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Discover what popular Shih Tzu dogs are really like to live with – from experienced owners and Dog Advice Videos experts. There’s the truth about temperament – they’re people-loving dogs who adore company, but can be every so slightly stubborn when it comes to dog training. Perservere with your Shih Tzu and they could end up a champion in agility or heelwork to music. There’s advice on the most suitable homes for these lively little dogs and their exercise demands. Plus there’s a guide to the challenges of grooming a Shih Tzu – whether you let its coat grow naturally long for the show ring, or the easier clipped short coats for pets. Enjoy the video and – as ever – don’t forget to add your comments about the Shi Tzus you know and love. They’re probably the funniest, most endearing little creatures you could ever come across. They’re great companions. Once you’ve had a Shih Tzu you’re spoiled for life. I’ve been in the breed now for eleven years, I’ve got six now. So they’re very collectable. The Shih Tzu was originally developed in Tibet. Shortly after moved to China where it was further developed. They are one of the original palace dogs, so they are used to being around people and have a lively outgoing nature. They are very much into being with people. They are not the kind of breed you’d want to put in a kennel. They love their home environment, their sofas and their chairs. Infact, as soon as you get out of your chair they’re into it. Shih Tzus are a lovely little dogs. They’re quite lively for the size of them. They have medium exercise demands. They like to go for really long exercise and really long walks. A fit Shih Tzu will need up to an hour a day. Road walking is good because thay builds up muscle, but they are free spirits so they like to have some open spaces to move around in as well. And although they’re little dogs, they do like to keep up with the bigger dogs running around in the park. But I think the minimum a day is half an hour adn agian it depends what age they are and how fit they are. Shih Tzus are a delight to train. We’ve had many through class doing absolutely stunning heel work, they’re a beautiful little companion dog. They’re very sweet but they’ve got real personality so they’re good fun to train. If you find what their motivation is, you’re onto a winner. And it’s either in the form of some food or a toy. Usually a squeaky toy. Obviously you can train them because we have them doing what we want them to do in the show ring, and they are very good at agility and heel work to music. But again, it really does depend on the individual dog and the ability of the person who’s training them. I think it’s more a stubborn-ness that they have. And an aloofness sometimes. I can call my dogs and sometimes they’ll all come running together depending on my tone of voice – and others it’s as if I’m not there. The only area that I’d be careful to train early on is – they’ve got coats – quite a lot of coat that needs grooming. So you need to think about getting them handle early. Particularly by a kind groomer. So you ought to be looking around their eyes and their ears and their paws. Lots of people get the dog used to handling the front paws, but what they don’t do is handle the back paws. You need to be handling your Shih Tzu from all over as soon as you get it. Finding a really nice groomer to take it to. It does take a little bit to toilet train them once they’ve gone to their new homes. And that’s just about being vigilant and getting them out like any puppy, after they’ve had some play or food or sleep. So you do need to be very aware that a Shih Tzu may take a little longer than other breeds. But it’s not impossible. We would re-home with most familes. They are nice, goodpopular dogs. I think they’d fit in anywhere really. I think because they’re really gregarious, and they like to run around and have fun. You should have a failry sized property. They’re very fast. So maybe not suited to elderly people – but maybe if they’re rehomed and they are elderly themselves then they’re lovely lapdogs. Really depending on what age they are, what you want to do with them – they can fit into almost any household. This is a breed that does need grooming. And obviously if you want to keep them in a long coat you do need to do that religiously every day. Otherwise matts will form. They grow a lot of hair in the pads between their toes – so that has to be trimmed regularly. Even road walking won’t take that off. So you do need to look out for that, otherwise it will matt between the pads and that will be very uncomfortable for them. You do need to attend to their nails and pads twice weekly just to make sure you’re keeping it under control. with the clipped off Shih Tzu, that’s a lot easier. And most people who want a Shih Tzu as a pet will go for a pet trim. You still have to check the eyes, ears and faces because they do – even when they’re trimmed –