Shih Tzu – Breed Information
Breed Information: The Shih Tzu is a small dog covered with a double coat the undercoat is thick and woolly while the topcoat is long and soft. The head is rounded and completely covered by hair, including a long moustache and beard. The nose is black except on liver-colored dogs where the nose is liver, and the ears are pendant-shaped, but also completely covered in long hair that blends into the coat of the body. The eyes are large and dark, though lighter on lighter colored dogs. Shih Tzus should have an undershot bite, though the teeth and tongue should not be visible when the mouth is closed. The tail curls over the back and is also covered in long hair which blends into the body. All colors are acceptable for the Shih Tzu.
- Size: Dogs and bitches Height: up to 11 inches/Weight: 9-16 pounds
- Breed Specific Health Issues: Problems with the teeth are most occurring among Shih Tzus they are often lost at an early age. Spinal problems are also occasionally seen as their bodies are longer than they are tall.
- Life Expectancy: The Shih Tzu can live to be 15 years or more.
- Grooming Requirements: When the coat is left long, this breed requires daily grooming with a brush with bristles. Some owners prefer clipping the coat short to make grooming easier. A topknot is used to tie back the hair from the face so the dog can see. Shih Tzus eyes can be sensitive so you must be sure to keep them clean and to keep hair out of their eyes.
Shih Tzu – Breed Behavior
Shih Tzus will lay around all day if they are allowed to, so their activity level is low. Although when they are taken for walks, they are thoroughly enjoyed. As this breed can put on weight very quickly, it is advisable to take them for a walk morning and evening.
Because of their low activity level, this breed is well suited for apartment living. These dogs are quite active indoors, so a backyard/garden is not necessary.