Posts Tagged ‘lhasa apso’

Difference Between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso

January 7, 2012

I know my dog breeds fairly well. But I often get confused over the difference between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso. At a glance, the Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso look like twins. But there are some subtle differences in both personality and looks.

After doing some research, I discovered that even kennel breed clubs used to have a difficult time determining the difference between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso. The breed club in England had the Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso grouped as one-in-the-same breed. It wasn’t until after 1934 that they separated into two separate breeds. The American Kennel Club (AKC) has always kept them separate. They recognized the Lhasa Apso in 1935 but didn’t recognize the Shih Tzu until 1969. Another thing I discovered is that while the Shih Tzu is a dog breed by itself, it originated from a mix of the Lhasa Apso and Pekingese dog breeds.

Book on the Shih Tzu Dog Breed Book on the Lhasa Apso Dog Breed

Both the Shih Tzu and the Lhasa Apso originated in the monasteries of Tibet. Both were kept as companions and both were referred to as ‘lion dogs’. The Lhasa Apso, however, was also kept as a guard dog and was referred to as the ‘bark lion sentinel dog”. In personality, the Lhasa Apso differs from the Shih Tzu in that he is bolder and a bit more standoffish with strangers. Shih Tzus tend to be a little more playful and affectionate.

According to the AKC standards, a Shih Tzu and a Lhasa Apso can be a variety of any color. A Shih Tzu should stand between 8-11 inches tall while a Lhasa Apso should stand between 10-11 inches tall. And a Shih Tzu should weigh between 9-16 pounds while a Lhasa Apso should weigh between 13-15 pounds. Based on this info, a Shih Tzu can be smaller, but they can also be about the same size as a Lhasa Apso.

So if the Lhasa Apso and the Shih Tzu can be any color and about the same size, then how can you tell the difference between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso by looking at them? One major difference is the coat type. The hair of a Shih Tzu is much softer than the hair of a Lhasa Apso. The hair of a Lhasa Apso tends to be harder and holds up better in cold weather. Another observable difference is the shape of their heads. The skull of a Shih Tzu is broad and domed. The Lhasa Apso has a flatter head, but it is still a bit rounded. And it is narrower than that of a Shih Tzu.

One good give-away regarding the difference between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso is the owners of a Shih Tzu tend to put the hair on their dog’s head up in a single pony-tail (see Shih Tzu figurine below). This is not as easy to do on a Lhasa Apso since their head is broader and their hair is rougher. If the owner didn’t put the hair in a pony-tail, however, ask them if you can pet the dog. While patting his head, feel his fur and the shape of his skull. See if you can correctly guess the difference between a Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso.

Lhasa Apso Dog Breed Gift Tote Shih Tzu Dog Breed Gift Mug and Mouse Pad


Saying Goodbye to Killer the Lhasa Apso (My Parent’s Dog)

May 3, 2011

Killer the Dog Wearing a Sweater and Boots

Killer the Lhasa Apso refused to be potty trained.  Little “presents” and wet spots were found hidden at least once a week.  Killer liked to bark.  Sometimes he barked for no reason at all – especially in his last year when it was suspected that he had dementia.  Killer was known to growl at times when he was protecting his territory; whether it be his favorite toy or a comfortable spot on the bed.  And Killer was a pain in the butt when my parents took him camping or to the beach.

Killer certainly had his fair share of issues.  But he was loved and he loved in return.  He was spoiled rotten by my stepmom – seldom yelled at or punished in any way.  But in return, he greeted her at the door with adoring enthusiasm and kept her lap warm.  At times, my dad seemed to tolerate Killer with only a grudging reluctance.  But despite Killer’s shortcomings as a “real dog” (as my dad might say), it was never surprising to see a smile on my dad’s face from Killer’s antics.  Killer greeted him with the same adoration and often found his way onto dad’s lap (sometimes because dad put him there).

At about age eleven, Killers health began to decline.  One health issue after another presented itself.  There were skin issues, weak joints, increased incontinence, deafness, and possibly dementia.  Each came gradually or sporadically but none were overly serious.  But at age thirteen, things got much worse.  Diarrhea and other symptoms presented themselves and the vet determined that Killer’s kidneys were failing.  Killer was in pain and miserable.  Treatment wasn’t guaranteed and would likely make him more miserable in the process.  It was a difficult moment for my parents.  They wanted so desperately to hang on but in their hearts they knew it was time to say goodbye.

That was about a month ago.  With me being in Kansas and my parents in Texas, I was not particularly close to Killer.  But I know my parents loved him dearly.  As troublesome as Killer could be at times, he was family.  I could hear their love for him whenever they talked about him – whether it was about his good qualities or bad.  There is no doubt that Killer gave my parents joy.  And there is no doubt that Killer will be sorely missed.  Thank you, Killer, for being a part of my parent’s lives and giving them your love.  I know you have crossed over the Rainbow Bridge and enjoying a romp in the grass or playing with your favorite squeaky toy.

The Lhasa Apso Dog Breed

January 12, 2011
Lhasa Apso Dog Breed Figurine

Lhasa Apso Dog Breed Figurine

Despite his smallness, the Lhasa Apso dog  breed is not in the toy dog breed group of the American Kennel Club (AKC).  Although he was once in the terrier dog breed group, he does not have the characteristics of a terrier and so he now falls under the non-sporting dog breed group.

The Lhasa Apso dog breed has origins in the monasteries of Tibet.  His original purpose was as both a watchdog and companion.  In fact, his other name Abso Seng Kye means Bark Lion Sentinel Dog.  The Lhasa Apso dog breed has a lot of similarities with the Tibetan Terrier and Shih Tzu dog breeds and are often confused.  In early AKC registries, they were all considered one in the same breed.

Although the Lhasa Apso dog breed is a small dog (10-11 inches tall and 13-15 pounds), he makes a good watchdog because he will bark at intruders.  He is wary of strangers but has a happy disposition with his family.  He also generally gets along well with other pets.

The smallness and temperament of the Lhasa Apso dog breed makes him a good family companion.  He requires only a short walk or a little play time per day.  He can be both playful and affectionate.  The Lhasa Apso dog breed, however, can be a bit independent and stubborn.  Positive reinforcement is the best way to train this dog breed.  Negative reinforcement is no fun for him and he will be inclined to react negatively in return.

While the exercise of the Lhasa Apso dog breed are minimal, his grooming requirements are a bit more involved.  He needs a good brushing or combing daily and a regular shave to keep his hair from getting matted.  The hair of the Lhasa Apso dog breed is straight, long, and dense.  He has a feather tail, feathered feet, feathered ears, and long hair on his face.  The Lhasa Apso dog breed has a tail which should be shorter than the length of his body.  The tail is carried upwards and over the back.  He has a narrow skull, a prominent black nose, and an even or slight undershot bite.

The Lhasa Apso dog breed is an adorable dog breed.  But like most purebred dogs, he can acquire a number of genetic health issues.  The most common are patellar luxation, various eyelid problems, progressive retinal atrophy, and renal cortical hypoplasia.  Patellar luxation is a skeletal issue with the knee cap.  It can be very painful and lead to lameness.  Progressive retinal atrophy is where the retina of the eye deteriorates, possibly to the point of blindness.  And renal cortical hypoplasia is failure of the kidneys which can be deadly.

If you are considering purchasing a Lhasa Apso dog breed, be sure to research the breeder thoroughly.  Ask if they are a member of any other breed clubs other than the AKC.  And ask if they have done any testing to confirm if the dog is not prone to any hereditary diseases.  A good and responsible breeder will probably also be a member of the American Lhasa Apso Club, Inc. and they would have done some testing on the breed to verify his quality.  A good purebred Lhasa Apso can also be found at Lhasa Apso breed rescue groups and possibly even at the local animal shelter.

Lhasa Apso Dog Breed

Killer wearing his sweater and boots

Featuring Devil Dog Breed Figurines

June 23, 2010

New to the Animal Figurine are your favorite dog breed figurines in a devil costume. We love our dogs but sometimes they have quirky little annoying traits, or sometimes they do some naughty things. That is where the Devil Dog Breed Figurines come in.

Take my dog, Maya, for example. She is basically a good dog. But there was this one time when we went to the dog park and the first thing she did was find a big muddy puddle and jump in it. Its what dogs do so I couldn’t be mad at her, but I couldn’t help thinking, “You little devil!” At that moment, the Labrador Retriever Devil Dog Breed Figurine was a perfect representation of her.

There was another time when we went to a park which had a big fountain. The water of the fountain was dyed pink for Breast Cancer Awareness week. Maya, being a Labrador Retriever and all, saw the water and bolted so quickly that I lost hold of her leash. Next thing you know, she is playing in pink water. Since Maya is a Yellow Labrador Retriever, she turned pink for a week. It was really funny but I couldn’t help thinking, “You cute little devil!” Once again, the Labrador Retriever Devil Dog Breed Figurine was the perfect representation of her. I keep a Yellow Labrador Retriever Devil Dog Breed Figurine on my desk at work.

My parents have a Lhasa Apso named Killer. Killer is basically a good dog with some annoying habits. He likes to take food out of his bowl and take it into another room to eat. Every once in a while, my parents step on a piece of food which had been dropped in the hallway. I’m sure that when they say, “Ouch!”, they are actually thinking, “You little devil!” They now have a Lhasa Apso Devil Dog Breed Figurine on their curio shelf at home.

Although sometimes we call our dogs “brats” or “little devils” we say it out of love. And sometimes when we think back on bad things they have done, we can’t help but to laugh. Get a Devil Dog Breed Figurine to help remind you of those times. Visit the Animal Figurine and enter “devil” in the search field to pull up all our Devil Dog Breed Figurine gifts. See if we have a Devil Dog Breed Figurine for your dog’s breed.