Meet The Breeds: Shih Tzu

Meet The Breeds: Shih Tzu

Sep 21, 2021
15 min

Shih Tzu is a cute small dog from the toy group breeds. These dogs are perfect family pets due to their loving and caring nature. Shih Tzu can follow their people the entire day to get a chance to sit in their lap and relax. This small fluffy dog loves to play indoor with their owners but, at the same time, loves going on a walk outside to meet with new people and pets of other types.

Shih Tzu, also called “lion dog” is an adorable creature opposite its name. These dogs are bred to be companions, not hunters, but they will hunt down your heart with their charming smile and cute face!


Shih Tzu Dog Breed Information

Everyone loves Shih Tzu dogs. These dogs come in different colours and fur types.

Here is some fun fact about the Shih Tzu which can help you in better understanding the breed

  • Breed group: toy group
  • Height: Males are 20-28 cm tall (adult, at the withers), Females are also 20-28 cm tall (Adult, at the withers)
  • Weight: Both male and female Shih Tzu shares almost the same weight of 4-7.2 kg as an adult
  • Life span: 10-16 years
  • Coat: Double-coat, with long, flowing, silky hairs.
  • Colour: Black, White, Brindle, Blue, Gold, Liver & White, Black & White, Dark Brown, Light Brown
  • Hypoallergenic: Yes
  • Temperament: Intelligent, Clever, Affectionate, Lively, Spunky
  • The difficulty level for first-time owners: On the scale of increasing difficulty from 1-10 paws, Shih Tzu dogs receive 5/10 paws according to many Shih Tzu owners’ feedback. According to their Testimonies, Shih Tzu puppies can be challenging to train. But, as adorable as they are, they should be train as early as possible.


Shih Tzu Dog History

Shih Tzu dogs are adorable small creatures. According to legends, Shih Tzu was developed in Tibet in the 17th century by cross-breeding two different breeds, Pekingese and Lhasa Apso, and was given to Chinese emperors by Dalai Lama, a Tibetan spiritual leader of the “Yellow Hat” school of Tibetan Buddhism.

Shih Tzu was a favourite pet of the Chinese royals, and that’s why they refused to sell or give away Shih Tzu for years. After many years, few dogs of the Shih Tzu breed were imported in Europe in 1930 and were named “Apsos.” After five years, the first European standard of the breed was written in 1935, and they were recognized as “Shih Tzu.” After World War II, the U.S. Military’s returning members brought Shih Tzu from Europe and Asia. The UK Kennel Club recognized Shih Tzu in May 1940.

Shih Tzu is a famous and popular dog breed in the United States. In 2012, Shih Tzu received the title of 11th most popular dog in the United States and a year after in 2013, the 15th most popular dog.


What are the types of Shih Tzu?

Shih Tzu has two types that are recognized by the Kennel Club. According to the Kennel Club, these two are the only original breeds of the Shih Tzu, and all the other species that are claiming to be Shih Tzu are imposters.

The two breeds that are original Shih Tzu are

  • American Shih Tzu
  • European Shih Tzu

The other breeds that pretend to be Shih Tzu but are imposters are

  • Imperial Shih Tzu
  • Teacup Shih Tzu
  • Blue-eyed Shih Tzu
  • Black Shih Tzu
  • Brindle Shih Tzu
  • Brown Shih Tzu


Are Shih Tzu good pets?

Shih Tzu is one of the best pets you can ever have. Being a companion dog, Shih Tzu is a loving, caring, affectionate, and happy, outgoing dog who loves going on a walk and meeting new people. Shih Tzu loves playing with other animals and kids, so long as kids know how to handle a small dog. Since Shih Tzu dogs have a past of living indoors, they do not mind not having the vast expense of the backyard. So, if you own an apartment, you can consider Shih Tzu’s personalities as your top pet choice.


Are Shih Tzu aggressive?

Shih Tzu has growling and biting problems. Overall, Shih Tzu dogs are considered loving and caring and are not aggressive, but you can experience growling and biting in some dogs. But if you train them properly from an early age, all of these bad habits, including excessive aggression, can be eliminated.


Do Shih Tzu bark a lot?

Yes, like any other dog, Shih Tzu bark a lot. Shih Tzu will bark on any person or other animal from the window or a distance while walking. Sometimes their barking seems out of control. But, their excessive barking can be eliminated by training thanks to their moderate trainability.


Are Shih Tzu high maintenance?

Having a beautiful furry coat, Shih Tzu requires high maintenance. A proper Shih Tzu with long silky fur needs regular brushing daily and a regular bath once a week. Along with their coat, their ears should be cleaned regularly, and their nails should be cut weekly. And Most importantly, your Shih Tzu Dog should be trained for this excessive care and brushing, and all of this grooming should be done with proper care without hurting the little creature.


What are the popular mixed breeds with Shih Tzu?

Shih Tzu is a beautiful dog with many popular mixed breeds that are available in the market. Few of the most popular Shih Tzu mixed breeds are

  • Shih Tzu / Yorkie mix
  • Shih Tzu / Chihuahua mix
  • Shih Tzu / terrier mix
  • Shih Tzu / Bichon mix
  • Malshi: Shih Tzu / Maltese mix
  • Shih Tzu / Pomeranian mix
  • Shih Tzu / Spaniel mix
  • Shih Tzu / Havanese mix


Are Shih Tzu HDB approved?

Yes, Shih Tzu are them HDB approved. Being HDB approved is the very reason that makes them one of the most popular breeds in Singapore. All they need is your attention and a chance to sit in your lap and relax. If you think you can provide him with all the attention he needs, he can be the best pet to add fun to your life. Another alternative to keep the Shih Tzus mind stimulated and engaged is to give an interactive toy!


Are Shih Tzu Hypoallergenic?

Shih Tzu do not shed, and therefore are considered hypoallergenic. This is a huge factor in why they are such a popular breed, as the lack of shedding eliminates any fur messes. This is one of the top qualities of Shih Tzus that their owners appreciate the most!


What health issues does Shih Tzu face?

Overall, Shih Tzu are healthy dogs. Like all the other dogs, they also face several diseases and infections that may cause problems if not cured. Shih Tzu is not good around heat and water because they can not swim and do not tolerate heat. So, keeping these things in mind is essential if you are about to adopt a Shih Tzu.

  • From a puppy to adult, they mostly develop eye infections due to their long hairs covering their eyes. This infection can be eliminated by cutting their hair near the eyes. Also, they develop Epiphoria, an eye disease that causes an overflow of tears that stain their fur near the eyes.
  • As getting old, Shih Tzu can develop Hip Dysplasia. This disease causes their thigh bone to not sit properly in their hip bone, limiting their physical activity and making them slow. So, if you ever notice any laziness in your dog’s movement, you should consider a vet for treatment.

If you’re looking for a sweet lap dog to keep you company, the Shih Tzu is the right dog for you! Coupled with their adorable looks, it’s no surprise that the Shih Tzu has made it to the Top 10 Breeds in Singapore!