The Shih Tzu Poodle mix, often called the Shih Poo, is a designer hybrid mix between a Poodle and a Shih Tzu. The reason these dogs are so desirable is because they shed very little, making them a great choice for individuals who have allergies. Not only are these dogs adorable, they are full of energy, which makes them a fun pet to have around. They bring plenty of joy to any home, and they are small enough to be perfect for suburban homes, small apartments, and more. If you’re considering a small, happy dog for your home, the Shih Poo may be for you. Here’s a closer look at their history, appearance, grooming needs, and other information that will let you know what to expect from the hybrid.
Origin and History
The Shih Tzu Poodle mix was started in the United States, and it’s thought that the hybrid was created to help create a hypoallergenic dog that could be enjoyed by allergy sufferers. Designer dogs have become quite popular in the last 20 years, particularly Poodle crosses. While the Shih Tzu Poodle mix is still quite new, it’s expected to surge in popularity in the next few years.
To better understand the history and origin of these dogs, it’s a good idea to take a look at both parent breeds. When it comes to the Poodle, these dogs have such a long history that their exact origin is still unknown. However, it is known that they were used in Germany and France as far back as the 1400s for water dogs, retrieving dogs, and as loyal companions.
The Shih Tzu is a very old breed that dates all the way back to both Tibet and China. It’s thought that this breed may have been created by crossing a Pekingese with a Lhasa Apsos. The Emperors of China favored the Shih Tzu, and later these early dogs were crossed with other small dogs said to resemble small lions to create the Shih Tzu breed we’re familiar with today. It wasn’t until the 20th century that this breed became well known in the western world. Later, in 1969, the breed would be recognized by the American Kennel Club’s studbook.
Shih Poo Appearance
The Shih Poo is a very small dog that usually stands between 8 and 13 inches tall and weighs in between 8 and 18 pounds. These dogs have a coat that can be curly, short, silky, or long, and sometimes they even have a coat that is somewhere in between. They can come in many different colors as well, including gray, black, brown, apricot, and white. You can expect them to have an adorable face that looks slightly like a teddy bear, and their eyes are round and expressive.
The Shih Tzu Poodle mix is an energetic, playful dog. These dogs enjoy playing with toys, stuffed animals, and balls. They love to play, so they are great with older kids. However, they don’t tolerate any hair pulling or harsh handling, which means they may not be a great fit for smaller children. The Shih Poo also enjoys plenty of cuddling, and they’ll curl up in your lap and be content. Unfortunately, these dogs enjoy barking, and it can be difficult to train them to stop barking.
Although the Shih Poo is very smart, they can be very stubborn when it comes to training. They are notorious for being difficult to house train as well. In some cases, it can take a year of stringent training to achieve house training. In some cases, crate training may prove helpful for these dogs. When training the Shih Tzu Poodle mix, it’s best to use positive methods, such as excited praise and rewards. Since they have a short attention span, it’s best to go with short training sessions. However, repetition is important, so having several short sessions in one day is an excellent idea.
You won’t need to worry a lot about shedding from the Shih Poo, but they still require regular brushing to prevent mats. Having your dog clipped regularly can help, and daily brushings can reduce problems with matting and tangles. These dogs often have tearing problems, so it’s important to clean and check their eyes regularly. Their ears also need to be cleaned weekly and checked for any problems.
These dogs are generally not used in working roles. They make great lap dogs and loving pets. Since they love people so much and are very small, the Shih Tzu Poodle mix may make great companion dogs for the elderly or disabled.
On average, a Shih Tzu Poodle mix will live to be between 10 and 15 years old. The Shih Poo can display some of the health problems of both the Poodle and Shih Tzu breeds. Some potential health concerns for this hybrid may include:
- Renal dysplasia
- Cleft palate
- Invertebral disk disease
- Von Willebrand disease
- Respiratory problems
- Dental problems
- Patellar luxation
- Eye problems
- Hip dysplasia
- Addison’s disease
- Juvenile renal disease
- Sebaceous adenitis