When Do Shih Tzus Stop Growing: What You Need to Know

Four black and white Shih Tzus

As a small breed dog, the Shih Tzu matures more quickly than other breeds. Most puppies reach full growth around ten months old, but some may take an entire year. The American Kennel Club notes that the life span for this toy dog breed is about 12-15 years with regular care and diet.

The growth rate of your Shih Tzu will differ based on age, diet, and physical activity levels. Contact a knowledgeable veterinary practitioner if you have questions regarding your Shih Tzu puppy’s development. They will be able to give you specific advice tailored to your pet.

Many breeders can also provide information about your lion dog puppy and adult weight.

Shih Tzu puppy development

During the first two weeks of life, your Shih Tzu’s growth is rapid. According to the American Kennel Club, puppies typically double their birth weight during this time. For a healthy littermate comparison, consider how much your puppy weighs at two weeks old and compare it to their siblings.

Most puppies have tripled their birth weight at three to four weeks old. By this age, they should also be able to control their bowels and bladder. If your puppy is not reaching these milestones, contact your veterinarian.

Weeks five through seven are when your Shih Tzu’s growth starts to level off. They will gain weight steadily but slower than in previous weeks. Your puppy coat will also start to come in during this time.

Eight weeks old is when most puppies are ready to leave their mother and littermates and join their new families. This is also around the time that they will have received all of their vaccinations and be able to start attending puppy socialization classes.

The next several months are when your Shih Tzu will reach their full adult size.

JasperArt Shih Tzu on carpet

Factors That Affect Shih Tzu Puppy Growth

When it comes to Shih Tzu puppies, there are a number of factors that can affect their growth:

Shih Tzu’s Diet

Diet is important – puppies need a nutrient-rich diet to grow properly.

As with any other breed of dog, Shih Tzus need a balanced diet in order to grow and stay healthy. This means they need access to protein and carbohydrates, as well as a variety of other nutrients. Puppies, in particular, need a diet rich in nutrients to support their rapid growth.

Various commercial dog foods are available that are formulated specifically for Shih Tzus. These diets usually contain all the nutrients your puppy needs to grow and develop properly. If you are feeding your Shih Tzu a commercial diet, be sure to follow the feeding guidelines on the packaging.

You can also supplement your Shih Tzu’s diet with home-cooked meals. When cooking for your Shih Tzu, be sure to include lean protein sources and complex carbohydrates. You may also want to add some healthy fats, such as olive oil.

Related read: Best Dog Food for Shih Tzu with Allergies

JasperArt Shih tzu on dog bed


Exercise plays a role in the growth – puppies who are active will typically grow more quickly than those who are not.

The amount of exercise a Shih Tzu gets also contributes to how quickly or slowly it will grow. Puppies that are active and get plenty of exercises will typically grow more quickly than those that are not as active. It is important to keep your Shih Tzu puppy active and playing, as this will help it grow into a healthy adult dog.


Genetics plays a role – certain breeds of dogs tend to grow more quickly than others.

Shih Tzus are a small breed of dog; as such, they typically do not grow to be very large. However, there is some variation in size among Shih Tzus, and some may be larger or smaller than others. This variation is due to genetics and cannot be controlled.

Knowing the size of the parents or grandparents will give you a good idea of your dog’s size and weight.

While you cannot control the genetics of your Shih Tzu, you can provide it with a healthy diet and plenty of exercises to help it reach its full potential.

JasperArt Shih Tzu with a toy 1

When does Shih Tzus stop growing?

Most Shih Tzus will stop growing by around ten months of age. However, there can be some variation in size, with some dogs continuing to grow until they are around a year old. Some factors influencing a Shih Tzu’s ultimate size include food, exercise habits, and overall health.

If you are concerned about your Shih Tzu’s size, weight, or growth rate, consult with your veterinarian. They will be able to give you specific advice and help ensure that your dog is healthy and on track.

What Size Is A Fully Grown Shih Tzu Dog?

The American Kennel Club (AKC link) states that the typical size and weight ranges for Shih Tzus are as follows:

  • The ideal height ranges from 8 inches to 11 inches(20.32 cm to about 28 cm)
  • The ideal normal weight ranges between 9 and 16 lbs(4 kg to 7.25 kg)

Adult weight and height can also depend on the sex of the dog, with males tending to be larger and heavier than females.

While there is some variation in size among Shih Tzus, most will fall within the typical range.

Breeding abnormalities, either deliberate or natural, or underlying health concerns are responsible for any Shih Tzu that exceeds the weight and height ranges.

The terms “teacup Shih Tzu,” “toy Shih Tzu,” and “imperial Shih Tzu” refer to undersized dogs, not a distinct breed.

How to make sure your Shih Tzu puppies grow properly?

Regular check-ups, a balanced diet, and appropriate exercise will help your Shih Tzu reach their full potential and enjoy a long, healthy life.

Puppies should see a veterinarian every few weeks during their first few months to ensure they are growing properly. After that, annual check-ups are typically sufficient.

A healthy diet is important for all dogs, especially growing puppies. Puppy food provides young dogs with the nutrients for proper growth and development.

Exercise is also important for all dogs, including Shih Tzus. Puppies need short bursts of activity several times daily to stay healthy and avoid obesity. Most adult Shih Tzus only need moderate exercise, such as a daily walk or playtime in the yard.

JasperArt Shih tzu on dog mat 1

The Importance of Nutrition for Growing Shih Tzu breed

Any dog owner knows nutrition is important for a pup’s health, but this is especially true for certain breeds. The Shih Tzu is a small breed of dog known for its long, luxurious coat.

However, this coat requires a lot of upkeep and grooming and can be susceptible to matting.

A diet high in nutrients will help keep the coat healthy and prevent mats from forming. In addition, a healthy diet will also promote overall good health in the dog. This includes strong bones, teeth, and a healthy digestive system.

Also, adult Shih Tzu dogs can be prone to obesity, so a diet that helps maintain a healthy weight is important.

For these reasons, it is essential to ensure that a Shih Tzu always has access to fresh, wholesome food.

What to do if your Shih Tzu is not growing?

If your Shih Tzu isn’t growing, don’t worry- there are a few things you can do to help.

First, ensure that he eats a balanced diet and gets enough exercise. Puppies need a lot of calories to grow, so if he’s eating mostly dry food, try adding some wet food or Puppy Milk Replacer to his diet.

You should also ensure he’s getting plenty of opportunities to run and play- a tired puppy is a happy puppy!

Secondly, take him to the vet for a check-up. He may not grow because of an underlying health condition that can be easily treated.

Finally, be patient! Some Shih Tzus are just late bloomers and will eventually catch up to their peers.

With a little time and care, your Shih Tzu will be as big and bouncy as you’d hoped.

JasperArt three Shih tzus1

How to Properly Care for a Shih Tzu Puppy?

A Shih Tzu puppy is a lifetime commitment. They are bred as companion dogs and love nothing more than being with their family.

shih tzu dog face
  1. They do not like being left alone for long periods of time. A Shih Tzu puppy needs plenty of socialization. Puppy class is a great way to start them off right. They need to be around other people and learn how to interact with them in a positive way.
  2. Shih Tzus are also known for being barkers and having “small dog syndrome.” This is when they think they are the alpha dog and try to boss everyone around. Proper training and socialization will help prevent this behavior.
  3. Crate training is also recommended. This will give your Shih Tzu their own special place where they can feel safe and secure.
  4. Shih Tzus are prone to certain health problems such as Luxating patella, hip dysplasia, allergies, and respiratory issues. Be sure to talk to your veterinarian about what you can do to help prevent these problems.
  5. Regular grooming is also important for your Shih Tzu’s health. They need to be brushed daily and have their teeth brushed at least once a week. Their nails should also be trimmed on a regular basis.
  6. A healthy diet is also important for preventing health problems and maintaining a proper Shih Tzu’s weight.

Shih Tzus are great companion dogs that will bring great joy to your life. They will be a beloved family member with proper care and training for many years.

The Best Exercise Regimen for Growing Shih Tzus

Daily exercise is essential for all dogs, but it is especially important for Shih Tzus. This breed is known for being lively and playful, and they need an outlet for their energy.

A daily walk is a great way to give your Shih Tzu the necessary exercise.

But if you really want to give them a workout, consider taking them to a dog park or letting them run around in your backyard. Just be sure to supervise them closely, as Shih Tzus are known for being escape artists.

In addition to daily exercise, Shih Tzus also benefit from regular play sessions. This can include fetch, tug-of-war, or any other activity that gets them moving. So if you’re looking for the best way to exercise your Shih Tzu, a combination of daily walks and regular play sessions is the way to go for healthy growth.

JasperArt four Shih tzus

What is a healthy weight for a Shih Tzu?

Shih Tzu is a small dog whose weight ranges from 9 lb to 15 lb when grown. However, the weight of Shih Tzu is influenced by the weight of parents, food consumption, and exercise levels.

The average weight of a Shih Tzu is 11 lb. A fully grown Shih Tzu should ideally weigh between 9 lb and 15 lb. Anything outside this range is considered underweight or overweight.

A female Shih Tzu typically weighs between 9 lb and 11 lb. A male Shih Tzu typically weighs between 10 lb and 15 lb. Adult weights can vary depending on the parents’ weight, food consumption, and exercise levels.

Overweight Shih Tzus are at risk for health problems such as joint pain, diabetes, respiratory problems, and heart disease. If your Shih Tzu is overweight, talk to your veterinarian about the best way to help them reach a healthy weight.

Underweight Shih Tzus are also at risk for health problems. They can have difficulty regulating their body temperature and are more susceptible to injuries.

JasperArt Shih Tzu on colored carpet


The Shih Tzu is a small dog breed that matures quickly and reaches full growth around ten months old in most cases. However, some may take up to a year. This toy dog breed has a life span of 12-15 years with regular care and diet. As your Shih Tzu puppy grows, it is important to monitor its weight and diet. You should also be sure to provide plenty of exercise for your pet and a healthy diet. If you have concerns about your dog’s development, don’t hesitate to speak with a veterinarian. They will be able to give you specific advice tailored to your Shih Tzu puppy’s growth.

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