Affen Tzu

Mary Simpson
by Mary Simpson
fast facts

About Affen Tzu

10-14 lb
8-12 inches
11-15 years
Not Applicable
Best Suited For
singles, seniors, families with or without kids and pets, those living in apartments
friendly, affectionate, fearless, devoted
Comparable Breeds
Affenpinscher, Shih Tzu
Affen Tzu Basics

The fearless little Affen Tzu brings the sweet-natured personality of the Shih Tzu together with the spunky spirit of the Affenpinscher for a feisty companion dog that bonds closely with his human pack and loves to be involved in all family activities. This small pooch with the big personality is the perfect choice for singles or families that have the time to devote to him.

The fearless Affen Tzu brings together the sweet nature of the Shih Tzu and the spunky spirit of the Affenpinscher.


While both the Affenpinscher and the Shih Tzu are ancient breeds that date back to Germany and China respectively, the Affen Tzu is a relatively new dog that likely goes back just 30 years to when Designer Dogs first became popular. Breeders crossed different pure-breds to produce pups that carried desirable traits such as gentler personalities, smaller sizes and hypo-allergenic qualities – without the health issues of their parents.


The Affen Tzu’s Designer Dog status means he doesn’t qualify to join the American Kennel Club (AKC) roster of pure-breeds however both parent breeds are long-time members; the Affenpinscher joined the “toy” group back in 1936 while the Shih Tzu became a member of the same group in 1969.


The Affen Tzu is a small or toy-sized dog who is fairly active and needs a top-quality kibble specifically designed for his size, age and activity level. Because this breed can experience joint issues later in life its important he not become obese so plan to feed him 2 to 3 meals each day versus free-feeding and select a blend that is low in fillers that may cause him to over-eat to feel full. Flat-faced dogs can also have challenges with regular shaped food dishes so check out some of the specially angled bowls designed for this type of breed – they’ll allow him easier access to his food and a cleaner meal period.


The Affen Tzu can be a stubborn little dog and patience will be required when training him. Take a firm, consistent approach that establishes pack leadership but in a manner that will keep him motivated and engaged in the process. Lots of praise and rewards will go a long way in getting the results you are seeking.


The little Affen Tzu will weigh in at just 10 to 14 pounds once he reaches adulthood.


The Affen Tzu is a fun, spirited little dog that thrives on human companionship and just hanging out with his people. This pooch has a stubborn streak and can become territorial with his “stuff” to the extent he may be prepared to do battle with larger dogs. Early socialization will help break him of this trait and ensure he learns to play nice with kids and other animals. He is affectionate, energetic and tremendously loyal to his family. Be aware that he can adapt “small dog syndrome” and decide that he rules the household if not taught differently. While he is super alert, he won’t always react to strangers so not the best watchdog.

Common Health Problems

While designer dogs are typically healthier than their pure-bred parents, it’s important to know what your new pup could inherit. With the Affen Tzu a lot depends on which body structure they inherit. If more like the Shih Tzu, health issues can include eye and respiratory issues due to the flatter face and bulging eyes. If the Affenpinscher, health concerns could include the same respiratory problems due to facial structure as well as joint issues including patella luxation and hip dysplasia.

Life Expectancy

The Affen Tzu has a lifespan of between 11 and 15 years.

Exercise Requirements

The Affen Tzu’s size dictates his exercise needs – which is not marathon walks or runs. A good daily walk and tossed ball in the yard or dog park will be sufficient to keep him physically fit and mentally stimulated. This pooch is a great candidate for puzzle toys and indoor activities that will help keep him engaged and “busy”.

Recognized Clubs

Also known as the Affie Tzu, the Affen Tzu is not recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC) because he is a cross of two different pure-breds. He is however, a member of the Designer Breed Registry (DBR) and the Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA).

The fearless Affen Tzu thrives on human companionship and loves just hanging out with his family.


While the Affen Tzu’s soft, thick coat is considered low-to-non-shedding, he will still need brushing once or twice a week to keep it shiny and tangle-free. Professional grooming may be down to personal preference versus necessity and bathing should only be done as needed. This dog may inherit the floppy ears of the Shih Tzu so be sure to inspect and clean weekly to avoid potential infection.


Small dogs produce tiny pups and extra care should be taken when handling Affen Tzu puppies or allowing children to play with them as any joint injury can become a serious problem when this dog gets older. This is a stubborn little pooch, so ensure socialization starts at a young age and that pack leadership is established from the onset.

Photo credit: M. Matthieu/Shutterstock; NcikName/Shutterstock

Mary Simpson
Mary Simpson

Sharing space with three seriously judgy Schnoodles and a feline who prefers to be left alone. #LivingMyBestLife

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