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Shih-Poo Breed


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Dog Size

Energy Level

Dog Energy Level


Dog Trainability

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Physical Characteristics:
Height: 8-13”
Weight: 8-18 lbs.
Energy Level: Moderate
The Shih-Poo is found in the following colors:

  • Apricot
  • Black
  • Brown
  • Cream
  • Gray and brown
  • Red
  • Sable tan
  • White

Health & Longevity

Average Life Span: 10-15 years
The Shih-Poo is a hybrid breed of the Shih-Tzu and the Poodle. This breed has several health problems that you need to be aware of. If you work with a reputable breeder, you will find that your pup probably will not develop any of these conditions. Health problems usually arise from poor breeding habits. Some of the health concerns you need to be informed of include hypothyroidism, patellar luxation, Addison’s Disease, Cushing’s Disease, Von Willebrand’s Disease, hip dysplasia, allergies, ear infections, and Legg-Perthe’s Disease.

Hypothyroidism is a condition that occurs in your pup when there is a problem with his or her thyroid. This condition can lead to obesity or can cause your pup to have trouble gaining weight. If you notice any issues with your pup’s weight, make sure to speak with your veterinarian to catch and properly treat the issue.

Patellar luxation is the dislocation of the knee in your dog. This often occurs in females and is not as prominent or common in males. The dislocation is painful for your pup and your dog may hold his or her leg elevated from the ground.

Addison’s Disease occurs when there is a problem with your Shih-Poo’s adrenal gland. When the adrenal gland cannot add corticosteroids to your pup’s body, the body cannot function as it is supposed to.

Cushing’s Disease is another problem that occurs with adrenal glands and also the pituitary gland. This condition is marked by low cortisone levels in your pup and these low levels can cause weakness in muscles, increased appetite or thirst, and nervous system problems.

Von Willebrand’s Disease is a blood disorder that occurs in a variety of breeds and is characterized by the lack of proteins in the dog’s platelets. This results in the platelets not being able to clot.

Hip dysplasia may affect your Shih-Poo and is caused from a deformed hip joint or a hip joint that does not fit into the socket properly. This condition usually affects senior dogs and is painful for them.

Allergies may be present in your Shih-Poo and can range from a skin allergy to vaccine sensitivities and everything in between. You need to make sure you alert your vet when you notice any problems with your pup’s skin or sinuses. You will usually know when a skin allergy is present because your pup’s skin will be red, hot, irritated, and inflamed.

Ear infections can crop up from time to time in your Shih-Poo. To prevent them, you should clean his or her ears once per week with a cleansing solution and a cotton ball.

Lastly, Legg-Perthe’s Disease is a disease that affects the femur bone in your Shih-Poo. This disease causes inflammation of the joint and bone and can lead to lameness in the back limbs.

The Shih-Poo’s life expectancy is 10 to 15 years.

Temperament & Train-ability

The Shih-Poo is considered to be a lively dog that is happy and easy going. You will find that your pup is happy when you give him or her attention or when he or she can latch onto a chew toy and go at it.

This breed is considered loving and will not go after strangers in your home, unless of course your pup wants to give a bunch of friendly licks. You do not have to worry about this aggression in this breed, as he or she is even tempered and will not attack or cause harm to other animals or kids.

The Shih-Poo is not a super active dog and is happy with some mild playtime outside and a walk of 15 to 30 minutes per day.

This breed is easy to train and likes to perform for his or her owner, so you will not run into issues when it comes to learning commands and tricks. You want to make sure you are consistent though and that you use friendly methods to train your pup.


The Shih-Poo is considered to be moderately easy to groom and does not require a lot of attention. This breed does not shed a lot, so is an excellent choice for those who suffer from allergies. You should brush your pup once a day to remove any mats or tangles that form in his or her coat. Brushing will also remove any loose hairs that show up.

Your Shih-Poo does not need to be bathed on a regular schedule, bathing can be done when he or she becomes really dirty or gets into something stinky. When you bathe him or her, make sure that you choose a shampoo that is mild and will not strip the natural oils from his or her skin.

You will need to clean your pup’s ears once a week to make sure you remove any buildup of earwax and dirt. Proper cleaning of your pup’s ears can prevent infections.

Lastly, you need to make sure that you trim your Shih-Poo’s nails once a month or sooner if necessary. Nails that grow too long will become brittle and break, which is painful for your pup.


Your Shih-Poo will eat between 3/4 cup of food and 1 1/2 cups of food per day. You should ideally split this up into two meals. The best food for your pup will be made from high quality ingredients and not contain any chemicals and fillers.

Since your pup is unlikely to be extremely active, you want to purchase a brand of dog food that will fit in with his or her activity level and nutritional needs.

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A Shih-Poo puppy can cost you anywhere between $500 and $1,800. It is unlikely that you will find this breed in a shelter or a rescue.

In addition to the cost of the puppy, you need to factor in the cost of pet supplies, vaccinations, preventative medications, and veterinarian care.

Paws ‘N’ Pups Ranking

Paws ‘N’ Pups ranks every breed out of 4 with 1 being easiest to integrate into your life and 4 being the toughest – The lower the ranking the better.

Ranking takes into account a few basic factors including cost, skill level needed, high vs low maintenance and how critical regular training is to success. The Shih-Poo is a good addition to any home and you will find that your pup is friendly and craves attention. He or she is not too energetic and will wind down for a cuddle anytime of the day or night. This breed is easy to train and will provide you with a lot of love. This breed ranks a 1.


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