In the world of designer dog breeds, two popular crossbreeds have captured the hearts of many pet owners: the Shih Poo and the Poodle crossbreeds. These adorable mixes combine the best traits of their parent breeds, creating unique and charming companions. In this article, we’ll explore the similarities and differences between these two crossbreeds, helping you decide which one might be the perfect fit for your lifestyle.

What is a Shih Poo?

The Shih Poo is a hybrid breed that results from crossing a Shih Tzu and a Poodle (usually a Miniature or Toy Poodle). This delightful mix inherits the affectionate and loyal nature of the Shih Tzu, combined with the intelligence and hypoallergenic coat of the Poodle. Shih Poos are known for their adorable teddy bear-like appearance, making them irresistible to many dog lovers.

What are Poodle Crossbreeds?

Poodle crossbreeds, also known as Poodle mixes or Doodles, are a diverse group of designer dogs created by crossing a Poodle with another purebred dog breed. These crossbreeds aim to combine the hypoallergenic coat and intelligence of the Poodle with the unique traits of the other parent breed. Some popular examples include the Labradoodle (Labrador Retriever x Poodle), Goldendoodle (Golden Retriever x Poodle), and Bernedoodle (Bernese Mountain Dog x Poodle).

Temperament and Personality

Shih Poo

Shih Poos are known for their affectionate and loving nature. They thrive on human companionship and often form strong bonds with their owners. These little dogs are generally friendly and get along well with children and other pets when properly socialized. However, they can be prone to separation anxiety if left alone for extended periods.

Poodle Crossbreeds

The temperament of Poodle crossbreeds can vary depending on the specific mix, but they generally inherit the intelligence and trainability of the Poodle parent. Many Poodle mixes are known for their friendly, outgoing personalities and their eagerness to please their owners. They tend to be energetic and enjoy participating in various activities with their families.

Size and Appearance

Shih Poo

Shih Poos typically range in size from small to medium, depending on the size of the Poodle parent. They can weigh anywhere from 8 to 18 pounds and stand between 8 to 15 inches tall. Their coats can be either curly or wavy, and they come in a variety of colors, including black, white, brown, and apricot.

Poodle Crossbreeds

Poodle crossbreeds can vary greatly in size, depending on the other breed involved. For example, a Labradoodle can range from medium to large, while a Maltipoo (Maltese x Poodle) is typically a small breed. Their coats are often hypoallergenic and low-shedding, inheriting the Poodle’s curly or wavy coat texture.

Grooming Needs

Both Shih Poos and Poodle crossbreeds require regular grooming to maintain their coats and prevent matting. However, the grooming needs may vary slightly between the two.

Shih Poo

Shih Poos have a moderate grooming requirement. Their coats should be brushed regularly to prevent tangles and mats, and they may need professional grooming every 6-8 weeks to keep their coats trimmed and tidy.

Poodle Crossbreeds

Poodle crossbreeds generally have higher grooming needs due to their curly or wavy coats. Regular brushing and professional grooming every 4-6 weeks are recommended to prevent matting and keep their coats in good condition.

Exercise and Activity Levels

Shih Poo

Shih Poos are relatively low-energy dogs and do not require extensive exercise. However, they still need daily walks and playtime to maintain their physical and mental well-being. They make excellent apartment dogs and can adapt to various living situations.

Poodle Crossbreeds

The exercise needs of Poodle crossbreeds can vary depending on the specific mix. Some, like the Labradoodle, may have higher energy levels and require more vigorous exercise, while others, like the Maltipoo, may have more moderate exercise needs. It’s essential to research the exercise requirements of the specific breed mix to ensure you can meet their needs.

Health and Lifespan

Both Shih Poos and Poodle crossbreeds are generally healthy breeds, but they can be prone to certain health issues inherited from their parent breeds.

Shih Poo

Shih Poos may be susceptible to respiratory issues, eye problems, and dental issues due to their small size and flat faces. Regular veterinary check-ups and proper grooming can help mitigate these risks.

Poodle Crossbreeds

The health concerns of Poodle crossbreeds can vary depending on the specific mix. However, some common issues to be aware of include hip and elbow dysplasia, eye problems, and certain types of cancer. Responsible breeding practices and regular veterinary care can help minimize these risks.


Both Shih Poos and Poodle crossbreeds are generally intelligent and responsive to training, but their trainability may vary slightly.

Shih Poo

Shih Poos can be somewhat stubborn at times, but with patience and positive reinforcement training methods, they can excel in obedience and trick training. Early socialization and consistent training are essential for these breeds.

Poodle Crossbreeds

Poodle crossbreeds are known for their intelligence and eagerness to please, making them highly trainable. They often excel in various dog sports and activities, such as agility, obedience, and therapy work.

Are you a proud owner of a Shih Poo or Poodle crossbreed? Learn how to care for their grooming needs with our helpful guides on brushing dos and don’ts, DIY grooming shampoos, DIY haircuts, nail trimming, and discover the top 5 dog nail clippers for Shih Poos. Keep your furry friend looking and feeling their best!


Both the Shih Poo and Poodle crossbreeds make wonderful companions for the right owners. The Shih Poo is an excellent choice for those seeking a loyal, affectionate, and low-maintenance companion, while Poodle crossbreeds may be better suited for active families or individuals interested in participating in dog sports and activities. Ultimately, the decision between these two crossbreeds will depend on your lifestyle, living situation, and personal preferences. Whichever breed you choose, you’re sure to have a loving and devoted furry friend by your side.

Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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