theShih Tzu

Outgoing, Affectionate, Playful
Toy Group Toy Group

meet theShih Tzu

Did you know?

The legend of the Shih Tzu has come to us from documents, paintings, and objets d'art dating from AD 624.


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at aGlance

Energy & Size

medium ENERGY &
small size

AKC Dog Ranking

17th
Most Popular Dog Breed

Personality

  • Check Affectionate
  • Check Outgoing
  • Check Playful
Outgoing, affectionate, playful and charming

theBreed Standard

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  • General Appearance

    The Shih Tzu is a sturdy, lively, alert toy dog with long flowing double coat. Befitting his noble Chinese ancestry as a highly valued, prized companion and palace pet, the Shih Tzu is proud of bearing, has a distinctively arrogant carriage with head well up and tail curved over the back. Although there has always been considerable size variation, the Shih Tzu must be compact, solid, carrying good weight and substance. Even though a toy dog, the Shih Tzu must be subject to the same requirements of soundness and structure prescribed for all breeds, and any deviation from the ideal described in the standard should be penalized to the extent of the deviation.

  • Head

    Head - Round, broad, wide between eyes, its size in balance with the overall size of dog being neither too large nor too small. Fault: Narrow head, close-set eyes. Expression - Warm, sweet, wide-eyed, friendly and trusting. An overall well-balanced and pleasant expression supersedes the importance of individual parts. Care should be taken to look and examine well beyond the hair to determine if what is seen is the actual head and expression rather than an image created by grooming technique.

  • Body

    Short-coupled and sturdy with no waist or tuck-up. The Shih Tzu is slightly longer than tall. Fault - Legginess. Chest - Broad and deep with good spring-of-rib, however, not barrel-chested. Depth of ribcage should extend to just below elbow. Distance from elbow to withers is a little greater than from elbow to ground. Croup - Flat.

  • Forequarters

    Shoulders - Well-angulated, well laid-back, well laid-in, fitting smoothly into body. Legs - Straight, well-boned, muscular, set well-apart and under chest, with elbows set close to body. Pasterns - Strong, perpendicular. Dewclaws - May be removed. Feet - Firm, well-padded, point straight ahead.

     

  • Coat

    Luxurious, double-coated, dense, long, and flowing. Slight wave permissible. Hair on top of head is tied up. Fault: Sparse coat, single coat, curly coat. Trimming - Feet, bottom of coat, and anus may be done for neatness and to facilitate movement. Fault - Excessive trimming.

  • Hindquarters

    Angulation of hindquarters should be in balance with forequarters. Legs - Well-boned, muscular, and straight when viewed from rear with well-bent stifles, not close set but in line with forequarters. Hocks - Well let down, perpendicular. Fault - Hyperextension of hocks. Dewclaws - May be removed. Feet - Firm, well-padded, point straight ahead.

A Shih Tzu
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