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Ori-Pei Hybrid Dogs (American Ori-Pei)

Updated on January 26, 2012

Physical Description

This hybrid dog is a cross between a Chinese Shar-Pei and a Pug. It has the wrinkled skin of the Shar-Pei combined with the outstanding personality of the Pug, all in a smaller sized package than the original Shar-Pei breed. Most American Ori-Peis will weigh under 40 pounds at maturity and typically measure under 16 inches at the shoulder. They have the very short, dense and rather coarse coat of both parent breeds and come in a variety of colors from fawns and creams through to black, gray, brindle and even tan with black markings on the muzzle and ears.

The Ori-Pei is one of the canine hybrid crosses that was developed as an effort to correct some of the health issues within both parent breeds while still maintaining the similar physical attributes. The Ori-Pei is a solid, stocky dog with a wide chest and body, sturdy legs and a thick neck. The ears are typically very small and turned over and the tail is carried in a tight curl over the back. Wrinkling on the face ranges from moderate to very little, however typically the wrinkling is not as deep or pronounced as with the Shar-Pei.


The Ori-Pei, when socialized and raised with children, cats and other pets makes a terrific family dog. They are playful and loving, loyal and brave and bond very strongly with their family. They can be excellent watchdogs but are not prone to unnecessary barking so they are suitable for apartment living or living in the city.

Some Ori-Peis are dominant in their temperament and need firm, consistent and experienced owners to prevent the dog from seeing himself or herself as the boss in the family. As with any of the hybrid breeds the temperament may be more like the Pug or the Shar-Pei, so careful observation of the puppies is important to select one with the temperament you are looking for.

Training the Ori-Pei can be challenging as they do have a streak of independence and can be very stubborn at times. They are very strong dogs for their size and need to be leash trained early as part of routine obedience training.

Grooming and General Care

The Ori-Pei, like any of the wrinkly skinned dog types, requires regular cleaning of the folds of the skin to prevent infections and irritations. A damp cloth is used to wipe out the folds, then the skin has to be thoroughly dried to prevent bacterial growth. The smooth parts of the coat can be easily maintained with a grooming mitt or a soft bristle brush. The American Ori-Pei will shed a moderate amount of very short hairs year round.

While this breed tends to have fewer respiratory problems than the Pug, it is important to monitor their breathing during intense exercise, especially in the summer months. Their short coats may not make them suitable for year round outdoor living, especially in very cold climates or in climates that are damp.

Ori-Peis can be ideal housedogs and are typically very calm in the house, however they do need time to run in a fenced yard or have regular walks throughout the day.

Clubs and Registries:

  • ACHC
  • DRA
  • ICA
  • UABR
  • APRI
  • CKC

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    • instantlyfamily profile image

      instantlyfamily 5 years ago

      Auh, so cute! I am a big sharpei lover, myself. I had never heard of this breed until now. Interesting. Thanks for sharing.