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If you are looking for a happy, affectionate and outgoing dog, then go for a Shih Tzu—also known as Lion Dog. These dogs are known for their affectionate behavior towards children, plus the big cute eyes and a sweet smile attract the children as well. These cute little dogs look extremely sensitive, but they are surprisingly tough for the dogs their size.

Unlike other breeds of dogs who like to dig holes and roam around, the Shih Tzu loves to sit in your lap for cuddles and watch TV with you. Plus, these dogs are amiable and can quickly become friends with new people. 

Raising a Shih Tzu

Every breed of dog needs specific care, and there are some things that you must keep in mind before adopting a Shih Tzu. These dogs want their owners to spend time and cuddle with them daily. So, whenever you come home from work, give some time to your little fellow.

Furthermore, if you want to raise a healthy and happy Shih Tzu, you must follow the below-mentioned tips.

Offer Good Quality Food

To ensure the health of your little pal, you must choose the best quality food. A well-balanced diet having all the useful ingredients will help to keep your little fellow healthy. You can also go for a diet chart from some qualified veterinarian for all the nutrient requirement details.

The quality of food directly affects the health and dogs, so you must go for high-quality food products. Plus, don’t fall for products having synthetic colors or ingredients; always select the food products manufactured with natural ingredients. 

The Shih Tzu is extremely sensitive, and synthetic preservatives can cause allergic reactions to them. Furthermore, you must check the nutrient requirements, which are designed according to your dog’s age, size, and weight, and try to feed the optimum amount of food recommended by the veterinarian. Don’t overfeed your little pal because it can also cause some severe health issues. 

Physical Activity

Like every other breed of dog, Shih Tzu also requires some physical activity daily. If you have a huge place at home, he can roam about in the house, and you can play with him, but if you live in an apartment, you must take him for a walk and play with him in the park.

As boredom can lead to irritating and unfavorable behavior, it is recommended to take your little pal on a walk, which also affects health and growth in a good way.

Proper Cleaning and Grooming

To prevent your dog from any disease or health issue, the first thing is performing proper cleanliness and grooming. It is recommended to brush the whole coat 1 to 3 times a week, plus, the nails must be clipped every six weeks, and you must give a proper bath to your little fellow once a week and in winters after every three weeks.

Furthermore, you must check the shampoo before applying it to the dog’s coat because if the shampoo contains harsh chemicals, it can cause severe allergic reactions.

Dietary Supplements

If you observe that your dog is acting quite lazy and not responding well, he is not getting the whole nutrients, and you must give him some dietary supplements recommended by a veterinarian.

Furthermore, you can give him fish oil, which can help cure allergies, and probiotics can be given if the dog is facing some digestive issues. Plus, some calming supplements can help to fight chronic emotional stress.

But before giving any supplement, you must visit a veterinarian and get your dog fully examined to find the root cause of the problem.

Use Good Quality Coat Products

One of the essential tips for maintaining dogs’ health is to check all the products you use on the dog’s coat. These include shampoos, wash-out conditioner, and leave-in spray. All these products can affect the dog’s health, and you must check all the ingredients from which these products are manufactured.

Moreover, avoid using artificial fragrances, dyes, or the soaping agents having sulfates because these products can cause serious allergies. Plus, you must check the pH level, which must be below 6.5, and if it is above 7.5, you should not use it because it can prove harmful.

Health Concerns

Shih Tzu is a brachycephalic breed, so the skull and the breathing passages are compressed. Due to this reason, they can suffer from breathing issues, so if you are raising a Shih Tzu, then you must check the breathing patterns regularly to ensure the health of your little pal.

You must play with your dog so that he can check his breathing patterns while exercising. But if you observe that your dog is panting heavily, you must visit a veterinarian for a proper checkup.

One more thing directly related to health is dental care and hygiene, as poor dental hygiene can lead to dental infections, jawbone deterioration, tooth decay, and tooth loss. So, you must pay proper attention to dental hygiene so that the dog doesn’t suffer from any health issues.

Puppy Proof the Whole House

When you are going to adopt a dog, the first thing you must do is ‘puppy proof the whole house.’ Dogs have a habit of chewing and eating everything they see, and the same is the case for the chewer dog, Shih Tzu. No matter how much old this dog is, he can choke on any object, electrocute themselves, can also be poisoned.

So, it is highly recommended to check every single part of the house because Shih Tzu can easily go to small places and can harm himself.

Proper Sleeping Place

Shih Tzu is small in size, but you must arrange a proper sleeping place, your little fellow. But while selecting a bed or cushion, you must keep in mind that he can easily destroy a bed or blanket as a chewer dog.

So, it is highly recommended to go for a chew proof dog bed for your dog, as they are composed of high-quality chew-proof material that is quite indestructible and feels comfortable while staying in it for a long time.

Use a Comfortable Harness

Shih Tzu is a sensitive brachycephalic breed that can easily suffer from the collapsed trachea and breathing issues. So, collars must not be used on these dog’s necks.

Instead of using a collar, it is recommended to use a harness to distribute pressure over the whole body instead of applying severe pressure on the neck area. There are multiple types of harnesses available in the market, but you must go for the one that suits Shih Tzu the most.

Proper Adjustments for Summers and Winters

Shih Tzu is a brachycephalic breed, is prone to the harmful effects of summers. So, you must make proper adjustments to prevent your little pal from heat. You must take appropriate your dog with enough water to keep him hydrated, plus it is recommended to give frozen berries as well.

Plus, you can have a cooling mat at which the dog can sleep to prevent form heat. Furthermore, it is recommended to take your dog on a walk in the morning or at night so that he doesn’t feel bored while staying at home.  

In the same way, you must make proper adjustments in the winters to prevent your dog from cold. It is recommended to make your dog wear a sweater or vest to keep him warm. One more thing that you must keep in mind is that the cold weather can affect the skin and makes the paws dry and ditching, plus the coat also becomes dry, so you must go for a paw wax which can moisturize the dog and makes the skin soft, plus you can have a moisturizing shampoo which can keep the coat clean and smooth.

Make Veterinary Appointments

If you are raising a god for the first time, you must make proper veterinary appointments to get your dog checked properly.

So, it is recommended to have proper vaccination of your dog and, after that, take your dog to the vet to get him checked. For the in-between stuff you can contact a televet service.

A well-qualified vet will perform some major tests, like CBC, urine, and stool analysis, to check the dog’s health. Furthermore, he will also examine the breathing and heart rate, plus all other body parts like eyes, ears, and mouth.

Final Verdict

Every dog breed includes different techniques and steps to raise; the same is the case for Shih Tzu. So, if you are going to adopt this tiny dog, you must keep in mind the raising tips that will help you properly raise a healthy and happy dog. These techniques include proper exercise, food examination, sleeping place, proper adjustments, veterinary appointments, and many more. Review this article to know about all the tips in detail, which will prove helpful for you.

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