Dog Breeds Similar To Shih Tzus

Reviewed By Kyoko •  Updated: 08/18/22 •  7 min read
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Dog Breeds Similar To Shih Tzus

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Are you familiar with the Shih Tzu? These are small, adorable dogs that are very fluffy. They’re also very happy, loving, and playful little dogs!

If you’re looking to adopt a dog that looks like a Shih Tzu, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve put together a list of dog breeds that are similar to Shih Tzus. And we share a few details about each breed! But first, we’ll do a short overview of the Shih Tzu. Let’s get started!

What is a Shih Tzu?

The Shih Tzu is a small, ancient dog breed that originally came from China. It’s thought the Shih Tzu is one of the oldest dog breeds around. There are paintings from the Tang Dynasty of China (618-907 AD) that show dogs that look like the Shih Tzu.

These small dogs have very noble bearing and beautiful faces that capture your heart. The dogs are usually friendly and have a very sophisticated appearance. They have long, flowing hair that reaches the ground, with a topknot on their heads (if their pet parents put the dog’s hair up). Shih Tzus are lively, loyal companions dogs that you can’t help but love. Shih Tzu’s Anxiety is something to monitor for specifically if you leave your dog alone for extended periods.

These small dogs were bred to be companion dogs, and they still want to be with their pet parents today. They want to be near you all the time. The dogs are happiest when with their families and love to give and receive attention.

So, this is a short overview of the Shih Tzu. These small dogs will melt your heart for sure! However, we’ve put together a list of other small dogs with some of the same characteristics as the Shih Tzu. Let’s check it out!

Our List of Dogs Similar to Shih Tzus

Here’s our list of small dogs that have some of the same characteristics as the Shih Tzu!

1. Biewer Terrier

The Biewer Terrier originally comes from Germany. The dogs were developed by Gertrud & Werner Biewer, who had two Yorkies that had recessive piebald genes. When these two dogs were bred, the result was the Biewer Terrier.

These small dogs are adorable! They have a piebald colorization which means they have irregular patches of color over their bodies. The colors usually include white or blueish-white patches over white fur on their chests, legs, and bellies. The Biewer Terrier usually have black and tan on their faces.

These dogs don’t shed very much and are pretty easy to groom. They aren’t very friendly with strangers; however, with socialization and training, they can learn to be very small, diligent watchdogs! The Biewer Terrier can get along with kids; however, the dogs are small and easily injured. So, they’re best for families that have older kids who know how to play safely with these little dogs.

2. Lhasa Apso

Here’s a small dog that believes he’s a large dog! They were originally from Tibet, where they were bred to be companions to the nobility and monks. They were bred to guard and protect the monastery and the nobles they lived with. Today, these small dogs are beloved family members who continue to guard their homes and families.

These small dogs have long, flowing hair like the Shih Tzu. And they’re more independent, a bit like a ct. However, they can be very obedient dogs if properly trained and socialized from a young age.

The Lhasa Apso is a highly intelligent dog that can use his brain to think. Don’t be surprised if your Lhasa Apso has a way of manipulating you to get what he wants! However, you really want to make these dogs happy. They have adorable faces and sparkling, mischievous eyes.

3. Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka

Here’s another small dog that looks similar to a Shih Tzu—it’s the Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka. These small dogs date back to the early 1800s. It’s said the dogs were taken as a gift by an ambassador of Louis XIV to the then Russian Czar.

These small dogs come in a wide range of colors with white markings. Their colors generally include black, brown, gray, wolfgray, blue, cream, silver, fawn, and red. These small dogs don’t shed very much and may be a better choice for some people who are allergic to dogs.

The Russian Tsvetnaya Bolonka has long, beautiful hair that needs to be brushed a few times a week. However, if you trim the hair, these dogs don’t need to be brushed quite as often.

These small dogs are playful and loving. They’re great companions for families with kids. And they get along well with other pets; however, some of these dogs may have a strong prey drive. So, it’s best to supervise them around small pets, such as rodents.

4. Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire Terrier is another adorable small dog that has become a favorite for many pet parents. These little dogs originally came from England and Scotland. They were bred to catch rats and other pests.

Like the Shih Tzu, Yorkies also have long, silky fur that’s a steel-blue and tan color. These small dogs have great personalities that make them quite fun to be around! In addition, these small dogs believe they’re large dogs. They can get into trouble with larger dogs for this reason, and they don’t back down easily.

Yorkies are very affectionate with their families and make wonderful companion dogs. However, they can be suspicious of strangers and may bark a lot at strange sounds. They will definitely bark at intruders.

These small dogs need lots of attention and want to be with their families most of the time. They suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for long periods of time.

5. The Maltese

The Maltese is another small dog that resembles the Shih Tzu! This is another dog breed that has long, silky hair. These dogs are usually white, with a straight, thick coat that goes all the way to the floor.

These dogs are highly intelligent and have a sweet nature. They’re very loyal and devoted to their families. This is one of the smallest toy dog breeds, and they can adapt very well to living in an apartment or a condo. And they make great small watchdogs!

The Maltese has a lot of energy, and they learn quickly. They respond best to positive reinforcement training methods. Like the other small dogs on this list, the Maltese doesn’t do well when left alone for long periods. They can develop separation anxiety.

These small dogs may not tolerate small kids or other dogs. So, they’re not recommended for families that have small kids. What’s more, these dogs are delicate and easily injured, so it’s imperative to be careful not to accidentally step on them.

Summing It Up

So, there you have it! These small dog breeds are all similar to the Shih Tzu. So, if you can’t find a Shih Tzu to adopt, we’re pretty sure you can find one of the other dog breeds in this article!

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Kyoko is from a family of 3 and moved to New York with her parents and siblings when she was 13. Kyoko is fond of spending a great amount of time with pets, specifically her beagle Luna and cat Missy. Her boyfriend often complains that she spends too much time giving attention to their animals. Kyoko has written dozens of articles concerning pets and is aiming at owning a pet shop one day!

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