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Does anyone have a shih tzu?

(20 Posts)
Dancergirl Tue 21-Apr-15 19:54:08

Our neighbours have a gorgeous little dog and found out recently he's a shih tzu. They told me he's really easy to look after, doesn't wake up too early, sleeps a lot and doesn't need much walking.

Is that typical for this breed? Have been thinking about getting a dog for a while but want to make sure we get the right dog for us.

We also have a cat. Does anyone know if this breed would get on ok with a cat?

Innocentbystander01 Tue 21-Apr-15 19:57:33

I have one I love him to bits but he's hard work. He needs grooming once every 6 weeks, his eyes need cleaning every day. He wakes early and wants lot of attention grin they are lovely I would have a houseful but he is very high maintainence.

Dancergirl Tue 21-Apr-15 20:02:20

That's interesting as my neighbour says the opposite - very easy! How long do you walk him for?

chipshop Tue 21-Apr-15 20:12:31

I got one when I was a teenager and she was beautiful! True that she didn't like walking much at all, half the time she'd sit on her bum and be dragged until we gave up and took her home. She wasn't destructive and yes she was pretty easy really.

However, even though she was supposed to be my dog she was devoted to my mum. She'd sit at the window and wait for mum if she was out and not want to interact in any way with the rest of us. My mum ended up taking her everywhere with her in her car! Not sure if it's typical of the breed.

Innocentbystander01 Tue 21-Apr-15 21:08:18

He has lots of little walks through the day. He is only a puppy so might settle down in a few years but he is a very bouncy giddy boy at the moment.

PrincessSlayer Tue 21-Apr-15 21:18:35

I do! Totally adore her, although she can be hard work in the sense that she is a total Velcro dog so always wants to be with me, preferably on me! The most sweet, entertaining and affectionate girl.
I would definitely recommend the breed as every one I've met has been a gorgeous love bug. They can get a bit of a napoleon complex with other dogs if they're not properly socialised but otherwise lovely!

wecanmanagenow Tue 21-Apr-15 22:12:50

I've one a male, brilliant wee dog he's very petted on me. they can be quite stubborn with house training. Now we've cracked that I wouldn't be without him.

BurningBridges Tue 21-Apr-15 22:16:40

Having lost our DDog 6 weeks ago, this was originally top of my DDs' list for a new dog next year - but I was reading another thread on Doghouse today saying that the reason they don't do much is that they struggle to breathe, hate the summer and have lots of problems because of short nose etc.

What does everyone else think?

VetNurse Tue 21-Apr-15 22:37:23

They are prone to eye problems because they stick out a bit. We see a lot requiring surgery for ulcers.

PrincessSlayer Wed 22-Apr-15 19:08:49

My tzu does hate the heat and I have to be careful about hot weather - walks in midsummer are in the evening only, or very early morning.
I don't think their issues are as severe as e.g. Bulldogs (could be wrong) but I know that mine gets overheated quickly if it's very warm weather and will pant a lot if she's too warm.
However, it's never been much of a problem as I just factor it in and always make sure she's cool enough. It depends on your lifestyle and what you want the dog to do with you! Jogging in summer not for these guys!

VivaLeBeaver Wed 22-Apr-15 20:36:55

We had them as family dogs when I was a kid, my mum still has one.

Out of the three dogs we had all three had heart murmurs by middle age and needed medication. Saying that they all seem to live to a good age. Mums current one is 13yo and apart from his "heart tablets" has never been ill.

They've all been easy going, lazy and my mums gets on with my cats ok. He was a bit interested at first but soon learnt they were off limits. The main thing Id say is the grooming, but keep them clipped short is always an option!

YouveCatToBeKittenMe Wed 22-Apr-15 21:22:40

I have a jack Shiht grin

He has a shih tzu coat and does need a lot of grooming. However since I'm not that fussy I have purchased some good clippers and a table and now do it myself. He looks a bit odd sometimes!
He is a great character, very affectionate and cuddly but also loves to run and is always trying to follow my spaniel through hedges and ditches
He gets on really well with my cats and often has a bundle with one of them.
He was easy to house train and is quite satisfied with whatever walk he gets although he usually gets quite a bit as I also have a collie and a spaniel.
Have never had a small dog before and he is brilliant. I don't know how different a pure shih tzu would be but I'm sure they all vary in stubbornness and angelic-ness!

sandgrown Wed 22-Apr-15 21:30:53

My Shih Tzu is very scruffy so keep him short. He has three 15 minute walks a day and is very active. He has had grumpy moments though and once nipped my grandson . On the whole he is a good dog and changed my impression of little dogs.

Dancergirl Wed 22-Apr-15 22:11:20

Well I don't like the heat either so perhaps we'll be a good match!

We've never had a dog before, what other research would I need to do? How do I find a reputable breeder?

dillite Sun 26-Apr-15 18:58:16

I have one- she's a 1/4 poodle but all shih tzu in appearance and behaviour. She is very sweet, but does wake early- 7am or earlier. She is my shadow. Very stubborn- it has taken me 5 months to toilet train her, even now there are still one of three accidents a week. She has to be brushed daily, which she hates and bites me every time. She needs weekly baths- if it's wet outside her paws have to be washed daily as mud clings to her fur for dear life. She is very fussy when it comes to food. But she is lovely. Great with my dd too. And does sleep a lot during the day.

PrincessSlayer Sun 26-Apr-15 19:34:44

Dancer where did your neighbours get theirs? Might be they already know of a reputable breeder?

In terms of finding one, just don't be afraid to ask them lots of questions. A good breeder will be more than happy to answer them - I've popped some links here, also remember visiting doesn't mean you have to come home with a puppy (this is hard...)

www.apbc.org.uk/articles/good_breeder

www.pets4homes.co.uk/pet-advice/puppy-farms-how-and-why-to-avoid-buying-a-farmed-puppy.html

Also, if you're open to considering a rescue, there are lots of shih tzus or tzu crosses looking for loving homes. You might benefit from getting a dog already socialised and trained which doesn't need the intensive work of a puppy. There are several shih tzu specific rescues but there will be lots in other centres as well as they are a popular breed.

Best of luck!

insanityscatching Mon 27-Apr-15 15:57:24

We have a poodle shih tzu cross who looks like a shih tzu but is poodle temperament. He's a clever, loving, bundle of fun incredibly agile, walks for miles, happy to meet anybody, friendly to dogs, cats, chickens, sheep and pretty much bomb proof. We have him clipped short because he likes to get dirty and it's easier to keep him clean. I'd definitely recommend shih tzus and their crosses.

SistersofPercy Tue 28-Apr-15 23:40:08

Mum is on number two now...

Leo. He was more cat like than dog. Would happily spend all day in the window in the sun watching life go by. Quite aloof, had little interest in people really. Was exceptionally grumpy. Died aged 14.

Charlie. Utterly bonkers. Never still, completely stupid, are half the house despite the fact mum is 79 and the furthest she goes without him is to the toilet. Also very grumpy at times and has a rather series case of resource guarding (I will point out this is entirely my mother's fault and not the breed. She's very much of the Barbara woodhouse school of thought and refuses to listen to anything I say).

Both were walked several times a day usually but were happy to be in the garden if mum couldn't get out (usually through ice). Grooming is an every day job and hair cuts every six to eight weeks are about the the norm.

I don't know any others so can't say if the snappy attitude is breed specific though I suspect it's just how my mum has reinforced behaviours.

SistersofPercy Tue 28-Apr-15 23:40:48

*ate half the house not are.

ChowNowBrownCow Sun 03-May-15 11:15:26

I have a full tzu- he is the perfect dog for us. He's soft, furry, loves cuddles and attention. Hardly barks, does not shed, doesn't need lots of exercise. Great personality tho is a bit dim! Loves all other dogs, loves people as well as children, is not grumpy at all! Eats skinners dog food (he's not fussy). They need grooming regularly which is expensive (£30), or lots of owners do it themselves. He is a Velcro dog tho, but saying that I am out for 4 or 5 hours at work and no anxiety issues as he just sleeps (we filmed him). I would get another one in a heart beat.

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