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1 year old Shih Tzu sooo many issues....please help....

May 22nd, 2008, 05:21 PM
I've got a one year old pure bred Shih Tzu that we've had since she was about 3 months old, she was spayed at 7 months... I'm a stay at home Mom who dedicated alot of long days working with her.. training, socializing... However I've still got a dog who pees in the house when she feels like it... one day she'll be great, she'll let you know everytime she needs to go outside, then the next day, you'll be walking in pee puddles all over the house! She is kept in a crate at night and when she's alone... And her behaviour is quite puzzling as well... sometimes she loves other dogs, wags her tail, whimpers when she sees them from afar.. then other days, she snarls and barks.. and spins her 2 front paws like she's trying to attack but someone is holding her back.. very funny to see but very strange!? Is the spinning an attack threat or just a make me look tougher thing.. I tend to hold her back.. will a small dog actually attack a large dog? She does this to the neighbors black lab and I often wonder what she'd do when she actually got to the dog... will she attack or just stop? How do I find that out? It seems like it's just a 'tough show'.. but ??? I've noticed that when we come upon a bigger dog she always stands up on her back paws, when she's wagging her tail and happy and also when she's snarling.. almost like she wants to look bigger?! Sometimes I'll be walking down the street with other dogs around and it looks like I'm walking a meercat.. she's hopping on her back legs?!?! She's very sweet, we have 2 cats and she torments them to play constantly.. I have also noticed that if I put her on leash when someone comes in the house, she doesn't bark (that used to be a big problem - barking).. but after the person is in the house for an hour and I take her off leash, if that person stands up, as if they're leaving, she starts barking and going nuts.
Phew.. so many issues for a 9 pound cutie!! Please help!

May 22nd, 2008, 09:00 PM
No suggestions with the peeing thing besides starting from scratch - with you being the one who is responsible for getting your little girl outside. Consistency and lots of patience.
Please don't test out that "will she attack". She WILL! Small dogs don't know they are small. They are fierce protectors. They think they have to protect everything around them. That's why she barks whenever the person visiting gets up. She is protecting you. At least that's my theory.

May 22nd, 2008, 09:26 PM
She would most likely attack.big dog in small body.our shih tzu lives with my mom and i have a large dog and when she is her she's boss.and my boy was attacked by a shih mom also fosters a shih tzu for a fella in a nursing home.and they are both the same way your's is.they can be a funny dog.i've also run into ones that are totally different dogs wouldn't know it was the same breed.

May 23rd, 2008, 08:01 PM
Obedience classes would help you train her, give her some socialization time with other dogs and give you some insight into dog's behaviour.

May 23rd, 2008, 08:36 PM
Problem I'm having with that is that I am English living in Quebec (husband's work posting) and I can't find obedience classes in English?!?! I'm thinking of signing up anyway just to get her out there.. and I can try to learn from watching?! I know there are probably some in Montreal but we are off island on the South Shore. I've had an in home training session but after $60 for one hour, just felt ripped off... it wasn't enough time to actually learn anything and I certainly can't afford $60/hour for training!
I'm still working on it though...
does anyone else's dogs "spin".. I'm really confused by this behavior... I've never seen another dog do this before.. she literally rips up the grass with her front paws... I keep thinking that it may be a sign of major aggression but she's just soo sweet with us and the kids that I just don't know what to think anymore.. she only does this with other dogs.. :ca:

May 23rd, 2008, 08:42 PM
May I ask where on South Shore ? Maybe I could help finding obedience classes ? I'm on South Shore too , near the US border.

May 24th, 2008, 10:36 AM
As far as the spinning, May I suggest a change in dog food? My brother's Weimeraner and my Boxer both had a few neurotic behaviors that stopped after a switch in food.

Is she spayed?

And the aggression, have your dog keep "Four on the floor" at all times, no couch, no lap, no bed. No standing on you when youre on the floor... try going back to step one with house training, you can kennel her when you cant watch her, or get an "umbilical" leash, tie her to your waste and keep her there for 20 min/day minimum while you go about your bussiness. This teaches her you are in control, not her. My Boston is good with small kids unless she is in my vehicle or on my lap, then she sometimes growls and barks. She is "owning" me and the vehicle when she is doing that. Thats not allowed! She gets put on the floor immediatley.

Ive heard that not talking to the dog can help (for a week) and that feeding the dog by hand can too, but we havent tried those methods.

With the neighbors dog...this is what I do...however, many disagree with this method, so please call a trainer if it doesnt sound right to you... when your dog goes off on the lab, providing the lab is non-reactive and its safe to do so, pick your dog up, not very high, turn her around, have her lay down with her bum to the lab... allow the lab to smell her while you hold her there, in the down position till she relaxes. This might take a few minutes. Just a quik sniff from the lab...he doesnt need to be there too long..this teaches her that the lab can smell her without hurting her, and that she isnt in charge...Dont yell. When youre on a walk and she freaks out, correct her,make sure she knows this is unnacceptable behavior. Dont praise her after she has reacted, even once she calms down. Only use praise and maybe treats when she has passed by a dog without reacting.

Trust me, you dont want to "find out" if she will attack, she is showing all the signs...

I hope you can find some classes in your area in english! That will help a great deal! Good luck!

May 27th, 2008, 06:49 AM
Hi, yes she was spayed at 7 months (wanted to do it at 6 but they were waiting to see if her baby teeth would fall out.. they didn't so they had to be pulled - anyway......)
I never thought of changing her food.. we've been considering it lately anyway, we've been feeding her Science Diet's Nature's Best.. but she's been having recurrent ear infections and I read that it may be caused by a food allergy so I'll have to find another food I guess... any suggestions?
I found out about a class yesterday that is given in French but the trainer speaks English so they said they'd help me out... problem is it only starts in September!! But, if that's all I can get, then I'll sign up for that one...
I bought a book on dog training . don't know if it was worth it or not.. I'll be sitting down today and reading it.. worth a shot I guess!
I believe she thinks she needs to protect us.. she thinks she's pack leader...
and don't worry, I would never test if she'd attack or not... I'm just trying to figure out how I know if she's safe to have around other dogs... what is the first sign of a dog attacking another... if they are sniffing each other.. what do I watch for.. so I can stop it before it's too late.. I REALLY NEED TRAINING! Not soo much her as me.. LOL I've always had big dogs and never had any of these issues so a little dog that acts like she thinks she's a giant is completely strange to me!! :fingerscr