Shih Tzus descended from roots in Chinese royalty, but have transformed from lap dogs to sturdy and agile companions. They typically weigh between 9-16lbs. Although an individual Shih Tzu's temperament varies from dog to dog, the breed has a personality and temperament that is loyal, affectionate, outgoing, cute and alert. They may be a little temperamental with hyper or larger breeds, but generally the Shih Tzu gets along well with other pets. They are generally well behaved and suitable for families.
Common Health Conditions
- Collapsing trachea. This condition is more often found in little dogs, due to the structure of their faces. The trachea (also known as the windpipe) is composed of cartilage. If the cartilage weakens, the structure will flatten.
- The structure of the Shih Tzu’s ears makes them prone to ear infections. The floppy ears give way to a warm long canal, which can sometimes be the stomping grounds for bacteria.
- The Shih Tzu may be more prone than other breeds to get a blood disease called immune-mediated hemolytic anemia, which causes their immune system to attack itself and kill off their blood cells.