Tenzin Shih Tzu

Breed ༅ Groom ༅ Show ༅ Board ༅ Love

Who Are We?


Tenzin Shih Tzu are a small, home based kennel owned and run by Liam and Alistair Richard-Howes.  We are based in Palmerston North, New Zealand.  We love our dogs, we love the Shih Tzu breed, and we want you to as well.

© Maree Turner 2008 

The journey to Tenzin Shih Tzu began in May 2008 when we welcomed Tobesocuteisacrime ("Toby" for short) into our family.  Toby was our very first Shih Tzu (and Alistair's very first dog) and he changed our lives and our family in ways that we could not have imagined.

Liam [on the left] had grown up with dogs, from Pugs to German Shepherds and even Norwegian Elkhounds.  Neither of us had thought we would want a long haired "floor mop" though!  But when Sharon and Heather showed us this remarkable little boy we fell in love completely and took him home at 12 weeks old to become a member of our family.

We didn't know how much he would change our lives for the better.  Toby's pure Shih Tzu personality not only won us over, but also anyone and everyone who has ever met him.  Toby is charm and unconditional love, the perfect dog who trained himself to walk on a lead, use the toilet training pads, dance on his hind legs and be in exactly the right place when someone is sad.  His expression of attentive love and deep set intelligence is the perfect reflection of the Shih Tzu breed standard - one of the only standards to include expression.

Toby is our house pet, he is a dedicated member of our family (he was the ring bearer at our wedding), and although he enjoys coming to shows, watching his friends and housemates strut their stuff, he enjoys his days and nights more like a spoiled child.

There is a saying that "two Shih Tzu are better than one", and many Shih Tzu owners say that you, "can't ever stop at just one," and we certainly know this to be true.  In January 2009 we welcomed Denem Diamonds are Forever ("Cartier") into our lives and our Family.


From her  very first show we knew that Cartier would be something very special.  She entered the ring at 4 months old and not only won Best Baby Puppy of Breed, but was also awarded Best Baby Puppy in Group under Mr. Ian Smith of Cambridge, New Zealand.  It was a wonderful moment, and from that first show, Cartier has proven herself to be the perfect show dog, running the ring with elegance, decorum and finesse.

Since then, we have added more dogs to our household and even bred a litter of beautiful puppies.  Although we enjoy the achievements of our dogs in the show ring, we enjoy even more their loving personalities and their presence in our home.