Skin Care for a Shar-Pei

Updated March 23, 2017

The Shar-Pei breed is known for its rough coat and many skin folds. These defining characteristics also give the breed special skin care needs, because Shar-Peis are prone to skin infections if their skin is not cared for properly. if you own a Shar-Pei or are thinking of getting Shar-Pei puppy, learn about the proper skin care for Shar-Pei dogs so you can keep your pet comfortable and healthy.


Because the Shar-Pei is prone to skin irritation, many owners assume they need to bathe their dog frequently to avoid this problem. However, according to Hong Ming Kennels, a Shar-Pei breeder, this is not true. Only bathe your Shar-Pei once every one to two months, or when your pet has got dirty.

Choose your shampoo carefully when bathing your Shar-Pei. Use Murphy's Oil Soap diluted one part shampoo to three parts water, or use Mane and Tail shampoo. Baby shampoo works as well. Dandruff shampoo can help dogs with flaky skin. Avoid other dog or human shampoos, as they may dry out your Shar-Pei's skin.

Wet your dog thoroughly, rubbing water into the coat, as a Shar-Pei's coat naturally repels moisture. Once your dog is damp, use the shampoo to cleanse him. Carefully rinse him, paying close attention to the skin folds to ensure that all of the shampoo is out. Thoroughly dry your Shar-Pei using a towel, again paying close attention to the wrinkles. If you are bathing a puppy, take extra time to dry the many wrinkles on his body.

Flea and Mange Control

Skin infections are difficult for Shar-Pei owners to control because of the folds of the skin. For this reason, control common causes of skin infections before an infection occurs. Irritation from fleas and mange from mites are two of the most common skin infections that you can control.

Keep your dog on a strict flea control regimen. Talk to your vet about the best preventive medication to use. Getting an infection under control after a flea infestation is much more difficult than preventing the fleas in the first place. Some of the topical flea control products also control the mites that cause mange. Keep your Shar-Pei away from dogs that appear to be infested with fleas or suffering from mange.


Proper grooming of your Shar-Pei will keep her skin healthy. Brushing your dog when it is shedding will prevent irritation and discomfort to the skin. The Chinese Shar-Pei does not shed all year. Rather, these dogs shed once a year when they rid themselves of their winter coats. When your dog is shedding, use a rubber brush or grooming glove to loosen the shed hair.

Daily brushing using a rubber brush keeps the coat shiny, but this is not necessary when you are focusing on Shar-Pei skin care. The shedding season is the only time your dog's coat may irritate his skin.

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About the Author

Nicole Harms has been writing professionally since 2006, specializing in real estate, finance and travel. When she's not writing, she enjoys traveling and has visited several countries, including Israel, Spain, France and Guam. Harms received a Bachelor of Science in Education from Maranatha Baptist Bible College.