Dog training has the reputation of being a very physical job. In reality though, as we are learning more about the canine species it seems that the art of training is more brain and less brawn. Which is exactly why I thought this a good time to share Shih Tzu puppy training tips for senior citizens.
The Shih Tzu is a perfect dog for an older home. His exercise levels are reasonable and he is more than happy to become a much adored lap dog. Similarly he is happy to wander for longer walks with a retired owner but his behavior won’t be affected by a more leisurely lifestyle.
What is Hands-off Shih Tzu Training?
Training a Shih Tzu with a hands-off approach is in line with the most relevant and recent dog training knowledge. It’s also much better for the back and shoulders of the trainer.
When we train small dogs, with the old fashioned approach, where we push them into position we fail in two ways;
- We don’t give the dog the chance to learn because we are simply and physically manipulating his actions.
- We hurt our own bodies whilst leaning over the dog and adding pressure to our spine and shoulders.
Shih Tzu Training Tips – Strain Free Training
These tips are relevant to everyone that work with dogs yet particularly so for those of us with limited mobility. The idea is that we use our mind in training in order to prompt the Shih Tzu to use his mind too. We can do this with simple motivation and clever thinking.
Here are some perfect hands-off Shih Tzu training tips;
If you show your Shih Tzu a reward that he likes then he will always offer a behavior. Then it is your job just to drop the reward into or near his expectant mouth.
- For instance most dogs will sit naturally in the hope that it gets them that coveted bit of tasty food. You simply have to wait then say the word “sit” and drop the food at the exact point he sits.
- Another example is to drop the dog’s treat on the ground and pop your foot over it. Your Shih Tzu will certainly eventually lie down at which point you can say the word “down” lift your foot giving him access to the treat.
- Thirdly if you need your Shih Tzu to get off the sofa simply drop a treat somewhere and as he leaves your furniture say the word “off” and your dog will soon learn exactly what the command means.
It is absolutely and entirely possible to train your Shih Tzu without touching him at all. In fact it is the best way to do it because when your dog is taught to think hard, because he is motivated by a reward, then he will learn the lesson much quicker.
It’s a good idea to partner the Shih Tzu puppy training tips of hands-off training and the good practice of training in bite sized chunks, shown in our blog post on the subject here for perfect Shih Tzu training every time.