The Papastzu, a hybrid mix of the Papillon and the Shih Tzu, is a breed developed in the United States in the late 1900's to the early 2000's for what appears to be solely for purposes of companionship and family pet. Beyond this place and approximate date of origin, there is little to no other history available about the hybrid itself. In order to get an idea of what the hybrid is and what it can be in your home and family, we will need to look at the histories of the parent breeds. The Papillon is one of the oldest of the spaniel-type breeds, its name being a French word meaning "butterfly". This particular moniker really fits the breed, describing the striking similarity of its ear set to the shape of a butterfly. This toy breed can be found in paintings, drawings and other recordings that go back at least 700 years in Europe. This breed, going back to the 1200's, has been pictured sitting in the laps of the female rich and famous of Spain, France and Italy all through the Renaissance periods, later becoming popular also in England and Belgium. Some believe that the ancestry of the Papillon included some Asian toy spaniel breeds like the Japanese Chin, while others believe its small size was obtained by breeding the smallest Papillons to reduce the original size. Regardless of which breeding theory you buy into, the earlier versions of the breed had dropped ears and was called the Phalene (meaning "moth"), however, over the centuries, the breeding changes which took place changed the ear set to the erect, fringed ears that resemble the butterfly that we see in the breed today. Thus the name Papillon describes the erect, fringed ear version while the dropped ear version is called the Phalene. The American Kennel Club recognized the Papillon in 1915 and it became eligible for full registration in the Toy group in 1935. It remains a quite popular lap and companion canine, especially for the ladies and elderly. The Shih Tzu breed also goes back many centuries, believed to have been bred in China and Tibet from the mixing of miniature Chinese breeds with smaller Tibetan breeds. Early on in its breed life, it was quite popular among the Chinese emperors, being given to other royalty as gifts. In the 1600's, small lion dogs began coming from Tibet and are said to have become part of the stock used to create the Shih Tzu we know and love today. In the early 1900's, a few of the breed made its way to England, then to Norway and eventually North America. In 1949, due to Communist intervention, the breed was almost made extinct. Were it not for a few brave breed fanciers who kept their dogs, this breed would have been eliminated. It is believed that 14 dogs became the foundation of the Shih Tzu breed of today. The Shih Tzu breed was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1969. The Papastzu hybrid is recognized by the following organizations: American Canine Hybrid Club, Designer Dogs Kennel Club, Designer Breed Registry, Dog Registry of America, Inc. and the International Designer Canine Registry.