What you should know about the dog breed Shih Tzu – It is a lot and we will give you a good overview here. The Shih Tzu is an intelligent and lively dog who stands out through his independent and proud appearance. He is reserved towards strangers, but without aggression. The Shih Tzu belongs to the companion dogs and adapts to almost every living situation. He has little hunting instinct, which also makes the free run educational and compared to many other dog breeds simple.
Nature and Character of Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu is a friendly, attentive dog who likes to cuddle, play and be close to his owners. As a family dog he is also suitable for families with children. But like every dog he should also have places of retreat and the children should be instructed not to harass him and to treat him respectfully. He is well compatible with other dogs and pets if his owners attach importance to a good socialization. Because also here he learns gladly and can be guided without much resistance to show the right behaviour.
Buying a puppy is a decision for a long time in life. That’s why you should study the character traits of your future roommate before making a decision. For a puppy, moving to a new home is often stressful. If the puppy has to be given back because the owners realize that the dog does not fit into the family, it is all the more traumatic for the little puppy.
Shih Tzus are very affectionate and also demand attention loudly, although they are otherwise considered calm and balanced. The Shih Tzu puppy has his own family above all else. Not for nothing he is often called a “lapdog”. Too gladly it cuddles with its people. And that often for hours.
However, the Shih Tzu can also differently. He is very self-confident and decides for himself to whom he wants to give his attention. Shih Tzus is open-minded and friendly towards other dogs. However, males also like to demonstrate their dominance towards other dogs. The small liondogs remain playful and awake until old age.
They are especially suitable for families with children with whom the Shih Tzu puppies can romp around and play. Shih Tzus are very loyal and faithful companions who are interested in their environment and openly approach others. They are friendly dogs who hardly ever become aggressive. Although they do not have the size of a lion, they call a lion heart their own.
What does the Shih Tzu look like?
The sight of fluffy Shih Tzu puppies quickly warms the heart. You’ll be tempted to buy a puppy as soon as you look into its cute button eyes. But keep in mind that the puppy will eventually become a full-grown dog that has needs and demands. Especially the coat care takes a lot of time. If you can’t do this, you shouldn’t buy Shih Tzu puppies.
One of the most striking features of these dogs is the long coat that reaches down to the ground. Further characteristics are a shoulder height of 25 to 27 centimetres, where males are somewhat larger than females, and a weight between 4.5 and 7.3 kilograms.
In the head-area, the slightly protruding eyes and the tiny nose attract attention. An extended soft palate provides snoring noises, which the Shih Tzu emits even when awake. Sometimes the Shih Tzu is said to have an “arrogant” posture, which is accentuated by the long body and the relatively short legs.
Shih Tzus can be found in all possible coat colours. If you want to buy a Shih Tzu puppy, please consider that these dogs can reach an age of 15 years.
How do I train my Shih Tzu?
Buying a Shih Tzu puppy also means taking responsibility for his upbringing. A well socialized dog who obeys the word is welcome with friends and in the restaurant. But education is more than just teaching commands. The right socialization also strengthens the bond between humans and puppies.
Especially when raising Shih Tzu puppies you should refrain from swearing. Shih Tzu puppies react to this with defiant behavior, but can be motivated by gentle and loving giving in and rewards well. So that your Shih Tzu does not develop into a small boss in the relationship, it is important that you act consistently right from the start.
This is especially true when your dog tries to soften you by begging for treats. If he gets away with it once, he will try again and again. Probably with success, because the challenging look of a Shih Tzu puppy is hard to resist. Avoid punishments in dog training. Rewards for proper behavior will increase your puppy’s motivation and retention.
How much exercise and care does the Shih Tzu need?
Shih Tzus love walks in the countryside, which can also be a bit more extensive. Dog puppies of this breed can be kept in the country, but are also happy in city apartments. More important to the Shih Tzu than his surroundings are the closeness to his family and extensive cuddling hours.
If you want to buy a Shih Tzu puppy, you should inform yourself in advance about the detailed coat care of these little rascals. Shih Tzus do not change their fur, so they lose only a little hair. But the care of the coat is very time-consuming. Daily brushing is just as important as cleaning the coat after a walk and frequent bathing and blow drying.
One way to reduce the effort is to keep the coat as short as possible. This is recommended especially in summer. If you want to keep your dog’s coat for a long time, because you want to take him to shows with you, it is advisable to style the dog’s coat with braces from his face. In this way the sensitive eyes of the Shih Tzu can also be kept free of dog hair, which prevents inflammation of the conjunctiva.
How much space does the Shih Tzu need?
While the ancestors of the Shih Tzu were once bred in their Tibetan homeland for spiritual reasons, the Shih Tzu is today a pure companion dog. It is also suitable for keeping in small flats, because unlike other breeds it can cope with little space. If the animals are not shorn, the coat must be cared for daily. Due to its small size and strength, the Shih Tzu can already be safely kept on a leash by small children; its playfulness and attachment also make it an ideal companion for children.
Origin & History of the Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu originally comes from Tibet, where it was appreciated for its lion-like appearance. Hence the name, because “Shih Tzu” means “lion” or “lion dog”. But he was not only appreciated for his appearance, but also served as a reliable watchdog for the temples due to his very fine hearing. In China the Shih Tzu was kept in the royal palaces and after the foundation of the Chinese republic the first specimens reached the western countries, where they were recognized 1934 as an independent race.
What are the breed characteristics of the Shih Tzu?
In the classification of the largest cynological umbrella organization “Fédération Cynologique Internationale” (FCI) the Shih Tzu belongs to group 9 “Social and Accompanying Dogs” and therein to section 5 “Tibetan Dog Breeds”.
The Shih Tzu is a small dog, which reaches a size of up to 27 cm according to FCI standard and becomes heavy up to maximally 8 kilos. It owes its fluffy appearance to its long, dense coat with plenty of undercoat. It is available in many colours (also spotted) and the long floppy ears are often difficult to recognize due to the many coats.
The Shih Tzu has a well proportioned and beautifully curved neck which is long enough to allow a proud head posture. The tail is carried high above the back by the small, robust dog, which gives it a proud appearance – also due to the pronounced stop and the short nose.
The Shih Tzu has a calm, flowing gait with the forelegs reaching out well. The coat is long and dense, but not curly or woolly. The undercoat is only moderately present. Neither vision nor movement should be affected by the coat.
What are the special features of the Shih Tzu diet?
Although it is relatively uncomplicated to have a Shih Tzu at home, the Shih Tzu sometimes tends to food allergies. By consistently avoiding the allergy-causing ingredients, possible digestive disorders, skin problems and other complications can be prevented. In addition, the individual characteristics of each Shih Tzu should also be taken into account in the composition of the food. Many conventional standard feeds are based on the average values of the respective breed and cannot guarantee an optimal nutrient supply for this reason in every case. The result is often a permanent missupply, which can be the cause of nutritional diseases.
Nine nutritional factors determine the nutritional requirements of your Shih Tzus. The decisive factors are breed, weight and height, but also the age of the dog. Especially with puppies and young animals, a diet that is too rich in energy can lead to considerable rapid growth and the resulting damage to the musculoskeletal system. Very active dogs, on the other hand, are dependent on an energy- and protein-rich food in order to cover the increased demand. Also pregnant and nursing bitches show strongly increased need values, which must be considered with the food composition.
Possible diseases or allergies of your Shih Tzu may make it necessary to do without some ingredients or to increase the intake of other substances. Overweight or underweight can be successfully combated by an appropriate diet with the preparation of an appropriate diet feed, dietary susceptibilities can be specifically prevented. In addition, existing illnesses can be combated as a result of misuse.
What should I know about Shih Tzu puppies?
Many families dream of buying a puppy. But very few of them think in advance whether they are up to this responsible task. You have a lot of fun with a pet! But dogs are not only a nice pastime, they need attention and regular exercise. They want to be occupied and cared for.
Make yourself aware of the fact that with the moving in of a dog regular costs come up to you. In addition to food expenses, a visit to the vet may also be necessary. If you are aware of the conditions, you should also think about which breed of dog suits you best. Dogs are small personalities with very different characters.
How much do Shih Tzu puppies cost?
After careful consideration you have decided to buy a Shih Tzu puppy. While browsing the internet for a suitable breeder, you will find advertisements in which Shih Tzu puppies are offered at a conspicuously low price. Be suspicious. Often these are dubious offers from multipliers who are only looking for profit.
The welfare of the parents and Shih Tzu puppies should stand in the first place. Unfortunately this is not always the case. In the same way you should never buy a puppy that is offered to you at a market or resting place. These puppies are often sick, and before you know it, the veterinary costs skyrocket. The poor condition of the puppies is due to their inappropriate keeping. If your family and you want to buy a Shih Tzu puppy, you should look for a serious breeder.
Even if the price between 800 and 1000 dollars for a puppy seems impressive, it includes a good socialization, veterinary costs and first vaccinations as well as the feeding of high quality food.
What are the typical diseases in Shih Tzu dogs?
If you would like to buy a Shih Tzu puppy from the breeder, they have already undergone the first veterinary examinations and have been thoroughly checked. In the course of its life, Shih Tzu can still suffer from breed-typical ailments caused by overbreeding. You should be aware of this before you and your family buy a puppy.
The most common diseases of Shih Tzu include hip dysplasia, umbilical hernia, anal dysplasia and knee dislocations. The head region is also affected by hereditary diseases. The small nose of the Shih Tzu leads to breathing problems. A too long or too short soft palate also disturbs breathing and triggers snoring sounds. The problem can be corrected surgically.
Too much heat is also a problem for the little rascal, even if the long coat has been shorn. Health problems are also caused by the sensitive eyes, which are often inflamed. They can also be easily injured or even fall out of their sockets. In such a case, the eyelid is sewn up by the vet.
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