15-22 lbs
American Eskimo
Shih Tzu
The Shih-Mo is a hybrid designer dog that is obtained from a cross between an American Eskimo and a Shih Tzu. The hybrid has been a popular mix for the last 20 years. Its exact origins are unknown. This small dog possesses the combined characteristics of both parents to create a delightful companion. The Shih-Mo is relatively short and stands only 12 to 18 inches and weighs 15 to 25 pounds. Females tend to be a bit smaller than males. The Shih-Mo has long, silky fur and comes in shades of cream and tan. He is affectionate and lovable. The Shih-Mo is usually considered an excellent companion for small children or seniors. He adores being a lapdog and having ample amounts of attention lavished on him.
Date of Origin
American Eskimo and Shih Tzu

Shih-Mo Health

Average Size
Male Shih-Mo size stats
Height: 15-18 inches Weight: 18-25 lbs
Female Shih-Mo size stats
Height: 12-16 inches Weight: 15-22 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Liver Disease
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Eye Problems
  • Kidney Problems
  • Legg-Calve Perthes Disease
  • Pateller Luxation
  • Bladder Stones and Infections
Minor Concerns
  • Ear Infections
  • Allergies
  • Hernia
  • Reverse Sneezing
  • Dental Problems
Occasional Diagnoses
  • None Known
Occasional Tests
  • Dental Examination
  • Eye examination
  • Chest X-rays
  • Clinical Exam

Shih-Mo Breed History

The Shih-Mo is a cross between a Shih Tzu and an American Eskimo dog. In many cases, the breed is a 50/50 mix but with each consecutive generation, the ratio alters a bit. Despite the percentage, the Shih-Mo remains a combination of both the Shih Tzu and the American Eskimo so shares many of both its parent’s unique characteristics. The Shih Tzu is a noble and ancient breed. The dog’s history can be traced back to both China and Tibet where it was a favored companion dog in the Tang dynasty. Once only a pet of the nobility, the Shih Tzu became a commoner's canine during the Ming dynasty. In 1928, a breeding pair was shipped to the United Kingdom. Eventually, the breed made its way to the United States where it was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1969. The American Eskimo is from the Nordic family of dogs known as the ‘Spitz’. Its exact origins are unknown but the dog was a common pet in the 19th century in many German communities in America. It would eventually become a popular breed used by circus entertainers to perform tricks. The American Eskimo joined the American Kennel Club in 1994. This small dog is exceptionally smart and always willing to please his owner. The Shih-Mo is a delightful combination of both its parents.

Shih-Mo Breed Appearance

The Shih-Mo is considered a small to medium sized dogs. He typically has long legs and a compact body. His tail curls up across his back. His ears resemble the Shih Tzu’s. Many people think that the face of the Shih-Mo more closely resembles that of the Shih Tzu instead of the American Eskimo. The Shih-Mo has an alert appearance with bright, shining eyes. His hindquarters are well muscled and slightly larger than his chest area which gives him a cute and unusual form. 

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Shih-Mo eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Shih-Mo nose
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Shih-Mo straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Shih-Mo Breed Maintenance

This small dog has a long, silky, straight coat the comes in shades of cream, white, brown, and black. He sheds moderately and does require daily brushing to prevent tangles. This soft little dog benefits from a professional grooming once a month. Many owners opt to have his long coat sheared short to prolong grooming visits. He has no significant odor and usually only requires a bath once a month. His ears should be wiped clean weekly. This dog's toenails often require monthly clipping. Many owners opt to brush their dog’s teeth a few times a week to prevent future periodontal disease
Brushes for Shih-Mo
Slicker Brush
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
Shih-Mo requires daily brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Shih-Mo Temperament

Unlike many other small dogs, the Shih Mo loves children and is a great companion for youngsters. He is also ideal for a senior because he requires very little care and loves to while away his hours as a spoiled lapdog. The Shih Mo is ideal for anyone with other pets because he gets along well with dogs or cats. He tends to be a very happy dog who is always willing to please his owner. When a stranger approaches, he is protective and may bark. The Shih-Mo is not an excessive barker like some small dogs. He makes a wonderful apartment dog as long as he is allowed adequate time outside for a change of scenery.

Shih-Mo Activity Requirements

The Shih-Mo is an excellent combination of its two parent breeds. The Shih Tzu tends to be a laid back lapdog and the American Eskimo loves to play and is bursting with energy. The Shih-Mo loves to be cuddled on a warm lap but is always ready for a fun walk and a bit of playtime. His desire to play is one of the reasons why the Shih-Mo excels as a child’s companion. He will benefit from a daily hour-long walk but if his owner doesn’t feel like walking then he is happy to play indoors. His versatility is one of the reasons why he is an ideal apartment dog.  The Shih-Mo bonds closely with his owner and make an exceptionally loving companion.
Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
5 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes

Shih-Mo Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
1 cups
Daily Cost
$0.90 - $1.00
Monthly Cost
$25.00 - $30.00

Shih-Mo Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Shih-Mo size stats at six months
Height: 13.5 inches Weight: 7.0 lbs
Female Shih-Mo size stats at six months
Height: 11.5 inches Weight: 6.0 lbs
12 Months
Male Shih-Mo size stats at 12 months
Height: 16.5 inches Weight: 11.0 lbs
Female Shih-Mo size stats at 12 months
Height: 14.0 inches Weight: 9.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Shih-Mo size stats at 18 months
Height: 16.5 inches Weight: 21.5 lbs
Female Shih-Mo size stats at 18 months
Height: 14.0 inches Weight: 18.5 lbs

Shih-Mo Owner Experiences

Prince Darius
4 Years
2 People
He loves senior dogs but all dogs really not so much puppies. He love all animals cats, my friends snake, birds, frogs lol he’s absolutely curious by everything it cute he watches tv with me love to be on my lap & just feel me pet him. He loves babies and kids & old people men he has an issue with because he’s a rescue. Swimming he’ll do it if I’m in the water but he’s a little afraid of it cause he’s small & when I go underwater he barks thinking I’ll drown, he’s very protective of me & my grandma. If a stranger gets close & he doesn’t like them he’ll growl never bite not unless you pet him while he’s growled I know that would push him to his limit happened. I feed him a raw / freeze dried diet he’s very healthy cost very soft & shiny, it was really easy to train him with any dog especially if they’re a puppy train everyday for 30 minutes for older dogs you can still train would just take more time but with him he’s pretty fast; roll over, spin, sit, ‘against the wall’ aka sitting upright, high five, paw, fist pump, lay, stay, eat, crawl, beg, & bark. This breed is definitely family oriented loves to just be with you he never lets me cry or my grandma he’ll give you kisses & cry for you it makes you laugh helps a lot considering my grandma has dementia he’s a major stress reliever & mine, even if you’re single he’s still a great breed to have a great friend by your side maybe just just a cat or dog to keep each other company while you are at work.
4 days ago
3 Years
3 People
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Ezra is a very happy shih-mo that loves constant attention and affection. He loves playing dress-up, going bye-bye in the car, and making new friends.
9 months, 1 week ago
6 Years
3 People
House & Yard
She’s protective and lovable. She loves attention.
2 years, 4 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
Sketch of smiling australian shepherd