ShiChi Overview

Parent Breeds:
Chihuahua & Shih Tzu
Breed Nickname:
9 to 11 inches
5 to 12 pounds
Life Span:
10 to 12 years
Coat Colors:
Black, brown, fawn, cream, and white

ShiChi Characteristics

Good for First-Time Owners
Good with Children
Easy to Train
Exercise Requirements
Ease of Grooming
Amount of Shedding
Amount of Drooling
Tendency to Bark

About The ShiChi

What Is A Shih Tzu Chihuahua Mix called?

A mix between the Shih Tzu and Chihuahua is called a ShiChi. They are sometimes also referred to as a Chi-Shi or a Chi-Tzu. This breed is popular thanks to both its looks and personality!

Despite their small size, the ShiChi has a big heart. They love their owners and form a special bond with one person in particular. But are they the best breed to welcome into your family? Let’s find out.


ShiChi Breed History

  • First originated in the US, likely around the 1990s.

  • Most likely bred to minimize the health conditions of purebred parents.

  • Both parents have fascinating histories dating back hundreds of years!

The ShiChi was recently developed in North America, but there’s not much more information on them than that.

It is assumed that they were bred to minimize the health concerns of the parent breeds, as Chihuahuas in particular can inherit plenty of health concerns due to overbreeding.

The ShiChi is a very popular breed and can vary in size and appearance. To learn more about ShiChi, we must look at the parent breeds and their history.

Chihuahuas first originated in Mexico, with historical artifacts showing them dating back to the 9th century. They were used as vermin hunters, but were still highly prized by many.

They were often euthanized once their owners passed away to accompany them into the afterlife.

The Shih Tzu is one of the oldest dog breeds, with evidence pointing them back to 10,000 years in China.

Their origins are also a mystery, and they were treasured companion dogs kept secret from the rest of the world.

The Chinese Empress was fond of the Shih Tzu, and upon her death, there was a competition to see which noble family could breed the best Shih Tzu in her honor.

ShiChi Personality & Temperament

  • Lots of energy to burn despite their small bodies!

  • Can feel threatened around small children and strangers.

  • Early socialization is imperative.

The ShiChi have plenty of energy and aren’t afraid to show their owners lots of affection.

They love big families, although they’re better for households with older children who know how to play with small dogs properly.

The ShiChi can feel threatened when someone tries to play rough with them, and they won’t hesitate to snap in retaliation. This is why it’s best for them to stay away from households with small children.

It is vital that you socialize your ShiChi from an early age to prevent them from becoming timid or aggressive around strangers and other pets.

They can feel overprotective if they have not been introduced to others, which can lead to assertive behavior.

ShiChi Health

  • Can inherit health issues from either parent breed.

  • Main concerns include Hip Dysplasia and Hydrocephalus.

  • Routine vet checkups should be attended once a year.

As far as mixed breeds are concerned, the ShiChi are relatively healthy dogs. They can inherit health concerns from both parent breeds, but they’re less likely to suffer from these thanks to their mixed genes.

There are only two major concerns associated with ShiChis – Hip Dysplasia and Hydrocephalus.

There are a few more minor concerns to worry about, including:

  • Distichiasis
  • Glaucoma
  • Dental Issues
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Cataracts
  • Brachycephalic Syndrome

Routine vet appointments can give your ShiChi a detailed checkup to ensure that they are as healthy as possible.

This will also reduce waiting time for treatment, hopefully preventing the ailments from becoming too serious. Yearly vet checks are vital for any dog owner.

ShiChi Training

Training a ShiChi can be either simple or complex, depending on the traits they inherit from both parents.

Shih Tzus are people pleasers and therefore good at training, while Chihuahuas have a stubborn side that makes training longer and more frustrating.

No matter whether your dog is willing to train with you or not, only use positive reinforcement. Shouting or getting annoyed with them isn’t going to help, and it will only make them more inclined to ignore you.

ShiChis do well with food-based rewards, so make sure that you always have plenty of treats to hand. Patience is key when training this small dog – you’ll get there eventually!

ShiChi Exercise Requirements

    ShiChis have moderate energy levels, but they do best in short bursts of exercise. They’ll need around 25 minutes of exercise a day, but you can break this up into smaller chunks to keep them happy and prevent boredom.

    We might even suggest offering them five 5-minute walks throughout the day, as this will burn off their high energy quickly, allowing them to rest until it replenishes.

    ShiChis can feel isolated when left alone for long periods of time, so they do best when there is always someone around them.

    They are good dogs for seniors due to their lower exercise requirements and the need to be around people all of the time.

    ShiChi Diet & Feeding

    • Offer premium food for small dogs.

    • Only feed them enough for their body weight.

    • Never leave food out to prevent overeating.

    Choose food formulated for small dogs with moderate energy levels. They’ll need plenty of vitamins and minerals fortified into their food to keep them as healthy as possible.

    Small dogs, including Chihuahuas, often have dental issues, such as cracked teeth or swollen gums. Low-quality kibble is often too hard for ShiChi’s sensitive teeth to handle, which can lead to unnecessary pain.

    Only opt for premium kibble to prevent this pain from occurring. You can also feed them a mixture of wet and dry food to help alleviate mouth pain.

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    ShiChi Cost

    • Costs between $500 and $1,000.

    • Always only use a reputable breeder.

    You can expect to find the ShiChi being sold for between $500 and $1,000. They are expensive as they are designer breeds, and their price is often higher due to the popularity of their parent breeds.

    You might be able to find a breeder who will charge less than this but beware of backyard breeders.

    It pays to use a reputable breeder who has access to information about the parents and possible health issues.

    Ongoing costs for a ShiChi include food, toys, vet bills, and insurance. Insurance might be higher due to the health complications Chihuahuas often have.