The Japeke is a toy-sized hybrid of two ancient and well-loved Chinese breeds, the Japanese Chin and the Pekingese. As a designer dog, the tale of the Japeke is not yet written; however, both parent breeds have royal histories to share with the Japeke. The Japanese Chin, despite its nomenclatural ties to Japan, is an ancient breed of China. Like other Chinese breeds, the Japanese Chin was well-regarded by the Imperial nobility who maintained secret breeding programs. However, the Chinese court often gifted the Japanese Chin to foreign dignitaries; thus, the small dog made its way to Japan. In Japan, the dog was regarded as a separate being above all other dogs (inu) and gained its title, chin. The Japanese Chin made its way to Europe and the United States through trade with the West beginning in the 19th Century but maintained a rare status for several years though it gained American Kennel Club recognition in 1888. The Pekingese is one of these most well-known breeds of China, partly due to its reference to the Imperial capital, Peking, now modern-day Beijing, and partly due to its long and once-secret history as an Imperial favorite. The breed was well-guarded and not allowed to leave the Imperial Palace, which gave it mystique. The Pekingese was first discovered by the West during the Opium War in 1860 when British troops found a set of five guarding the body of their mistress, who had committed suicide rather than be captured. The five dogs were taken to England and gifted to nobility, including one to Queen Victoria. Despite its secret beginning in China and its subsequent introduction in the West, the Pekingese quickly gained recognition. The Pekingese join the American Kennel Club ranks in 1906, and the breed enjoys moderate popularity.