Shih Tzu’s are very intelligent dogs. The most important thing for them is to please their owners, so they are very aware of their successes and failures when it comes to Shih Tzu puppy training.
However, unlike most other breeds. They are flighty and easily distracted up until about 10 weeks of age. You can begin training most puppies right away. But you need to wait until your Shih Tzu puppy is 10 to 12 weeks old before beginning any serious potty training.
Shih Tzu puppies are highly excitable and have little to no bladder control until they are 10 weeks old.
Shih Tzu Puppy Training Takes Time
Attempting Shih Tzu puppy training too early can cause you to become discouraged, which could lead to you allowing the puppy to control the results of the sessions. Actually, many dog trainers believe that the Shih Tzu can begin learning simple commands (not potty training) between 6 and 9 weeks. However, it depends on how complex the commands are.
Up to this point, you are better served by keeping them in a controlled area with newspapers or potty training pads on the floor while you regulate their eating and drinking times of the day.
When you find they are urinating or defecating at regular times of the day then it is time to begin their potty training. For example, you should find your puppy will want to defecate right as they wake up. And then again within 10-15 minutes after they eat their morning meal.
Do not try to limit when they go by only giving them water twice a day. Your puppy needs access to lots of water throughout the day.
Feed them once in the morning and once about 3 hours before bedtime.
Because they are high energy pets, you need to spend lots of time playing with them in these early weeks. While this may not seem like training, it does serve to establish a bond between you and your pet.
Because you control where they can go in the house (perhaps by putting up a child safety gate), they will quickly understand you are the “alpha” in their pack.
So, when it comes time to train them they will be ready to accept your commands and eager to please. When you do start training. Avoid negative feedback. Again, your Shih Tzu is very sensitive to your desires and displeasing you can cause them a great deal of grief.
Praise your puppy when they do something right. A simple but firm “no” should suffice when they do something wrong.
Or try using a loud rattle to startle the puppy. A tin can with marbles in it works really well. This should stop them from doing what they are doing and you can lead them to do it somewhere more appropriate.
For the most part, almost all puppies have issues at first with potty training or housetraining. However, this lasts only for a little while. This dilemma is especially true for this breed. Shih Tzus have tiny bladders that will cause them to have accidents when training.
A simple but effective method to potty train your dog is crate training. However, it will require a lot of patience, praise, and positive reinforcement. Shih Tzus are relatively clean dogs and do not want to soil their crates, but due to their small bladders, accidents are going to happen.
Starting Shih Tzu puppy training off correctly from the very first day you bring him home is a sure way to ensure that training goes smoothly. Your new puppy is nervous about being in strange surroundings and away from his mom as well as littermates.
Getting accustomed to a new home will take time. Try to make it as stress-free as possible.