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Teaching Tricks: A Step-by-Step Approach to Shih Tzu Training

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shih Tzu Training

So, you’ve got a Shih Tzu, huh? Cute, fluffy, and full of personality, these little dogs are bundles of joy. But hey, why stop at just being adorable? Let’s teach them some tricks! Not only will it impress your friends and family, but it’s also a fantastic way to bond with your furry friend. So, grab some treats and let’s get started on this pawsome journey of Shih Tzu training!

Step 1: Choose the Right Environment

First things first, find a quiet and comfortable space for training. Distractions are the enemy here, so opt for a room with minimal noise and activity. Your Shih Tzu needs to be able to focus solely on you and the task at hand.

Step 2: Get the Right Treats

Treats are the holy grail of dog training. Opt for small, bite-sized treats that your Shih Tzu can easily gobble up. Find something irresistible – like bits of chicken or cheese – to keep them motivated throughout the training session.

Step 3: Start with Basic Commands

Before diving into fancy tricks, make sure your Shih Tzu has mastered basic commands like sit, stay, and come. These are the building blocks of all other tricks and will lay a solid foundation for further training.

Step 4: Break It Down

Now, let’s break down the trick you want to teach into smaller, manageable steps. For example, if you’re teaching your Shih Tzu to roll over, start by getting them to lie down on command.

Step 5: Use Positive Reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is key to effective training. Shower your Shih Tzu with praise and treats when they perform the desired behavior correctly. Remember, they thrive on praise and will be more eager to learn if they feel rewarded.

Step 6: Be Patient

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither are trick-performing Shih Tzus. Be patient with your furry friend and don’t get discouraged if progress is slow. Every dog learns at their own pace, so celebrate even the smallest victories along the way.

Step 7: Practice, Practice, Practice

Consistency is key when it comes to dog training. Set aside dedicated time each day to work on tricks with your Shih Tzu. The more you practice, the quicker they’ll pick up new skills.

Step 8: Keep Sessions Short and Sweet

Attention spans can be short, especially for our little Shih Tzu friends. Keep training sessions short – around 10 to 15 minutes – to prevent boredom and maintain focus.

Step 9: Add a Cue

Once your Shih Tzu has mastered a trick, add a verbal or hand cue to signal the desired behavior. This will help them understand what you want them to do even without a treat in hand.

Step 10: Don’t Forget to Have Fun

Above all, training should be a fun and rewarding experience for both you and your Shih Tzu. Don’t take it too seriously, and always end on a positive note – even if it means laughing at your pup’s adorable attempts at mastering a new trick.


And there you have it – a step-by-step guide to teaching tricks to your beloved Shih Tzu. With patience, consistency, and lots of tasty treats, there’s no limit to what you can achieve together. So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and start training – your Shih Tzu will thank you for it!


How long does it take to train a Shih Tzu?

Training times can vary depending on the complexity of the trick and your Shih Tzu’s individual temperament. Some tricks may take only a few sessions to master, while others may require weeks of consistent practice.

What if my Shih Tzu doesn’t seem interested in training?

If your Shih Tzu seems disinterested or reluctant to participate in training, try making the sessions more engaging by using high-value treats, incorporating toys, or breaking up the training into shorter, more frequent sessions.

Is it possible to teach an old Shih Tzu new tricks?

Absolutely! While it may take a bit more time and patience, older Shih Tzus are certainly capable of learning new tricks. Just be sure to take things slow and adjust your training approach to suit their needs.

Should I use punishment during training?

No, punishment should never be used during training. Positive reinforcement techniques, such as praise and treats, are much more effective and will help strengthen the bond between you and your Shih Tzu.

Can I train my Shih Tzu without treats?

While treats are a powerful motivator during training, they’re not the only option. You can also use praise, toys, or other rewards that your Shih Tzu finds rewarding. Experiment to see what works best for your furry friend!

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