While searching for an appropriate dog crate, consider how big you expect your Shih Tzu to grow. Dog crates usually show a strength rating based on weight of dog.
Average weight of adult Shih Tzu = 9-16 lbs
Make sure your dog crate is a few inches higher than your dogs height.
Average height of adult Shih Tzu = 8-11 inches
A little about the Shih Tzu:
The name Shih Tzu comes from the Chinese word for Lion Dog. Across the Asian culture, you see many historic references to Guardian Lions. These references come in the form of statues, paintings and writings. The Shih Tzu is a greatly respected animal in China because of its cultural connection with these Guardian Lions. Even though they were bred to look like these Guardian Lions, they don’t behave anything like a guardian. They prefer to be close to their companions and will usually offer strangers their affection.
The Shih Tzu is most often associated with China but it most likely originated in Tibet around the 17th century. What we think of as the modern Shih Tzu breed was imported into England in 1930 and was classified by the Kennel Club as Apsos. The Apsos were recategorized as the Shih Tzu by the Shih Tzu Club in 1935. The breed spread through Europe and was brought to the United States just after World War II.
The Shih Tzu was recognized by the AKC in 1969.
As with all dogs the Shih Tzu’s personality varies but for the most part it can be described as a loyal, affectionate, spunky, sweet lapdog. They are great with children and are lovable family pets. They are of the toy group and are on the low end of the spectrum in regards to exercise. That being said they still require daily exercise.
These needs can be met with playful romp indoors or short walks.
Consider the level of mental and physical exercise your Shih Tzu needs when figuring out your crate training schedule.
Shih Tzu exercise requirements = 1 out of 5
(5 being the breed of dog that requires the highest level of exercise)
Average life span of the Shih Tzu = 11-14 years
Dog crates combined with dogs not getting enough exercise will result in behavior problems. The Shih Tzu needs their daily exercise for them to behave well at home. Dog crates work best when your dog is getting the exercise he needs. If you’re going to use a dog crate, make sure he’s getting that exercise.
Both you and he will be happier for it.