Owning a Shih Poo pros and cons
What are the pros and cons of a Shihpoo dog? If you are considering owning a Shih Poo dog, understanding the advantages and disadvantages of Shih Tzu and Poodle mix dog is very important, especially if you are a first time potential dog owner. Shih-Poo is an offspring of Shih Tzu and Poodle cross and puppies resulting from the mix may inherit some of the Shih Tzu as well as some of the Poodle genetics that determines Shih Poo puppy's size, coat color and even coat texture, health issues as well as temperament of the dog. While with purebred puppies it is easier to know what to expect, Shih Poo dogs may be full of surprises.
Shih Poo dogs are small in size, which makes this designer breed easier to manage and to travel with. Shih Poo dogs are small yet sturdy and they are not as fragile in comparison to many other small dogs. Shihpoo dogs make great companions for people who live in apartments where larger breeds may not be allowed. For people who are looking for a dog that doesn't bark much, Shih Poo may be a good option because most Shihpoos don't bark much thus making polite neighbors for other people living in the same apartment complex.
The positive news about Shih Poo dogs is that they are very versatile and can be comfortable in most living conditions, from living in a small apartment to living in a large house with a fenced backyard. As long as Shihpoo gets to spend a lot of time every day with the owners and gets to enjoy physical and mental exercise during the day a Shih Poo is a happy dog.
In addition to the small size, Shih Poo dogs have other advantages that include the dog's friendly and confident temperament. Shih Poo dogs welcome new friendships and are typically not aggressive to other people or dogs.
Another pro of owning a Shih Tzu is that this dog is reasonably active and can be a suitable companion for families with kids as well as for seniors. Shih Poo dogs make wonderful pet companions for most families who want a small pet that is full of personality and charm. Despite all the good qualities, Shih Poos may not be happy in an environment where the dog spends a lot of time alone with the owners at work or unable to spend the whole day with the dog. Shihpoos need to be around their people most of the day and that can be a con for people who have a job outside of the home and must leave a pet at home for prolonged periods every day. Shih-Poos are excellent choices for retirees as they are moderately active, small in size and provide a companionship that many older people enjoy especially if they don't get enough social interaction. Shih Poo dog will want all the attention the dog can get and for someone who has the time to enjoy a small and intelligent pet, a Shihpoo dog can be the right choice.
Are Shih Poo dogs good with kids? Families with older, reasonable kids may be appreciative of Shih-Tzu's playful and joyful personality around kids. Families with very young kids may not have the time that it takes to properly care for a small, demanding dog and there may be some competition for attention between the small children and a dog, which is never a good thing. Shih Poos are not suitable for families with very small kids for many reasons and it is best to wait until the kids get older and can be respectful towards the family dog. All kids need to be taught how to properly handle and treat a dog. For example, many young children may not realize that when a dog is sleeping or resting, it is necessary to leave the dog alone. Also, while the dog is eating, the kids should know that they should never approach a dog during that time as the pet needs to eat in peace to stay happy and healthy.
Another con associated with the Shih Poo dog is that this dog is very demanding in terms of grooming. The lovely coat needs a significant time investment to stay that way and owners need to not only brush the dog's coat frequently to prevent mats from forming, but also hair trimming is needed once every couple of months to keep the coat neat and easier to care for. Grooming a Shihpoo at a professional pet grooming salon can be costly and some Shih-Poo owners learn how to groom their pet at home. There will be an initial investment into the professional grooming tools that are necessary to care for Shih Poo, but even that investment will quickly pay for itself when you no longer have to take the dog for expensive grooming sessions every couple of months.
One of the cons of owning a Shihpoo dog is that Shih-Poos can be stubborn and in many cases can be challenging to train basic commands or potty training. If you are looking to get a dog that is very easy to train, Shih Poo may not be the right dog for you. With Shihpoo dogs, successful training results can be achieved if the owner is calm and patient. Use only positive reinforcement and positive motivation as you are training your Shih-Poo. Harsh training methods will only make training more difficult and can affect your relationship with the dog in a negative way. Make training sessions short and use lots of treats to help your Shih Poo learn faster. Some Shih Poos may respond well to play based training. Making training sessions fun for the dog can be enjoyable and you may be surprised at how much easier it is to train your dog if you use that approach.
Pros of Shih Poos
Shihpoo's small convenient size makes it easy for you to move around with.
Shihpoo is sturdy and not as fragile as other smaller breeds.
Shih Poos have a confident and friendly temperament.
Shih Poos are playful and curious.
Shih Poos make super companions in an active family set up with older kids as well as other older people.
Since Shih Poos don't bark a lot, they make great apartment dogs.
Cons of Shih Poos
Owners of the Shih Poo breed are likely to spend time housetraining. You will need extra effort during housebreaking for this dog.
Shih Poo also demands maximum needs when grooming. At least half an hour is required each day to maintain its coat since it doesn't shed much.
Potty training a Shih Poo poses a great challenge.
Are Shihpoos healthy dogs? Most Shih-poo dogs can live a long and healthy life, but there are some potential health issues that Shihpoo owners need to be aware of.
Shihpoo health problems
The Shih Poo designer crossbreed ought to be a great beneficiary of hybrid vigor in an ideal world. However, first-generation crosses such as Shihpoo are known to be at a high risk of inheriting health issues that are common to the parent breeds (Poodle and Shih Tzu). Additionally, hybrid doesn't always result from crossbreeding pedigrees.
Shih Poos are most susceptible to dental issues, and they also experience skin and eye health problems. There have also been incidences of diagnosed cleft palate issues in this breed. The following are some of the diseases that Shih Poos are predisposed to:
Invertebral disk disease
Von Willebrand's disease
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