Shih Tzu: Fluffy Temple Dog from the “Roof of the World”

According to legend, the Buddha had a dog that could turn into a lion. The Shih Tzu is very close, at least visually, with its stocky build, rounded head, and lush coat. However, in character, a small dog has little in common with a wild cat: Shih Tzu inspires with their cheeky, cheerful nature and affection. Attractive four-legged friends expect the full attention of their people.

Ancient Breed from Tibet

The origin of the Shih Tzu goes back a long way: Tibetan monks kept animals as temple dogs as early as the seventh century. The breed was probably created by crossing small Lhasa Apso with Pekingese. About a thousand years later, Shih Tzu came into fashion among the Chinese nobility. After Shih Tzu breeding came to a standstill in China under Mao, dog lovers from other countries took up the task of preserving the breed. The UK has patronized the recognized breed since 1929.

Shih Tzu Personality

Shih Tzu is a friendly and affectionate dog who always wants to be the center of attention, loves to play and mess around. They make excellent family dogs as well as therapy animals. However, they are also said to have a certain “arrogance” because Shih Tzu has retained the independence that is more expected of cats. It doesn’t like being dominated.

At the same time, the dog has mastered all the techniques necessary to wrap a person around a paw and manipulate it. Don’t fall for the little charmer or he will dance around you. The hunting instinct is poorly developed.

Breeding & Keeping

Because of their adaptability, Shih Tzu is suitable for apartment life as long as they get enough daily exercise and are able to explore their surroundings. They cannot stand being alone; ideal if a family member is always nearby.

Shih Tzu is not easy to train. Many animals show a certain tendency to be stubborn, others are too playful to take attempts at parenting seriously. Therefore, great perseverance is required. It can also be a long way to breaking into a house. There is also a feature characteristic of the breed: many Shih Tzu eats feces; a habit that you must strictly avoid when training a puppy.

Shih Tzu Care

The Shih Tzu’s coat does not change naturally: the smooth or slightly wavy topcoat continues to grow. To keep the coat silky, clean, and tangle-free, you must brush it daily and cut it regularly to the desired length. The inner surfaces of the paws and ears are particularly at risk formats.

If you prefer an exclusive long hairstyle for your Shih Tzu, the effort will increase. The fur needs to be washed more often and treated with a special care oil.

You should always either tie or trim the topcoat on the head, otherwise, it can get into the dog’s eyes and irritate them.

Shih Tzu Features

There are a number of factors associated with a short muzzle and malocclusion that can cause health problems. Be especially careful with Shih Tzu on hot days: dogs are prone to heatstroke, so staying out of the hot sun should be avoided. In addition, Shih Tzus tend to have dental and breathing problems due to their short skull. Therefore, you should only buy purebred dogs such as Shih Tzu from a responsible breeder.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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