If you're looking for an all-around easy going and fun dog to live with, the Shih Tzu may be what you seek. This is a small dog, so you should be aware of that. Shih Tzus were first bred in Tibet thousands of years ago primarily as companion animals. They get along very well with humans and other pets and prefer to keep their master and family close. They're great with small children and the elderly, due to their laid back nature. They're also perfect for smaller apartment living in cities, due to their lower energy levels and exercise requirements. Don't under estimate this dog because of its well behaved nature though. They'll keep up with the best of them. They can be spunky and playful when the situation calls for that.
Continue reading to learn more about Shih Tzus, an ancient breed of dog that's also known as the Lion Dog.
Popularity: Very popular.
Trainability: Like so many other small dogs, the Shih Tzu is somewhat challenging to train. This dog has been characterized as being obstinate. It can be trained, but you'll need to be patient and consistent. And you can't give up. Begin training when this dog is still a puppy and recognize the fact that it will have a short attention span. Go ahead and engage in multiple training sessions that are shorter in duration, rather than fewer longer sessions. Keep the lessons fun and with some patience and treats for a job well done, you'll be able to teach your dog some obedience commands as well as tricks. Socialize the Shih Tzu early on in life and teach it how to walk on a leash. Also, be sure to housebreak this dog early in life as well.
Size/Weight: Small sized dogs, weighing in at an average of 9-16 pounds.
Origin Location/Date: As mentioned above, the Shih Tzu is an ancient breed. It's been dated back to over 10,000 years old. The breed was first developed in Tibet and then in Imperial China. After living for centuries in China, this breed made its way to England and then finally, the United States in 1960. Today, it's a very popular pet here in the U.S.
Energy Level: This is a great indoor dog. It's not highly energetic and the exercise it does require can be gained inside your home and during short walks on the sidewalk.
Temperament: Shih Tzus are sidlers. They'll stick by your side no matter what you do. This dog is willing to engage in pretty much any activity that you're interested in. They're great companions. They aren't overly energetic, so they're nearly perfect for the elderly. These dogs are playful and can entertain themselves as well. They're also very loving, good with children and are considerate of other animals in the home. That will need to be tested though because some Shih Tzus like other animals and some don't. This breed can also be a bit mischievous and may steal and hide things you own.
Necessary Space: The Shih Tzu is a perfect apartment dog and doesn't require much space in which to live. Its exercise requirements aren't high and as long and you play with your dog indoors and take it for daily walks, you should be fine living with it in a smaller space.
Talents: This is a companion dog. It was bred that way. It's got a strut to it, is adorable and is companionable. Its claim to fame is that the Shih Tzu is a wonderful friend who will stick by your side.
Life Expectancy: 10-18 years.
Group: Toy Group.
A few terms and phrases to describe the typical Shih Tzu puppy and dog: friendly, companionable, adorable, cute, small, mischievous, tough to train, not energetic, great apartment dog, good with elderly, playful, can self entertain, and good with children.