9 Amazing Facts About the Shih-Tzu Poodle Mix (A.K.A. Shih-Poo)

brown shih-poo looking into the camera

Small dog breeds are among the most sought-after dogs. That is because they look cute, almost fit in your pocket, and are so loving of you and your family. That is exactly why the Shih-Poo exists.

He is a cute, little pooch that wants to leave a joyful and happy paw-print on your life. And the life of everyone that meets him, for that matter.

The Shih-Poo wants to look good, make you look good so that he can get all the attention. This companion dog wants to be part of the family more than anything.

He will make sure to have a good relationship with everyone, including the mailman. He wants to play, have as much fun, and ensure long session of petting and belly rubs.

The article below will have a lot more about the Shih-Poo. We will get to know this dog a lot better very soon.

But for now, let’s get to meet his parents.

After all, he is a mix of two of the most beloved dog breeds in the world.

Who Are the Shih-Poo Parents?

Below are a few notes about the purebred parents of the Shih-Poo. Knowing about your crossbreed dog’s parents is necessary considering that your dog may take on one or both of their temperament and attitude. Always get to know your dog’s parents.


white black and brown shih-tzu standing next to a fence

Man, that dog looks like he’s got wisdom for days!

The little lion is a cute dog. No, seriously, his name is Little-Lion. However, don’t expect him to do anything a lion might do. He is not going to hunt, guard, or do anything that would require excessive energy.

The Shih-Tzu is a chill dude. He loves to do one thing, and that’s laying on your lap and staying there. Also, maybe fetch a ball a couple of times. Otherwise, he just wants to be your companion.

No less, no more.

He looks to keep you in a good mood by making silly faces and acting cute whenever you need him to. You can’t train him to do that, though. He does it by instinct.

There is a lot more to learn about the Shih-Tzu. And here’s where to read about it.

The Poodle

white poodle on leash in the street

Oh yeah! I’m sexy and I know it!

These were bred to be water retrievers. No, they don’t retrieve water, but they do love to swim in it.

Poodles are known to be show dogs, with their crazy haircuts. However, those haircuts were essential to the success of the dogs in their missions in water.

They don’t appreciate being left alone for long periods of time. They would love to be part of the family as much as possible. That means they wouldn’t mind if you take them with you everywhere you go.

He is very playful by nature. The Poodle will always like to start the games to keep his mind and body active. He can be a bit handful if he isn’t trained well enough.

Taking him to a swimming pool for a fetching game maybe the best thing you could with the Poodle. It is what he was bred to do, and he would love to do it every day.

Of course, the Poodle is not just this. There is more to the Poodle dog breed than meets the eye. You can learn more about him here.

Who Is the Shih-Poo?

a shih-tzu poodle mix smiling holding his toy

Look at that happy face!!!

Credit: By Chloeshihpoo [CC BY-SA 4.0], from Wikimedia Commons​

As it is obvious now, the mix of Shih-Tzu and a Poodle gives you a Shih-Poo (not to be confused with Poo-Shi, a mix between Poodle and a Shiba Inu).

This is a small dog, with awesome looks and a friendly personality. He has been gaining popularity among breeders of designer dogs.

His looks and temperament make him a suitable dog for many families looking for a new member to join their household.

This is exactly why many people love the Shih-Tzu Poodle mix. He is way too cute to pass on. And those eyes, they really see through your soul and start controlling your mind.

It is time for us to get to know the Shih-Poo a little more.

Keep reading to find everything you need to know about this crossbreed.

List of Facts About the Shih-Poo

Disclaimer: The list below includes facts we have been able to find during our research on Shih-Tzu Poodle mix. This list may not be representative of all Shih-Poos, just as not all Shih-Poos are similar. The temperament, looks, and all other characteristics of a crossbreed are not easy to determine as they depend heavily on genetics, environment, and your ability to train your dog.

Now that we have that out of the way let’s get to know our crossbreed of the day (and every day).

1 - He Is A Small Dog, Very Small

The Shih-Poo is a mix between a Shih-Tzu (small dog) and a miniature or Toy Poodle. The litter of such small dogs is definitely just as tiny as they are, or maybe even tinier.

You can easily pick up this dog, put him inside your hood and have a walk around the block with ease. Or, hold him in your arms as you stroke his back and walk to your favorite coffee place.

Either way, this dog won’t be an inconvenience concerning his size.

The Shih-Poo is, depending on the size of his purebred Poodle parent, 8-15 inches tall. He weighs between 8 and 18 pounds.

If you see a Shih-Poo larger than that, he is probably the puppy of a standard Poodle. They are very uncommon as the size difference of the parent breeds is quite an obstacle.

It could be unsafe to crossbreed a standard Poodle with a Shih-Tzu, and we recommend that you don’t trust any breeder who is trying to sell you such a mix.

2 - Shih-Poo Is One of Many Poodle Mixes

The Poodles are crazy cute dogs, and many breeders have been mixing them with other breeds. The Shih-Tzu Poodle mix is just one of many others.

Of course, Shih-Poo is among the best of these mixes (although we can say that about all of them).

The most important reason Poodles are crossed with other breeds is because they are considered hypoallergenic. So, all cute and small dogs that may shed relatively bad are considered for a Poodle mix.

The result, based heavily on genetics, is a litter of hypoallergenic dogs that may or may not look like what the breeder wanted them to look like.

We have talked about another Poodle mix before; the Maltipoo. If you think the Shih-Poo is cute, you should check the Maltipoo out. He will blow your mind.

3 - Shih-Poos Are Intelligent and Easy to Train

The Poodle is a great dog to have because of his intelligence and trainability. The Shih-Tzu is a little less trainable, but he will do anything to put a smile on your face.

The Shih-Poo is both or neither of those depending on the individual temperament of your puppy. However, it is generally believed that Shih-Poos have a calm attitude and are interested in learning new tricks.

You wouldn’t have a lot of problems training your Shih-Poo as long as you keep the training sessions entertaining and have enough stimuli for his tiny brain.

Considering his size, the Shih-Poo won’t be the cause of much annoyance, but he should be trained to follow your basic commands.

grey shih-tzu poodle shih-poo smiling with a tennis ball

He is the happiest dog!

Credit: petguide.com​

4 - It Is Important to Socialize Your Dog

Being a small dog does not translate to having a weak personality. It is widely believed that small dogs have a bigger personality in comparison to other larger breeds of dogs.

That is why introducing your puppy to the outside world at a young age is necessary. The Shih-Poo may feel the need to defend his space and yours everywhere he goes, but that could change.

You should give your dog a chance to meet the world beyond the comfort of your home. Allow him to play with strangers and let him explore his surroundings.

Your dog will gain more self-confidence and act less nervous as he grows up.

Socialization should also involve introducing your Shih-Poo to other dogs, both large and small. Of course, all interactions should be under your supervision. However, allowing your dog to play with other dogs can boost his confidence.

5 - He Will NOT Be A Good Guard Dog

Small dogs tend to be overprotective of their families and households. The same can be said about Shih-Poo.

Still, because he is a chill dog, the Shih-Tzu Poodle mix wouldn’t make a fuss about strangers coming in from the backyard.

In fact, he is more likely to ask for pets and treats than to hunt them down.

The affectionate side of the Shih-Tzu is usually strong enough to become your dog’s first instinct when it comes to strangers (provided he has had good experiences before).

Of course, you can train your dog to be more alert. There are advanced techniques that would allow your dog to become more of a guard dog even if he wasn’t bred to do so.

However, his natural instincts will always be there. So, it wouldn’t be a surprise if your Shih-Poo stops in the middle of a training session to be playful.

Here is a Shih-Poo meeting a bunny. Warning: too cute!

6 - Shih-Poos Are Relatively Easy to Groom

The Shih-Poo looks pretty cute in almost all of the coat he may have. It could be a curly coat like the Poodle or the long and straight coat of the Shih-Tzu. Your dog is almost guaranteed to look great.

He also comes in a multitude of solid and multicolors. It all depends on the genes that he gets from his parents.

One thing is for sure, he will always look adorable. But that might change if you don’t clean and brush his hair every two or three days. You may want to learn to groom your dog yourself too.

Usually, you should take him to a professional dog groomer every 2 months to keep him looking awesome. The cost can add up, so learning to do it yourself will cut it down.

He barely sheds, that is why he is also considered hypoallergenic (of course, if you are allergic, you should be careful).

You should also cut his nails every once in a while. Cleaning his teeth is mandatory to keep them healthy. And bathing regularly every two months is recommended.

7 - He Has Moderate Nutritional Needs

The Shih-Poo is a dog that loves to run around and play with everyone. However, he doesn’t need much exercise. This means that his nutritional needs are relatively moderate.

You should give him dry dog food as it is best for his dental health. Shih-Poos are known to have premature teeth loss if their teeth aren’t protected and cared for. (Here are a few toys that can help with that.)

Also, since he is a small dog, you should find a dry kibble that is made especially for dogs of his size. Many brands produce size-oriented dog food so that small dogs don’t choke on large kibble.

To provide your dog with the highest quality dog food in your price range, you should read dog food reviews and ask your vet about the best option.

You should make sure the food you pick does not have any ingredients that may trigger your dog’s food allergies. It also should not have ingredients from unknown sources or have no nutritional value.

Here is how to evaluate the quality of dog food.

black and white toy shih-poo

What a sweet and cute dog!

Credit: littledoggiesrule.com​

8 - Life Long and Prosper, Shih-Poo!

Like most small dogs, and thanks to his parents’ genes, the Shih-Poo can live up to 15 years. He is a relatively healthy dog, except when it comes to hereditary health issues.

These are health issues that are inherited from the parents. Therefore, always ask to see the parents’ medical history before picking a new puppy.

These health issues can be planned for if you have an idea of what the parents have dealt with in the past. Most respectable breeders will only breed healthy dogs, however.

Other health problems that may show up during your puppy’s lifetime include entropion, patellar luxation, hip dysplasia, and cataracts.

9 - Shih-Poos Are Available for Adoption

At this point, you already know whether you want a Shih-Tzu Poodle mix or not. We hope you actually want one.

We are big fans of adoption. The most important reason for that is because adult dogs are already developed. You can see whether the temperament of the dog is what you are looking for.

If you are looking for a newborn puppy, you should be very careful about the breeder. You should ask the right questions about the breeder and the purebred parents.

Making sure that the breeder has the best intentions in mind means that the litter is relatively healthy.

If your breeder cannot provide you with the relevant information about the medical history of the parents, or show you the parents of his litter, I would suggest you run away.

In fact, you should even report that breeder for animal abuse.

Here are the questions you need to ask before buying a new puppy from a breeder.


The Shih-Poo is a great dog to have. He is way too cute not to be noticed.

A Shih-Poo demands attention wherever he is. So, your attractiveness will immediately increase by owning one and walking with him around the neighborhood.

We love this crossbreed and would encourage you to get one for yourself.

Let us know in the comments down below what you think.

About the Author Sam Cummings

Hey world! Sam here! I am a writer and a blogger, with keen interest in pets, dogs especially. Writing about those creatures make time melt like an ice cube in a desert! Dogs are just unbelievably amazing!

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