- Height: 8-10 inches
- Weight: 15-20 lb
- Lifespan: 12-15 years
- Group: Not Applicable
- Best Suited For: active families with older kids and other pets, apartment dwellers, experienced dog owners
- Temperament: aloof, loyal, affectionate, active
- Comparable Breeds: Scottish Terrier, Shih Tzu
The scruffy little Sco-Shi brings together the feisty personality of the Shih Tzu and the tenacious nature of the Scottish Terrier for a loyal but often headstrong family pooch that loves to spend time with his human pack. While he enjoys his walkies, this confident doggie doesn’t require a lot of activity nor does he suffer from separation anxiety so he’s cool with being left on his own for longer periods of time.
The Sco-Shi is a fun mix of the feisty Shih Tzu and the tenacious Scottish Terrier.
The Sco-Shi is a cross of the Shih Tzu that dates back to Tibet around the year 800 and the Scottish Terrier who first appears around the turn of the 19th century. Although his lineage has been centuries in the making, the Sco-Shi himself likely only dates back to the 1980s when breeders first began crossing pure-bred dogs to create pups free from many of the health issues of their pure-bred parents. These dogs also often carry some of the more desirable traits of popular breeds such as gentler personalities, smaller sizes and hypo-allergenic qualities.
Both the Sco-Shi’s parent breeds are members of the American Kennel Club (AKC); the Shih Tzu joined this coveted club’s “toy” group back in 1969 while the Scottish Terrier became a member of the “terrier” group way back in 1885.
The Sco-Shi is not an overly active dog and while he enjoys a good walk, he enjoys his food and can become obese if not monitored. Always choose a food specifically designed to meet his age, size and activity levels and opt for a top-quality kibble free from fillers such as carbohydrates that may cause him to overeat to feel full. Plan to feed him 2 to 3 small meals each day versus allow him to free feed.
The wee yet feisty Sco-Shi pup can grow into a stubborn little dog.
While the Sco-Shi is quite a bright dog, he is an independent thinker with a touch of the terrier so doesn’t always choose to obey commands. Patience will be required while training this little guy and because he can become aggressive toward other animals, he will need a firm, consistent approach that establishes pack leadership early on. Of course, every dog loves a reward for a job well done, so pack treats!
When he reaches adulthood, the Sco-Shi will weigh between 7 and 14 pounds.
The Sco-Shi is a feisty, independent little dog who may well possess the terrier trait to hunt, chase and herd… so he needs to be socialized before entering a home with other pets. He is highly loyal and can be aloof with strangers or even family members he deems are not his true pet parent. While he isn’t prone to barking, he is protective and won’t hesitate to vocalize his concerns as he sees fit. Smart, loving and confident, he doesn’t suffer from separation anxiety and is comfortable being left to his own devices for longer periods of time.
Common Health Problems
Although the Sco-Shi is considered a healthy dog it’s important to know what medical issues may be genetic. For the Sco-Shi, he may inherit joint issues as well as problems with his eyes including cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy and dry eye.
Your Sco-Shi will live between 12 and 15 years.
Although the Sco-Shi isn’t considered a super energetic pooch, he does need regular exercise to keep him physically fit and mentally stimulated. Short daily walks should be sufficient but because he is part Terrier the urge to chase is there so ensure he is trained to respond to basic commands before setting him loose in a dog park. He can become distracted if he picks up a trail so any off-leash activity in a non-fenced area needs to be supervised to ensure he doesn’t wander off.
The confident little Sco-Shi isn’t bothered by separation anxiety.
The Sco-Shi’s designer dog status means he isn’t eligible to join the American Kennel Club’s roster of purebreds however he is recognized by American Canine Hybrid Club (ACHC) and the Dog Registry of America, Inc. (DRA.
The medium-to longer-haired coat of the Sco-Shi will tend to look a bit scruffy and may (or may not) include the iconic Scottie beard. This pooch is a moderate-shedder and will need brushing 2 to 3 times a week to avoid excessive hair loss in the home and to prevent tangles and matting. As with all floppy eared dogs he will need to have a weekly inspection and ear cleaning to prevent infection and as smaller dogs are prone to dental issues, teeth should be brushed 1 to 2 times per week.
The wee yet feisty Sco-Shi pup can grow into a stubborn little dog that doesn’t like to play nice with other animals. As a result, plan to socialize him from a very young age so that he becomes used to new faces and sharing time with his human. Obedience is also crucial with this dog to ensure he responds quickly to commands – always important with a dog that wanders.
Photo credit: Lindsay Helms/Shutterstock; Joyce Marrero/Shutterstock