The Shih-Tzu 

Breed & Care Information

Personality

The Shih Tzu is a wonderful family dog! Their friendly personality combined with their hardy size makes them a fun companion pet for children. The Shih Tzu breed has a lively and playful personality that often enjoys to snuggle and cuddle with their family.

Size

The Shih Tzu is short in stature but hardy in build. Their body type is heavier due to more solid muscle mass, but their short, cobby little legs make them a sturdy small breed dog. The Shih Tzu breed is available in Tiny Teacup and Toy sizes ranges from 3 lbs to 10 lbs.

Coat & Color Options

The Shih-Tzu is available in solid and party colors with many different color options. The Shih-Tzu has a thick and soft coat that falls straight to the ground. 

Grooming

The Shih-Tzu requires regular grooming. Sticking to a regular grooming schedule for your pet will help making their needs more manageable. Brushing your pets hair every 1-3 days will help fight tangles and mats. As their hair continues to grow a full body groom is needed every 3 to 4 weeks. The shorter their hair is cut the longer it will last in-between grooms. The shorter their hair is cut the longer it will last in-between grooms.The shorter the haircut, the longer it will last in-between grooms. Ask for a “Puppy Cut” to keep their hair short and manageable, but not shaved too short. Shih-Tzu’s may also need the hair from their ears pulled as long hairs grow in their ears and may cause infections.

 

The Shih-Tzu has human-like hair and gentle skin that should be washed with a gentle shampoo. TropiClean Shampoo is a gentle shampoo that uses coconut oil and water to cleanse their coat and skin. Shih-Tzu’s are known to be lively and playful. Bathe your Shih-Tzu every week to keep them fresh and clean! TropiClean Ear Cleaning Wipes can be used once a week to gently remove ear wax and debris and reduce risk of infection.

Health

Diet & Nutrition

The Shih-Tzu is known to be a very healthy breed, however, most small breeds do face health concerns related to their size.

 

One health condition to be aware of is an Umbilical Hernia. An Umbilical Hernia looks like a small bump near their belly and may resemble an “outie” belly-button. Most puppies grow out of this, but a veterinarian can help monitor the condition as the puppy ages. Hernia surgery can also remove the bump during spay or neuter if necessary.


Hypoglycemia is also common in small breed dogs. Hypoglycemia is caused by low-blood sugar and is usually the result of a lack in diet. Hypoglycemia is easily preventable by monitoring their feeding schedule. Small puppies should eat every 4 hours to prevent low-blood sugar. A high calorie supplement such as Nutri-Cal is recommended in tiny puppies. Mix Nutrical in your puppies water bowl to maintain strong blood sugar levels throughout the day.   

It is recommended to monitor your Shih-Tzu’s eating habits, especially during puppy stages. Offer your puppy food every 3 to 4 hours to help prevent low blood sugar. They should be eating roughly ¼ cup to ½ cup of dog food per day based on activity level.


A high-quality, small-bite dry dog food is recommended to maintain their shiny coat, to protect their bones, to keep their teeth clean, to be gentle on their digestive system, and to overall keep them healthy. We recommend Royal Canin dry dog food. A nutritional supplement, such as Nutrical, may also be needed in teacup sized puppies to prevent Hypoglycemia.

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