A chose this breed as may years ago my daughter and I spotted two of these dogs in a nearby car and went over to chat with them. They were really beautiful and so friendly. Over the years we have often said we would love to own one but we never have. I have now researched this breed and although I think it would be a delightful pet I feel it could take quite a lot of work, both in training and caring for its coat.
A SHIH TZU is a toy dog breed weighing 5-7.25 kilograms (11.0-16.0 lb) with long silky hair. The breed originated in China. Shih Tzu were officially recognised by the American Kennel Club in 1969. The name is both singular and plural.
It is a small, sturdy little dog with a short muzzle and large dark eye. It has a soft and double long coat. Its drop ears are covered with long fut, and the heavily furred tail is carried curved over the back. The coat may of any colour, though white and with blazes of white are frequently seen. This dog has a very noticeable under-bite which is required in the breed standard. The traditional long, silky coat, which reaches the floor, required daily brushing to avoid tangles and because of their long coat and fast-growing hair, regular grooming is necessary, which may be costly and should be considered when looking forward to having this dog breed. Often the coat is clipped short to simplify care. For conformation showing, the coast must be left in its natural state, through trimming for nearness around the feet and rear end is allowed. This is a tricolor (black, white and gold) Shih Tzu in show coat:
Although a Shih Tzu's temperament varies from dog to dog, the breed has a personality and temperament that is loyal, affectionate, outgoing and alert. Training and proper socialising must start at a young age for the Shih Tzu to obey basic commands While it is an excellent watchdog because of its alert and active nature it was not specifically bred for this purpose. Unlike the Lhasa Apso, which was bred to be a sentinel dog that enjoys high perches and is wary of strangers, the Shih Tzu prefers to be close to its companions and will often offer strangers its affection. Due to its friendly nature, the Shih Tzu tends to interact well with other dogs and with children and adults They have been observed to be peevish if provoked, so an owner should be mindful when the dog is is the presence of children. Improper training can also result in nipping and biting, Shih Tzu dogs can also become needy and cry if not properly disciplined at the correct age. Overall, they are friendly and outgoing companions.
These dogs can suffer from various medical complaints. The UK Kennel Club survey puts the median life plan at 13 years and 2 months, with most living between 10-20 years.
Here are a couple of delightful puppies: