Pug vs Shih Tzu

Compare the Pug to the Shih Tzu. Use the tool below to compare temperament, size, personality, maintenance requirements, and everything else between Pugs and Shih Tzus.

Quick Summary

Below are a few quick comparisons between the two breeds.
  • Owner Experience - The Shih Tzu is an excellent choice for new/inexperienced owners. The Pug is okay for new owners, but may not be as easy as the Shih Tzu.
  • Children - Both the Pug and Shih Tzu are great with children.
  • Grooming - Both breeds have high grooming requirements, but the Pug is slightly easier to groom between the two.
  • Barking - The Pug has an above-average tendency to bark, while the Shih Tzu is an average barker.
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Pug vs Shih Tzu
Pug Dog Breed
Silver & White Shih Tzu
Breed NamePugShih Tzu
General Details
Breed TypePurebredPurebred
Is Hypo­allergenicNoYes
Lifespan12-15 yrs.10-15 yrs.
Height10-14 in.9-10 in.
Weight13-20 lb9-16 lb
IntelligenceBelow AverageAverage
History
Origin CountryChinaChina
Origin Year206 BC618 AD
Temperament
Overall FriendlinessVery GoodVery Good
Family FriendlyVery GoodVery Good
Kid FriendlyVery GoodVery Good
Pet FriendlyVery GoodVery Good
Stranger FriendlyVery GoodVery Good
Personality
  • Affectionate
  • Enjoys Attention
  • Jealous
  • Loving
  • Does Not Like Being Alone
  • Likes To Snuggle
  • Stubborn
  • Affectionate
  • Enjoys Attention
  • Loving
  • Does Not Like Being Alone
  • Likes To Snuggle
Living Environment
ApartmentYesYes
IndoorYesYes
Small YardNoNo
Medium YardNoNo
Large YardNoNo
Temperature Tolerance ¹55°F to 80°F55°F to 80°F
Barks/HowlsOftenBelow Average
Exercise Needs
Energy LevelLowMedium
Exercise RequiredLowLow
Top Running Speed12 mph12 mph
StrengthLowLow
Grooming Needs
Coat Main­tenanceHighMedium
SheddingHighNone
DanderHighNone
Drool AmountNoneNone

¹This is estimated min/max temperature range for a healthy adult dog. Dogs that live indoors, puppies, seniors, unwell dogs, and/or dogs with improperly groomed coats may overheat sooner and get cold more quickly.
Instincts & Behavior Comparison
Breed NamePugShih Tzu
Breed Mentality
Dominant/AlphaNoNo
Family/PackYesYes
IndependentNoNo
Breed Focus
Distracted EasilyNoNo
AverageYesYes
Focused & PatientNoNo
Breed Instincts
AggressionBelow AverageBelow Average
Burrow/DiggingBelow AverageBelow Average
ChasingBelow AverageBelow Average
Follow CommandsBelow AverageBelow Average
FightingBelow AverageBelow Average
GuardingBelow AverageBelow Average
HerdingBelow AverageBelow Average
HuntingBelow AverageBelow Average
ProtectionBelow AverageBelow Average
Remove VerminBelow AverageBelow Average
SleddingVery LowBelow Average
WatchBelow AverageBelow Average
Health Comparison
Breed NamePugShih Tzu
Lifespan
Lifespan12-15 yrs.10-15 yrs.
Common Health Issues
AllergiesYesYes
Bladder StonesNoYes
Cheyletiella DermatitisYesNo
Corneal UlcersYesNo
Demodectic MangeYesNo
DistichiasisYesYes
Dry EyeYesYes
Ear InfectionsNoYes
Ectopic CiliaNoYes
EntropionYesNo
EpilepsyYesNo
Hemi-vertebraeYesNo
Hip DysplasiaYesYes
Juvenile Renal DysplasiaNoYes
KeratitisNoYes
Legg-perthes DiseaseYesNo
Nerve DegenerationYesNo
Patellar LuxationYesYes
Portosystemic Liver ShuntNoYes
Progressive Retinal AtrophyYesYes
ProptosisYesYes
Pug Dog EncephalitisYesNo
Retained Baby TeethNoYes
Reverse SneezingNoYes
SnufflesNoYes
Staph InfectionYesNo
Umbilical HerniasNoYes
Vaccination SensitivityYesNo
Yeast InfectionYesNo
Appearance Comparison
Breed NamePugShih Tzu
Coat
FurYesNo
HairNoYes
Coat Type
Double CoatYesYes
Coat Texture
StraightYesNo
SilkyNoYes
Coat Length(s)
ShortYesNo
LongNoYes
Coat Color(s)
BlackYesYes
FawnYesNo
Black & WhiteNoYes
Black, Gold, & SilverNoYes
Black, Gold, & WhiteNoYes
Black, White, & SilverNoYes
BlueNoYes
Blue & WhiteNoYes
BrindleNoYes
Brindle & WhiteNoYes
GoldNoYes
Gold & WhiteNoYes
LiverNoYes
Liver & WhiteNoYes
RedNoYes
Red & WhiteNoYes
SilverNoYes
Silver & WhiteNoYes
Silver, Gold, & WhiteNoYes
WhiteNoYes
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