The Maltese Shih Tzu is a designer dog breed that has grown in popularity among pet owners for it is affectionate, beautiful, happy and devoted family companion pet. Interestingly, he is sometimes nicknamed Chrysanthemum Dog which describes the hair growth on his face, which grows out in all directions and makes him look like a flower with a nose as its centre.
Both males and females are 9 to 10 inches tall and weigh averagely 9 to 16 pounds. The dog’s small body size puts it at a disadvantage and pet owners are advised to always prevent the dog from been hurt by children while playing. This prevents the Maltese Shih Tzu from any accidents or getting hurt during rough play.
All breeds of dogs have a purpose. The purpose of this pet is to be a family companion. The dog simply desires and likes to be with you. Never expect him to guard, hunt, fetch or retrieve. His dominant characteristic is affection and your lap is his favourite destination. He is usually happy whenever he is with family. In-addition, he is very alert and at times may bark at visitors to his home. Anyway, he is very friendly and will make friendship with your guests or visitors.
The Maltese Shih Tzu is normally healthy, though like all dog breeds, they are prone to develop certain diseases. The pet can develop diseases such as allergies, eye problems, ear infections, retained baby teeth, tooth and gum problems, reverse sneezing, snuffles, bladder stones, canine hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, juvenile renal dysplasia and umbilical hernias. It is highly recommended to take the puppy to the veterinarian for check-ups when the dog is sick or if you observe any changes in behaviour.
Shih Tzu’s face is flat shaped putting him at risk of heat stroke. This is because the air passing through to the lungs is not cooled efficiently as it is in longer-nosed breeds. Therefore, the pet should be kept indoors in well ventilated or air-conditioned rooms especially during hot weather.
Grooming this pet is necessary, so always prepare to comb and brush the pet’s coat every day for it mats easily.