Representatives of this breed may well be classified as long-livers. It is known that the smaller the dog, the longer it can live. Shih Tzu, as we know, cannot boast of large sizes.
The Shih Tzu is a fairly common and popular breed. They like to have them in large families with children. And also these wonderful dogs can be a great company for the elderly. However, both the first and the second categories of owners are interested in how long such a pet can live.
How Long Do Shih Tzu Dogs Live?
The usual lifespan of these wonderful pets is 12 to 15 years, but this is not the limit. So, if the dog is well cared for, it can celebrate its 20th or even 23rd birthday. It is important that both puppies and retired dogs can be playful and active.
You can determine the age of the animal by the teeth, condition, and color of the coat, eyes.
What Determines the Life Span of a Shih Tzu?
Like any other dog, representatives of this breed may not even live up to the average rate. The following factors can shorten the life of these four-legged animals:
Diseases. Among the diseases inherent in this breed include a tendency to develop cardiac pathologies, urolithiasis. They are the ones that most often become the reason that worsens the quality of life.
Accidents. If the dog is not brought up, it can behave incorrectly on the street, not understand the boundaries, being at home. All this leads to the fact that dogs fall out of windows, get involved in fights, pick up poisoned food.
Lack of communication. Shih Tzu are very contact dogs. If not given enough attention, they can get sick. Communication with the owner is what they need most.
Improper nutrition. Food from the human table and the first dry food that comes across is not suitable for representatives of this breed. Fresh dietary products should be present in their diet. If the choice fell on drying, then it should be intended for dogs of decorative breeds.
Frequent puppy birth. In females, which are used only for the reproduction of offspring, vital resources are wasted much faster. Better to avoid more than one pregnancy every two years.
Ignoring prevention. Failure to get vaccinated and make scheduled visits to your vet can be extremely unpleasant. So, a dog that does not have vaccinations can get a viral infection that will cost it its life.
In addition, quite often unscrupulous people are engaged in breeding this breed. They do not worry about pedigrees, allowing non-purebred individuals to cross. As a result, mestizos are born with genetic mutations that may not be immediately visible. Outwardly, they look like purebred animals. But these puppies usually live short lives and have many diseases.
For a Shih Tzu to live a long life, he needs a good and responsible owner. Only such a person can provide a pet with everything it needs.