Shih Tzus are not big dogs, but they have a very big personality with all the love and affection they can share. They make great companions because they get along with almost everyone and their cute size makes them easy to manage. But just how big do Shih Tzus Get?
Table of Contents
- How big will a Shih Tzu grow as an adult?
- How do I ensure my Shih Tzu eats a healthy diet, so they don’t get too big?
- What can I do to ensure my Shih Tzu doesn’t get hurt since they are so small?
- If my Shih Tzu doesn’t fit the breed standard, does it mean they are not purebred?
How big will a Shih Tzu grow as an adult?
Shih Tzus typically get to be anywhere from eight to eleven inches in height and from nine to fifteen pounds. It can depend on their breed and family background, with some Shih Tzu being smaller or bigger than that.
Shih Tzus are very small dogs with big hearts. For those reasons, they are very popular and make great family dogs and pets for many people. As part of the toy dog group with the American Kennel Club, this breed is a dog that can easily get lost because of its size.
While the numbers listed above are a guideline, not all Shih Tzu may fit into that category. Some Shih Tzu, for various reasons, might be bigger or small. If they are, it doesn’t mean they are sickly or have suffered poor nutrition.
Usually, the Shih Tzu’s veterinarian can help the pet parent know their growth from one puppy stage to the next and what is healthy for that particular dog.
The American Kennel Club has a guideline for the breed standard, including height and weight, but that is for show dogs.
Shih Tzus that are not show quality but are bred by a reputable breeder who practices responsible breeding practices can be higher or lower in weight or height. That is normal and not something to worry about.
If a pet parent is concerned about their Shih Tzu’s height and weight, consulting the breeder and/or veterinarian is smart.
Many things can affect the size of any dog. Things like diet, exercise, and health can cause a Shih Tzu to weigh more or less. Mostly it is driven by their breed and the background of their ancestors, which the breeder has knowledge of and can share.
This is why it’s important for a potential adopter to use responsible breeders and have a good reputation. Inferior breeding practices can cause variances in a dog’s height and weight and their future health.
By adopting from a reputable breeder and avoiding irresponsible breeders, you lessen the chance of these issues.
How do I ensure my Shih Tzu eats a healthy diet, so they don’t get too big?
The best way to ensure your Shih Tzu is eating a healthy diet so they don’t get too big is to consult their veterinarian. Their veterinarian will know their health and how best to care for your individual Shih Tzu.
They can offer suggestions on the proper diet and discuss any food allergies or issues the dog has if any. The veterinarian can also discuss how much food to feed your Shih Tzu at every stage of their life, from the puppy phase to old age.
Of course, you will want to feed your Shih Tzu the healthiest food you can afford. It is good to feed them dog food that contains simple, natural ingredients. There shouldn’t be fillers, additives, or chemicals in dog food, whether dry or wet.
Dog treats should always be kept to a minimum even during training but should be of the same quality to promote a healthy body and growth.
If you find that your Shih Tzu is very active, they may need more food. If they are couch potatoes for a day, they may need less. The amounts the veterinarian provides are a guideline, and every dog is different. The amount of food can change from day to day, and you can base it on your individual dog’s behavior.
What can I do to ensure my Shih Tzu doesn’t get hurt since they are so small?
What can be done to keep your Shih Tzu safe because they are so small is to teach everyone in their home environment about paying attention to the little dog in the house. It can be very easy to forget that you live with a little dog when you are busy or in a rush. Therefore thoughtful reminding on everyone’s part in the house can help keep the Shih Tzu safe.
Another way to provide safety is to have multiple spots in the home that belong to the Shih Tzu. A dog bed here, a crate there, and a cozy blanket rolled up there provide the Shih Tzu with a safe place to escape when things get crazy, and they could get hurt.
Outside the home, you can carry them instead of leaving them on the ground all the time. Doing this when you take them to a party, or anywhere you find appropriate can protect them from harm.
Pet parents use some really great products to keep their little ones safe when they travel out in the world. Small pet carriers made of mesh and netting are great for when you want to take your Shih Tzu on a walking tour around town.
They will feel secure, you will have peace of mind, and when they need to use the bathroom or eat, you can find an out-of-the-way place to set them down. Little dogs can very easily get hurt by accident. Thankfully, there are numerous ways to prevent these issues in life.
If my Shih Tzu doesn’t fit the breed standard, does it mean they are not purebred?
No, if your Shih Tzu doesn’t fit the breed standard, it doesn’t mean they are not a pure breed. Some dogs fit the breed standard within each pure breed, which makes them great in the show ring, but many do not fit this criterion on various levels.
Dogs of a breed that don’t fit the criteria or breed standard in height and weight are no less purebred than another. They are still quality pure-bred dogs, without having the exact height and weight of those show quality dogs. They are also less expensive for that very same reason.