How to Train Your Shih Tzu: Tips for a Happy, Well-Behaved Pup

Table of Contents

Professional dog trainer teaching Shih Tzu puppy to pee on pad, not bite, shake hands, and stay home alone in a well-equipped training environment.


  • Why training your Shih Tzu is essential: Training your Shih Tzu is important for many reasons. It helps your dog learn good behavior and manners. A well-trained Shih Tzu is happier and healthier. Training also makes it easier for you to manage your pet. This means fewer accidents and less stress for both you and your dog.
  • Understanding your Shih Tzu’s behavior: Shih Tzus are known for their friendly and loving nature. They are also very smart and can learn quickly. However, they can be stubborn at times. Understanding their behavior helps you train them better. Knowing why they act a certain way can make training easier and more effective.

How to Train Your Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu Training Age

Training your Shih Tzu at the right age is crucial for their development. Let’s explore the best age to start training and how to train older Shih Tzus.

  • Best age to start training: The ideal time to start training your Shih Tzu is when they are around 8 weeks old. At this age, they are more receptive to learning new things. Early training helps in building good habits and social skills. According to Wikipedia, early training can lead to better behavior in dogs.
  • Training older Shih Tzus: It’s never too late to train your Shih Tzu. Older dogs can learn new tricks and commands too. However, patience is key. Start with basic commands and gradually introduce more complex ones. Consistency and positive reinforcement are essential when training older Shih Tzus.
Age Training Focus
8 weeks Basic commands, socialization
6 months Advanced commands, leash training
1 year and older Behavior correction, new tricks

Shih Tzu Training Commands

  1. Basic commands to teach your Shih Tzu

    Teaching your Shih Tzu basic commands is essential for good behavior. Start with these:

    • Sit: Hold a treat close to your dog’s nose. Move your hand up, allowing their head to follow the treat and causing their bottom to lower. Once they’re in a sitting position, say “Sit,” give them the treat, and share affection.
    • Stay: First, command your dog to “Sit.” Open the palm of your hand in front of you and say “Stay.” Take a few steps back. If they stay, reward them with a treat and affection.
    • Come: Put a leash and collar on your dog. Go down to their level and say, “Come,” while gently pulling on the leash. When they come to you, reward them with a treat and affection.
  2. Advanced commands for a well-behaved pup

    • Heel: With your dog on a leash, start walking and say “Heel.” Keep treats handy to reward them for walking beside you without pulling.
    • Leave it: Place a treat in both hands. Show your dog one enclosed fist with the treat inside and say “Leave it.” Ignore their attempts to get the treat. Once they stop trying, give them the treat from the other hand.
    • Down: Hold a treat in your closed hand. Let your dog sniff it. Move your hand to the ground, and when they follow, say “Down.” Once they’re lying down, give them the treat and affection.

How to Train a Shih Tzu to Stay Home Alone

  • Gradual introduction to alone time:Begin with just 5-10 minutes. Gradually increase the time as your dog becomes more comfortable. This helps them get used to being alone without feeling anxious.

    For example, you can leave the room and close the door. After a few minutes, return and give your Shih Tzu a treat. This positive reinforcement helps them associate alone time with good things.

  • Creating a safe space for your Shih Tzu:This could be a small room or a crate with their favorite toys and a comfy bed. Ensure the space is quiet and free from hazards.

    According to Wikipedia, crate training can be very effective for creating a safe space. It provides a den-like environment that can help reduce anxiety.

    Leave water and some chew toys to keep them entertained. A well-prepared space can make a big difference in how your Shih Tzu handles being alone.

How to Train Shih Tzu Where to Poop

Training your Shih Tzu to poop in the right place is very important. It helps keep your home clean and makes your pet happy. Here are some steps to help you:

  • Creating a designated bathroom spot: Choose a specific spot in your yard or home where you want your Shih Tzu to poop. This helps your dog understand where to go. Make sure this spot is easy for your dog to reach.
  • Consistency in potty training: Take your Shih Tzu to the designated spot at the same times every day. This could be after meals, after playtime, or first thing in the morning. Consistency helps your dog learn faster.

Your Shih Tzu will learn with time and practice. Reward your dog with treats and praise when they poop in the right spot. This positive reinforcement makes them want to do it again.

Steps Details
Creating a designated bathroom spot Choose a specific spot for your Shih Tzu to poop. Make sure it is easy to reach.
Consistency in potty training Take your Shih Tzu to the spot at the same times every day. Reward them when they poop in the right place.

For more information on Shih Tzu training, you can visit Wikipedia.

How to Train a Shih Tzu Puppy Not to Bite

  1. Understanding why puppies biteOften bite because they are teething or exploring their world. Biting is a natural behavior for them. They use their mouths to play and learn about their surroundings. However, it’s important to teach them that biting is not acceptable.
  2. Teaching bite inhibitionA way to teach your puppy to control the force of their bite. Here are some steps to follow:
    1. Yelp when bitten: When your puppy bites, make a high-pitched yelp. This mimics the sound other puppies make when they are hurt. It helps your puppy understand that biting hurts.
    2. Stop playing: After yelping, stop playing with your puppy for a few seconds. This shows them that biting ends the fun.
    3. Redirect their attention: Give your puppy a chew toy to bite instead. This teaches them what is okay to bite.
    4. Be consistent: Always respond the same way when your puppy bites. Consistency helps them learn faster.

How to Train Shih Tzu Puppy to Pee on Pad

  • Choosing the right pee pad

You want one that is absorbent and large enough for your Shih Tzu puppy. Look for pads with a leak-proof bottom layer to protect your floors. Some pads come with attractants to help your puppy know where to go.

  • Training steps for pee pad use

Training your Shih Tzu to use a pee pad takes patience. Here are the steps:

  1. Introduce the pad: Place the pee pad in a spot that is easy for your puppy to reach. Show your puppy the pad and let them sniff it.
  2. Set a schedule: Take your puppy to the pad after meals, naps, and playtime. Puppies usually need to pee every 2-3 hours.
  3. Use commands: Use a command like “Go potty” when you place your puppy on the pad. This helps them understand what you want them to do.
  4. Reward success: When your puppy uses the pad, give them a treat and lots of praise. Positive reinforcement helps them learn faster.
  5. Be patient: Accidents will happen. Do not scold your puppy. Clean up the mess and keep training. Consistency is key.

Training your Shih Tzu to use a pee pad can take a few weeks. Stay patient and keep rewarding good behavior. Soon, your puppy will know exactly where to go!

Shih Tzu Training Near Me

Choosing a Local Trainer

Finding the right trainer for your Shih Tzu can make a big difference. Here are some tips to help you choose the best local trainer.

  • What to look for in a trainer:

    • Experience: Look for trainers who have experience with Shih Tzus. They will understand the breed’s unique needs.
    • Certifications: Check if the trainer has certifications from recognized organizations like the Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT).
    • Positive Reviews: Read reviews from other pet owners. Good feedback can be a sign of a reliable trainer.
    • Training Methods: Ensure the trainer uses positive reinforcement techniques. Avoid trainers who use harsh methods.
  • Benefits of local training:

    • Personalized Attention: Local trainers can offer one-on-one sessions, which can be more effective.
    • Convenience: It’s easier to schedule sessions and attend classes close to home.
    • Community Support: Local trainers often have connections with other pet owners and services in your area.
    • Familiar Environment: Training in a familiar setting can help your Shih Tzu feel more comfortable and learn better.
Trainer Qualification Importance
Experience with Shih Tzus High
Certifications Medium
Positive Reviews High
Positive Reinforcement Methods Very High

Online Training Options

  1. Benefits of Online Training

    • Convenience: You can train your Shih Tzu from the comfort of your home.
    • Flexibility: Online courses allow you to learn at your own pace.
    • Cost-Effective: Many online resources are cheaper than hiring a local trainer.
    • Variety: There are many different courses and methods available online.

    According to a study by the American Pet Products Association, 67% of pet owners found online training to be effective. This shows that many people are successfully using online resources to train their pets.

  2. Recommended Online Training Resources

    Resource Description Link
    Zak George’s Dog Training Revolution Offers free videos on YouTube covering various training topics. YouTube Channel
    Udemy Provides paid courses on dog training, including specific courses for Shih Tzus. Udemy
    American Kennel Club (AKC) Offers articles and videos on training and caring for your Shih Tzu. AKC Website

    These resources offer a mix of free and paid content, so you can choose what works best for you and your Shih Tzu.

How to Train Shih Tzu to Shake Hands

  • Step-by-step guide to teaching your Shih Tzu to shake hands
  • Tips for successful training

Step-by-Step Guide to Teaching Your Shih Tzu to Shake Hands

Training your Shih Tzu to shake hands is a fun and rewarding experience. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Get Your Treats Ready: Use small, tasty treats to motivate your Shih Tzu.
  2. Command “Sit”: Start by asking your Shih Tzu to sit. This is the starting position.
  3. Show the Treat: Hold a treat in your hand and let your Shih Tzu see it.
  4. Lift the Paw: Gently lift one of your Shih Tzu’s paws while saying “Shake.”
  5. Give the Treat: Reward your Shih Tzu with a treat and praise as soon as they lift their paw.
  6. Repeat: Practice this several times a day until your Shih Tzu understands the command.

Tips for Successful Training

  • Be Patient: Training takes time. Be patient and consistent with your commands.
  • Use Positive Reinforcement: Always reward your Shih Tzu with treats and praise for good behavior.
  • Keep Sessions Short: Short, frequent training sessions are more effective than long ones.
  • Practice Regularly: Consistency is key. Practice the “shake” command daily.
  • Stay Calm: Your Shih Tzu can sense your emotions. Stay calm and positive during training.
Training Step Details
Get Your Treats Ready Use small, tasty treats to motivate your Shih Tzu.
Command “Sit” Start by asking your Shih Tzu to sit.
Show the Treat Hold a treat in your hand and let your Shih Tzu see it.
Lift the Paw Gently lift one of your Shih Tzu’s paws while saying “Shake.”
Give the Treat Reward your Shih Tzu with a treat and praise as soon as they lift their paw.
Repeat Practice this several times a day until your Shih Tzu understands the command.


  • Recap of Training Tips: Training your Shih Tzu can be a rewarding experience. Use positive reinforcement, be consistent with commands, and start training early. Patience is key. Always reward good behavior and be gentle with corrections.
  • Encouragement for Patient, Consistent Training: Training takes time and effort. Stay patient and keep practicing. Consistency will help your Shih Tzu learn faster. Celebrate small successes and keep a positive attitude. Your hard work will pay off!

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