Imperial Shih Tzu
True Facts about the Chinese Imperial!
The True "" Facts" about the Chinese Imperial Dog
also known as Imperial Shih Tzu
We have too often seen the ASTC's version of the " Facts About the Imperial Shih Tzu". Many of these so called "facts" are nothing more than an attempt to discredit the smaller dog and those who breed them. What is true is that the Chinese Imperial or Imperial Shih Tzu does not conform to the standard that the ASTC has set for the size THEY feel that the shih tzu should be. That is the only thing that is true about the propaganda they have put out there, even going so far as to have AKC include a flyer with shih tzu registrations discrediting not only the smaller dog, but those who breed them. This is slanderous material put out there because of the popularity of the smaller size. (The ASTC had to change the wording in this flyer since this was originally written) It is motivated by money..... money that is being spent on the smaller size dog, rather than the larger standard size shih tzu. We love the standards. We love the temperament of the breed. They are wonderful family dogs who get along well with children and other pets. What most Imperial breeders love more though, is the smaller size of the same dog. In many cases, the Imperial size is indeed more expensive than the larger standard shih tzu. It is relative though to the number of pups that a Chinese Imperial can produce in one litter, and the time and work involved in raising them to an age where they can go to their new homes.
The Chinese Imperial, or Imperial Shih Tzu is NO MYTH, as the ASTC states. There are literally thousands upon thousands of them out there living long happy lives. The life span of the Chinese Imperial is the same as the standard size with most living 12 to 15 years. They have no more serious health problems than the larger Shih Tzu, and are not small because they are unhealthy. They are small because the breeders have carefully selected their breeding dogs to have smaller lines. They are small because we want them small. We cannot speak for ALL Imperial breeders, the same as the ASTC cannot state that ALL breeders of the Standard Shih Tzu are reputable or ethical, however from what we have experienced, most Imperial Breeders are very concerned with the health of their puppies and select their dogs carefully for health and temperament. Many give 1 to 5 year guarantees on the genetic health of their puppies offering replacements in the off chance that a puppy should die during that time from a genetic disorder and would never knowingly breed any dog that had any serious health issue. What we consider a reputable or ethical breeder is one who is honest an stands behind their puppies. A reputable and ethical breeder offers support, and in most cases has a contract and guarantee spelling out exactly what you are getting. The smaller Imperial IS recognized by AKC. They take our money every time we register a litter or a puppy regardless of the size of the dog. They are registered as Shih Tzu, which is what they are, just in a smaller package than what the ASTC has designated as the "ideal" size.
The Chinese Imperial Dog is just a name given by those who have fallen in love with the smaller Shih Tzu to distinguish it from it's larger counter parts. The Chinese Imperial Dog Club was formed so that the breeders and fanciers of the smaller dog could come together and learn from each other and work towards getting the smaller dog recognized as it's own separate version of the breed. The parent club for the Chinese Imperial also has breed standards for this version of the Shih Tzu. Most of your dog sites now do recognize the Chinese Imperial Dog and have special categories just for breeders of this dog. The Chinese Imperial Dog has it's own separate registry www.Chinese-Imperial-Dog-RegistryofAmerica.com. We are not the only breed who is a " variation" of another AKC recognized breed. The Biewer Terrier is a variation of the Yorkie by color. The parent club does not recognize the party colored Yorkie, thus the Biewer Terrier was created.
We have stood by for years and ignored the slanderous material created by the ASTC in an effort to discredit our dogs and the breeders of these smaller dogs known as Chinese Imperials, or Imperial Shih Tzu but when we started seeing the untruths about the health of our little dogs and statements that call the breeders of the smaller dog unethical distributed by AKC upon instruction of the ASTC, we felt it was time to take a stand against these untruths.
Written by me for the
Chinese Imperial Dog Club of America