Conditions
  • Skin Allergies
  • Entropion
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Cataracts
Serious Conditions
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Patella Luxation
  • Congenital Heart Defect
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Gastric Dilation Volvulus

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Male vs Female

So, you have now decided that the Pitchow is the dog for you, but what sex should you get? Well, there are a few things you need to know as your lifestyle might dictate which sex you choose …

Males tend to be more playful and boisterous, with females being a little calmer during playtime. Females also typically mature at a faster rate than male dogs, which some say can make them easier to train.

You also need to think about whether you are going to spay or neuter your Pitchow. If you do not want to spay your female Pitchow, then you need to keep her away from other dogs during heat, and this can make public exercise restrictive. If you have other male dogs in the family then you also need to keep them separate in the home.

Female Pitchows are less likely to get on with other female dogs, so again, if you are a multidog household, this might affect your decision, too.

Overall, the most important determining factor behind a dog’s personality is training and human influence. So, make sure that you give him the right start to his new life with you.

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Final Thoughts

The Pitchow is a fantastic mixed doggo who is a great balance of energy and calmness and one that urges on the right side of guard dog for most families. He can be a headstrong pooch, but as long as you are prepared for this and continue his training and socialization throughout his life then this should not be a problem.

The Pitchow is a great family dog for the right family, just make sure that you love both of his parents’ characteristics, can exercise him enough, and you should be a match made in heaven!


Featured Image: roboticalatina, Shutterstock