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Maltese vs Shih Tzu – Which one is a better dog breed for you?

"Find similarities and differences between Maltese vs Shih Tzu" Compare Maltese and Shih Tzu. Which is better: Maltese or Shih Tzu?
Name Maltese Shih Tzu
OriginsItaly China
Group Companion Dogs Companion Dogs
Popularity Rank3320
Reviews00
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Other Names Maltese Dog, Maltese lion dog Chinese Lion Dog, Chrysanthemum Dog
Breed Type Purebred Purebred
AKC Group Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1888 as a Toy breed. Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1969 as a Toy breed.
FCI Group Recognized by FCI in the Companion and Toy Dogs group, in the Bichons and related breeds section. Recognized by FCI in the Companion and Toy Dogs group, in the Tibetan breeds section.
Breed Recognition American Canine Registry American Kennel Club America's Pet Registry Canadian Kennel Club Dog Registry of America Inc. Federation Cynologique Internationale Kennel Club of Great Britain North American Purebred Registry, Inc. American Canine Association, Inc. Australian National Kennel Council Continental Kennel Club National Kennel Club New Zealand Kennel Club United Kennel Club American Canine Registry American Kennel Club America's Pet Registry Canadian Kennel Club Dog Registry of America Inc. Federation Cynologique Internationale Kennel Club of Great Britain North American Purebred Registry, Inc. American Canine Association, Inc. Australian National Kennel Council Continental Kennel Club National Kennel Club New Zealand Kennel Club United Kennel Club Canadian Canine Registry
Price $600-$800 $800-$1200

General Appearance - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Size Small Small
Weight 6.5-9 pounds (3-4 kg) 9–16 pounds (4-7 kg)
Avg. Weight 6.7 pounds (3.5 kg) 9–16 pounds (5.5 kg)
Height Male: 8-10 inches (21-25 cm), Female: 8-9 inches (20-23 cm) 8-11 inches (20-28 cm)
Avg. Height Male: 9 inches (23 cm), Female: 8.5 inches (21.5 cm) 9.5 inches (24 cm)

Hair & Care - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Coat Feathered Dense
Colors White Brindle Liver Silver Blue Gold Red Black
Grooming
Average: The Maltese requires average grooming effort.
Professional: This breed needs a lot of work to keep in good condition.
Shedding Level
Malteses shed none to minimal.
Shih Tzus shed none to minimal.

Characteristics - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Temperament Active Easygoing Intelligent Responsive Docile Gentle Playful Sweet Tempered Active Friendly Happy Lively Playful Courageous Gentle Intelligent Outgoing
Intelligent Rank
Low to average: This canine intelligence is not the brightest one.
Low: The Shih Tzu if one of the dog breeds that have the lowest degree of obedience intelligence.
Trainability
Malteses are quite easy to train.
Shih Tzus are quite easy to train.
Playfulness
Malteses, like any other dog breed, like playing.
Shih Tzus are not the most playful dog breed.
Sensitivity Level
They are a little bit more sensitive than other dog breeds.
Shih Tzus have an average emotional level and are not the most sensitive dog breed.
Affection Level
Malteses are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers.
Shih Tzus are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers.
Social Needs
Malteses need a lot of social interaction.
Shih Tzus need a lot of social interaction.
Barking
High: The Maltese is a very vocal breed.
High: The Shih Tzu is a very vocal breed.
Watchdog Ability
Malteses are average watchdogs.
Shih Tzus are average watchdogs.
Territorial
Malteses strongly protect their territory.
Shih Tzus strongly protect their territory.
Biting Potential Low
The Maltese has a low chance of biting somebody.
Low
The Shih Tzu has a low chance of biting somebody.
Mouthiness
Malteses have an average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
Shih Tzus have a higher than average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
Malteses are not the biggest explorers.
Shih Tzus tend to escape less than other breeds.
Prey Drive
Malteses have a higher impulse to chase and catch something than other dog breeds.
Shih Tzus have a higher impulse to chase and catch something than other dog breeds.
Apartment Friendly
Malteses are very apartment-friendly dogs.
Shih Tzus are very apartment-friendly dogs.
Adaptability
Malteses adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
Shih Tzus adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Malteses tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
Shih Tzus tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
Fighting Dog Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.
Not really
In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Good With - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Stranger Friendly
Malteses are very stranger friendly dogs.
Shih Tzus are average friendly towards strangers.
Child Friendly
Malteses are kid-friendly dogs.
Shih Tzus are not the most kid-friendly dogs.
Cat Friendly
Malteses are very cat-friendly dogs.
Shih Tzus are very cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Malteses are very dog-friendly dogs.
Shih Tzus are very dog-friendly dogs.
Office Friendly No
Maltese is not the best dog breed for office environment.
No
Shih Tzu is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Malteses are usually recommended for elderly people.
Shih Tzus are not the best breed for elderly people.
Pet Friendly
Malteses are one of the friendliest dog breeds.
Shih Tzus are one of the friendliest dog breeds.
Good For First Time Owners No
Malteses are not good for novice owners, due to their stubborn personality.
Yes
Shih Tzus are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
Service Dog Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog.
Not really
This breed generally not used as a service dog.
Therapy Dog Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog.
Not really
This breed generally not used as a therapy dog.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones.
Not really
A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR) Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people.
Not really
The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and in locating missing people.
Boat Dog Not really
Maltese breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Not really
Shih Tzu breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.
Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling.
Not really
A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling.

Health Factors - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Health Issues
Egészségesek Maltese fajták, de vannak bizonyos egészségügyi problémáik, amelyeket rendszeresen ellenőrizned kell az állatorvossal.
Egészségesek Shih Tzu fajták, de vannak bizonyos egészségügyi problémáik, amelyeket rendszeresen ellenőrizned kell az állatorvossal.
Health Problems Collapsed Trachea Hypoglycemia Patellar Luxation Portosystemic Liver Shunt Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) Reverse Sneezing White Dog Shaker Syndrome Allergies Bladder Stones Distichiasis Dry Eye Ear Infections Ectopic Cilia Hip Dysplasia Juvenile Renal Dysplasia Keratitis Patellar Luxation Portosystemic Liver Shunt Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) Proptosis Retained Baby Teeth Reverse Sneezing Snuffles Umbilical Hernias
Life Expectancy 15-18 years 10-16 years
Hypoallergenic Yes Yes
Energy Level
Malteses have an average energy level, so if you live a semi-active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Shih Tzus have a lower energy level than other dogs.
Exercise Need
Malteses exercise need is very minimal.
Shih Tzus exercise need is minimal.
Sleeping Need
Malteses sleep 12-14 hours a day as an average dog and they're not considered as a lazy breed.
Shih Tzus like sleeping so they do sleep a lot.
Avg. daily food consumption Recommended daily amount: 1/4 to 1/2 cup of high-quality dry food a day, divided into two meals. Recommended daily amount: 1/2 to 1 cup of high-quality dry food a day.
Weight Gain Potential
Average.
Average to High.
Weather & Climate Prefers warm weather Tolerates warm and cold weather.
Stinkiness Medium
The Maltese has an average chance of bad smell.
Low
The Shih Tzu has a low chance of bad smell.
Drooling tendency
The Maltese is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.
The Shih Tzu is a perfect example for very low drooling tendency.

Reproducibility - Maltese vs Shih Tzu

Gestation Length 60-64 days 60-64 days
How often can the have a litter? Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy.
Once a year.
More frequent breeding is not healthy.
Litter Size 3-5 puppies 2-5 puppies

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