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Hi! New Member

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Hi! New Member

Post by Mimi&Kiki on Thu Mar 20, 2014 6:54 pm

Hello Smile

My name is Diane and along with my husband Andy live in Bucks and are the willing slaves of Mia - also known as Mimi - am 8mth old brindle Shih Tzu.  We are collecting our 2nd puppy Kiki next week from the same breeder and we can't wait to expand our little family.  We also have 5 cats, 2 parrots, a chinchilla, a rabbit and a guinea pig.

Mia is, from what I've been reading, a typical Tzu, being a total diva, princess and proper little madam.  She has the sweetest temperament, loves everyone and believes that everyone who comes through the front door has only come to see her.  She also loves the cats, they roll around together on the floor play-wrestling until they get tired of her and jump out of reach, which, let's face it, doesn't have to be very high up!

We have a couple of small issues that are more irritations than real problems;  she's taken a very long time to toilet train and is still unreliable, although she's still quite young I suppose.  The biggest annoyance is that she will go outside, pee, then come inside and pee AGAIN on the floor, no matter how long she is outside.  We have puppy pads for accidents which she's very good about using,  but we are trying our best to confine the toileting to outdoors.

The other small annoyance is her eating, or rather the lack of it.  She's extremely food oriented when it comes to training and treats, but trying to get her to eat a meal is very difficult as she's the fussiest creature I've ever had.  I've had German Shepherds and Irish Setters in the past, and my daughter has a chocolate lab, all of them have been vacuums with fur pretty much.

We don't give her human food, she doesn't get a lot of treats, and we don't hand feed her.  We've tried a few different foods which I know isn't a good thing really but we're trying to find something she likes that we can stick to.  We've tried leaving it down, we've tried the 'tough love' approach by taking it up until the next meal time, but she often sniffs it and turns up her nose and walks away.  She's a good size and weight so I don't think it's hurting her, but I wish she would eat more.  It seems to make no difference if we stay with her, leave her alone or put it in her crate.. she's just not really interested in it.

We found a great groomer who is coming again next week to clip her, as Mia looks like Tina Turner in a wind tunnel at the moment !

Anyway, that's us Smile  
Diane
x

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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by simbalove on Thu Mar 20, 2014 8:41 pm

Hi and welcome.  I am rather tired tonight so I'll come on tomorrow to answer this x

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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by simbalove on Fri Mar 21, 2014 7:43 pm

Hi Diane and sorry about the delay. I have had a dreadful virus this week and it has drained me. 

Right 8 months is still quite young for a shih tzu to have total control of their bladder. ..it's not quite like training a lab.  Do you stay with her when she is outside and use language to develop the routine?  I always stand out with mine even the adults as they get sidetracked very easily and I say things like have a wee be clean and hurry up lol
The other thing is that shih tzu always do two wees particularly in the morning Smile
I tend to get up and walk mine straight away as I find regular exercise helps develop toilet training.YYou may find she goes back a bit when the puppy arrives. You will be toilet training that one anyway so just stay calm and trust that the penny will drop eventually. 
Shih tzu are tinkers when it comes to meal times especially when they manage to get mum and dad where they want them and please don't take that as criticism because it happens to the best of us lol. Even someone like me who has had the breed over 30 years. Again I tend to feed after exercise as they have an appetite then. You will probably find once she has competition she will start to eat better. My first shid was terrible to feed but when I got another puppy when she was a year old she never looked back and I wished I had done it sooner. 
When I had Josh as a Singleton I started feedinga raw diet and feeding was easy then.  There are a few threads on here about that if you want to have a read. 
A trick you can use is give her some of her food as treat make her work for it.
Hope that helps x

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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by AJ on Fri Mar 21, 2014 8:48 pm

Hi there and welcome.

Simbalove has already given excellent advice. To add to that (if it helps) when we were toilet training our little boy, our puppy trainer advised us to get rid of the puppy pads as soon as we could. He was going outside, doing a wee and then coming in and doing one. Similarly we would take him for a walk and he would come home and poo. We got rid of the pads and set out clocks (even during the night) and for a while took him out every few hours. It only took a week or so and he stopped doing it indoors...or so we thought!! he then moved on to pee on the door mats just inside the door. By now he was about 6 months old. Again our trainer suggested we move the mats for a month or so. He was so used to the pads that the mats gave the same sensation underfoot. We did this and hey presto! a couple of months later and he was fine. He will now only pee and poo on none smooth surfaces, ie he loves grass, leaves or gravel. he will only pee and poo on the pavement if he is desperate. 

Re the food, she may not be hungry if you are also giving treats. We read up on the breed when we got Archie and learnt they can be a little fussy. Archie went through a phase at 9 months of only eating his kibbles if we added some ham or grated cheese. he refused food otherwise. We spoke to puppy trainer who suggested we dont add extras, leave the food for a while and if he didnt eat to take it away. We did this once or twice but then couldnt bear the sad eyes looking up at us. We went on holiday for two weeks, left him with his day carer (who doesn't believe in spoiling dogs rotten!!!), we left his kibbles and two bags of grated cheddar. When we arrived back from holiday we came back to a healthy happy dog and two bags of grated cheddar. She said he only missed one meal, realised that her dogs would scoff it otherwise. he then quickly ate his own bare naked kibbles! we havent looked back since! we have learnt over time that some little pooches are very clever and we human beings are suckers to their gorgeous "who me" face. It just takes a little will power and you get there. It does take time though. I was surprised. Its only now at 19 months old that I think we are really settled.

Hope the grooming goes OK. Again this can be difficult for some little ones. It is so important to ensure that the experience is positive for them, they have a lifetime of it ahead!

Its often trial and error! you can only do your best. I found the people on here really helpful and supportive. I hope you do to. 

Good luck with your little ones. Do you have any pics? we all love seeing the little furbabies.
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by Michele on Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:52 pm

Hi and welcome from us too, as the others have said 8 months is very young still and only one of mine got toilet training really quickly. I used to set the cooker alarm to remind me to take them out as you can soon lose track of time and now they all will wee on command which is good if I am going out or before we take them in the car.
I too have learnt that they are fussy over feeding so now food goes down for say half an hour and if not eaten I pick it up and they don't get anything else until the next mealtime when they then usually clear the plate.
Look forward to seeing some photos x
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by Mimi&Kiki on Fri Mar 21, 2014 10:18 pm

Hi all,

Thanks for the welcome and replies Smile  

We do the picking up of the food if it's not eaten, and she really doesn't get many treats.  I refuse to pander to her by hand feeding as I don't want a spoiled fussy dog if I can possibly avoid it.  I did try an experiment a few weeks ago, I'd bought some 100% turkey canned food which she wolfed down the first time I gave it to her, then turned her nose up at every meal after.   So I put some in one of our dishes and sat down at my desk.  She came to see what I'd got, so I offered her some on a spoon.  Oh yes, I'll eat as much as you'll give me from a spoon Mummy !  Little mare..    lol! 

It does seem from reading this forum that it's quite a common thing with the breed, so we will just persevere and hopefully find something she really likes. The one thing she will always eat is fresh raw chicken pieces, not mince unless it's beef, so we may go down the raw route.  We have bred pedigree cats for about 20 years, and fed a raw diet for a long time, but new kitten owners often didn't like the idea of raw food so we switched to a commercial diet.

The thing I forgot to mention is that she's horribly car-sick.  Unfortunately my husband has to use my car now as he was made redundant and his new job has no car yet, so I'm completely housebound during the week.  My vet prescribed Cerenia, which does stop her throwing up, but it's annoying as they will only give us enough for one trip at a time.  Are there any other over the counter/herbal remedies anyone has tried that work ?

The photo of her is at about 5 months old, after her first 'big girl clip'.  We absolutely adore her, she's sweet and hilarious, they really are such clowns.  Can't wait to collect Kiki next week, I'd  have a house full given half a chance.  We've given Mia a talking to and said she has to be nice and share her toys with her little sister !

Diane
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by simbalove on Sat Mar 22, 2014 11:04 am

Some show people I know give a ginger biscuit before travel to those who are travel sick... I have never had a carsick dog so haven't tried it but they reckon it works a treat x

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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by Mimi&Kiki on Sat Mar 22, 2014 1:13 pm

I'll try that, thank you Smile  x

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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by lilly bell on Sat Mar 22, 2014 6:33 pm

Hi Diane,
Welcome to the forum from me and Contessa.The ginger biscuits may be just what you need to prevent car sickness.I do know they recommend them to pregnent women to help them with morning sickness.
Please some photo's of your furbabies.Maxine x
 hi piglet  welcome 3  welcome  welcome 2  group hug  party
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by Mimi&Kiki on Sat Mar 22, 2014 6:43 pm

Hi

Did the photo in my 2nd post above not show ?  If not I'll try again.  I'll definitely give the ginger biscuits a go Smile

Diane
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by lilly bell on Wed Mar 26, 2014 9:52 am

Hi Diane,
I meant when you get Kiki, then please send us all a photo of her, and maybe both of them together.Lovely photo of Mia.
Maxine x
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Re: Hi! New Member

Post by Mercedes55 on Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:35 am

Hi and  welcome from me too.

Our shih tzu Daisy took ages to housetrain and she is nearly 2 now.  We had a chocolate labrador before and compared to Daisy she was a breeze to housetrain.  When I read that small dogs were harder to housetrain I really didn't believe it, but now I've been through it with Daisy I am inclined to agree.  I put Daisy out at about 7.30am and tell her to 'go potty' and she goes pretty much straight away.  She then goes into her crate for her breakfast and then has a nap and I take her out around 10am and she always does another pee and usually a poo too at that time.  We get the odd excitement pee even now but apart from that she seems okay now, fingers crossed!

As for food, I do think they can be very fussy and like many others on here I also raw feed and find that Daisy has not once turned her nose up at raw food.  Also I don't find it to be very expensive, about 50p a day is the average I am spending which I think is pretty good.

Look forward to seeing pics of your other new girl when you get her.

Lyn
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