Last Updated on September 20, 2023
Quick Summary: The Shih Tzu makes a great parent breed for many breeds because of their relaxed personality. On the other hand, the Chihuahua is an aggressive breed, even though they’re small. They are even well-known for their ability to compete with large dogs. The Shih Tzu and Chihuahua mix is called ShiChi, and they come with the temperament of their parent breeds. You should train these dogs to avoid developing the “small dog syndrome.” However, this is unlikely to happen since ShiChis are easy to train. This breed rarely suffers health problems when they’re well taken care of. The lifespan of Shih Tzus is 13 years, and Chihuahuas can live for about 16 years – so ShiChis have an average lifespan of about 15 years.
The combination of the Chihuahua and Shih Tzu makes for a lively, brave, fun, and trustworthy companion. The two breeds of toy dogs make an excellent cuddle companion who will beg to rest on your lap during playing sessions. While they are small, the ShiChi (also called Chi Tzu) have amazing personalities.
The ShiChi is among the rare breeds of mixed breeds that are recognized by the American Canine Hybrid Clube, the Designer Breed Registry, the Dog Registry of America, the Designer Dogs Kennel Club, and the International Designer Canine Registry. This makes it easier to locate them than other breeds of designer dogs.
The Chihuahua is famous for its spirited and outgoing personality, and the same goes for the Shih Tzu. It’s hard to imagine an even better breed combination since their personalities are so similar.
This designer breed is created exclusively for companionship, but due to their loud bark, you’d think they’re guard dogs!
Like most toy breeds that are available, the ShiChi is a good choice for dog owners who are new to the breed. Their compact dimensions make them ideal for small families or roommates in smaller apartments.
ShiChis are a great fit in any environment because they don’t need much space. They’ll be looking for a place to be close to their family and friends; however, they’re more likely to choose their favorites!
Are the ShiChi the right choice for you? This guide will guide you through the process of determining if you’re prepared for this tiny piece of energy!
- 1 What is a Designer Toy Breed?
- 2 The Shih Tzu: An Overview
- 3 The Chihuahua: An Overview
- 4 Shih Tzu and Chihuahua Mix (ShiChi)
- 5 Conclusion
What is a Designer Toy Breed?
The term “designer dog” is any combination of two purebred parents. To be considered designer dogs, parents have to be purebred over generations until the point that they are crossed with a different breed. True purebred dogs will produce puppies with the same traits and temperament as their parents.
The advantage of having a purebred dog with the proper papers is that you’ll be able to make a fair estimate of the way your puppy behaves. If you have a dog that is a designer, it’s not a privilege since the puppies can take traits from both parents. But, this isn’t the only negative aspect of owning a dog that is designer (unless you are concerned about the color of your coat).
Designer breeds are less likely to develop diseases than purebred counterparts, and this could be an important benefit in certain breeds. Be aware that not all dogs with designer breeds require a purebred line because some crosses need an unbalanced split.
“Toy” is a term that’s used to describe how big a dog’s breed is and the likelihood it will grow beyond a certain threshold. Toy dogs will be small; they’re among the tiniest breeds you’ll discover.
The Shih Tzu: An Overview
Also known by the name “Lion Dog” by the Chinese, the breed is among the most popular dogs in the world. The breed is recognized for its class and beauty; however, their personalities reveal a completely distinct aspect of their appearance.
They’re not princesses; they’re quite independent. Shih Tzus were great watchdogs due to their loud bark. They were originally bred for this reason.
Shih Tzus are also outgoing, spunky, and alert. They are playful, active, and fierce. They are brave, courageous, and playful. They are great at making acquaintances with children, adults, and even other dogs. You can be sure that your Shih Tzu will run up to you as you open the door, even if you’re an outsider!
In the end, Shih Tzus are tiny adorable sweethearts that are well-behaved when properly trained. They need little grooming, are simple to train, and need only a little exercise to remain healthy. Shih Tzus live for about 13 years old and will not weigh any more than 16 pounds.
Shih Tzu’s Shih Tzu makes a great parent breed for many breeds because of their relaxed personality.
The Chihuahua: An Overview
Although small, the Chihuahua is an incredibly loyal, fierce breed that loves to make their presence felt. Timid isn’t a word they use.
They are well-known for their ability to compete with even the largest dogs. Chihuahuas know what they want and how to achieve it.
The purse dogs will be loyal to one individual and only one person. However, this doesn’t mean that they’re not affectionate as they will be with everyone within the extended household. But, the Chihuahua will seek to be loved by their beloved and avoid other people.
Chihuahuas must be taught to encourage positive behavior, as their owners tend to overlook this. The socialization of this breed is extremely crucial; otherwise, they could be a living nightmare. Nobody likes a spoilt brat.
Chihuahuas can have heads that are apple-shaped or the head of a deer.
Their joy makes them the ideal watchdog. They need little grooming, are easy to train, and require only a small amount of exercise. Chihuahuas live for about 16 years old and weigh any over 6lbs. Due to their size and enthusiasm for life, they’re often mixed with other breeds.
Shih Tzu and Chihuahua Mix (ShiChi)
There is no evidence regarding the breeder who developed Shichi; however, it is possible that they were developed in the latter part of the 21st century or perhaps during the first half of 2000.
Establishing uniformity between the breed’s traits and health, behavior, and temperament is a challenge for any breed of mixed breed; however, it’s even more difficult when they’re an atypical mix that doesn’t have legal documentation.
The Shichi will likely follow the footsteps of their parents and, therefore, if you request the breeder to look over the papers, you’ll get an idea of it. For instance, if the Shichi’s Shih Tzu parents have an elongated coat, it’s likely to have an extended coat. They’ll also take their color and personality from their parents too.
You’ll probably get a fierce, enthusiastic, loyal, and outgoing dog that is a lover of people. Both parents require little grooming, and this will be passed on to their puppies too.
Also, the Shih Tzu is more natural to train than the Chihuahua.
Appearance and Grooming
If your pet has a shorter coat, grooming shouldn’t be a problem. However, it is still important to brush them every week to ensure their coat is clean. Being close to the ground will cause them to become dirtier faster. The closer your ShiChi’s coat to that of the Shih Tzus, the more likely it is that you’ll need to brush them regularly to eliminate any clumps, mats, or knots.
ShiChis can be bred with an extended coat. If your pet is sporting this coat, it is recommended to wash them at least once every month while grooming them regularly. Nails must be clipped in their grooming routine, as should their ears be cleaned.
Look for inflammation, discharge, or foul odor. Make sure to brush their teeth at least every day or two times to prevent them from going to the dog’s dentist.
The coat color of their pups could vary from white to black and all in between. Look at their parents to determine what their puppies will look like.
Living and Exercise Requirements
Apartments are ideal for tiny ShiChi because they need little space and virtually no activity. You don’t need to take your dog on a walk each day. Tossing the ball around and running about the house for 30 minutes is enough to meet their fitness requirements. These are the Shichi’s preferred exercise methods, so just have fun with them until your heart’s satisfied!
They may even want to play with children or with other adults in the home. Make sure that children are aware that the ShiChi is a small animal and must be handled with care.
ShiChis are dogs that live in the house and should not be left on their own for extended durations of time. They are prone to separation anxiety and prefer to accompany you on shopping trips. They are also more likely to sleep with you, so placing them on furniture is essential.
It is difficult to emphasize the importance of training enough since dogs that aren’t properly trained can be susceptible to developing “small dog syndrome.” Because the ShiChi is simple to train using positive reinforcement, it is unlikely to happen if you have the time to train them each and every day.
Training and Socialization
Don’t fall into the trap of not educating a smaller dog. They require just the same amount of attention as large dogs and must be introduced to socialization early so that they don’t get irritated by anyone they meet. Even if your dog is calm, friendly, and energetic, you must treat them like every other pet.
Small dogs must be housebroken as smaller canines are smaller in the bladder. It can be challenging to teach this in the beginning. Many accidents can happen in the span of a few hours as puppies. Be patient in teaching your ShiChi because they have two pet parents who are both proud and excited. It doesn’t mean that they’re hard to train.
ShiChis just require some ego-stroking from their owners. You can do this by rewarding them with treats and praise when they do something that you enjoy. If you reward them for their good behavior, they’ll desire to emulate the behavior to attract your focus.
Nutrition and Basic Diet
ShiChis are tiny and don’t need to have a lot of calories. They also have an increased chance of becoming overweight, and therefore, care must be taken when feeding them regularly. As mentioned previously, eating small portions of food every day is ideal for their health.
Veterinarians recommend between 140 and 325 calories of high-quality, protein-rich dog food each day. Be aware of your dog’s activity levels because the more they enjoy playing, the more they’ll want to eat. In general, half a cup to one cup of food each day is suggested for Shi Chi.
But, be aware of the calories in the food your dog eats compared to the number of cups you need to give them each day because dog food can differ in terms of calories. It is not a good idea to overfeed your dog since you relied on measurements rather than calories.
Toy breeds are generally healthy; however, they have a higher chance of developing hypoglycemia than a normal-sized dog. It’s likely that you’ll prefer to feed them less because of their size; however, they consume their energy fast because they’re active.
This issue can be resolved by feeding small portions of food several times per day. Be sure to visit the vet when your puppy is old enough to determine the calorie requirements of your puppy.
ShiChis also risk having health problems such as hip dysplasia, luxating patellas, and cataracts. In the end, your ShiChi will likely remain healthy for the long term.
The ShiChi as Family Pets
ShiChis desire to be the focus of attention within your home, so show them plenty of affection. But are they likely to make a great match with your family? You can take a look at the checklist below.
- The ShiChi is a friendly, playful dog that loves everyone, including children and other pets.
- A good socialization program will ensure that they don’t bark whenever they see someone at the door.
- They do not require much space. A smaller apartment is ideal for them to live in.
- The grooming requirements are minimal when the lengths of their coats are low.
- A weekly bath is also necessary to ensure that their coats are clean.
- ShiChis don’t shed, so they are hypoallergenic.
- The game is one of ShiChi’s favorite methods of exercise!
- Be sure they get a minimum of 30 minutes per day of intense play.
- Lazy is a foreign term for the ShiChi. They are active dogs!
- Shichi’s personality is like a large dog in a compact package.
- They need a lot of affection and praise.
- Health issues are not that common and the majority are related to being overweight or in the middle of aging.
- If they’re well taken care of when they’re young, health issues will not develop.
- A reputable breeder can help you track the lineage of your pup.
Breeders and Puppy Prices/Costs
It shouldn’t be a problem to locate the ShiChi within North America, as most of their owners reside on the continent. They’re also a less expensive dog breed in general.
A reliable breeder is crucial for a mixed breed since you’ll need to check the documents of the purebred parent breeders. As previously mentioned, a great breeding isn’t required for the ShiChi since they’re not recognized to have health issues.
If you’re not keen on getting the puppy you want from a breeder, you can search for rescues. Get in touch with your neighborhood Chihuahua club and Shih Tzu clubs for local breeders and rescues.
Because both the Shih Tzu and Chihuahua are well-known breeds, you can locate a rescue fairly quickly. They tend to be more likely to be adopted than bigger breeds, so if you find one at the shelter, I’d suggest you go and take it in immediately.
This is a less expensive option and has the advantage of not knowing the person that owned the pet. However, these dogs require loving families and will make excellent companions.
If you’re looking for a joyful dog that always needs your attention and love, consider the ShiChi. These adorable, affectionate toy-sized pets are perfect for those who haven’t previously owned a dog since they require very little training and hardly any exercise.
Remember that the parent breeds of the ShiChi are excellent security dogs. This probably implies that your dog will also be an excellent one too. A good socialization program and proper training will ensure that your dog isn’t a nuisance to strangers. But, it’s more likely that your dog will run into the arms of any person who comes through your door.
If you are averse to yappy, loud dogs and are an active professional, or you have very young children, I suggest you pass the ShiChi. Attention requirements for these dogs are extremely high (it’s the reason I mentioned it twice) and they will not do well with owners who leave them unattended for prolonged durations of time. If you’re not adept at implementing positive reinforcement during training, this breed could become resentful of them.
Lack of training can cause your dog to develop “small dog syndrome,” which is a common occurrence in dogs that aren’t trained. Do not make the mistake of ignoring this – you don’t have a princess on your hands!
But, if your children are older than 8 years old, have allergies, or are highly sensitive to dander, live in little space, can walk them every day, and are patient enough to teach them, they’ll make the perfect choice for you!