Skip to Content

Differences Between A Shih Poo and Maltipoo

Differences Between A Shih Poo and Maltipoo

In this article, I’ll be exploring the differences between A Shih Poo and Maltipoo. When you think of Doodles, you most likely think about larger breeds. But, there are a lot of great smaller breeds too. These breeds can be great for apartment dwellers or people with small children. Today, we are going to explore the differences between a Shih Poo and Maltipoo. These are two excellent dogs to bring into your home, and here is why…

Deep-Rooted Origins

  • Some of the fascinating differences between all breeds are their origins. The history that took their breeding to make specific traits and personalities that we all know and love today.

Both Doodle Origins

  • Both of these breeds are Doodles. That means that half of their history comes from the Poodle. Since both of these breeds are smaller Doodles, they both have origins in a toy or miniature Poodle. Toy and Miniature Poodles were created to be some of the first companion breeds. These dogs have it in their DNA to be lap dogs.

Shih Poo History

  • Maltipoo Owner's Manual

    Maltipoo Owner’s Manual

    As you can tell by their names, the Shih Poo is a cross from a Shih Tzu. The Shih Tzu originated in China for royalty. There is debate on the exact origins of these pups since trading them with outsiders before the 1900s was banned. But, one thing is for sure, they were bred to be pampered and loved by all. Shihpoo is a recently discovered designer breed to be the perfect companion.

Maltipoo History

  • The Maltipoo got their other half from the amazing Maltese. The Maltese can trace their history back to the Greek and Roman empires. These dogs are in paintings and books as being the perfect family pet for the upper class of Greece and Rome. They are well-behaved with children and other pets. The first Maltipoo came about recently to be the ideal addition to many homes all over the world.

What’s Their Temperament?

  • The temperament of a breed can help you decide if they are right for your family. The temperament is how the dog is known to behave through rigorous breeding and genetics.

Shihpoo Temperament

  • Shih Poo Complete Owner's Manual

    Shih Poo Complete Owner’s Manual

    A Shih poo is known to be a very loving dog. They will enjoy every second sitting by your side getting love. They will love cuddling and being playful with a dash of teasing. Most Shihpoos will enjoy every day being with you and following you around at the heel.

Maltipoo Temperament

  • Your Maltipoo will be very courageous and a little bit independent. They will love your affection and company throughout the day, but they don’t want you to know it. You will often see a sassy side of your Maltipoo that comes out just a little bit goofy. After all, you are the one that loves them and feeds them. So, they have to love you back, right?

Energy Levels

  • While there are many differences between a Shih Poo and Maltipoo, energy levels are about the same.
  • Both of these dogs were bred to be great house pets and lapdogs. They don’t require a lot of exercise throughout the day, or even a large yard. They love playtime, but you can often see them lounging around the house with their owners and soaking up some sun.
  • The only time you may see these Doodles more excited is with company. Both breeds tend to bark at strangers and unfamiliar noises, but they warm up quickly. Soon they will think your visitor is there just for them.

Training and Intelligence

  • When everyone gets a new puppy, they always want to know how easier the breed is to train. While Doodles are brilliant, this does not always translate into easy to train.

Training A Shihpoo

  • Shihpoos are highly intelligent and can learn very quickly. But, they also tend to be stubborn. If you start training at a young age and be diligent, it will make the training process faster. Always use positive reinforcement to coax your Shihpoo into wanting to perform tricks.

Training A Maltipoo

  • Maltipoos are just as intelligent as a Shihpoo. They are fast learners and love to please you. But, they can also be very sensitive to punishments. So remember always to keep calm and be patient with these guys.

Coat Types

  • When it comes to coat types, the Shihpoo and Maltipoo are very similar. They both have a wavy to curly coat that comes in a wide variety of colors. But, the most critical question to answer is, “Do they shed?”
  • Both of these Doodles have minimal shedding. Poodles are used specifically for hypoallergenic traits. But, with these Doodles, neither one has a parent that sheds much. The Shih Tzu and Maltese are both known to have minimal shedding and are great for allergy sufferers.
  • This can be an excellent characteristic to reduce the chances of getting a dog that sheds a lot. Doodles bred with a shedding parent are harder to predict the coat types. You won’t have to worry about that at all with these breeds.


  • Ceenwes Dog Clippers

    Ceenwes Dog Clippers

    Grooming your Shih Poo and Maltipoo will be identical. You will have to invest a fair amount of time brushing your dog daily. Focusing on areas like the elbows, stomach, and behind the ears will help prevent matting. You will need to invest in excellent quality grooming supplies for at-home use to keep your dog looking great.

  • These Doodles will also need to see a professional groomer every 6-8 weeks. Since they do not shed, they will need to have their hair cut and styled regularly. Frequent visits are preferred to keep your Doodle’s coat looking great. Skipping visits and waiting too long can result in unwanted shave downs by the groomer. But this is not to be mean; it is a necessity if your dog’s coat is matted and unkempt.

Size And Lifespan

  • When looking at the differences between a Shih Poo and Maltipoo, you may notice that they both have very similar sizes. A Shih Poo will grow to be 8-18 pounds and a Maltipoo, only 5-20 pounds.
  • This can seem like a wide size range for each breed. That is because the Poodle parent can be either toy or miniature, which will affect the puppy’s size. If you want a smaller dog, always view the parents first. The puppy will always be about the same size as the parents. It is impossible to get a little dog from large parents.
  • What’s their lifespan like? A long time. a Shih Poo in excellent health and breeding can live anywhere between 12-15 years. And a Maltipoo can live between 10-13 years. But, you can get more years out of your beloved dog with proper diet, exercise, superior breeding, and wellness checkups by your vet.

Medical Conditions

  • Because the Shihpoo and Maltipoo are hybrid breeds, they are prone to getting diseases prevalent in their parents. And since the Shih Tzu and Maltese are greatly over-bred and inbred, it makes them more likely to carry genetic deformities. Both of these breeds are prone to getting everything from cleft palates to renal failure to eye diseases.
  • While you can not predict all medical conditions that your puppy will develop, there are steps to prevent it. First, always make sure that you are buying from a reputable breeder. This breeder will do genetic tests on all breeding pairs before planning for a litter. These results will be ready for you to view at any time. Keep in mind that your puppy will cost more, but it is worth it.
  • Second, keep up with all wellness checks and dental exams with your vet. These checks can diagnose diseases early and prevent them from spreading.

Price Tag

  • One of the most significant differences between a Shih Poo and Maltipoo is the price.
  • A Shih Poo has an average cost of $1,700-$5,700, while a Maltipoo can cost just $400-$2,000.
  • These prices can vary on location, and only include the breeder price. Since both of these Doodles are a newer breed, it can be difficult in some areas to find. The scarcity of them will make them more expensive, and waiting lists longer.
  • While both of these pups can have a hefty price tag, they don’t cost much for upkeep. Unlike larger Doodles, these breeds cost less in food because they do not eat as much or have high energy levels. They also cost less to groom since most groomers charge by the size of the dog.

Why Would I Get One?

  • Well, the answer is simple. Because you want a close companion that will enjoy your company as much as you love theirs. These Doodles make great pets for people who are not very outgoing and active. They are perfect for smaller children or even people who don’t have the energy to keep up with larger dogs.
  • Both the Shih Poo and Maltipoo have great personalities that give your life a little extra spark. You may want a pet that is low maintenance and yet will still love to cuddle. After all, you can’t cuddle a goldfish. That is why these small dogs make great pets that everyone should consider having.

Do we have you convinced yet?

Below is a Pinterest friendly photo…. so you can pin it to your Doodle Board!!

Sharing is caring!