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How Much Do Shih Tzus Cost: Price Guide: Top 20 US States

As a proud Shih Tzu owner, I understand how important it is to find the perfect furry friend at a reasonable price.

In this article, I’ll break down the costs of owning a Shih Tzu in the top 20 US states.

Remember, the overall cost of your Shih Tzu doesn’t just include the initial purchase or adoption price, but also factors in ongoing expenses like food, grooming, and veterinary care.

how much do shih tzus cost

Initial Purchase or Adoption Price

On average, you can expect to pay between $900 and $3,000 for a Shih Tzu puppy from a reputable breeder.

The price of a Shih Tzu varies depending on several factors, including pedigree, breeder reputation, and location.

Here’s a breakdown of the average prices you can expect to pay for a Shih Tzu puppy in the 20 most popular US states for Shih Tzus:

  1. California – $1,200 to $3,000
  2. Texas – $1,000 to $2,500
  3. Florida – $1,000 to $2,500
  4. New York – $1,500 to $3,500
  5. Pennsylvania – $1,000 to $2,500
  6. Illinois – $1,000 to $2,500
  7. Ohio – $900 to $2,000
  8. Georgia – $900 to $2,000
  9. North Carolina – $900 to $2,000
  10. Michigan – $900 to $2,000
  11. New Jersey – $1,500 to $3,500
  12. Virginia – $900 to $2,000
  13. Washington – $1,200 to $3,000
  14. Arizona – $1,000 to $2,500
  15. Massachusetts – $1,500 to $3,500
  16. Tennessee – $900 to $2,000
  17. Indiana – $900 to $2,000
  18. Missouri – $900 to $2,000
  19. Maryland – $1,000 to $2,500
  20. Wisconsin – $900 to $2,000

Keep in mind that these prices are just averages, and individual breeders may charge more or less depending on various factors.

If you’re looking to adopt a Shih Tzu, adoption fees generally range from $150 to $500, depending on the organization and any included services like vaccinations and spaying/neutering.

Ongoing Expenses

Once you’ve brought your new Shih Tzu home, you’ll need to budget for ongoing expenses. Here’s a breakdown of the main costs associated with owning a Shih Tzu:

  • Food: On average, you can expect to spend around $30 to $60 per month on high-quality dog food. Keep in mind that this cost can vary depending on the size, age, and activity level of your Shih Tzu.
  • Grooming: Shih Tzus are known for their beautiful, flowing coats, which require regular grooming. Professional grooming can cost anywhere from $40 to $70 per session. To save money, you can also learn to groom your Shih Tzu at home, but you’ll need to invest in grooming tools like clippers, brushes, and nail trimmers.
  • Veterinary Care: Routine vet visits, vaccinations, and preventive medications for your Shih Tzu will cost approximately $200 to $400 per year. However, this amount can increase significantly if your dog develops any health issues. For this reason, it’s a good idea to consider pet insurance, which typically costs around $30 to $50 per month.
  • Training: While Shih Tzus are intelligent and eager to please, they can also be stubborn at times. Investing in training classes or hiring a professional trainer can help establish good behavior and strengthen your bond with your pet. Group classes typically cost between $100 and $200 for a 6-8 week course, while private training sessions range from $50 to $100 per hour.
  • Toys and Accessories: To keep your Shih Tzu entertained and comfortable, you’ll need to purchase toys, bedding, leashes, collars, and other accessories. Initial costs for these items can range from $100 to $300, while replacing worn-out items can add an additional $50 to $100 per year.
  • Miscellaneous Expenses: Depending on your individual circumstances, you may also need to budget for other expenses like dog walking services, boarding, or doggy daycare. These costs can vary widely depending on your location and the specific services you require.

Tips for Saving Money on Shih Tzu Ownership

Owning a Shih Tzu can be expensive, but there are ways to reduce costs without compromising your pet’s well-being.

Here are some tips to help you save money with your Shih Tzu:

  • Adopt, Don’t Shop: Adopting a Shih Tzu from a rescue organization or animal shelter can save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars compared to purchasing a puppy from a breeder. Plus, you’ll be giving a loving home to a dog in need.
  • Buy in Bulk: Purchasing dog food, treats, and other supplies in bulk can lead to significant savings over time. Just be sure to store these items properly to maintain freshness and prevent spoilage.
  • DIY Grooming: Learning to groom your Shih Tzu at home can save you money on professional grooming services. There are many online resources, like PetMD, that can guide you through the process.
  • Preventive Care: Regular vet checkups and vaccinations can help catch potential health issues early, potentially saving you money on costly treatments down the line. The AKC offers a helpful guide on what vaccinations your Shih Tzu needs and when they should be administered.
  • Shop Around: Comparing prices for pet supplies and services can help you find the best deals. Don’t be afraid to ask for discounts or inquire about promotions and loyalty programs.

The True Cost of Shih Tzu Ownership

The cost of owning a Shih Tzu can vary greatly depending on factors like your location, your dog’s specific needs, and your personal preferences.

However, it’s important to remember that owning a dog is a long-term commitment, and the overall cost of your Shih Tzu will extend far beyond the initial purchase or adoption price.

Before bringing a Shih Tzu into your life, be sure you’re prepared to budget for ongoing expenses like food, grooming, and veterinary care.

By being proactive about preventive care and looking for ways to save on pet expenses, you can enjoy the many benefits of Shih Tzu ownership without breaking the bank.

Last thoughts

To learn more about Shih Tzus and their specific needs, visit reputable pet websites like AKC, PetMD, and VCA Hospitals. These resources can provide valuable information on breed characteristics, health concerns, and best practices for care and training


Before making any decisions that could affect the health and/or safety of your dog, you should always consult a trained veterinarian in your local area. Even though this content may have been written/reviewed by a trained veterinarian, our advice to you is to always consult your own local veterinarian in person. Please read our full dislcaimer if you have any questions.