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Shih Tzu Pitbull Mix: All The Tidbits On This Hybrid

Shih Tzu Pitbull Mix: All The Tidbits On This Hybrid

Today, we’re discussing a rather unusual crossbreed puppy. Meet the Shih Tzu Pitbull mix!

This pup is an unusual result of breeding two contrasting parents. Let’s face it, all crossbreed doggies are special. There’s something unique in every single one of them because you never know what your crossbreed pup will look like.

Shih Tzu Pitbull mix puppies can either resemble both parents or lean to one side more than the other. It’s completely individual and we can’t predict what a puppy will look like. In fact, there are noticeable differences between puppies of the same litter.

But, let’s not lower your hopes. Even though we don’t know what Pitshih puppies will look like, we still know they’ll be wonderful family dogs. Do you know why? It’s because both parents are pawmazing dogs.

Pitbulls do have bad publicity, but once you get to know them, you’ll realize how amazing they are. Shihs are equally amazing too!

The Shih Tzu Pitbull mix puppy can only be one incredible mixed breed dog.

Now, if you agree, I’d like to show you this complete guide on the Pitshih and show you what these dogs can be like.

Can Pitbulls And Shih Tzus Breed?

Let’s keep this answer a simple one: yes, a Pitbull can absolutely mate with a Shih Tzu!

The result is a funny-looking pup called the Pitshih.

However, it’s not common for these two dog breeds to be mixed together. Pitbulls are medium to large dogs. They can be quite heavy and robust compared to Shih Tzus, which belong to the toy group of dogs.

We’re used to seeing dogs of similar sizes being bred together. For example, the Dalmatian Husky mix features two parents of almost identical average size. But, to see Shihs and Pitties being bred together, that’s something new and unusual.

In order to get a Pitshih, the breeder must submit the female dog to artificial insemination. Usually, the female is a Shih Tzu dog, while the father is a Pittie. The vice versa situation is also possible. When we compare male to female Pitties, males are always more dominant and act like great stud dogs.

This just depends on the breeder’s preferences.

What you need to understand is that artificial insemination is a common practice in breeding dogs. Don’t think of it as something bad, or something used to manipulate dog genes.

The Shih Tzu Pitbull mix is a hybrid dog like many others, for example, Labrador and Poodle mixe (Labradoodle).

What Do You Call A Cross Between A Shih Tzu And A Pitbull?

shihpit mixed breed

Photo from: @oursouthernpack

The Shih Tzu Pitbull mix is also named the Pitshih.

Almost all crossbreed dogs have unique names that are created by using the breed names of the parents. That’s why we have the Husky Corgi mix or the Horgi and the Australian Shepherd Poodle mix called the Aussiedoodle.

Pitshih is a pretty obvious abbreviation.

Even though this crossbreed pooch has its origin, signature temperament, and familiar appearance, it’s still not an official dog breed that is recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC). Actually, they will never be AKC-approved because this club only accepts purebred dogs.

The AKC categorizes Pitbulls as a group name for the American Pitbull Terrier and the Staffordshire Terrier. These types of Pitbulls often get mixed up.

But, other organizations, such as the Designer Kennel Club or the Designer Breed Registry, may claim that Pitshihs are approved and welcome as a hybrid breed.

Be that as may, the Pitshih is a relatively unknown hybrid dog, despite the popularity of the parent breeds in the States.

Where Does The Pitshih Come From?

Like all hybrid or designer dogs, the Pitshih is a new addition to the canine kingdom.

Dog enthusiasts have begun creating designer dogs in the past century. During the 1980s and the 1990s, they were all focused on breeding new pups that have wonderful traits, i.e. hypoallergenic coats, compact size, lovely temperaments, fewer health problems, etc.

It’s likely that the Pitshih was founded some twenty to thirty years ago. We still don’t know when the first Pitshih was created. It’s always the same issue with hybrid dogs. Unless it’s a popular hybrid like the Yorkiepoo, we can’t really tell when the first hybrid pooch was born.

But, we do know where the parent breeds come from.

The Shih Tzu is a pup originally from Tibet. They’re an ancient dog breed, but history recognizes Shih Tzus from the 18th century. These dogs were a part of the royal court in China and were very much valued for their companion skills as sweet lapdogs.

Although they were always small, Shih Tzus were great watchdogs. They used to alert people when someone was approaching their homes.

On the other hand, Pitbulls don’t have a long history, and they really don’t have a cool story like Shih Tzus. Sadly, their origin story is quite sad. The Pitbull’s roots are linked to a bloody sport called bull baiting, hence the Pittie ear cropping that is still present today.

Luckily, this sport is now banned and Pitbulls, being loving dogs, can enjoy their lives as any other dog breed does.

Since both parents come from different backgrounds, you can expect the Shih Tzu Pitbull mix to behave friendly, have a great athletic body, and have an easy-going temperament.

Pitshih Appearance: Who Do They Resemble?

shih tzu pitbull mix

Photo from: tobeydavidthedog

The Shih Tzu and Pitbull are two different breeds. They really don’t have lots of things in common. In fact, I see no resemblance between the two parents.

A Shih Tzu Pitbull puppy can either resemble a Shih Tzu parent or a Pittie parent. Also, they can look like a lovely, unique mixture of both breeds.

I find crossbreed pups quite entertaining and I enjoy working with them, especially while they’re still little. You never know what the puppy will look like once he’s all grown up.

I might add though, that the unpredictable appearance is definitely a lovely factor and makes such dogs even more charming.

The Pitshih usually features a stocky, muscular body, but he can also have a rather compact body, like the Shih parent. It’s highly likely for these dogs to have short legs like Pitties. The body will be a rectangular shape, with an elongated back.

Normally, these dogs have flat muzzles, just like Shih Tzus. I haven’t seen many Pitshihs featuring a blocky muzzle like Pitbulls. They’re possible but quite rare.

Pitshihs usually weigh up to 30 pounds.They can grow up to 10 to 25 inches at the withers. As you can see, they belong to the small dog group, leaning toward the medium. This combination of a toy dog and a large one has resulted in a small pup.

Coat Types & Colors

Another thing that can vary with this crossbreed pup in terms of its appearance is the coat type. If your puppy inherits more Pitbull genes, he’ll shed all year round because Pitbulls are shedders. The shedding is moderate, but still present, and you’ll need to brush the dog regularly. This also means there are no hypoallergenic traits present.

If your dog takes after the Shih Tzu, he’ll shed less and be more likely to show off hypoallergenic features. Trust me, you’ll notice a Shih Tzu-like coat because it’s a bit scruffy compared to the Pit parent.

As far as the colors are concerned, all parent coat colors are possible. Shih Tzus are known to fashion many coat colors. We have pure black Shihs, white ones, black and white Shihs, liver coats, silver Shih pups, red Shih Tzus, etc. The Pitshih can come in any of the mentioned colors.

The Pitbull parent also features numerous coat colors. Pitties can come in champagne, but also solid black, black and white, and gray coat variations. Also, tri-color Pitties are possible, as well as merle Pitbulls and blue fawn Pitbulls.

Character Traits: What Are Shih Tzu Pitbull Mix Dogs Like?

First off, Pitbulls are not aggressive. Pitbulls are not dangerous. Pitbulls are friendly dogs. Period.

Now that we have that cleared up, let’s discuss what a Pitshih’s temperament would be like.

This hybrid dog is truly blessed with a sweet nature. That’s thanks to both parent breeds, since Pitties and Shihs are equally friendly canines. The parents are surprisingly easy-going and open to meeting new people and animals. They won’t show aggression in any situation.

One of the biggest personality traits of a Shih Tzu Pitbull mix is his loyalty. This is the kind of dog that will put you before himself, and stay loyal to the bone. Pitshihs, just like its parents, usually cling to one person in the family.

Training 101: Shaping Your Pitshih

Every dog owner should be ready to train a new puppy or have a professional dog trainer do it instead. Why? Because well-behaved dogs are not a privilege. Obedient dogs are a must. Dog training comes hand in hand with socialization. You simply can’t have one without the other.

If a dog is not trained properly, or at all, he might become prone to unwanted behavior patterns. Most often, aggression is the way they choose, and that doesn’t suit anybody, does it?

No one wants a dog that changes his mind every so often. All dog owners want Fido to be obedient, stay consistent, and know who is a friend and who is not.

Now, I know dog training can be difficult for both dogs and owners. If you really can’t handle it on your own, consult a professional. It’s really not that expensive. Just think of paid for training as something that will pay itself back throughout your dog’s lifespan.

But, if you do want to dabble in dog training and try to train your dog at home, there are some tricks you could use.

Our Pitbull Shih Tzu mix puppy comes from two smart parents. You shouldn’t have any major issues with training this hybrid. Potty training and general housebreaking are something you simply have to do.

Some dogs pick it up easily, while others need more time to learn what not to chew around the house or where to go potty.

Just in case, here are some tips.

Establishing Dominance

No matter what dog you’re training, establishing dominance should be your first step towards successful training. Dogs must know who is in charge, or who is the leader of their pack. If you don’t place yourself as the leader, your dog will take over and he won’t listen to you.

The Shih Tzu Pitbull mix is highly likely to inherit stubbornness as a trait from the Pitbull parent. Training stubborn dogs can be quite tricky. You’ll need lots of patience and nerves of steel.

He won’t listen. He’ll want to play, and you’ll want to stop the training immediately. But, don’t. Stay persistent and your little Pitshih will realize that you’re the one to listen to and will begin acting like an obedient little pup.


Early socialization is what every dog needs. Don’t skip on this part or you’ll have a dog that’s afraid of people, other animals, and unknown situations.

Dogs that are socialized from a young age won’t show signs of aggression. Aggression isn’t something that automatically comes with certain dog breeds. Pitbulls have pretty bad publicity for being aggressive. But, that’s only due to their blood sport history. No Pitbull is born aggressive.

An untrained and unsocialized Shih Tzu can be as equally dangerous as any other dog breed. Luckily, both these parents are loved companion breeds.

You don’t judge a puppy on its publicity.

Health Problems A Pitshih Might Experience

pitshih mix

Photo from: @tobeydavidthedog

Every dog, no matter if it’s a purebred one or not, can develop some sort of health issue that bothers him. With mixed breed dogs, it’s always tricky because they have more chances of developing certain conditions, since they come from two different parents.

Our Shih Tzu Pitbull mix has contrasting parents that could transfer numerous health problems to their offspring. Mixed breed dogs are either hybrid vigors or relatively healthy like other dogs. Of course, it all depends on the parent breeds used in the breeding process.

As far as the Shih Tzu and the Pitbull parents are concerned, they’re both healthy with a slight proneness to some illnesses.

The Shih Tzu pitbull mix can inherit the conditions we’re about to discuss!

Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is one of the most common conditions found in all dogs, especially larger ones. As you may have figured out, this condition comes from the Pitbull side of the family.

But, what is hip dysplasia, and is it serious?

Hip dysplasia is a condition that affects the dog’s hip socket, when it grows faster than the head of the femur. Gradually, the bones will start to grind and your dog will have issues with mobility.

Sadly, there is no cure for hip dysplasia, or even elbow dysplasia, a similar condition. However, experts have found some treatments that could ease the pain and make your dog’s life easier.

Hip dysplasia affects all aspects of a dog’s life significantly because he won’t be able to run, exercise, or perform everyday routines. Dogs that don’t move that much are susceptible to becoming obese, which leads to more problems.


BOAS actually means Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome. This condition is a signature one for flat-faced dogs like the Shih Tzu. Dogs with flat faces have problems with their upper airways. It’s difficult for them to breathe, they often snort, snore, and have sleep apnea.

A Pitshih with a flat face inherited from the Shih parent can easily experience breathing problems. If you’re worried, consult your vet and have him hand out some helpful advice on handling BOAS with your Pitshih.

I recommend that you don’t use leashes, since they can hurt your dog’s neck and cause more issues with breathing.

Intervertebral Disc Disease

Intervertebral Disc Disease is a severe condition that causes degeneration of one or more of the discs that divide the bones of the spine.

This condition strikes all dogs, no matter their size, gender, or breed. And yes, it surely can strike our Pitshih, especially since this is a cross of two dogs.

Intervertebral Disc Disease causes discomfort and pain in a dog’s legs, back, and neck.

Luckily, the disease can be treated, but it requires a big budget since vet bills are enormous.

Degenerative Myelopathy

Degenerative myelopathy is a condition that affects a dog’s spinal cord. Dogs with degenerative myelopathy have problems with physiological functioning.

Unfortunately, all dogs can get it, but seniors are more prone to it. This condition has no cure, but it does have some treatments which can improve a dog’s lifespan and add more years.

If a dog gets diagnosed with degenerative myelopathy and doesn’t get treatment, the longest he can live with this condition is six months.
If you have the funds to treat this health issue, do it. Treatment will ease your dog’s final years and give you more time to spend it together.

Other than these conditions, your Pitshih may also have some dental issues since he has a narrow jaw.

Taking Care Of A Shih Tzu Pitbull Mixed Puppy

pitbull shih tzu mix

Photo from: @tobeydavidthedog

Taking care of this crossbreed dog really depends on the type of coat your puppy gets. You can either have a low-maintenance dog, or you can end up with a puppy that you need to groom all of the time.

The Shih Tzu parent is a type of dog that is like the Yorkie, Maltese, or Pomeranians. Meaning, they don’t shed and they’re considered to be hypoallergenic. Still, Shih Tzus need lots of grooming and brushing.

If your Pitshih inherits a thick, fluffy coat from the Shih’s side of the family, you’ll need to commit to brushing it at least three to four times a week. The double coat may be a handful for some dog lovers.

Those of you that don’t mind brushing regularly can easily adopt a Pitshih that leans more towards the Shih side.

However, those of you who don’t have the time or patience for grooming should look for a Pitshih that resembles a Pitbull. These pups don’t need frequent brushing thanks to their sleek coats. However, they do shed, so they aren’t the best dogs for those of you who suffer from allergies.

Everything comes with a price, so you’ll need to be prepared and know which sacrifices to make.

Finding A Good Shih Tzu Pitbull Breeder

The Pitshih is relatively new on the market and I bet you’ll have some issues trying to get one.

For starters, this isn’t a purebred dog and there aren’t any reputable breeders listed so far. PupVine always makes sure to bring you only the finest breeders of pups in demand. I believe our Pitshih will soon become a valued pack member.

Until the situation changes, all we can do is monitor the market carefully for a Pitshih pup from a trusted source. That source will be someone that takes good care of their puppies and their breeding stock and someone that submits all their dogs to numerous health tests to ensure pristine health.

A good breeder will sell you a dog because he wants to enrich your life with a buddy that will give you unconditional love, not for the sake of good profit. Keep that in mind and steer away from pet shops and puppy mills.

Also, try checking out Shih Tzu and Pitbull breeders in the States. You never know when somebody will try their luck and breed a new hybrid pooch from stellar Shih or Pittie parents.

How Much Should A Shih Tzu Pitbull Mix Cost?

Before we crunch some numbers, let’s give you a general idea of how things really are with the parent breeds in terms of pricing.

Both parents can be champion dogs of exceptional quality. Normally, Shih Tzus are pricey, more expensive than Pitbulls, but both of them can be quite pricey.

Shih Tzus can range from $1,000 up to $3,500 or more. Usually, brindle Shihs are cheaper, i.e. than liver Shih Tzus.

As far as the Pitbull parent is concerned, their price is usually around $1,000. A Pitbull’s price is low since they’re not accepted by the AKC.

So, how much should a Pitshih cost?

As you can imagine, it will depend on the parent’s lineage. If you want a normal, pet-quality dog, you can find a Pitshih puppy for around $1,000. If you want the parents to be champions with pristine pedigrees, your Pitbull Shih puppy can cost up to $3,000, which is quite alot for a mixed breed dog.

And this is only the beginning. There are also toys, harnesses, dog food, etc.?

The Pitshih is not a mutt from the streets. This is a pooch that comes from purebred parents and can easily become a popular hybrid dog like any other. Yes, I’m looking at you, Yorkiepoo!

Reliable Shih Tzu And Pitbull Breeders

shih tzu and pitbull mix

PupVine rarely has any trusted sources for hybrid dog breeders. It’s not our fault, there aren’t really any reputable crossbreed breeders out there. It all depends on the popularity of the breed.

For example, we do have some great Goldendoodle breeders, but that’s because Goldendoodles are highly popular.

Our Pitshih is still a pretty uncommon crossbreed dog. You’re more likely to find one in a shelter as a result of accidental breeding, instead offinding one from professional breeders.

I’d recommend that you check out some reliable Shih Tzu and Pitbull breeders. Maybe these guys could help you out with finding your Pitshih!

Shih Tzu breeders in Texas

Shih Tzu breeders in California

Shih Tzu breeders in Ohio

Shih Tzu breeders in Ontario

PupVine’s also got some pretty awesome Pitbull breeders that you can check out here.

Other Interesting Shih Tzu And Pitbull Mixes

I know you’re here because you want to learn more about the Shih Tzu Pitbull mix, but we have to admit one thing: these pups are pretty hard to find.

If you ever change your mind, but you still like the parent breeds mentioned in this article, maybe you can try another mixed-breed dog.

Here you have some pretty pawmazing Pitbull mixes:

OEB (Old English Bulldog) Pitbull mix

Corgi Pitbull mix

Blue Heeler Pitbull mix

French Bulldog Pitbull mix

Doberman Pitbull mix

Cane Corso Pitbull mix

Golden Retriever Pitbull mix

Weimaraner Pitbull mix

Basset Hound Pitbull mix

If you’d like your puppy to have more Shih Tzu genes, you can check out these Shih mixes!


Are Shih Tzu Pitbulls Good With Families And Children?

I’m getting really frustrated with all the bad publicity that Pitbulls have. Years have passed since these dogs were used for bull baiting, but they’re still judged as dangerous. Pitties are not dangerous, still, some people do decide that it’s okay to train them to be aggressive.

Those people are the only reason that Pitties are still on the black list in many States.

However, if you’re a true Pitbull lover, you’ll know that Pitbulls are super sweet and loyal. You can absolutely see the kindness in their sparkling little eyes. A face shining bright with a huge Pittie smile is their signature sign.

Simply put: Pitbulls are wonderful and friendly.

But, what about Shih Tzus? Are they friendly too?

Absolutely! Shih Tzus love humans so much that they like to cling to them, like little velcro dogs. This may bother some dog owners, but they have to realize one thing first: Shihs are extremely loyal and will give their lives to protect you and see you smiling.

I can recommend the Pitshih for a family with children, even little ones. This isn’t a tiny dog like the teacup Pug. He won’t get hurt easily. As long as you socialize your dog and have it trained for obedience, you can have a perfect family dog in a Pitshih!

Are Pitbull Shih Tzus Good With Other Animals?

This is an easy question!

Yes, Pitshihs are good with other animals. They’re not herding dogs like Australian Shepherds, or crazy little terriers with a huge prey drive like Jack Russel Terriers.

Pitshihs can be wonderful companions for your other pets, but you need to spend some time socializing and training them.

Every dog can be a good companion as long as it’s trained and knows how to behave around other animals.

If you already have cats or other dogs at home, you can easily have a Pitshih as a new furry friend.

Is The Shih Tzu Pitbull Hypoallergenic?

There is a high chance that a Pitshih will be a hypoallergenic dog. However, it all depends on the genes that the pup inherits.

Since the Shih parent is a hypoallergenic one, you can expect them to transfer lots of hypoallergenic features to their puppies. If the Shih side of the family prevails, you won’t have to worry about frequent allergic reactions.

Dogs that have coats like Shihs don’t cause allergies. You can easily live with them if you or your family members suffer from allergies. Shihs don’t shed a lot. Their shedding is minimal.

If you notice that your Pitshih only has a few dead hairs while brushing, consider yourself blessed as you have a hypoallergenic doggo!

To Sum Up…

Tell me, how do you like our Shih Tzu Pitbull mix? It’s definitely a cool one, isn’t it?

As we now know, Shih Tzu mix puppies, or Pitshihs, are uncommon dogs. However, I strongly believe that they will become popular over time because of their pleasant appearance, and lovely temperament.

They’re sweet doggos that get along with pretty much everyone. If you want a dog that will show only its good sides, even in front of strangers, then you need a Pitshih. These unique doggos will be sure to start many conversations at the dog park.

Our doggy of the day has the best qualities of both worlds: a Shih’s cuddliness and a Pitbull’s impressive character and stunning posture.

Once you spend an hour with this unique hybrid, you won’t need any persuasion to bring a Pitshih home. You’ll be charmed and crazy in love with Pitshih pups and their sweet nature!

Read Next:
• A Guide To A Pitbull Pug Mix Breed

A Full Blooded Pitbull Or A Mix: How To Recognize?