Standards for the Shih Tzu
General Appearance: Solidly compact, well groomed, luxurious coat, an alert, energetic, and strikingly exotic looking animal
Head: Broad domed shaped head with a definite stop, the eyes while being large, round, and well spaced are not protrusive. They look straight ahead and are dark in color. In liver colored and/or liver marked dogs the eyes are a lighter. The large and heavy coated ears are set just below the crown of the skull and appear to blend into the rest of the coat. The crown hair is long, and worn in a “top knot”. The well-plumed tail is set high and carried curled well over the back.
Body: The body is short but sturdy, longer in length than height. The back is level, the deep chest broad and the shoulders firm. The short legs are straight, well boned and muscular. Forelegs are set under the chest and wide apart.
Color: The lavishly long and dense double-coat may be any color. The hair itself may be straight or slightly wavy.
Size: Females: 9-10 inches // 12-15 pounds
Males: 9-10 inches // 12-15 pounds
Temperament: This playful, feisty, ever alert and very energetic dog makes a great little watch-dog/ companion. It is a high-maintenance breed due to the abundant coat. Daily grooming is highly recommended. While this is very time consuming, it is also very gratifying to the owner and the pet.