How Much Should a Shih Tzu Weigh? A guide to healthy weights for Shih Tzus.

Shih Tzu weight

How much should a Shih Tzu weigh is a question that many pet parents have when considering bringing home a lion dog, as they are referred to sometimes. It is important to maintain a healthy weight for your Shih Tzu, as obesity can lead to health problems. In this blog post, I will explain what an ideal weight range is for Shih Tzus, and I will also provide tips on how to help your dog stay healthy.

Although Shih Tzus come in various colors and markings, they all share one crucial trait: they are small dogs. Most Shih Tzus weigh less than 10 pounds when they are fully grown. However, Shih Tzu puppies can vary widely in size, with some weighing as little as 3 pounds and others topping out at 15 pounds.

As a result, Shih Tzu owners often wonder how much their pets should weigh. The answer depends on several factors, including the dog’s age, sex, and overall health. For example, female Shih Tzus tend to be smaller than males, and puppies typically weigh more than adult dogs. Additionally, Shih Tzus that are unhealthy or have medical conditions may weigh less than their counterparts. 

Shih Tzu breed

The Shih Tzu is a toy dog breed that originated in Tibet and may have been the tiniest of the Lhasa Apso species there. The breed grew from gifts to Chinese emperors and became the dog we know today.

It is one of the most recognized dog breeds because of its tiny and compact form. Shih Tzu dogs are short in height, with far more robust coats than their stature implies.

Dogs from the same breed can vary considerably in size and weight. Don’t be alarmed whether your dog is under or over the average number!

Shih Tzu weight
Heavy-set Shih Tzu.

What is a healthy weight for a Shih Tzu, and how can you tell if your dog is overweight or underweight?

Shih Tzus are small breed dogs with prominent personalities. Though their exact origins are unknown, they are believed to have originated in Tibet, where they were prized for their long, luxurious coats.

Today, Shih Tzus are still popular companion dogs, and their beautiful coats continue to be one of their most distinctive features. Another important aspect of the Shih Tzu is its weight.

Like all dogs, a Shih Tzu breed should maintain a healthy weight to live a long and happy life. But what is a healthy weight for a lion dog?

Generally speaking, a healthy weight for a Shih Tzu, according to the American Kennel Club, is between 9 and 16 pounds. However, this can vary depending on the individual dog’s height, age, and build.

Shih Tzu puppy

A puppy Shih Tzu should weigh between four and six pounds.

Adult Shih Tzu

An adult Shih Tzu should weigh between nine and sixteen pounds.

Related Read: Best Dog Food For Shih Tzus With Allergies

Shih Tzu Size Chart

Breeders must learn various tools for predicting the potential size of their dog. Most breeders give a wide range of weights because they currently cannot accurately predict the exact size of a dog’s adult weight.

The size of the parent animal usually calculates weights for Shih Tzus. We provide Shih Tzu weight charts below. This Shih Tzu growth chart will help you understand the potential growth potential and what you should do when your puppy grows.

Puppy weight chart

AgeBirthEight weeksThree monthsFour monthsFive monthsSeven mouthsEight months and up
Average Weight6 ounces40 ounces4 pounds6 pounds8 pounds12 pounds12.5 pounds
Typical Shih Tzu weight.

To get a more accurate idea of a healthy weight for your Shih Tzu, or your pup’s estimated adult size, you can consult with your veterinarian.

You can do a few things to help your Shih Tzu maintain a healthy weight. We’ll go through them in further detail. Read on for more information.

Puppy weight chart
Average weight puppies.

Factors that affect Shih Tzu Puppy Growth

Several factors impact puppy development:

Genetics: How big were your Shih Tzu’s parents? How much did they weigh when fully grown?

This will give you a good idea of how big your puppy is likely to get. Remember that even puppies from the same litter can be very different sizes from adults.

Food intake: How much and what type of food are you feeding your puppy? Puppies need a high-quality diet to support their rapid growth. If you’re unsure about what to feed your puppy, ask your veterinarian for advice.

Overfeeding can lead to obesity, which can cause health problems later in life. Feed your puppy small meals several times a day, rather than one large meal.

As your puppy grows, you can slowly transition to feeding them two meals per day.

Avoid giving your puppy table scraps or human food, which can lead to obesity and other health problems.

Physical activity: How much exercise is your puppy get?

Puppies need plenty of exercises to stay healthy and fit. Take your puppy for walks, runs, or to the dog park to play.

As your puppy grows, you can increase the length and intensity of its workouts.

Remember, puppies are more prone to injury than adult dogs, so take it easy at first and don’t overdo it.

Factors that affect Shih Tzu’s adult weight

Like puppies, adult Shih Tzus need a high-quality diet and exercises to maintain a healthy weight.

There are a few other factors that can affect your dog’s weight, including:

1- Age: As your Shih Tzu gets older, they may start to gain weight because their metabolism slows down and become less active.

To help your dog maintain a healthy weight as they age, feed them a senior diet and make sure they get plenty of exercise.

2- Health: If your Shih Tzu is sick, they may lose or gain weight. If you notice your dog losing or gaining weight, take them to the veterinarian to rule out any medical problems.

3- Anxiety: Stress can also lead to weight loss or gain in dogs. If your Shih Tzu is stressed, they may not have an appetite and lose weight.

On the other hand, some dogs may eat more when they’re stressed and gain weight.

If you think your Shih Tzu’s weight gain or loss is due to stress, try to identify the source of their anxiety and remove it from their environment.

Shih Tzu’s body shape changes

As you can see from the chart above, Shih Tzu has an extremely high growth rate. In their first year of life, the baby weighs a few pounds, but by eight weeks, their weight has increased by several pounds. Where puppies have round bodies but shorter legs, an adult dog is generally longer and slightly slimmer.

The Shih Tzu can easily be classified as a smaller dog with good bones. As their size increases, the dogs gain weight and height. The American Kennel Club says that the typical Shih Tzu is 9-16 pounds with an average elevation of eight-11 inches from the floor to the withers.

How to adjust your dog’s diet and exercise routine to help them reach a healthy weight

If your Shih Tzu is carrying a few extra pounds, it’s important to make changes to their diet and exercise routine to help them slim down.

First, start by reducing the amount of food you’re giving them at each meal. Then, add some additional exercise by taking them for long walks or playing with them for more extended periods.

You should also cut back on treats and snacks and ensure they’re getting enough water each day.

Water is an essential part of a dog’s diet, and it’s vital for dogs who are trying to lose weight. Make sure that your Shih Tzu has access to fresh, clean water.

These are just a few tips to help your Shih Tzu maintain a healthy weight and enjoy a long, happy life.

Some tips on choosing the right food and treats for your Shih Tzu

When choosing the right food and treats for your Shih Tzu, there are a few things to keep in mind.

First, pay attention to the ingredients list. Ensure that the first ingredient is a high-quality protein source, and avoid foods with fillers or artificial preservatives.

Second, keep an eye on portion sizes. Shih Tzus are small dogs, so they don’t need large meals. Choose a food designed for small breeds, and measure out portions carefully to avoid overfeeding.

Finally, don’t forget about treats! Shih Tzu dogs love to eat, so use treats to reward good behavior or show your affection. Just be sure to choose healthy options like freeze-dried chicken or rawhide chews.

The importance of regular weigh-ins and why you should take your dog to the vet for regular checkups

As any pet owner knows, regular health checkups are essential for keeping your furry friend happy and healthy. Weigh-ins are a crucial part of these checkups, as they can help identify any potential health issues early on.

For example, if your dog starts to gain weight unexpectedly, it could be a sign of diabetes or another serious condition.

In addition, regular weigh-ins can help you keep track of your dog’s overall health and fitness level. Just like humans, dogs can benefit from maintaining a healthy weight.

Finally, regular checkups with your vet can help build a trusting relationship between you and your pet’s healthcare team. This relationship is essential for ensuring that your dog receives the best possible care.

How to deal with an overweight Shih Tzu and some helpful resources

Obesity is a growing problem in the animal population, and dogs are no exception. Like humans, dogs can suffer from health problems related to being overweight, including joint pain, breathing difficulties, and diabetes.

And like us, they can also find it hard to lose weight once they’ve put on a few extra pounds. If you’re concerned that your dog is overweight, there are a few things you can do to help them get back to a healthy weight:

  • Increase their activity level by taking them on more walks or playing with them more often.
  • Switch to a food that is lower in calories and fat.
  • Cut back on treats and snacks.
  • Use an automatic dog feeder to help you control portion sizes and make sure your dog is getting enough food.
  • Talk to your vet about your dog’s weight, as they can offer additional advice and resources. They can help you create a weight-loss plan tailored to your dog’s individual needs.

Obesity is a serious problem, but Shih Tzu parents can overcome it with patience, dedication, and love.

What are the risks associated with an overweight or underweight Shih Tzu?

Shih Tzus are a popular breed of dog, known for their playful personality and long, silky coats. However, they can suffer from health problems if you don’t keep them at a healthy weight.

Overweight or underweight dogs are more likely to experience joint pain, respiratory problems, and digestive issues. They may also be more susceptible to diseases such as diabetes and cancer. 


An underweight Shih Tzu may not be getting the nutrients they need to stay healthy. They may also be more susceptible to sickness and disease. Additionally, skinny dogs can have difficulty regulating their body temperature, leading to health problems in both hot and cold weather.

If you are concerned that your Shih Tzu is underweight, please talk to your veterinarian. They can help you determine if there is a health issue causing the weight loss or if your dog needs to eat more.

Either way, it is important to address the issue so that your Shih Tzu can lead a happy and healthy life.


Like all dogs, Shih Tzus can experience health problems if they are overweight. Excess weight can put extra strain on the dog’s joints and bones, leading to pain and mobility problems.

Additionally, being overweight can increase the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and respiratory problems. Some of these conditions can be life-threatening, so it’s essential to keep an eye on your dog’s weight and make sure that they are at a healthy level.

There are many ways to help Shih Tzu lose weight, including feeding them a balanced diet and plenty of exercises. 

How can I help my Shih Tzu reach and maintain a healthy weight?

One common health concern for Shih Tzus is maintaining a healthy weight. These dogs are prone to putting on extra pounds, leading to joint problems, respiratory difficulty, and other health issues.

However, owners can take a few simple steps to help their Shih Tzus reach and maintain a healthy weight.

First, it is important to feed them a high-quality diet rich in protein and low in fat. Second, daily exercise is crucial for keeping them slim and trim. A good walking or playtime routine will help burn off any excess calories and keep their muscles toned.

Finally, regular trips to the vet can help to ensure that their weight stays on track. By following these simple tips, you can help your Shih Tzu maintain a healthy weight and stay healthy for years to come.

Sample diet plans for maintaining a healthy weight for your Shih Tzu

As a small breed, the Shih Tzu tends to be prone to obesity. This can lead to health problems, such as arthritis, heart disease, and respiratory difficulties. To maintain a healthy weight, your Shih Tzu will need a diet that is high in protein and low in calories.

An excellent way to start is by looking for dog food brands that offer unique formulas for small breeds. These foods are designed to provide the right balance of nutrients while keeping calories in check.

You should also avoid giving your Shih Tzu table scraps or other high-calorie treats. Instead, opt for healthy snacks that are specifically designed for dogs.

By following these simple guidelines, you can help your Shih Tzu maintain a healthy weight and enjoy a long and happy life.

In Conclusion

Maintaining a healthy weight is important for all dogs, but it is especially crucial for small breeds like the Shih Tzu. These dogs are prone to obesity, leading to several health problems.

However, owners can help their Shih Tzus reach and maintain optimal weight with a few easy, simple steps. By doing so, you can help your furry friend enjoy a long and happy life.

I hope this guide helped you understand how much your Shih Tzu should weigh. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me in the comments section below. I would be happy to help! Thanks for reading!

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