Shih TzuCare

The Shih Tzu’s long, flowing coat needs regular brushing and maintenance to avoid tangles.

As the sole purpose of the Shih Tzu is companion and house pet, he should be lively, alert, friendly and trusting towards all. He requires minimal exercise, but his long, luxurious coat needs daily brushing and maintenance.

nutrition &FEEDING

Depending on the size of your dog as an adult you are going to want to feed them a formula that will cater to their unique digestive needs through the various phases of their life. Many dog food companies have breed-specific formulas for small, medium, large and giant breeds.

The Shih Tzu is a small breed and has a lifespan of 12 to 14 years. What you feed your dog is an individual choice, but working with your veterinarian and/or breeder will be the best way to determine frequency of meals as a puppy and the best adult diet to increase his longevity. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.


​Being cute is a way of life for these lively little charmers, who live to love and amuse their owners. Where Shih Tzu go, giggles and mischief follow. Bred to spend most of their day inside royal palaces, they make a great pet if you live in an apartment or don’t have a big backyard. Some dogs live to dig holes and chase cats, but a Shih Tzu’s idea of fun is sitting in your lap and distracting you while you watch TV.

coat length Long
grooming Weekly Grooming

energy &EXERCISE

He requires minimal exercise. Somewhat Active; Daily walks and indoor playtime will satisfy this small, short-legged companion. Training a Shih Tzu can be both an amusing and a frustrating experience. Your dog will probably try to charm and kiss you into letting him have his own way, which can result in a chubby, less-than-completely-housebroken pet that is difficult to groom. Because Shih Tzu are such people dogs, praise and rewards are more effective than punishment. Introduce desired new behaviors a bit at a time, be firm, and never give in while your dog is misbehaving. If he nips or jumps up on you, ignore him until he settles down, then praise him. If you decide to socialize your Shih Tzu by taking him to puppy kindergarten or obedience classes, be sure the training methods are based on praise. Teaching your dog basic commands such as “sit,” “come,” and “stay” could one day save his life. Even if you don’t choose to show your dog, or participate in dog sports or pet therapy, remember that your Shih Tzu will love you just as much if you teach him to be well mannered—and you will love him more!

energy level Some Exercise

Shih Tzu &HEALTH

Like all breeds there may be some health issues, like hip dysplasia, patellar luxation and eye disease. Some dogs may be faced with these health challenges in their lives, but the majority of Shih Tzu are healthy dogs. Because of their heavy coats and short faces, Shih Tzu do not tolerate heat well and are not good swimmers. Shih Tzu puppies often bubble and snort while teething, but if this problem persists and is so severe that your dog is spending most of its time struggling for air, seek veterinary attention. When you travel with your pet, be sure to take along plenty of fresh water and frozen ice packs.

You must be careful to avoid eye injuries in a breed with large eyes and no muzzle to protect them, and seek prompt veterinary attention if you suspect an eye problem. One rare but serious health problem in this breed is juvenile renal dysplasia, in which the kidneys fail to develop normally. Working with a responsible breeder, those wishing to own a Shih Tzu can gain the education they need to know about specific health concerns within the breed. Good breeders utilize genetic testing of their breeding stock to reduce the likelihood of disease in their puppies.