Red Cantonese Bear Dog: Does It Really Exist or Just a Hoax?

Red Cantonese Bear dog real or hoax

If you have ever been curious whether the red Cantonese bear dog really exists or it’s just a hoax, here is your chance to find out! It has been making headlines for years, and some people remain skeptical about its existence.

Of course, with their soft and fluffy red coats, it is hard to believe that such canines exist. That is why when a few pictures of these red Cantonese bear dogs started emerging online, many thought they were fake.

So to set things straight, this article will delve into what we know about this mysterious dog breed, including where the rumors started, how they became so popular, and if there is any truth behind them being real at all.

Is the Red Cantonese Bear Dog Real or Fake?

Red Cantonese Bear Dog close up portrait

Despite the widespread belief that the red Cantonese bear dog is real, it is actually just a fictional breed. Sadly, misinformation has led many canine enthusiasts to believe otherwise. Some have even been tricked into buying dogs that are misleadingly labeled as red Cantonese bear dogs.

Allegedly, the red Cantonese bear dog originated from Guangzhou, China, and was bred by monks to protect them against intruders. It is also believed to have some relation with Chow Chows.

But while these are incredibly fascinating claims, no genuine evidence supports them. In fact, you won’t be able to find any kennel clubs or mixed-breed registries that recognize this type of dog.

Whether it be the American Kennel Club (AKC), American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC), or even the China Kennel Union (CKU), there is no mention of red Cantonese bear dogs anywhere.

So to put it briefly — yes, there is no such thing as a red Cantonese dog breed. Thus, if you have seen one for sale with any kind of paperwork claiming its authenticity, you should probably steer clear of it.

Here is a video of another dog breed that is claimed to be the red Cantonese bear dog:

Incredible Red Cantonese Bear Dog Looks Like Both A Dog And Cat

Why Are So Many People Searching for This Breed?

Given that the red Cantonese bear dog is supposedly a rare variety of canine, it is understandable that there are so many people searching for this breed. But there may be more to it than just curiosity.

For one thing, the hype surrounding these red Cantonese dogs is largely due to their distinctive appearances.

They are branded by puppy mills and backyard breeders as medium-sized bear dogs, sporting fluffy coats and thick tails that make them look like teddy bears.

What’s more, they also have striking fur colors that come in different tints of red and brown.

That said, the photos circulating online, unfortunately, appear to have been manipulated to some extent.

However, this isn’t just about looks; these pooches are said to have tons of characteristics that make them ideal pets for families with children or other animals.

They are claimed to be very smart and affectionate, which makes them easy to train; they are also known for being loyal and protective toward their owners.

Where Did the Hoax Come From?

Picture of Red Cantonese Bear Dog

Rumors of the existence of this dog first appeared in 2016, when an image of a reddish-brown canine was posted on social media sites and online forums, such as Twitter and Reddit.

The photo included an explanation as well, stating that it was a rare Chinese breed known as the red Cantonese bear dog.

As humans are easily attracted to unusual things, this mythical breed quickly went viral. In turn, the number of people who wanted to own one blew up, resulting in a growing market for these dogs.

So even though it is unclear why some individuals would purposely create a hoax like this, it is evident that the red Cantonese bear dog has been used as a way to deceive others and make easy money.

How to Spot Fake Dog Breeds

Now that you know red Cantonese bear dogs are not real, you are probably wondering how to recognize other fake dog breeds. After all, you wouldn’t want to purchase an adorable pup only to find out it is a hoax breed.

To spare you an unpleasant experience, the following are some tips on how to spot fake dog breeds:

  • Research the dog breed thoroughly: With all the information and resources available on the internet today, it is easier than ever to find out everything there is to know about any dog breed. Just make sure you’re getting your information from credible sources that don’t rely on hearsay or rumors.
  • Check the databases of different kennel clubs: Thanks to all their hard work, major kennel organizations have collected a vast amount of information about dogs and their ancestors. So if you have doubts about a certain breed’s authenticity, find out if it is registered in any kennel club database.
  • Meet your breeder or puppy seller in person: For those who are looking to get a rare dog breed, you should meet your breeder or puppy seller personally. You can then ask them questions about their canines, observe how they interact with them, and see if they seem knowledgeable about the breed in question.
  • Request proof of genetic testing: Lastly, before committing with any breeder, you may want to inquire about the existence of genetic testing records for their pooches. Genetic testing can specifically show which DNA markers are present in a dog’s bloodline.

Hopefully, the tips listed above will aid you in identifying and avoiding fake dog breeds. While it is easy to fall for a cute puppy, nothing beats the joy of knowing that you have purchased an authentic breed.

Breeds That Look Like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs

Even though many people testify that they have seen a red Cantonese bear dog, there is no conclusive proof. Hence, the closest thing to seeing one is to look at the dog breeds that resemble it.

Here are a few purebred canines and mixed breeds that look like red Cantonese bear dogs:

Shiba Inu

Shiba Inu breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs

On top of the list is the Shiba Inu, a Japanese breed that was originally bred for hunting small and large game. They are known for their independent nature, alertness, and faithfulness to their owners.

These dogs also sport a double coat that comes in a variety of colors, such as red. So it is easy to mistake this breed for a red Cantonese bear dog.

Chow Chow

Chow Chow breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs

Due to the Chow Chow breed’s teddy bear-like appearance, many people assume that it is the red Cantonese dog. It has a shaggy coat, floppy ears, and a fluffy tail.

However, Chow Chows possess a certain feature that is not typical of the red Cantonese bear dog, and that is their blue-colored tongues.


Pomeranian breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs

Pomeranians are one of the most popular teddy bear dogs in the United States, and their appearance resembles that of red Cantonese bear dogs. But note that the red Cantonese dog is supposedly larger than the Pom.

Chowba (Shiba Inu & Chow Chow Mix)

Chowba mixed breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs
Image credit: kobaeisbae / Instagram

One way to locate a pup that resembles the red Cantonese bear dog is to look at Shiba Inu and Chow Chow hybrids, such as the Chowba. It is a cross between these two breeds and has their traits combined into one.

The result is a fuzzy pooch with a stocky build and a playful personality.

Chusky (Chow Chow & Siberian Husky Mix)

Chusky mixed breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs
Image credit: dave.the.chowsky / Instagram

The Chusky is presumably the most similar-looking dog breed to a red Cantonese bear dog. It is a designer pooch that’s a result of crossing a Chow Chow with a Siberian Husky.

In addition, it boasts a thick double-layered coat, making it ideal for cold weather climates. It also has an incredibly dense tail and neck ruff, which gives it an almost lion-like build.

Pom Chow (Pomeranian & Chow Chow Mix)

Pom Chow mixed breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs
Image credit: mr.cutehimself / Instagram

The Pom Chow, a hybrid between a Pomeranian and a Chow Chow, is an ideal choice for anyone looking for a canine resembling the red Cantonese bear dog.

This mix combines the Pom’s fluffy coat with the Chow Chow’s bulky build, creating an endearing bear-like appearance.

Finnish Spitz

Finnish Spitz breed that looks like Red Cantonese Bear Dogs

With the Finnish Spitz breed’s flame-colored coat and striking facial features, this canine is often mistaken for being a red Cantonese dog.

However, keep in mind that although they may share some characteristics with the fake Chinese dog breed, such as their size and structure, they still differ in other physical aspects.

Other Chinese Dog Breeds to Consider

Knowing that the red Cantonese bear dog is just a hoax, you are probably heartbroken. But do not worry; there are still many other Chinese dogs for you to check out.

Below is a list of other Chinese dog breeds that you should consider if you are looking for a canine companion:

Lhasa Apso

A sable, red, or golden-colored Lhasa Apso is a good choice if you are searching for a low-shedding little company in your home.

This dog breed is known for being energetic and mischievous. But it also makes great companions for adults who want to relax after work.


If a small fluffy breed is what you want, then you should consider getting a red brindle or fawn Pekingese. These canines are extremely sought-after in China and have been around for centuries.

Appearance-wise, they are known for their impressive mane and lengthy fur, which makes them look like miniature lions or long-haired bears.


With over 21 colors to display, including red, red fawn, and red sable, the Shar-Pei dog breed has a lot to offer. This canine is known for its wrinkly skin and large head, as well as its strong jaw and muscular body build.

According to the AKC, Shar-Peis have been around since 200 B.C., making them one of the oldest breeds existing today.


For those looking for a low-maintenance puppy, the fawn-colored Pug breed may be the perfect fit. Pugs are small and compact, so they do not require a lot of space or exercise.

They also exhibit a friendly demeanor, which means you can rest assured that your Pug will be a willing companion in all situations. However, Pugs are far off from the red Cantonese bear dog in terms of appearance.

Chinese Crested Dog

While an apricot or cream Chinese Crested Dog may cost more than other dogs on this list, it is well worth the investment.

These canines are highly intelligent, loyal companions that will definitely give you years of love and happiness.

Shih Tzu

Many people may be surprised to learn that the modern-day red Shih Tzu is actually a Chinese dog breed.

In fact, thanks to its Pug and Pekingese ancestors, this small, furry companion has become a staple in many homes throughout the world.

Further, the temperament of this pup is sweet and affectionate; they are very devoted to their fur parents and make excellent companions for children.

Chinese Chongqing Dog

Finally, if you’re a real fan of Chinese dog breeds, you probably heard about the orange or red Chinese Chongqing Dog. It was initially bred to be an all-purpose pup that could hunt, guard livestock, and perform other tasks.

But the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI) has not yet accepted this breed because it has not been properly standardized. It is hoped, however, that this will change soon.

Frequently Asked Questions

Red Cantonese Bear Dog

Are Chinese Red Dogs Dangerous?

If you are talking about Laizhou Hong pups, also known as the Chinese Red Dog, then no. They are not dangerous at all. But if red Cantonese bear dogs are what you are interested in, it is worth emphasizing that they don’t exist.

The confusion stems from the fact that there is no such thing as a red Cantonese bear dog, but there are a lot of red-colored dogs in China, including Chow Chows, Shar-Peis, and Chinese Chongqing Dogs.

These dogs can be trained as guard dogs, and they can be fierce when they need to be, but they are not inherently dangerous by nature.

How Much Are Cantonese Bear Dogs?

Despite being a non-existent dog breed, puppy mills and backyard breeders price Cantonese bear dogs unbelievably high. In fact, they charge around $1,000 to $2,500 for these fictitious canines.

If you wish to own a pooch that looks like the red Cantonese bear dog, setting aside a budget of $500 to $3,000, depending on the breed, should be enough.

Where to Find Red Cantonese Bear Dogs for Sale?

Because the existence of red Cantonese bear dogs is just a myth, you cannot find them in any animal shelter, rescue, kennel, or pet store. Thus, choosing a similar-looking pooch will be your best option.

So, for those who want to own a breed that looks like this viral hoax pup, reading our guides on buying and adopting a dog might help. These will assist you in finding a credible source, picking out a breed, and more.

Final Thoughts

The red Cantonese bear dog, a breed made famous by an internet hoax, isn’t real.

So while the idea of a pup that looks like a bear and is red might sound like the cutest thing ever, don’t get your hopes up. It’s a myth.

With this in mind, be wary when reading information from the internet since it’s not always reliable. You might think you have found a rare breed of dog and begin to pursue acquiring one; however, it could be a scam.

Also, puppy mills and unreliable breeders may try to sell these dogs at inflated prices to unsuspecting buyers.

Having learned that the red Cantonese bear dog is just a hoax, make sure to leave your thoughts and opinions in the comments!

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