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The Secret Shih Tzu Of The Imperial Palace Do Live On In 2005 - Articles Surfing
An explanation of why the first English Shih Tzu imports were 'very large' is during the days of imperial rule eunuchs were in charge. Eunuchs tried to profit from all breedings. The oversized specimens produced were passed into the hands of the general public.
Eunuchs fed glass to the small Imperial Shih Tzu just shortly before committing suicide themselves. This practice kept others from breeding their bloodlines of the smaller type Imperial Shih Tzu. I suppose feeding the Shih Tzu glass was the only way they could think of to 'protect their bloodlines. This practice is comparable to the Shih Tzu breeders of today, some of whom, routinely spay and neuter their Shih Tzu at the very young age of 8 weeks. There are, however, many health advantages to spaying and neutering a Shih Tzu puppy early. Most vets agree spaying and neutering should be done not sooner than 6 months of age.
The Countess d'Anjou was a leading western authority on the Shih Tzu breed. She felt the first English Shih Tzu imports were too large. She agreed to a Peking Kennel Club standard of 10 to 15 pounds. This was an agreement she later regretted. In a very famous letter the Countess wrote to Mrs. Widdrington, she states the Shih Tzu really should be under 12 pounds. At one time in Peking they had two classes, up to 12 pounds and over 12 pounds judged separately. She went on to say in her letter to Mrs. Widdrington, 'they never had the big ones in the Imperial Palace'' The Countess acquired her information from the Princess Der Ling who was a lady-in-waiting at court. Princess Der Ling had a unique position to know exactly what the palace dogs were truly like. The Countess' letter gave no explanation as to what happened to the larger Shih Tzu. Her letter did make it quite clear that only the small Shih Tzu were kept in the Imperial Palace. There was some measure of priority given to them at Peking Kennel Club Shows. The Countess' wanted this arrangement to continue in Europe. Obviously this did not happen.
Empress Dowager and the eunuchs did not want outsiders to have possession of the smaller size Shih Tzu. However, these little guys do still live on with some of us. The tactics used to keep the smaller size Shih Tzu a secret of the Imperial Palace was not completely successful.
I want to emphasize the fact that the American Kennel Club's standard weight for a Shih Tzu is 9 to 16 pounds. Any Shih Tzu entered into AKC competitions under this weight is considered a fault and is disqualified.
There are not two separate types of Shih Tzu according to the current American Kennel Club standard in the year of 2005. The nicknames of Imperial and Teacup Shih Tzu for Shih Tzu under 9 pounds in weight are just that ' Nicknames. These are not official names given to the Shih Tzu.
Take a closer look at the history and development of the Shih Tzu since the fall of the Imperial Palace. The smaller type Shih Tzu genes are interspersed throughout our bloodlines. Imperial and Teacup Shih Tzu, commonly nicknamed, are a direct result of the Original Imperial Palace Shih Tzu. The Pekingese cross after the fall of the Imperial Palace also accounts for the smaller size Shih Tzu. It is not true that 'size' predicts health status. It is not true that all small size Shih Tzu are produced from excessive line-breeding and inbreeding of close relatives.
This article does not promote or advocate the crossbreeding of Shih Tzu with any other breed to reduce size or for any other reason. The American Shih Tzu Club code of ethics clearly states this is not acceptable. The code of ethics should be followed.
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Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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