If you have just welcomed a Shih Tzu puppy into your home, congratulations! Shih Tzu puppies are adorable and make great pets. One of the most important things to do when raising a Shih Tzu puppy is potty training them.
It can feel like a daunting task, but with these 11 simple steps, you can have your Shih Tzu puppy potty trained in no time!
Shih Tzu puppies are very smart and learn quickly, but they can also be stubborn. The key to potty training a Shih Tzu puppy is patience and consistency.
Here are 11 simple steps to potty train your Shih Tzu puppy:
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1. Choose a Designated Potty Area for Your Shih Tzu Puppy
Place the Puppy Pad or turf in the designated potty area and take your Shih Tzu puppy to the spot regularly throughout the day. Reward them with treats and praise when they go potty in the designated area.
If you are potty training your Shih Tzu puppy outdoors, take them out to the designated area often just has you would if you were training inside.
Be sure to reward them with treats and praise when they go potty outside.
2. Take your Puppy to the Potty Area Often
Puppies typically need to go potty every few hours, so it’s important to take them out often. A good rule of thumb is to take them out:
- First thing in the morning
- After every meal
- Before bedtime
- After naps
- After playing or exercising
If you work long hours, I would recommend hiring a dog walker or pet sitter to take your Shih Tzu puppy out during the day. This will help prevent accidents in the house and keep them on schedule.
3. Stick to a Schedule
Potty training a Shih Tzu puppy is all about establishing a routine. By sticking to a regular potty schedule, your Shih Tzu puppy will learn when they need to go potty and hold it until then.
Shih Tzus are creatures of habit, so it is important to maintain a consistent routine when potty training them. Set regular times for meals and walks and stick to them as much as possible.
4. Crate Train your Shih Tzu Puppy
Crate training is a great way to potty train your Shih Tzu puppy. Shih Tzus are den animals and feel safe in small, enclosed spaces.
When used properly, crates can help Shih Tzus learn bladder control and hold it until they are taken outside to relieve themselves.
Crate training will also help you to confine your puppy when you cannot directly supervise him and prevent accidents inside the house.
5. Watch for Signs Your Puppy Needs to Go Out
Puppies will usually give you some warning signs when they need to relieve themselves. Watch for signs that your Shih Tzu puppy needs to go out, such as:
- Sniffing around
If you see any of these signs, take your Shih Tzu puppy to the designated potty area immediately.
6. Clean Up Accidents Right Away
If your Shih Tzu puppy has an accident in the house, it is important to clean it up quickly. Shih Tzus are attracted to the scent of their own urine and feces, so if you leave it there, they will likely potty in that same spot again.
Use a pet-safe cleaner to thoroughly clean the area where the accident happened. I recommend using Nature’s Miracle or White Vinegar and Water mixture.
After cleaning up the accident, take your Shih Tzu puppy to the designated potty area to reinforce that is where they need to potty.
7. Avoid Using Punishment
When potty training your Shih Tzu puppy, it is important to avoid using punishment. Yelling at or punishing your Shih Tzu after an accident will only make them afraid of you and less likely to want to please you.
Accidents are a part of potty training, and they will happen. It’s best to simply clean up the mess calmly and move on.
8. Reward Good Behavior
Whenever your Shih Tzu puppy goes potty in the designated area, be sure to give them lots of praise and treats.
Shih Tzus are highly food motivated, so this is a great way to reinforce good behavior.
After your Shih Tzu puppy has relieved themselves, take them for a walk or playtime to reward them for a job well done.
Over time, you can phase out the treats and simply use verbal praise when your Shih Tzu puppy goes potty in the right spot.
9. Keep Up the Good Work
Just because your Shih Tzu is doing well with potty training doesn’t mean you can let your guard down completely. Accidents can still happen from time to time.
Be sure to continue taking your pup outside regularly and rewarding and praising them for good behavior.
10. Be Patient
Potty training a Shih Tzu puppy takes time, patience, and consistency. Do not expect your Shih Tzu to be fully potty trained overnight.
It will take several weeks (or even months) of consistent effort on your part before they are completely trained.
Being patient and calm along with consistency is key to success.
11. Get Professional Help if Needed
If you’re having trouble potty training your Shih Tzu puppy, you may want to consider getting professional help.
A dog trainer or behaviorist can give you customized advice and tips based on your individual situation.
There are many different methods of potty training, and what works for one Shih Tzu may not work for another.
A professional can help you find the right method for your Shih Tzu and guide you through the process.
Potty training a Shih Tzu puppy doesn’t have to be difficult. By following these simple tips, you can have your Shih Tzu potty trained in no time!
Just remember to be patient, consistent, and to reward good behavior. If you need help, don’t hesitate to reach out to a professional.