10. Chow Chow
The Chow Chow is at No. 10 in our most expensive dog breeds list, which can fetch between $3,000 – $9,000. It’s originally from China, where it is referred to as Songshi Quan which means ‘puffy-lion dog’. It’s an ancient breed that dates back to around 300 B.C., Chow Chow is thought to served as hunting, birding and guard dog. It’s a medium-sized dog with a large head and round muzzle, recognizable by its blue-black tongue and lion-like coat. Loyal to their owners and prized by dog fanciers for their regal appearance, Chow Chows are truly a unique breed.
The Chow Chow is a dog breed originally from northern China, where it is referred to as Songshi Quan, which means «puffy-lion dog». The breed has also been called the Tang Quan, «Dog of the Tang Empire.» It is believed that the Chow Chow is one of the native dogs used as the model for the Foo dog, the traditional stone guardians found in front of Buddhist temples and palaces. It is one of the few ancient dog breeds still in existence in the world today.
One writer has proposed that the Chow Chow originated in China 2,000 years ago or originated in Arctic Asia 3,000 years ago and then migrated to Mongolia, Siberia and then to China.
The Chow Chow probably originated in the high steppe regions of Siberia or Mongolia, and much later used as temple guards in China, Mongolia and Tibet. A bas-relief from 150 BC includes a hunting dog similar in appearance to the Chow. Later Chow Chows were bred as a general-purpose working dog for herding, hunting, pulling and guarding. From what records survive, some historians believe that the Chow was the dog described as accompanying the Mongolian armies as they invaded southward into China as well as west into Europe and southwest into the Middle East in the 13th century AD.