Legend and truth
“The fact that the word TIERSCHUTZ (protection of animal rights in German) had to be invented is one of the most embarrassing matters of human society.” (Theodor Heuss, federal president 1949-1959)
According to an old Chinese tale a lion once fell in love immortally with a little monkey. With gods approval the two had offspring that had the face of their monkey mother mixed with the powerful frame of their lion father. There also exists an anecdote telling the tale of a wizard that transformed a Chinese princess into a lotus flower and a prince into a squirrel. Buddha brought this unequal pair together and from this pairing stems the Pekingese. If you believe in mythical transmissions then Buddha was accompanied by little lions that could change into big lions if they sensed danger and protected him from his enemies. Soon there would be all kinds of colours and shadings, different sizes and weights of these palace dogs. These dogs where not only seen as treasures, they were also kept like precious possessions. It was forbidden and punished with death if a dog was taken outside of the palace without permission. These little dogs had their own servants that were liable for their wellbeing with their own life at stake. If the dog is well bred and comes from a good parentage it will be very sturdy and have a long life, if cared for suitably. In contrast to some bigger breeds, which have a short life span, Pekingese can easily reach an age of 17 years. A well-groomed dog, with its lion like mane and the lovely fur that reaches the ground is a sight to behold and surely a reason to fall in love with this breed. This kind of beauty of course comes with a cost! Regular grooming, combing and brushing, is a must. If the Pekingese gets too dirty a bath can also be in order sometimes.
“Dogs give their affection without ambivalence, a simple life, free of the almost unbearable conflicts of civilization, the beauty of an existence that rests in itself. Sigmund Freud (1856-1939)