The Shihpoo or Shih Po is a crossbreed. Opening your heart and home to a crossbreed is like opening a beautifully wrapped package on your birthday: you never know what’s going to be inside. It’s often assumed that a crossbreed will combine the best of two or more breeds, but genetics doesn’t always work that way. The way genes combine and express themselves is not always subject to a breeder’s control, even less so when two different breeds are crossed. That’s something to keep in mind before you lay down lots of money for a dog that you have been assured will be hypoallergenic or healthier than a purebred.
Choose a Shihpoo if you have older children who understand how to handle a dog carefully. Toddlers can be clumsy and may hurt a Shihpoo unless you can always be there to supervise their interactions.
Shihpoos are smart but may be stubborn. To train them effectively, you’ll need to figure out how to motivate them. Often, this involves food rewards or somehow inspiring the dog to believe that what you want him to do is his own idea.
At their best, Shihpoos are playful, friendly and affectionate, always happy to sit in a lap and give a little love. They generally weigh 7 to 20 pounds, depending on the size of their parent breeds. For their size, they are courageous and make excellent watchdogs, but they can be on the yappy side.
People have been crossing types of dogs for millennia in the attempt to achieve a certain look, temperament or working ability. That’s how many well-known purebreds, including the Affenpinscher, Australian Shepherd, Black Russian Terrier, Brussels Griffon, Doberman Pinscher, German Wirehaired Pointer, Leonberger and more, originally got their start.
But crossing two breeds over and over does not a breed make. A breed is a group of animals related by descent from common ancestors and visibly similar in most characteristics. To achieve consistency in appearance, size and temperament, breeders must select the puppies with the traits they want and breed them over several generations for the traits to become set.
Crossbreeds such as the Shihpoos here have become popular over the past 10 or 20 years as people seek out dogs that are different from the everyday Yorkie or Poodle or that they think will have certain appealing characteristics. For instance, it’s often claimed (falsely, by the way) that crossbreeds are hypoallergenic or have fewer health problems or will carry the best traits of each breed.
Unfortunately, genes aren’t quite that malleable. Genetic traits sort out randomly in each dog, so without selecting for certain characteristics over many generations, there’s no guarantee you’ll get the best of each breed. And no matter what his breed or mix, an individual dog may be more or less allergenic or intelligent or healthy.
Whatever his breed, cross, or mix, love your dog for what he is: a unique, special and loving companion.
The absolute best dogs. Kim is the best at what she does and makes sure to do everything she can to ensure the puppies are healthy, happy and go to the best homes. Merchandise is top of the line quality as well. Highly recommend the baby powder spray for dogs..smells so good!
~ Olivia Kerwin