Shih Tzu

About the Breed

The Shih Tzu is a small, yet regal breed of dog that has been popular for centuries. Noted for its long, flowing coat and friendly temperament, the Shih Tzu is a favorite among those looking for an ideal companion pet. While the breed is suitable for all types of households, it does require some special considerations when it comes to diet and exercise as well as regular veterinary visits. History The Shih Tzu originated in China as early as the 1600s and were kept by members of Chinese royalty. These little dogs were bred to resemble lions and were given as gifts to foreign dignitaries during that time period. The name Shih Tzu translates to lion dog in Mandarin Chinese, which further attests to their royal status at that time. In 1929, the first two Shih Tzus arrived in England from Peking (now Beijing). Eight years later, the breed was recognized by Britain's Kennel Club and soon after became popular family pets throughout Europe and North America. Temperament The Shih Tzu is an outgoing breed with a friendly disposition that makes them excellent family companions. They are loyal animals who love attention from their owners and thrive on being part of a loving household environment. They get along well with children and other pets but can be slightly reserved around strangers until they get used to them. As such, they make excellent watchdogs but may not be ideal guard dogs due to their small size. Ideal Households Due to their sweet personalities and loveable nature, Shih Tzus are great companions for all types of households including families with children or couples living alone or older people living on their own who want a loyal companion pet in their lives. However because they do need regular grooming due to their thick coats they may not be ideal if you're looking for an easy-care pet who doesn't need much upkeep or attention paid towards them regularly since this will require more work than other breeds would demand from you in terms of grooming needs which can include brushing daily or every other day depending on your preference. Healthy Weight & Exercise Requirements Shih Tzus should have healthy weights between 9-16 pounds depending on height but should never exceed 18 pounds so if your pup looks like he's getting too big then it's important that you adjust his diet accordingly or talk with your vet about how best to manage his weight since being overweight can lead to numerous health issues down the line. Also these little dogs don't need too much exercise but do still benefit from daily walks around 30 minutes long, especially if you want him staying active plus this will also help keep him at a healthy weight. Important Health Checks It's important that owners take extra care when it comes any health concerns relating to their Shih Tzus because like all breeds these little furry friends are prone certain illnesses including eye issues such as cataracts, hip dysplasia, breathing problems due partly from having such long coats so keeping up with regular checkups at your vet will ensure early detection should any health concerns arise. Also checking teeth regularly since poor dental hygiene can lead more serious issues down the line is also important so make sure get into habit of brushing your pup's teeth everyday too! Conclusion The Shih Tzu is an adorable breed known for its luxurious coat and friendly disposition making them wonderful companion pets suitable for all types of households including families with children or single people looking a loyal friend in life. However while they don't require much exercise they do need extra care when it comes diet especially keeping track weight which should always between 9-16 pounds maximum 18 lbs at most - plus brushing teeth regularly along visiting vet frequently ensure any potential illnesses caught early before becoming major problems later down road!

Healthy weight:

7-16 pounds

Recommended Food

Medium or Large breed dog food such as Royal Canin Golden Retriever or Hills Science Diet

Breed Colors

  • White
  • Black and White
  • Gold and White
  • Brown and White
  • Gray and White
  • Red and White
  • Silver and White
  • Cream
  • Black
  • Gold
  • Brown
  • Gray
  • Silver
  • Red
  • Apricot

Ideal for owners that

  • Patient
  • Loving
  • Attentive
  • Responsible
  • Flexible
  • Active

Health Considerations

  • Patellar Luxation
  • Eye Problems
  • Ear Infections
  • Respiratory Difficulties
  • Dental Problems
  • Skin Allergies
  • Obesity
  • Heart Disease
  • Hip Dysplasia

This breed may be cute, but these are some of their common health issues to be aware of.

Temperment & Skills


shihtzu's on Fetch Fido