Shih Tzu Food To Avoid (24 Foods to stay away from)

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A more significant portion of your Shih Tzu’s health is determined by what he eats. Shih Tzu is a very compact-sized lapdog; it doesn’t mean that they won’t eat less than other dogs; they are always open-hearted when it comes to eating.

Don’t fall too much for their love that you don’t consider the health benefits of the food and directly feed them. You might not know what effects different foods have on their health.

Today we will be discussing all the foods to feed a Shih Tzu. We would also test some myths and prove whether they are wrong or right.

We will be sharing the basic feeding guidelines for Shih Tzu. Moreover, we would shower some light on the eating problems that Shih Tzu faces so that you can remain aware of them.

In the end, we would also be sorting out things to be eaten and things not to be eaten. So, stick with us till the end if you are worried about Shih Tzu food.

Shih Tzu Food To Avoid
Shih Tzu Food To Avoid

Shih Tzu Food To Avoid

Some food your Shi Tzu needs to avoid are chocolates, avocados, grapes, currants, raisins, cherries, ham, etc. These types of foods will most of the time, cause harm to your Shih Tzu.

We feel guilty when not giving our Shih Tzu the food it likes and gazes for long sitting on the dining table. But at the same time, we also feel proud that we had saved our Shih Tzu from not eating the foods that aren’t recommended for him and are not suitable for his health.

We all know well that our dogs are always attracted to the smell of the foods, even if those foods aren’t healthy and beneficial. Some foods are toxic to the Shih Tzu’s health and should be avoided not to feed at any cost.

Also, if your dog eats them mistakenly or intentionally, it is advised to visit a vet quickly if you don’t want to risk your little friend’s life.


Who doesn’t like chocolates?

Everybody, even the dogs, does like them. But you should avoid it by your Shih Tzu by all possible means.

You can just place or keep it somewhere out of Shih Tzu’s reach. Also, ensure you do not eat chocolates in front of your dog.

Chocolates are made from cocoa beans, and cocoa beans contain high amounts of theobromine caffeine which can affect the dog’s nervous system.

Also, this theobromine is not good for their metabolism and can cause diarrhea, seizures, and even vomiting.


No doubt avocado is harmless for humans, but it does contain a person that is harmful and toxic for dogs.

Therefore, feeding your Shih Tzu with avocado should be avoided at all costs.

If your Shih Tzu eats avocado, it will cause digestive problems and result in several stomach issues.

Grapes, Currants, and Raisins

Consumption of only three to four pieces of grapes can lead to severe toxic conditions in small dogs.

Also, the use of grapes by the big dog is not good.

Raisins and Currants are poisonous to Shih Tzu; they can lead to kidney failure issues if taken in high amounts.


Cherries contain a harmful substance for Shih Tzu known as cyanide, present in the cherries’ roots, stems, and leaves.

The excessive use of cherries can not only cause blockage in the intestine but can also cause constipation and vomiting.

If you feed your Shih Tzu with around 4 or 5 cherries, you will notice reddened sore gums, dilated pupils and labored breathing symptoms.


The fat and salt content in harm are high, so if you feed your Shih Tzu consistently with ham, it would be injurious to its health.

Excessive ham in diet can cause weight gain, hair loss, and other internal damages to a Shih Tzu, so you should avoid it.

Why Your Shih Tzu Food Is Important

Before we start our debates, let you know which food is good for Shih Tzu and which is not. We would first set up some standards, which is impossible without knowing what food is essential for Shih Tzu.

Dogs, like humans, also need healthy food to function properly. Healthy food is the one that has specific amounts of all the macronutrients that are essential for Shih Tzu growth.

Protein and Carbohydrates in the Shih Tzu food are responsible for providing him sufficient energy to compete with his daily routine.

In contrast, fats are essential for his brain development and keeping the coat natural and healthy.

Vitamins and minerals in the Shih Tzu diet would be responsible for proper nerve function.

So, perfect food is essential for Shih Tzu’s proper growth and better health.

Shih Tzu Feeding Guidelines

Making sure that you are feeding your Shih Tzu with quality meals and healthy snacks will play a very important role in maintaining your puppy’s health.

Below we will be sharing some of the essential and most important Shih Tzu feeding guidelines, so stick with us and give it a full read.

How Often To Feed A Shih Tzu?

Depending upon the age, activity level, and metabolism of a Shih Tzu, you will decide how many times you should feed it with meals and snacks.

So, if you have a Shih Tzu pup between 3-12 months, you will need to feed it three times a day.

And for grown-up adult Shih Tzu, feeding them with 2-3 meals a day is recommended.

How Much To Feed A Shih Tzu?

Two ways are being adopted worldwide in feeding dogs. First is the free feed, which means giving your dog a bowl full of meals and checking how much it eats; record the amount by weighing the left and then feeding your dog with the same amount.

But in general numeric ways, feed a Shih Tzu with ¼ times 10 pounds of its weight.

What Can Shih Tzu Eat and Not Eat?

A diet serves as the building block for the dogs; if you feed your Shih Tzu a healthy and balanced diet, he will eventually have no significant health issues and live longer.

Contrary if you feed him all unhealthy food, he will end up being ill, and it will also decrease his life span. Moreover, a healthy diet makes a dog happier and helps him feel more confident and comfortable.

Selecting what your dog shall eat and what shall he not eat is based on the food quality and the effect of that food which it brings on Shih Tzu health, whether it’s beneficial and has sound effects or is it harmful with adverse effects on your Shih Tzu health.

Today we will be sharing with you a list of foods that Shih Tzu can possibly eat and a list of food Shih Tzu can’t eat.

As we had already mentioned the details of these foods in other subheadings, we won’t go into detail this time.

Food Shih Tzu Can Eat

  • Lamb, fish, white chicken, and cooked organs like liver and heart.
  • Blueberries, baby carrots, sweet peas, sweet potatoes, and green beans.
  • Cottage cheese, plain white and brown rice, and pasta.
  • Whole yogurt, peanut butter, and Salmon.

Food Shih Tzu Can’t Eat

Other than the foods to avoid and the food being mentioned as toxic to feed a Shih, Tzu. We also enlisted a few of the food items that Shih Tzu couldn’t eat.

  • Raw Eggs and Raw Milk: Bacteria in eggs are not good for health. Also, lactose in milk is hard to digest.
  • Raisins Grapes and Currants: Abdominal pain and kidney damage
  • Nuts and Macadamia Nuts: Cause kidney stones
  • Mushrooms and Cooked Bones: Cause abdominal pain
  • Garlic Onions and Pepper: They eat up red blood cells and cause anaemia
  • Preservatives and Additives: Could lead to liver problems

What Foods Are Toxic To Shih Tzus?

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What Foods Are Toxic To Shih Tzus?


Intake of a very small quantity of Alcohol and alcoholic beverages can lead a Shih Tzu to severe brain and liver illness.

Alcohol Should never be given to a Shih Tzu as it can cause pleural effusion, loss of the coordinated nervous system, and even cause coma or death.


The seed of the avocado has a very severe fungicide called persin, which peels into the avocado fruit itself. It is harmless for humans to eat, but if eaten by a Shih Tzu can cause vomiting and gastrointestinal imbalances.


Cyanide present within the cherries is also dangerous for Shih Tzu digestive system. Contact a vet if you observe intestinal blockage, reddened gums, and dilated pupils in your dog with no further delay.


Bacon has high-fat content, which can give a tough time to Shih Tzu metabolism and can have severe effects on the stomach of a Shih Tzu. So, don’t feed your Shih Tzu with Bacons.

Bread Dough

Never feed your Shih Tzu with bread dough, and don’t leave it unattended. Because Bread Dough, if eaten by a Shih Tzu, can block its intestine blockage, which can affect the digestive system badly.

Caffeine Coffee Tea and Sodas

Feeding a large quantity of caffeine to a small Shih Tzu can cause his death. Hopefully, you have understood the adverse effects of caffeine coffee and tea. Vomiting, abnormal heart rate, muscle tremors, collapse, and coma are indications that your dog has taken large amounts of caffeine. If you suspect these symptoms, quickly visit a vet.


Theobromine present in the chocolates can have a terrible impact on the metabolism of a Shih Tzu, so don’t give your Shih Tzu chocolates to eat.


Oils of cinnamon can cause skin irritation internally and externally. Moreover, cinnamon powder can cause breathing problems and stimulate coughing and choking.

Also, don’t give Shih Tzu the following foods to eat.

Shih Tzu Eating Problems

Shih Tzu Eating Problems
Shih Tzu Eating Problems

Shih Tzu is a small compact dog with quite an unpredictable eating behavior. This breed eats a lot of food as compared to its size. You might find a few fussy eaters, but most Shih Tzu eats with an open heart.

Shih Tzu’s sensitive stomach and picky nature make them prone to various eating problems. Below I will mention a few major eating problems that Shih Tzu faces.

Food Allergies

Shih Tzu affected by food allergies will scratch and chew out their hairs and skin more than unusual, indicating that they are experiencing some allergic reaction from the food you are feeding.

Hurting Tooth and Dental Problems

Oral health is very closely related to eating habits. If your pups start refusing to eat, it might be because their mouth or teeth are hurting. If you find any symptoms of loose gums, broken teeth, or severe gingivitis, then make sure to contact a vet.

Picky Eaters

Don’t let your Shih Tzu develop the habit, as it will destroy their eating routine and can cause eating problems.

Worms Formation

Worms’ formation and worm attack is a big issue that causes eating problems in Shih Tzu. They become too reluctant to their food and even stop eating sufficient food for weeks.

Size and Consistency of the Kibble

If you develop a habit of feeding your pup an excess amount in a small kibble, they will eventually ask for more food if you feed them in a small amount in a large kibble. So do make sure to always cut down to the size and amount of food.

Best Wet Food for Shih Tzu

There are two main food classes when, and the clash between both never ends. Both wet and dry food have their separate advantages and disadvantages. Wet food is better for Shih Tzu than dry food.

Wet foods have fewer carbohydrates present as a result, dogs eating wet food are less likely to be affected by digestion problems. Moreover, wet food has an extra amount of water content which keeps the dog hydrated.

Can Shih Tzu Eat Cheese?

Yes, Shih Tzu is able to eat cheese; various owners of the pets think feeding their dogs with cheese is not suitable for their health. But the reality is cheese is good for the health of your dog.

If you feed your dog with cheese, it can have a positive impact on your dog’s health because cheese contains a lot of vitamins like zinc and phosphorus.

It is to be noted with great concern that food items like cheese also have a large number of healthy fats, which can cause overweight gains in your Shih Tzu and can lead him to get obese. So always feed your pet a moderate amount.

Final Words

Food with a positive effect on the health of Shih Tzu is beneficial and is advised to be fed to a Shih Tzu. This food will not only increase the life span of your puppy but will also make his remaining life comfortable.

All the food that directly or indirectly affects the mental or physical health of the Shih Tzu should be avoided at all costs. Moreover, you must pay special attention to the feeding requirements of a Shih Tzu before getting started with feeding him.

The food contents mentioned under the umbrella of toxic foods shall never be given to Shih Tzu and also not be made readily available in the vicinity of a Shih Tzu.

That was all from our side on the foods to be avoided and the foods better for the health of a Shih Tzu. I hope you will find this helpful in your journey to selecting the best foods for your Shih Tzu.

If you still have any queries, you can drop them down; we would love to hear from you.


I am the owner of Shihtzuadvice.com and the proud parent of two black and one gold Shih Tzu's. I belive that the Shih Tzu is the best all-around dog for anyone and want to share with you as much valuable knowledge as possible about this great breed!

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