Hello, I have a Shih Tzu that is four years old, and my family and I would love to get another dog. We’re currently looking at a Labrador retriever. My question to you is will a Labrador Retriever and Shih Tzu get along?
Fortunately, Shih Tzus see all pets as potential friends and companions. However, other dogs may not be as loving and accommodating towards a Shih Tzu.
There are many breeds of dogs that are very territorial and may see other dogs as a threat.
In addition, there are those dogs that have extremely strong prey instincts and may see the Shih Tzu as something to chase around and harass. These are dogs that you will definitely want to keep far away from your beloved Shih Tzu.
A Labrador Retriever and Shih Tzu Should Have No Problems Getting Along
There are plenty of dogs out there that would be just as accommodating and welcoming when it comes to sharing space with a dog sibling as the Shih Tzu.
Above all, Shih Tzus are very accommodating of each other. And it is not rear to see some households with two to four of them without any trouble whatsoever.
Of course, this does not mean that there wouldn’t be some jealousy by the presence of another dog in the house.
The way you introduce the new dog whether it is a Labrador Retriever and Shih Tzu can go a long way toward easing the tension and ensuring that the dogs become best friends.
Here are some steps that you can take to make sure that the introduction of your Labrador Retriever and Shih Tzu goes as smoothly as possible.
If you have multiple dogs, you will have to introduce them to the new dog one by one. This way each dog can work out their own relationship with the new dog without too much confusion.
The first thing you need to do is put a leash on each dog. And then bring out the local dog for an introduction.
Try to introduce the dogs in a room absent of all of the resident dog’s toys, beds, crates, food, or any other item that belongs to him.
This ensures that there will be no sense of competition for resources. This is a good way of neutralizing the territory. This ensures that your resident dog does not feel threatened in any way.
If your resident dog or dogs have the run of the house and love being on the couch or your bed, you might want to have the introductions in the yard.
The next thing you need to do is keep both dogs on the ground and on their leashes to begin the introduction. This is just to observe their initial reactions.
Making sure that the dog’s four paws are on the ground will help because neither dog will feel possessive of, or possessed by, you.
This is to ensure that your Labrador Retriever and Shih Tzu work out their problems on doggy terms. Keep their leashes on. because you want to have control just in case one or both of them lunges at the other.
If possible, have someone else in the family help you with this one. Because each of you will have possession of one dog. It is easier to keep them apart if something were to go wrong.
Next on the list is to let them smell each other and greet each other.
While the dogs get accustomed to each other and greet each other, stay positive and praise them. Usually, both dogs would become friends right away.
However, if you get a growl or a little tension, separate them and try again a few minutes later. You will need to let the dogs know that you’re the boss and these fights will not be tolerated.
They need to understand that they need to play nice when they interact. If they growl or act up. They’ll have to suffer the ultimate punishment and that is being separated from you.
Once the dogs have shown that they can get along without any trouble, it is recommended that you keep a close eye on them for the first two to three weeks.
As you know, dogs can be very unpredictable at times. Therefore, you want to be able to manage the situation just in case something comes up.
It is your responsibility to keep everybody playing nicely and getting along.
The Introduction of a Puppy is A Lot Different Than Two Adult Dogs
However, if you’re introducing a new puppy to the household, it is a little different because your resident dogs might just see the new puppy as inferior and no threat at all.
You will still need to keep a close eye on them because the adult dog may play a little too rough with the new puppy.
Keep in mind that the adult dog is not playing rough with the puppy because it wants to hurt him; therefore, do not scold him.
Scolding could be a sign to the adult dog that playing with the new puppy is a bad thing. The best way to handle this situation is to hold him and encourage gentle interaction.
You will also need to be vigilant. Because there have been many resident dogs that have been excited about a new puppy in the household at first. But when the new puppy starts getting all of the attention. The resident dog may become jealous and confused as to why he is not important to you any longer.
It is extremely important that you do not let this happen. Treat all of your dogs like they mean the world to you. They will all need their regular one-on-one time.