Basic Shih Tzu Facts
Before you decide to bring a Shih Tzu puppy into your home you should familiarize yourself with some basic Shih Tzu facts. Understanding this breed will not only prepare you for what to expect, it will also help you determine whether a Shih Tzu puppy is right for you. .
Below are some common characteristics you should know about this adorble breed
- Make great family pets, are good around children and other pets
- Possess great confidence
- Make great apartment pets because they do not require much living space
- Do not shed
- Are bred for companionship
- Are happy, outgoing, affectionate, loyal, and obedient
- Are susceptible to ear, eye and respiratory problems
- Need to be bathed and groomed regularly
- Love to socialize and be socialized
- Enjoy and require playful activity
- Require proper diets and exercise
- Require regular visits to the veterinarian’s office
Sound like the perfect dog? That is because they are but then again I guess I’m a little bias.
Shih Tzu Personality
If you are looking to add a Shih Tzu to your family you will soon learn they love people, get along with other dogs and anyone that is willing to show them affection in return. Generally speaking, Shih Tzu are trusting and friendly to almost anyone they come in contact with.
One of the best characteristics of a Shih Tzu is their loveable little personalities. Shih Tzu are by nature nonaggressive, friendly and affectionate. Shih Tzu love to snuggle with you, give you kisses and sit on your lap.
Since Shih Tzu were bred for companionship they also have a tendency to adapt to their surroundings. This means that if they are raised in a loving family atmosphere they will show and know nothing but love. However, if they are raised in a loud or high stressed environment they may be high strung and stressed out as well. So, believe it or not, you do have some control over your Shih Tzu personality.
Shih Tzu Temperament
Shih Tzu are mild tempered and simply love to be around people. They are also generally very good around well behaved children. Naturally, like most dogs, Shih Tzu do not like to be teased, their tail pulled, their ears pulled, or yelled at. So, it is best to always monitor the situation when you have small children in the house and teach your children to treat your little Shih Tzu with the love and respect they deserve. Shih Tzu by nature do not have a mean bone in their body (unless they are provoked).
Like most of us, at times Shih Tzu can become irritable and may not want to play or be touched. As a result, some may growl, snap, or even bite (which is rare) when they simply just want to be left alone. Let’s face it, we all have our breaking points when pushed too far and Shih Tzu are no different.
Unlike some other toy dog breeds Shih Tzu do not bark much. However, in those rare occasions when they do bark it is not one of those high pitched or obnoxious barks that make your hair stand on end. They will bark though to let you know something is wrong or if there is a stranger in the area, which is a good thing.
Socializing Your Shih Tzu
Generally speaking, Shih Tzu love to socialize with other people, neighbors, play with children and other pets in the neighborhood. Socializing your little Shih Tzu is one of the first things you will want to do when you bring your Shih Tzu home. First of all, you can’t wait to show him/her off because they are so darn adorable. But more importantly it teaches them to get along with others at a young age. Shih Tzu are a trusting breed until given a reason not to trust. Therefore, it is best to socialize your Shih Tzu while they are young so they get used to being around other people and pets.
Take your Shih Tzu for a car ride, to the park, or visiting. Socializing your Shih Tzu at a young age will help to ensure they do not develop bad behavioral issues. If you are unsure of what needs to be done you should sign up for some professional training classes. Shih Tzu are like children at times whereby they depend on your guidance and discipline in order to grow up properly.
Shih Tzu Energy Levels
Shih Tzu energy level is fun and playful. On the other hand, they are also content with sitting around patiently watching you do your house chores. Shih Tzu do not require a great deal of play time unlike some other dog breeds. As a matter of fact, after about 15 – 20 minutes or so they generally tire out.
Shih Tzu love to play because it allows them to interact and spend time with the person they love the most ‘You’. Some great games to play include hide-n-seek, tug-of-war and fetch.
Male versus Female Shih Tzu
If you are wondering whether you should bring home a male or female Shih Tzu, wonder no more. The decision boils down to your personal preference because male and female Shih Tzu have similar traits when it comes to behaviors. Since this breed was bred to be a house pet and companion they also have similar intellectual levels and possess similar levels of affection.