Shipoo Hybrid Dogs
The Shipoo/Shih-Poo, alternatively spelled Shihpoo, is a very common hybrid dog that may be suitable for mild to severe dog allergy sufferers. They have the curly to wavy moderate length coat common to both the Shih-Tzu and Poodle parents, but they also have some interesting color combinations found in either purebred parent breed. Black and white color combinations are the most common, but really unique apricot colors as well as grays and browns with white markings can also be found.
The average size of the Shihpoo is about 8 to 11 inches at the shoulder and the typical weight range is 10 to 15 pounds when fully grown. They have the longer, leaner body of the Poodle and have a well balanced head on a slightly arched neck. The head tends to be a mix between the Poodle and the Shih Tzu with a longer, more tapered muzzle and a slightly undershot jaw. The eyes are dark, alert and expressive and the ears tend to be longer and hang down to the sides of the cheeks.
The legs are straight and moderately long for the body. The tail is typically carried in a gentle curl over the back hips and is well fringed with long straight to wavy hair that cascades down over the hips. The Shih-Poo has a jaunty walk and a lot of energy and a very playful spirit well into their senior years.
The Shih-Poo is a lively, alert and very intelligent dog. They love to be with people and need to be in a household where they are involved in the day to day activities of the family. This canine hybrid is considered to be very easy to train and highly adaptive to many different environments. Like most Poodle dog types the Shihpoo has a gentle temperament but is also a good watchdog and will bark to let owners know when strangers approach.
They are not typically dog aggressive and tend to get along very well with all types of pets, especially when socialized. The Shihpoo is a wonderful companion pet for families with children as they are active enough to keep up with kids all day long. They also love to snuggle and cuddle with owners and really bond with their family.
Grooming And General Care
Despite having a low shedding coat the Shih-Poo needs routine daily or every other day grooming when the hair is left long and natural. Many owners choose to puppy clip or Poodle clip these dogs to keep grooming routines to a minimum. Like with all hybrid breeds with Poodle in the mix there may be problems with tearing and the eyes should be closely monitored and cleaned routinely. It will also be important to check the ears and remove any hairs from the outer ear area that may trap wax and lead to the development of infections within the ear.
The Shihpoo is not a fragile or delicate dog and needs to have room to run and play. They can tolerate a wide range of weather conditions but should not be kept outdoors in cold or wet climates. The Shihpoo is a wonderful choice for an active family but can also adapt well to apartment life. Overfeeding needs to be avoided as this hybrid is prone to putting on weight and becoming a finicky eater if allowed too may table scraps and only fed canned food.
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