thanks guys you brought up some really good points and with your information i was able to look a little deeper into the breed. the reason we were interested in a chow is because friends have one and we adore her. and someone at my work place is looking to rehome their pup. although we live by ourselves (no children) the idea of them not being great with kids is slightly worrisome since we do plan on having kids within the next few years. my dog is getting very old and I defiently do not want him to have troubles with a dog at his age. I am really glad for your information and unfortunately it sounds like a chow may not be the pup for us.