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The Shih Tzu Tibetan Heritage - Articles Surfing
There has also been opinions that the Tibetan Lion Dog is the result of a cross between the Lhassa Terrier and the Pekingese. The dogs of each country, the Lhassa Terrier from Tibet and the Pekingese from China had been taken to the other country from time to time. The cross in Tibet that was taken out of that country through India has been called the Apso, while the Chinese cross has more of the Pekingese. It is the opinion of some that all these breeds were interbred to create the first Shih Tzu in China.
When first Shih Tzu imported into England in 1930, the Shih Tzu were classified as Apsos. The two breeds were distinguished as separate in 1934.
The Shih Tzu of Scandinavian background were in an even different category during this same time period. It is not documented anywhere of any of the Shih Tzu Scandinavian lines being mistaken for Lhasa Apso, even after importation into the United States. Their appearance was so different of the Lhasa Apso that there was no likelihood of confusing the Scandinavian Shih Tzu lines with the Lhasa Apso.
There was a considerable amount of fear expressed by the British Shih Tzu Club of potential 'disastrous' crossbreedings in the United States. They encouraged future American purchasers to avoid any further confusion between the Shih Tzu and Lhasa Apso in the U.S.A.
The American Shih Tzu Club code of ethics plainly states that crossbreeding a Shih Tzu with any other breed, whether it be with Lhasa Apso or the Pekingese breed, is strictly prohibited. This code of ethics should be adhered to by all Shih Tzu Purebred Breeders.
The two breeds of the Lhasa Apso and the Shih Tzu have been kept separate now for many years. A suggestion to help distinquish the two breeds from one another is to always show the Shih Tzu with the long sweep of hair on the top of the head tied with a rubber band into a top knot, the hair above the head then fanning out into a 'palm tree.' The Apso has its long hair of the head styled as parted n the center, then mingling with the ear featherings.
The fact that both Shih Tzu and the Lhasa Apso have common ancestry is highly probable according to all the documentations found in our history of the two breeds. However, one should continually look for and appreciate the subtleties of the different characteristics of Chinese Shih Tzu and Tibetan Apso. They have become two quite distinctly different breeds.
The earliest 'Lion Dog' in Tibet were probably long-haired and small and somewhat similar to the Maltese in type. As the cultural and religious ties between Tibet and China flowed over the centuries, the exchange of dogs no doubt became mutual between them. The Chinese have been most certainly known to interbred their small dogs, of which were more varieties than the Shih Tzu, with the long-haired Tibetans, and something similar occurred in Tibet without much reason to doubt this fact.
Again, however, I want to emphasize here: The crossbreedings mentioned in this article is a part of our past Shih Tzu History. The Present Day American Shih Tzu Club's Code of Ethics clearly states that crossbreeding a Shih Tzu with any other breed, is strictly prohibited and against the Shih Tzu Purebred Ethics for a Shih Tzu Breeder of the Purebred Shih Tzu. We must all adhere to this Code of Ethics.
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Copyright © 1995 - Photius Coutsoukis (All Rights Reserved).
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