Shih Poo vs Maltipoo – Full Breed Comparison

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo

When considering the best small doodle dog for your family, you have many options to choose from. While there are numerous purebred dogs to consider, designer breed dogs offer a great opportunity to find a unique and beloved pet.

If you are interested in a hybrid doodle dog, there are many breeds available, including two popular designer breeds: Shih Poo and Maltipoo. These breeds make great additions to any family, as they are cute and sociable, with non-shedding and hypoallergenic coats.

Like all designer dog breeds, each puppy has a unique personality and appearance that may vary. While they may not meet the strict standards set by the American Kennel Club (AKC) or the United Kennel Club (UKC), they possess the qualities that you would expect from your beloved pet.

Although both the Shih Poo and Maltipoo have one parent dog breed in common, they also have many differences and similarities. However, their differences in the second parent breed bring about important distinctions that you should consider when selecting the right doodle dog for your lifestyle and family.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Summary

In this article, we will provide you with important information to help you determine which dog breed is best suited for you and your family. You will find brief descriptions of each breed and comparison points that will assist you in making an informed decision. So, let’s get started.

What is the Shih Poo?


The Shih Poo is a small doodle dog breed that originated in the United States. Known for their sweet and friendly temperament, they make great pets for families. This hybrid breed is a cross between a Shih Tzu and a Toy or Miniature Poodle, although they are typically bred with Toy Poodles. By inheriting traits from both parent breeds, the Shih Poo is a family-oriented dog with excellent qualities.

If you have a busy schedule and limited time for exercise, the Shih Poo is a great option as they do not require a lot of physical activity. A moderate amount of exercise will keep them healthy and fit.

What is the Maltipoo?


Similar to the Shih Poo, the Maltipoo is a designer breed with a variety of physical and behavioral traits. This mixed breed dog is a combination of Maltese and Toy or Miniature Poodle genetics, although they are typically bred with Toy Poodles for a smaller size. The temperament and appearance of the Maltipoo are heavily influenced by the traits of its parent breeds.

Compared to the Shih Poo, Maltipoos require more exercise. Although they are small dogs, they make excellent watchdogs and will alert their owners with their barking if they sense anything unusual.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo: Which is Bigger?


Within the hybrid breed category, there can be a range of sizes available, including the Shih Poo and Maltipoo. However, there is not a significant difference in size between these two breeds.

The Shih Poo typically stands 8 to 13 inches tall, while the Maltipoo is slightly taller at 8 to 14 inches.

In terms of weight, the Shih Poo weighs between 8 and 18 pounds, while the Maltipoo can weigh anywhere from 5 to 20 pounds. This significant difference in weight is due to the mixed parentage of each breed.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Temperament: How do They Behave?


Both the Shih Poo and Maltipoo are intelligent and affectionate breeds, taking after their parent breeds. However, as hybrid breeds, their temperament can vary and may not be suitable for every dog.

The Shih Poo is known for its loving and friendly personality, making them great companions for people of all ages. They adapt well to different living environments, including apartments or condos, as they do not require much space. Shih Poo dogs are ideal for retired individuals seeking companionship.

Maltipoos have a cheerful and sociable temperament, enjoying the company of people and other pets. Due to their small size, they are well-suited for families with small children. However, early socialization is crucial in training your dog to behave appropriately with other people and pets.

Maltipoos love to cuddle with their owners while watching TV and enjoy playing with their owners, creating a strong bond between dog and owner.

Maltipoo vs Shih Poo: Appearance


As with all designer breeds, the appearance of Shih Poo and Maltipoo can vary depending on the amount of Poodle genetics in their lineage. Poodles have curly and hypoallergenic coats, so each breed may have a similar or different coat type.

Shih Poo dogs come in various coat colors, but black, apricot, or brown are the most common. Their ears fall on their heads and add to their adorable appearance. Similarly, Maltipoos come in a range of coat colors, although cream or white is the most typical. Their short tails move gently when running, and their perky ears show their attentiveness.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Training: Can They Be Easily Trained?

Thanks to their Poodle genetics, training Maltipoos and Shih Poos is generally not difficult, as both breeds are intelligent and quick learners. However, there may be some challenges in training these breeds.

While Shih Poos are intelligent, they can be stubborn when it comes to training. Patience and a positive attitude are key to successfully training and preparing your dog. Using positive reinforcement and rewards can make training easier. Keeping training sessions short can help prevent boredom and keep your dog engaged in the learning process.

Similarly, Maltipoos are highly intelligent and can quickly learn and follow commands. Compared to Shih Poos, training Maltipoos is generally easier due to their intelligence and quick learning abilities.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Lifespan: How Long Do They Live?

Both the Shih Poo and Maltipoo are small dog breeds, and smaller dogs typically have longer lifespans compared to larger breeds. The life expectancy of a Maltipoo is typically around 10 to 12 years, while the Shih Poo has a longer lifespan.

The life expectancy of a Shih Poo is around 10 to 15 years. As an owner, there are many things you can do to help extend your dog’s life, such as scheduling regular visits to the vet, providing them with healthy food, and ensuring they get daily exercise. By following these steps, you can help your dog live a longer and healthier life.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Health

One of the benefits of hybrid breeds is that they tend to have a lower risk of illness and health problems compared to their purebred parents. This is because the genetic health conditions of the parents are less likely to be passed down during the breeding process. However, it is still important to provide your pet with regular veterinary check-ups and trips as needed to help keep them healthy.

Despite the lower risk of hereditary genetic disease, both Shih Poo and Maltipoo breeds are still prone to certain health conditions. Maltipoos, for example, are more likely to develop eye conditions and liver problems. Additionally, tremors and epilepsy may be more common in Maltipoos.

Shih Poos are also prone to dental problems, so daily teeth brushing is important. Other concerns, such as eye and skin issues, may also become apparent, which is why daily grooming is vital. Other issues, such as hypothyroidism and renal dysplasia, may also be concerns that you should be aware of when caring for your Shih Poo.

Shih Poo vs Maltipoo Grooming

To keep your Shih Poo or Maltipoo healthy and happy, daily grooming is essential. Fortunately, grooming your puppy is not as time-consuming as you might think.

The amount of grooming required for your Shih Poo or Maltipoo depends on the type of coat they have. If their coat is more similar to a Poodle’s, curly and dense, they will require more grooming. For Shih Poo coats that shed more, you may need to wash their hair more often, but groom them less. As a general rule, washing their coats at least once a week can prevent mats and keep them looking and feeling their best.

Maltipoos, who do not shed much, may not require as much grooming to maintain their hair. However, they still need daily grooming and fur cleaning. Regular trimming for both Shih Poo and Maltipoo can help keep their coats manageable. Establishing a reliable grooming routine can also prevent the development of skin conditions or other health concerns that are more likely to occur.

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