LUV My dogs: tibetan

LUV My dogs

Everything about your dog!

Showing posts with label tibetan. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tibetan. Show all posts

Friday, December 9, 2016

Everything about your Lhasa Apso

Everything about your Lhasa Apso
  The Apso, as he’s known in his homeland of Tibet, is dignified yet mischievous. His alert and somewhat suspicious nature make him an excellent watchdog, and indeed that was his purpose for centuries. He has a long, flowing coat that requires extensive grooming.

Overview
  Hailing from the Himalayan Mountains, the Lhasa Apso was meant to guard and protect Tibetan monasteries and Buddhist temples. Named after the city of Lhasa, the breed was considered sacred. Gifted to the U.S. from the Dalai Lama, the Lhasa Apso became a loving household breed. Intelligent and loyal, this is a great breed for single adults or older children.
  If you are considering a Lhasa — and many find his looks irresistible — you must consider this breed's protective nature. Early socialization and training are absolutely critical to a Lhasa's success as a family member, so that he can properly direct his natural tendency toward wariness. The time invested in training him, however, is well worth your effort in terms of the loyalty, joy, and companionship that this long-lived, hardy little dog provides.
  It goes without saying that the Lhasa Apso, which was bred exclusively as a companion dog, needs to live in the house and never outdoors.

Highlights
  • The Lhasa is highly independent; his aim is to please himself, not you.
  • The Lhasa is a leader, and he'll be your leader if you allow him to.
  • The Lhasa is a naturally protective watchdog. There's no changing this, though you can teach him good canine manners. Early, positive socialization is essential to help him become a friendly, sociable pet.
  • The Lhasa matures slowly. Don't expect too much too soon.
  • The beautiful Lhasa coat needs a lot of grooming. Expect to do a lot of work, or to pay a professonial groomer.
  • Dental care is essential. Brush the Lhasa's teeth regularly, and have your veterinarian check his teeth and gums periodically.
  • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from an irresponsible breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies, and that they have sound temperaments.
Breed standards
AKC group: Non-sporting
UKC group: Companion
Average lifespan: 14 - 16 years
Average size: 13 - 15 pounds
Coat appearance: Dense and hard top coat
Coloration: Cream, light or brindle; black markings on the face
Hypoallergenic: No
Other identifiers: Longer in body than tall; balanced and compact; dark oval eyes; feathered ears and tail; long, oversized coat, but may be altered into a puppy cut for easier grooming
Possible alterations: May be darker in color
Comparable Breeds: Shih Tzu, Tibetan Terrier

History
  The Lhasa comes from Tibet, and he takes his name from the holy city of Lhasa. For thousands of years, the Lhasa was bred exclusively by nobility and monks in monasteries to act an inside guard and protector. He's known in his homeland as Abso Seng Kye, which translates as "Bark Lion Sentinel Dog." The Lhasa's thick coat is protective; his native climate is one of intense cold and extreme heat.
  Recorded history of the breed goes back to 800 B.C. A Lhasa was considered good luck, but it was nearly impossible to buy one: he was a watchdog in temples and monasteries and was therefore considered sacred. It was thought that when an owner died, the human soul entered the body of his Lhasa Apso. Lhasas were not allowed to leave the country except when given as gifts by the Dalai Lama.
  From the beginning of the Manchu Dynasty in 1583 until as recently as 1908, the Dalai Lama sent Lhasas as sacred gifts to the Emperor of China and members of the Imperial family. The Lhasas were always given in pairs and were thought to bring with them good luck and prosperity.
  The first Lhasas to enter the United States directly were given as gifts by the 13th Dalai Lama in 1933 to C. Suydam Cutting, a noted world traveler and naturalist. Cutting owned Hamilton Farm in Gladstone, New Jersey, and the two gift dogs became the foundation stock for his kennel.
  The American Kennel Club accepted the Lhasa Apso as a breed in 1935.

Personality
  The perfect Lhasa doesn’t come ready-made from the breeder. Any dog, no matter how nice, can develop obnoxious levels of barking, digging, countersurfing, and other undesirable behaviors if he is bored, untrained, or unsupervised. And any dog can be a trial to live with during adolescence. 
  Start training your puppy the day you bring him home. Even at 10 weeks old, he is capable of soaking up everything you can teach him. Don’t wait until he is 6 months old to begin training or you will have a more headstrong dog to deal with. If possible, get him into puppy kindergarten class by the time he is 10 to 12 weeks old, and socialize, socialize, socialize.   However, be aware that many puppy training classes require certain vaccines  to be up to date, and many veterinarians recommend limited exposure to other dogs and public places until puppy vaccines  have been completed. In lieu of formal training, you can begin training your puppy at home and socializing him among family and friends until puppy vaccines are completed.
  Talk to the breeder, describe exactly what you’re looking for in a dog, and ask for assistance in selecting a puppy. Breeders see the puppies daily and can make uncannily accurate recommendations once they know something about your lifestyle and personality. Whatever you want from an Apso, look for one whose parents have nice personalities and who has been well socialized from early puppyhood.

Health
  The Lhasa Apso is known to suffer from a few health problems. For example, it is known to suffer from sebaceous adenitis, a hereditary skin disease that occurs primarily in Standard Poodles, but has also been reported in a number of other breeds, including the Lhasa Apso.   They are also known to suffer from the genetic disease progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) which can render them blind. Responsible breeders have their breeding dogs checked yearly by a canine ophthalmologist to check that they are not developing the disease, which is heritable in offspring. Lhasa Apsos are also prone to eye diseases, such as cherry eye and keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS or dry eye syndrome). A 2004 Kennel Club survey puts the median lifespan of the breed at 14 years 4 months. UK vet clinic data puts the median at 13.0 years.

Care
  The Lhasa is a great choice for people with limited space. He's well suited for apartment or condo living, though he does enjoy playing outside in a fenced yard.
  The Lhasa is content with several short walks each day. He is not high-energy dog, and he doesn't tend to bounce off the walls when cooped up on a rainy day. He's happy sitting in your lap, wandering around the house, playing with his toys, and alerting you to passersby.
  Housetraining the Lhasa can be challenging, so it's wise to crate train. Also, remember that this dog will likely take a long time to mature mentally. He may reach full size at one year of age, but his behavior will still be quite puppyish. Be especially patient during training — keep it positive and consistent, and be willing to go the long haul.

Living Conditions
  These dogs are good for apartment living. They are very active indoors and will do okay without a yard.

Trainability
  Training requires a lot of patience and a gentle hand. Lhasas can be willful, and if they decide they don't want to do something, they simply won't do it. Harsh treatment will often result in the dog retaliating. Lhasas respond best to food rewards, short training sessions and varied routines. Absolute consistency is important when working with a Lhasa Apso as they will see your bending the rules as an invitation to walk all over you. The time it takes to train a Lhasa is well worth the effort. Once leadership is established and the Lhasa learns that there is food in it for him, will step up to the plate and perform the tasks at hand.
  Early and frequent socialization is important with this breed. They are naturally suspicious of strangers and this can get out of hand in the form of excessive barking and even nipping or snapping. It is imperative to teach a Lhasa to accept new people as welcome visitors.

Exercise Requirements
  Lhasa Apsos have a moderate energy level, so it doesn’t need much exercise. That doesn’t mean your dog should nap all day – you want your pup to stay healthy, trim and fit. Take your Lhasa Apso for walk, let them scamper about and run free to play in the backyard. This breed loves to play fetch and will chase the ball until it gets tired out.
  If you don’t have a backyard, don’t worry – your Lhasa Apso can exercise indoors. This breed doesn’t need a lot of space to move around, but your dog will need to get enough exercise every day.

Grooming
  If you are looking for a dog with an easy-care coat, it’s safe to say that the Lhasa Apso is not the right choice. That glamorous Lhasa you see sweeping around the show ring is the product of endless hours of grooming. Even if your Lhasa will be a pet, his long coat will still need regular care.
  For a pet, expect to brush and comb the long, straight, heavy coat daily. When you brush, be sure you get all the way down to the skin. If you just go over the top of the coat you’ll miss many mats and tangles. Your dog’s breeder can show you the best techniques to use. The American Lhasa Apso Club also has good grooming advice.
  Pet Lhasas can be kept clipped short, but that still means frequent professional grooming. Neglected coats become tangled and matted, which is painful and can lead to serious skin infections. A Lhasa needs a bath at least every two to three weeks. The good news is that he doesn’t shed much, but you will still find a few hairs here and there.
  The rest is basic care. Trim the nails as needed, usually every week or two. Small dogs are prone to periodontal disease so brush the teeth frequently with a vet-approved pet toothpaste for good overall health and fresh breath.

Children And Other Pets
  Children are probably not at the top of the Lhasa's list of favorite things. He tends to be intolerant of the normal antics of children, and he'll nip. The Lhasa is best suited to a home with older children who understand how to properly handle him. He's not advised for a family with young or rowdy kids.
  If he's properly socialized and trained, the Lhasa gets along with other dogs. He does like to be top dog, so he's often the leader, even around other dogs who are much larger. He isn't afraid to join in activities normally associated with large dogs, such as hiking or cross-country skiing. The Lhasa thinks he's a large dog.
  The Lhasa can get along with other pets as well, given proper introductions and training.

Is this breed right for you?
  A kind yet sturdy breed, the Lhasa Apso is absolutely devoted to his master. A good guard dog, he is aloof with strangers and requires a good amount of training and leadership to avoid developing small dog syndrome. A bit impatient, he may not do well with young children but will get along well with other animals. 
  Not requiring too much activity, he does well in apartments and is OK being indoors all day as long as he's kept in good company.   Needing a lot of grooming, his coat can be trimmed down to avoid daily brushing.

Did You Know?
  Lhasa Apsos were first bred 2,000 years ago by Buddhist monks in and around Tibet. The monks believed that when the Lhasa’s owner died, if he was not ready for Nirvana his soul would be reincarnated in the dog’s body.

In pop culture
  • The Brazilian comic series Monica's Gang features a green-colored Lhasa Apso named Fluffy which belongs to Jimmy Five.
  • In the animated series Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends, Angelica Jones/Firestar owns a Lhasa Apso named Ms. Lion.
  • Lhasa Apsos have also appeared in at least two episodes of The Simpsons. In the episode "Three Gays of the Condo", Homer Simpson moves in with a couple of gay men. Homer started to act like a gay man and got a Lhasa Apso. Also, Milhouse Van Houten owns a Lhasa Apso.
  • In the television series The L Word, Helena is assured by her wealthy mother that she was going to leave her inheritance to her, not to her Lhasa Apsos.
    Bethenny Frankel and Cookie
  • Lhasa Apsos are said to bring luck, hence the saying "Lucky Lhasa".
  • Singer Arturo Paz owns a Lhasa Apso named Coco.
  • Actress/Singer-Songwriter Keke Palmer has a Lhasa Apso named Rust
  • A Lhasa Apso is both a major character and a plot device in the 1948 children's novel Daughter of the Mountains by Louise Rankin .
  • Singer Gwen Stefani had a Lhasa Apso dog called Lamb/Meggan.
  • Reality star Bethenny Frankel has a Lhasa Apso named Cookie, who regularly appears on her show Bethenny Ever After.
  • Science fiction author John Scalzi includes a Lhasa Apso named Tuffy in a pivotal role in the The Dog King, the seventh part of his episodic novel The Human Division.
  • Writer Kurt Vonnegut lived with a Lhasa Apso named Pumpkin.
  • Singer Barbra Streisand owned a Lhasa Apso, and dedicated her performance of "Smile" on the Oprah Winfrey Show to it, after its death. She even dressed up as her beloved pup for her 2013 "Halloween Bash" hosted by Patti LaBelle.
  • Avant-garde art collector Peggy Guggenheim loved the Lhasa Apso breed so much, she has a burial site next to her own for her 14 "Beloved Babies" in Venice, Italy.
  • Singer-songwriter Criss Starr has a Lhasa Apso named Mozart.
  • The Hard Science Fiction Web Comic Freefall  has Winston owning a Lhasa Apso called Beekay.

A dream day in the life of a Lhasa Apso
  A simple breed, the Lhasa Apso requires little to be a happy dog. Loving constant companionship, he will be all smiles as long as he's in his owner's company. Keeping an eye out on the house, he'll guard his space and owner throughout the day. An affectionate dog, he will be sure to cuddle close with a lot of petting, rubbing and stoking and follow his master from morning until night.
Read More

Everything about your Tibetan Terrier

Everything about your Tibetan Terrier
  He’s not a terrier, but the mild-mannered “TT” is a loving family dog who was bred to traipse around snowy mountains with nomadic herdsmen. He stands out for his profuse and protective double coat, a fall of hair over the eyes, a well-feathered tail and large, round, flat feet designed for sure-footedness in snowy terrain.

Overview
  Bred in Tibet as a companion dog, the Tibetan Terrier was also raised as a herding dog. Kept by monks, the breed was never sold or traded due to the belief that the dogs brought good luck. Despite its name, the Tibetan Terrier lacks true Terrier characteristics. Not likely to dig or hunt, this is one loving and kind-spirited dog.
  It's not unusual for Tibetan Terriers to be reserved with strangers, but they shower affection on their people. They can adapt to life in many different types of households and are a good choice for families with older children who understand how to treat dogs. With their protective double coat and large, flat, round feet to provide traction — in much the same way as snowshoes — they're well suited to homes in snowy climates.

Highlights
  • Tibetan Terriers are wonderful family dogs but are best suited for homes with school-age children who know how to treat a dog properly.
  • Tibetan Terriers generally do well with dogs and other pets, especially if they have been raised with them.
  • The Tibetan Terrier requires frequent brushing and a bath at least once per month.
  • Tibetan Terriers make great watchdogs and will bark when they see or hear anything unusual.
  • If they get daily exercise, Tibetan Terriers can do well in apartments or condos.
  • Tibetan Terriers thrive on human companionship and do best in homes where they get plenty of attention and aren't left alone for long periods.
  • Barking is a favorite pastime for a Tibetan Terrier. He'll bark when people come to the door, when he sees or hears something unusual, or just out of boredom.
  • Tibetan Terriers require daily exercise and will enjoy a couple of 15-minute walks or one longer walk.
  • The Tibetan Terrier can be easy to train with positive reinforcement techniques such as praise, play, and food rewards.
  • To get a healthy dog, never buy a puppy from a puppy mill, a pet store, or a breeder who doesn't provide health clearances or guarantees. Look for a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs to make sure they're free of genetic diseases that they might pass onto the puppies and who breeds for sound temperaments.
Other Quick Facts

  • Tibet’s extreme climate and harsh terrain played a role in creating a dog with a protective double coat, compact size, unique foot construction and great agility.
  • A fall of hair covers the TT’s dark, expressive eyes, but he can see through it perfectly well thanks to his long eyelashes.
  • The Tibetan Terrier has large, round, flat feet that act like snowshoes and give the dog traction in snowy conditions.
  • The TT’s long, luxurious coat parts down the middle and can be any color or combination of colors. Colors and patterns include white, gold, tricolor, brindle, silver, black, and parti-color (a color plus white).
  • The Tibetan Terrier is not a true terrier but was given that appellation because of its size.
Breed standards
AKC group: Non-sporting
UKC group: Companion dog
Average lifespan: 12 - 15 years
Average size: 18 - 30 pounds
Coat appearance: Soft, wooly, thick double coat
Coloration: Any combination of colors
Hypoallergenic: Yes
Other identifiers: Proportionally sized body; dark brown, wide-set eyes; medium-sized head and short, black nose; ears hang beside head; feathered tail curls around to back of body
Possible alterations: None
Comparable Breeds: Lhasa Apso, Shih Tzu

History
  With its mountainous terrain, Tibet is sometimes referred to as the Roof of the World. It was in that harsh, high, remote land that the Tibetan Terrier was created. Prized as companions, the dogs were raised by Buddhist monks, known as lamas, from whom they took their name Holy Dog. 
Tibetan Terriers of Teasia
  But the shaggy, medium-size dogs weren't limited to life in the lamaseries where they were born. Considered to be luck bringers, they traveled the high plateaus with nomadic herdsmen, guarding their tents. Fearful of tempting fate by "selling" their luck, neither the lamas nor the herdsmen ever sold the dogs. Instead, they were given as gifts in return for favors or services or presented to officials as a mark of esteem.
  The Tibetan Terrier might have remained an obscure breed if not for a grateful Tibetan man who gave a Tibetan Terrier to Dr. Agnes R. H. Greig, who had saved his wife's life. Dr. Greig named her new puppy Bunti and became a fan of the breed. Eventually, she acquired a male, also as a gift, and began a breeding program, establishing the Lamleh line of Tibetan Terriers. Being neither a sporting dog nor a mix, the breed was given the name Tibetan Terrier, despite the fact that it wasn't a true terrier in either instinct or temperament but merely resembled one in size.
  A breed standard was created by the Kennel Club of India in 1930, and the Tibetan Terrier was officially recognized by England's Kennel Club in 1937. The first Tibetan Terrier imported into the United States, Gremlin Cortina, arrived in 1956. Owned by Dr. Henry S. and Alice Murphy, she was so beloved by them that she inspired Alice Murphy to establish her own kennel, Lamleh of Kalai. The Tibetan Terrier Club of America was formed in 1957, and the American Kennel Club recognized the breed in 1973. Today the Tibetan Terrier ranks 95th among the 155 breeds and varieties recognized by the AKC.

Personality
  The Tibetan Terrier is smart, pleasant, and affectionate. Gentle but fun loving, he's dedicated to his family but may be cautious or reserved toward strangers. Puppies are active and lively — what puppy isn't? — but settle down as they reach maturity.
  True to their heritage, they make wonderful watchdogs and will bark an alert if they see or hear anything suspicious. They don't like to be left alone for long periods, preferring the company of the people they love. Tibetan Terriers are known for adaptability and a sense of humor.
  Like every dog, Tibetan Terriers need early socialization — exposure to many different people, sights, sounds, and experiences — when they're young. Socialization helps ensure that your Tibetan Terrier puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.

Health
  The Tibetan Terrier, which has an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years, is prone to major health concerns such as progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) and lens luxation, as well as minor problems like patellar luxation, ceroid lipofuscinosis, cataract, canine hip dysplasia (CHD), and hypothyroidism. Often distichiasis is noticed in this breed; eye, hip, and thyroid tests are suggested for dogs of this breed.

Care
  Tibetan Terriers are adaptable dogs at home in a variety of households, from condos to castles. They should live indoors with their people, not stuck out in a backyard or kennel.
  Once they've matured, they are just as happy being couch potatoes as they are active family dogs. Like any dog, an adult Tibetan Terrier requires daily exercise to stay healthy and happy, but he'll be satisfied with a couple of 15-minute walks daily or one longer walk. Naturally, puppy and adolescent Tibetan Terriers are filled with energy and excitement and require higher levels of stimulation and exercise.
  Although it's nice for a Tibetan Terrier to have a securely fenced yard where he can play, it's not a great idea to leave him out there for long periods. A bored Tibetan Terrier is a barker, and a really bored Tibetan Terrier is an escape artist who's perfectly capable of climbing, jumping, or digging his way over or under a fence.
  Housetraining can take time, but you'll be successful if you're patient and give your Tibetan Terrier a regular schedule and plenty of opportunities to potty outdoors, praising him when he does so. Crate training is strongly recommended. It will make housetraining easier and keep your Tibetan Terrier from chewing things while you are away. The crate is a tool, not a jail, however, so don't keep your Tibetan Terrier locked up in it for long periods. The best place for a Tibetan Terrier is with you.
  TTs are generally amiable, but sometimes they have their own agenda. Keep training fun, be consistent, and use positive reinforcement techniques such as praise, play, and food rewards.

Living Conditions
  The Tibetan Terrier will do okay in an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised. It is relatively inactive indoors and a small yard will be sufficient.

Training
  Because it is intelligent, Tibetan Terriers are an ideal breed for training. But make sure you know what you’re doing, as the dog may use its smarts to get the upper hand and train you instead!  There are a few things in mind when training a Tibetan Terrier. Never use negative methods of training, as Tibetan Terriers will ignore you or rebel against the negative methods of training without modifying its behavior. You should use positive methods of training, such as treats, affection and play in order to teach obedience.
  For training to be successful, you’ll also have to be completely consistent throughout the process. Make sure that your Tibetan Terrier knows what it has to do in order to be rewarded, and don’t let your dog sucker you into giving it a reward without doing the work. When you keep your behavior consistent and give your dog achievable objectives every day, your Tibetan Terrier will master the finer points of training.

Exercise Requirements
  No matter where you live, your Tibetan Terrier needs to get some form of daily exercise. One walk a day isn’t sufficient for this breed – it needs to get out at least twice a day. It really comes in handy if you have a large, secure yard your dog can run around in. the important thing to remember is that your Tibetan Terrier needs to release its pent up energy, otherwise it may become destructive
  While walking your Tibetan Terrier, make sure it is always on a leash. Thanks to this dog’s mischievous streak, it may try to escape and explore the great outdoors. And if you chase after it, it’s all a big game to the Tibetan Terrier.

Grooming Needs
  The long coat of the Tibetan Terrier needs to be brushed daily to keep it tangle and mat free. The coat should always be misted with water before brushed, otherwise the hair will break off. It is important to brush the coat all the way down to the skin to ensure all loose hair is removed. Mats are espcially prone to form behind the ears, on the chest, the belly and the armpits. For dogs who won't be shown, owners can opt to clip the hair into a puppy cut, which requires much less maintenance. Tibetan Terriers should be bathed monthly.
  Check the ears on a weekly basis for signs of infection, irritation, or wax build up. Cleanse regularly with a veterinarian-approved cleanser and cotton ball. Brush the teeth at least once per week to prevent tartar buildup and fight gum disease. Additionally, nails should be trimmed once per month if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally.

Children And Other Pets
   Tibetan Terriers love kids and can match their energy levels all day long, but they're a little rambunctious for households with children under the age of 6 years.
  Always teach children how to approach and touch dogs, and always supervise any interactions between dogs and young children to prevent any biting or ear or tail pulling on the part of either party. Teach your child never to approach any dog while he's sleeping or eating or to try to take the dog's food away. No dog should ever be left unsupervised with a child.
  Tibetan Terriers usually get along well with other dogs and cats, especially if they're introduced to them in puppyhood.

Is this breed right for you?
  Tibetan Terriers are wonderful with school-aged children and other animals if raised with them. Doing OK with apartment living if properly exercised, this breed is inactive indoors but enjoys a good romp outside. Enjoying his own space in the yard, he can also be satisfied with daily walks and gentle praise. In need of companionship, he may act out if he doesn't get enough attention. If not given proper leadership, the Tibetan Terrier is likely to think of himself as the alpha and may become an over-active barker. Only shedding once a year, he makes a good fit for the allergy sufferer but will need grooming every 2 to 3 days.

Did You Know?
  The Tibetan Terrier was nicknamed Luck Bringer and Holy Dog in his homeland of Tibet.

A dream day in the life of a Tibetan Terrier
  The Tibetan Terrier will be happiest starting his day in the bed of his owner. After snuggling, he'll follow his owner wherever he may go. Ready for his daily walk, you'll find this breed waiting patiently at the door. Going back inside and enjoying a nice meal, the Tibetan Terrier will likely relax the rest of his day away on the couch. Happy with a couple of play sessions and a few petting sessions in the afternoon, the Tibetan Terrier will end his day just as he began it, cuddling close to his owner.



Read More

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Everything about your Shih Tzu

Everything about your Shih Tzu
  Shih Tzu are lively and energetic companions. Yet, they are also amazingly low-key and satisfied—assuming they get an adequate amount of attention. They like nothing better than to be held, stroked, petted and pampered by their owners, and are perfectly happy sitting on the couch with you for hours while you dote on them. This is a noble breed—sometimes translating into arrogance and haughtiness, other times into courageousness and politeness—but they are never too proud for a roll on the floor with a treasured squeaky toy.

Overview
  Compact, yet slightly longer than it is tall, the Shih Tzu hides a sturdy body beneath its mantle of luxurious hair. It has a smooth, effortless stride with good reach and drive. Even though its function is that of companion, it should nonetheless be structurally sound. Its expression is warm, sweet and wide-eyed, imparting the impression of trust and friendliness. The long, dense coat is double and fairly straight. 
  The spunky but sweet Shih Tzu is both a gentle lap dog and a vivacious companion. It has an upbeat attitude and loves to play and romp. It is affectionate to its family and good with children. It is surprisingly tough and does have a stubborn streak.


Highlights
  • There is no such breed as an "imperial" or "teacup" Shih Tzu. These are simply marketing terms used by unscrupulous breeders use to indicate a very small or large Shih Tzu.
  • Shih Tzus are difficult to housebreak. Be consistent, and do not allow a puppy to roam the house unsupervised until he is completely trained. Crate training is helpful.
  • The flat shape of the Shih Tzu's face makes him susceptible to heat stroke, because the air going into the lungs isn't cooled as efficiently as it is among longer-nosed breeds. He should be kept indoors in air-conditioning rooms during hot weather.
  • Be prepared to brush and comb the Shih Tzu coat every day. It mats easily.
  • While Shih Tzus are trustworthy with children, they're not the best choice for families with toddlers or very young children because their small size puts them at risk for unintentional injury.
  • The Shih Tzu tends to wheeze and snore, and can be prone to dental problems.
  • While all dogs eat their own or other animals' feces (coprophagia), the Shih Tzu seems especially prone to this behavior. The best way to handle the problem is never let it become a habit. Watch your Shih Tzu closely and clean up poop right away.
  • To get a healthy pet, never buy a puppy from a backyard breeder, puppy mill, or pet store. Find a reputable breeder who tests her breeding dogs for genetic health conditions and good temperaments.
Other Quick Facts
  • Shih Tzus are often called chrysanthemum dogs because of the way their hair grows up from the nose and around the face in all directions.
  • The Shih Tzu may have originated in Tibet, bred by Tibetan lamas to be a tiny replica of a lion, which is associated with Buddhist mythology.
  • The Shih Tzu is prized for his small size, sweet nature, flowing coat, and intelligent mind.
  • The name is pronounced SHEED-zoo.
  • Comparable Breeds: Lhasa Apso, Pekingese
History
  DNA analysis placed the ancestors of today's Shih Tzu breed in the group of "ancient" breeds indicating "close genetic relationship to wolves". Another branch coming down from the "Kitchen Midden Dog" gave rise to the Papillon and Long-haired Chihuahua and yet another "Kitchen Midden Dog" branch to the Pug and Shih Tzu.
  It is also said that the breed originated in China, hence the name "Lion Dog", in 800BC. There are various theories of the origins of today's breed. Theories relate that it stemmed from a cross between Pekingese and a Tibetan dog called the Lhasa Apso. Dogs during ancient times were selectively bred and seen in Chinese paintings. The dogs were favorites of the Chinese royals and were so prized that for years the Chinese refused to sell, trade, or give away any of the dogs. The first dogs of the breed were imported into Europe (England and Norway) in 1930, and were classified by the Kennel Club as "Apsos". The first European standard for the breed was written in England in 1935 by the Shih Tzu Club, and the dogs were recategorised as Shih Tzu. The breed spread throughout Europe, and was brought to the United States after World War II, when returning members of the US military brought back dogs from Europe, in the mid 1950s. The Shih Tzu was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1969 in the Toy Group.
  The breed is now recognized by all of the major kennel clubs in the English-speaking world. It is also recognised by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale for international competition in Companion and Toy Dog Group, Section 5, Tibetan breeds. In the United States, the Shih Tzu ranked the 15th most popular breed in 2013, falling slightly in popularity since 2012, when it was placed in 11th position.



Temperament
  The Shih Tzu is an alert, lively, little dog. It is happy and hardy, and packed with character. The gentle, loyal Shih Tzu makes friends easily and responds well to consistent, patient training. It makes a very alert watchdog. It is courageous and clever.
  Playful and spunky, this affectionate little dog likes to be with people and is generally good with other pets. Some can be difficult to housebreak. The Shih Tzu needs all of the humans in the house to be pack leaders, with the rules of the house made consistently clear.   Owners who allow their dogs to take over may find them to be snappish if they are surprised or peeved. Because of this dog’s small size and its adorable face, it commonly develops Small Dog Syndrome, human induced behaviors where the dog believes he is the boss of humans. This causes a varying degree of behavioral issues, such as, but not limited to separation anxiety, guarding, growling, snapping, and even biting. These dogs may become untrustworthy with children and sometimes adults, as they try and tell the humans what THEY want THEM to do. They will be obstinate as they take their stand and defend their top position in the pack. They may bark obsessively as they try and TELL you what they want. These behaviors are NOT Shih Tzu traits, but rather behaviors brought on by the way they are treated by people around them. Give this dog rules and limits as to what it is and is not allowed to do. Be its firm, stable, consistent pack leader. Take it for daily pack walks to burn mental and physical energy. Its temperament will improve for the better, and you will bring out the sweet, trustworthy dog in it.

Health
  The Shih Tzu has a lifespan of 11 to 16 years. Some of the minor diseases that can affect this breed are renal dysplasia (abnormal growth of tissue), trichiasis (eyelash malformation), entropion, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), otitis externa, patellar luxation, and inguinal (groin) hernia, as well as a major concern like canine hip dysplasia (CHD). This breed is also prone to cataract and dental problems. Eye, hip, and DNA tests can be good for preventive health care, or for management of non-preventive conditions.

Care
  The Shih Tzu doesn't really mind where he lives, as long as he's with you. He's a very adaptable dog who can be comfortable in a small city apartment or a large suburban or country home. He is definitely a housedog and should not be kenneled outside, though he enjoys a bit of backyard play.
  The Shih Tzu is content with short walks each day. He is not an extremely active dog; he's content to sit in your lap, wander around the house, play with his toys, or run to the door to  greet visitors.
  Like other breeds with short faces, the Shih Tzu is sensitive to heat. He should remain indoors in an air-conditioned room (or one with fans) on hot days so he doesn't suffer from heat exhaustion.
  No, the breed cannot fly; but owners commonly report that their Shih Tzu thinks he can. It not unusual for a Shih Tzu to fearlessly jump from a bed or a chair. While they may not seem high to you, these heights are towering to the small Shih Tzu. And, unfortunately, these jumps often end in injury. The breed is front heavy and crashes forward, causing injury or even a concussion to the head. Be very careful when carrying your Shih Tzu. Hold him securely and don't let him jump out of your arms or off furniture.
Even though he's naturally docile and friendly, the Shih Tzu needs early socialization and training. Like any dog, he can become timid if he is not properly socialized when young. Early socialization helps ensure that your Shih Tzu puppy grows up to be a well-rounded dog.
  Shih Tzus are often considered difficult to housebreak. Most important is to avoid giving your puppy opportunities to have accidents inside — you don't want him to become accustomed to using the carpet. (Some Shih Tzu owners teach their dogs to use a doggie litter box so they don't need to walk them in bad weather or rush home to take them out.) A Shih Tzu puppy should be carefully supervised inside the house until he has not eliminated indoors for at least four to eight weeks. Crate training is helpful for housetraining and provides your dog with a quiet place to relax. A crate is also useful when you board your Shih Tzu or travel.

Living Conditions
  The Shih Tzu is good for apartment life. These dogs are fairly active indoors and will do okay without a yard. This breed is sensitive to the heat.

Exercise
  The Shih Tzu needs a daily walk. Play will take care of a lot of its exercise needs, however, as with all breeds, play will not fulfill its primal instinct to walk. Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display behavior problems. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe, open area off lead, such as a large, fenced-in yard. Do not overfeed this breed or it will quickly become fat.

Grooming
  These little dogs require a good daily grooming using a bristle brush. When kept in a long coat a topknot is usually tied to keep the hair out of the dog's eyes. Some owners prefer to have them trimmed to make the coat easier and less time-consuming to care for. Keep the ear passages and area around the eyes clean. Shih Tzus have sensitive eyes that need to be kept clean. There are special drops you can buy to put in them if needed. Ask your vet what to use on your dog. This breed sheds little to no hair and is good for allergy sufferers if its coat is kept very well groomed, due to the fact that they shed little skin dander.

Children and other pets
  The Shih Tzu is a wonderful family pet. He gets along with other dogs or animals, and his docile personality makes him a good companion for children. Kids should sit on the floor to play with a Shih Tzu puppy, however, so there is no risk of carrying and dropping him. Children should also learn to keep their fingers away from the Shih Tzu's prominent eyes, which can be easily injured.

Did You Know?
One of the more ancient breeds in existence, Shih Tzus are believed to have been bred by Tibetan lamas to be a tiny replica of a lion, which is associated with Buddhist mythology.
Read More