Shih tzu – Care and Advice


The Shih Tzu is a breed of Tibetan origin developed in China with a history closely linked to royalty and has been for many years a prohibited dog for buying and selling, due to its high value. Today it undoubtedly occupies a prominent place among those preferred by lovers of furry friends. If you want to know him better, we will tell you everything.

Denomination: Shih Tzu
Origin: Tibet / United Kingdom Patronage
Size: Little
Life expectancy: more than 15 years
Weight: 4.5-8 kg
Hair Type: Long, smooth, thick
Character: Dominant, independent, calm
Cap: Any color, uniform or multicolor
Cross height: 26.5 cm with max.
General ranking: Small dog breeds
AKC classification: Group 5: (Toy) Companion and toy dogs
Classification according to the FCI: Group 9: Companion dogs. Section 5: Tibetan dogs

Origin of the Shih tzu

In reality, the origin of the shih tzu is very ambiguous and there is no very specific information about the true origin. So, over the years, stories have been told, some with legends and a tinge of fantasy that speak of the sacred offspring of this race. This is due to the devotion that Buddhist monks have always shown for lions, animals that are sacred to them. So, at the beginning it is believed that these dogs began to be bred to guard the Tibetan temples and if you look closely, they can remind you a bit of those ferocious cats … Did you know that it is also known as the lion dog?

Likewise, it is quite possible that the first crosses were carried out between small dogs from Mediterranean countries (pugs, Maltese bichons, etc.) and Tibetan dogs that used the dalais lamas as a gift.

In the nineteenth century, Empress Tzu Hsi became very famous as she bred specimens of the Pug, Pekingese or Shih Tzu. As a curiosity you should know that, in her facilities, the eunuchs who were dedicated to taking care of the place, carried out crosses without her knowing it, and their desire was none other than to get smaller puppies. However, once this breeder passed away in 1908, everything dispersed and remained in the hands of individuals. Already in the stage of the Mao regime, with the aim of eliminating everything related to the imperial past and luxury, the possession of these furry was prohibited for a long time. In the end, the breed found its salvation in the United Kingdom and it is for this reason that that country has been granted the patronage of the same.

Shih tzu character

What behavior does this dog have?

The Shih Tzu is a dog with a fairly cheerful and funny character, although it has a strong temperament. Don’t be fooled by his good looking face! Without a doubt, if there is something in which he is considered an expert, it is, in making friends and for that reason this furry man knows how to win the affection of young and old. He is also considered a very sociable dog and always likes to be the head of the park, making good use of his leadership skills. Be careful because he is a brave man and does not like to look for a fight but he does not flinch easily either!

In addition, it is a super good guardian, but given its small size it will not be a good idea for you to trust it with the protection of your home, although we assure you that it will not think twice about facing any intruder or danger that lies in wait for it.

Training your Shih tzu

The first months of life it is very important to be constant with the puppy’s socialization. In addition, the shih tzu needs firm and determined training. This dog needs to have a busy mind so that it can be avoided that it always takes the initiative. Being a fairly intelligent animal, it will respond well to teaching, therefore it will become the ideal companion even for those who have never had a pet or have little experience.

Keeping your best friend happy and energetic

Without a doubt, the best family for a Shih tzu is one that has time to dedicate to it and is lucky enough to be able to share a large part of its days with its dog. Something that should be known first before getting a copy is that it does not support loneliness:

  • You will not last many hours at home without company.
  • You could develop behavior disorders such as separation anxiety.
  • An animal that spends a lot of time alone can become surly, loud and overprotective.

Therefore, remember to include it in your plans with which he will enjoy being in the country or in the city but always with his family. Take advantage of the fact that it is a very smart dog and stimulate its brain with intelligence games, it will surprise you!

Small but with a lot of energy

In contrast to what you may think of having such an elegant bearing and coat, the Shih Tzu needs to do a lot of exercise as it is a very active animal. Leash walks are necessary but in the same way it will release a lot of tension if you let it run outdoors in an area where you can have it controlled. Also, enrolling him in any agility-type sports activity would be a great idea.

Is there a typical Shih tzu disease?

This breed is characterized by being very long-lived and is generally very healthy. However, there are some conditions that can occur in it due to its morphology and size:

  • Obesity.
  • Dry Eye.
  • Endocrine problems.
  • Progressive retinal atrophy.
  • Disc henias.
  • Patella luxation.

Apart from the above and as in many other breeds, the obesity It is a problem on the order of the day. The best thing you can do to preserve the health of your best friend is to keep him at his ideal weight, control his portions and subject him to a dose of exercise daily.

What does the Shih tzu eat and what is the best diet for this breed?

For your new best friend to develop and grow in a healthy way, you must take care of his diet from a puppy. The best advice we can give you is to provide it with a balanced feed, rich in nutrients and rich in essential fatty acids. In this way, you will have to adapt your diet based on these points:

Arrangement of Shih Tzu

For your dog to be the envy of everyone and look with wonderful hair, you have to follow a routine and provide good daily care that we summarize below:


It is the first part of the routine as well as the most important. Your coat should be brushed daily with a natural or metallic bristle brush. To give the final touch to areas such as the beard and mustaches, one trick is to apply a little talcum powder with a brush to remove traces of moisture and finish with a blow dryer to add volume.


Before bathing you should insist on brushing because, when your hair gets wet, it can become so heavy that it is really difficult to remove the dreaded knots. Remember to always use suitable products, that is, shampoos for long-haired dogs and conditioners that ensure the best results. To finish, remember to dry your entire body very well and not leave traces of moisture on the coat.


The hair on the head should be brushed every day, and the ideal is to collect it with a rubber band, forming the typical headdress. top knot. Regarding the haircut, the ideal is to leave it at its maximum length, trimming only the split ends with smooth scissors. Finally, the interdigital areas should be trimmed to remove excess hair.

And you, did you know the Shih tzu or are you thinking of having one? It is a wonderful companion that will attract attention wherever it passes both for its beauty and its character. In our online store Tghanimal we have a lot of products so that you do not miss a single detail. Also, if you want to learn more about dogs, such as the Ibizan Hound, here we tell you!


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