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Lovely little dog, loads of energy
Member Name: sarah101
Date: 30/09/08, updated on 01/10/08 (101 review reads)
Advantages: Great with kids and older people, friendly and playful
Disadvantages: Grooming is a serious daily commitment and will need trips to professional groomers
This was a breed of dog I considered getting as my aunt has a Shih Tzu and has had her for about a year longer than I have had my dog. She is still like a puppy with her energy and playfulness! My aunt is 70 in a few months and only manages to go on short walks with her dog and the dog seems content with the short walk and access to the garden to run around in as much as she likes throughout the day.
I know she managed to toilet train her really quickly and the dog will do basic obedience but has never taken a formal class. She is good walking on a lead and does not see herself as a small dog and will constantly want to go and play with the biggest dog in the park!
My aunt keeps her coat fairly short as it is easier for her to manage and the coat tends to get matted when it is longer even though she devotes some time each day to groom her. The only problem she has is getting to trim around the dogs eyes as it is something the dog just hates!
I decided against this breed of dog after falling in love with the Bichon Frise! However, their happy, playful and energetic energy does still appeal to me! As well as my aunt who lives in a small house and does not get to walk very far with her dog, I also have a friend who has this breed and they are a family of 5 and the dog goes for long walks everyday! So I think they are content doing what their owners do but also think that a Shih Tzu is a great dog for an older owner as they do not require a lot of exercise unlike some larger breed dogs.
Seems my review was not helpful to some people so thought I would add a bit more some of which I know and some I have researched. I used to see a dog in the park which I always classed as a Shih Tzu and it was only when i spoke to the owner that she informed me it was a Tibetan Terrier. To me it looked like a short haired Shih Tzu! After looking into the breed I discovered it was originally from Tibet and although Tibet is fairly isolated they spread across from gifts to China.
The are part of the utility group of dogs and are judged along side the toy group at Crufts - as they do Toy & Utility on the same day. They are small dogs coming in at about 3/4 the size of my Bichon Frise. The breed standard is from 23-27cms and the weight is from 4 to 8kgs. However my aunts dog seems to eat anything whenever she can get her paws on it and is only just over 4kgs - I put this down to her constant energy! As I mentioned above my aunt has problems cutting around the dogs eye and after looking on a few websites the Shih Tzu's eyes protrude so can be prone to cuts and it also mentioned that the hair grows in a way that can irritate the eyes.
I was shocked to read on a few places that the energy is low for the breed as the two I know are constantly on the go! The lifespan is from 9 to 15 and going back over 4 years ago my aunt paid around £400 for her dog and my friends paid about the same around 2 years ago for a puppy that is kennel club registered.
I already knew they were good with other animals as both the Shih Tzu's I see have a lot of contact with other animals and love to play with my dog. They are also wonderful with children my friends had a baby when they got the dog and they have lived together perfectly happily ever since they met! My aunts dog is also around a lot of her grandchildren and great nieces and nephews and has always enjoyed playing with them!
I hope the last few paragraphs I have added have helped those who were not happy with the original review - perhaps I should have not reviewed a dog I have never owned but I see one at least once a week and was considering getting one before I got my dog.
Summary: A cute, playful dog that I think could adapt to any loving home with any age family
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