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Are you looking for a small pooch as a buddy that is hypoallergenic for you to cuddle with? The Poodle Shih Tzu mix sounds like what you need.

This cross between a Shih Tzu and a Poodle receives some of the finest traits from both parents giving it a sweet disposition that pleases just anyone. They are the kind of pooch that loves human contact and companionship and are suitable for both apartment dwellers and those with homes. Think about the curly coat like the Poodle’s, straight like the Shih Tzu’s, or a blend of both! Sounds cute and admirable, right?

Well, before you start asking how much a Shih Tzu Poodle mix puppy costs, you should know what the hybrids require. What is their temperament? Do they shed? What do they eat? How much exercise do they need? All these questions and more are covered in our review of this mixed breed to help you know whether the cross is appropriate for you.

What is a Poodle Shih Tzu mix called?

The Poodle Shih Tzu mix is by charming names such as Shih-Poo, Pooshi, or Shoodle. The name Shih-Poo can also be spelled as Shih Poo or Shihpoo. Unlike their purebred parents, however, this mixed breed is not recognized by the AKC. The best thing is that you can register them with other kennel clubs like the DRA.

Why mix with Poodle?

Designers mix other dog breeds with a Poodle because of the sweet temperament, intelligence, ease of training, and affection. In addition, Poodles are adorable due to their striking coats and appearance, and the likelihood of the mix being hypoallergenic (shed less).


Size8 to 15 inches tall
Weight8 to 18 lbs.
Lifespan13 to 17+ years
GroomingLow-shedding with moderate maintenance
TemperamentFriendly, playful, affectionate & courageous
CoatCurly or Straight
Coat ColorsApricot, cream, parti-color, red sable, black & tan, black, white, and brown

History of the Breed

The Pooshi is a relatively new breed without much that we can share on their history. However, we know that they were created in North America. Designer dogs are not new, and it is a tradition that is said to have begun with the Romans in an attempt to control the spread of rabies. That is history, right? Back to our article.

To understand more about the Poodle Shih Tzu mix, let us briefly look at their parents.


The Poodle – Most historians argue that the Poodle dog breed originated in Germany before developing into its own breed in France where it is the country’s national flag. These dogs were created for hunting purposes where they helped their owners retrieve ducks and birds. Poodles come in 5 varieties but only 3, including the Toy, Miniature, and Standard types are recognized. The AKC registered Poodles as a dog breed in 1887.

A cute toy poodle
A cute toy poodle

Poodles are known for their friendly and sociable personality, and they are also lively and witty, something that makes people love them. This purebred has a high dog IQ that makes it rank well when it comes to obedience and working. Their intelligence makes them easy to train. Poodles are known to be excellent jumpers so if you consider having one, your yard needs proper fencing.

Read about a Poodle German shepherd mix.

Poodle sizes vary with the type. Toy Poodles stand 9.4 to 11 inches tall, Miniature 11 to 14 inches in height, and Standard Poodles are between 18 and 24 inches tall at the shoulders. They come in a range of colors. These pooches have a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years with very few health issues such as hip dysplasia, epilepsy, thyroid, bloat, and Addison’s disease.

The Shih Tzu – This dog breed is native to Tibet (and not China as most of you think) and they were developed as noble dogs for the Emperor of China in the palace. They were also used as guard dogs that barked at strangers and animals when they approached. The AKC recognized a Shih Tzu as a breed in 1959. Distinguishing features in this dog breed are a short snout, huge, rounded eyes, droopy ears, a growing coat, and a short & stout stance.

A well-groomed Shih Tzu standing
A well-groomed Shih Tzu standing

This dog breed is famous for its cheerful, ecstatic temperament and they are also lively and friendly with people and other dogs. That makes them excellent companions. Unfortunately, they are not the smartest pooches in terms of dog IQ as they rank 128th out of 138 dogs. Shih Tzus have a life expectancy of 10 to 16 years and are prone to health issues like hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, cataracts, and breathing problems. You can also check the Shih Tzu and Pomeranian mix review.


What does a Poodle Shih Tzu mix look like? This is something that most people would want to know. And you are right where you should be. The size will depend on the type of Poodle that was used to create the hybrid.

When you cross a Shih Tzu with a Poodle, the offspring is a small dog breed that stands 8 to 15 inches tall at the shoulders. Their weight ranges anywhere between 8 and 18 lbs. Not all puppies from the same litter look alike which makes it hard to predict how your mix looks. However, Shih-Poos have a well-balanced physique with a rounded face and droopy ears.

A pretty Shih-Poo playing on the field
A pretty Shih-Poo playing on the field

While some Pooshis have a proportional jaw, others have an underhung jaw. Their bodies will be wide with shorter front legs, a brawny chest, and an even back. Like their Shih Tzu parent, the mix has huge, rounded eyes and cute little beards as well as a nose that looks like their coat color. Coat colors include apricot, cream, parti-color, red sable, black & tan, black, white, and brown.

A Shihpoo can inherit either coat texture and be wooly like their Poodle parent or longer and straighter like their Shih Tzu parent. Either way, they will look adorable! Good news to allergic people, this mix inherits the low shedding coat of a Shih Tzu. When you combine it with the Poodle’s coat, your Pooshi is hypoallergenic.

Temperament and Characteristics

The Poo-Shi inherits characteristics from both parents and those that own them say they are full of fun and outgoing. Due to their small size, they might like to cuddle or sit and nap on their laps as they watch their favorite movie. Their personality allows them to be good with strangers and which is a good thing. However, you have to train them from puppyhood.

Like the Poodle parent, the Shih-Poo will be moderately quiet but will alert you when they are hungry. This behavior can, however, be controlled so it can’t be a nightmare for you and your neighbors. Unfortunately, Pooshis do not get along with strange pets like they do with those from inside their family. Be ready to offer them attention because it is something they always seek from you.

While their smartness is a plus, they can use it negatively by becoming destructive when they are bored. This is because their affection for human companions makes them vulnerable to separation anxiety. Alternatively, you should invest in interactive toys and games that keep them busy when you are away, but not for long.

Ease of Training

The Poodle Shih Tzu mix is an intelligent hybrid which means they will understand commands easily. However, they have a stubborn streak that can make training them a problem. As such, you should start training them while they are still in their puppyhood stage to prevent resistance.

The best thing about training Shihpoos is that they love food so much. Therefore, you can use this to your advantage during training sessions by implementing the positive reinforcement tactic. The reward-based method using treats also works fine, especially during behavioral training.

When it comes to socialization, you should take them out to meet new people, pooches, and environments. This will help prevent them from developing fear in new situations when they mature.  


While Shihpoos are extremely energetic and playful, they are disadvantaged for having little legs. As such, they will do just fine with 2 quick walks each day which should take not more than 40 minutes. That is enough to help them burn off extra energy in their body and will help them relax.

A pretty Shih-Poo playing on the field
A pretty Shih-Poo playing on the field

It would be good to invest in some tug toys and a ball so that your Poo-Shi can play with them in the backyard. This is especially helpful when you are not available to play with them. If you pick off-leash walks where your pooch can meet and make new friends, make sure you are in a safe location.

Nutritional Requirements

The Shih Tzu and Poodle mix is a small pooch with average energy which is why you should pick a diet that is suitable for these traits. Your Shihpoo will do fine with 1 cup of premium kibble divided into two servings a day. We recommend that you check the kibble’s texture because the breed is susceptible to dental problems such as premature teeth loss.

Since this mixed breed loves food and is prone to weight gain, do not allow them to free-feed. Increased weight in Shih-Poos can lead to joint issues.

Health Issues

Designer dogs, like the Shihpoo, have the advantage of being healthier than their parents. However, it is possible for them to inherit some health issues their Shih Tzu and Poodle parents are predisposed to. They may be quite a few compared to other mixed breeds, but you should watch out, nonetheless.

Some common health issues that Poo-Shis have to include hypothyroidism, breathing issues (caused by a short snout), dental problems as well as heatstroke. Minor conditions include teary eyes, lung disorders, von Willebrand’s disease, and intervertebral disc disease.

It is good to take your Shih-Poo to the vet as recommended for regular checkups to help maintain decent health.

Life Expectancy

A healthy Poodle Shih Tzu mix has a life expectancy of between 13 and 17 (or more) years.

How to Care for them

From adhering to scheduled vet visits to feeding them age-appropriate high-quality dog food with the right kibble size and texture, exercising them, and training them adequately, that is how you care for your Shihpoo. The next important thing that you should do is groom the well.


Shih-Poos can inherit a curly coat (Poodle parent), straight fur (Shih-Tzu parent), or a blend of both. Whichever they take after, daily brushings plus monthly grooming will keep them looking great. You can also take your doggie to a pro groomer for a more stunning look. Do not bathe your pooch more than once a month to avoid skin dryness and cracking.

Their nails should be clipped as required and their teeth brushed twice or thrice a week to protect them from dental problems.

How much are Chi-Poo puppies worth?

You can get a Poodle Shih Tzu mix puppy from a reputable breeder at a price of between $500 and $1,000. But if the pup was developed for dog show purposes, you will have to dig deeper into your pockets and pay up to or more than $2,000. Other factors influencing the price are the breeder’s location and the parent’s pedigree.

If you decide to buy your Shihpoo from a breeder, ensure they have all the needed certifications accompanied by the information on the mix’s parents. This will give you a good idea about the traits of the pup you are taking home.

Where to Adopt

Should you opt for adoption, you can talk to workers at your local shelter to find out whether you can get a Poodle Shih Tzu mix there. If not, try your luck from rescue centers of the parent breeds. You might get lucky.


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