11 Fun Activities To Do With Shih Tzu Puppies

shih tzu on beach at sunset

Shih Tzu puppies are friendly, joyful, and outgoing house dogs that like nothing better than following their owners from one room to the next. They love making themselves comfortable on their owner’s lap and are one of the friendliest lap dog breeds. Shih Tzus are also known to be among the liveliest dogs. They usually get high ratings on objective playfulness metrics. Furthermore, they tend to stay active even in old age.  Shih Tzu’s have a typical life expectancy of 13 years.  They are active dogs who love to play around. 

Playing games with your Shih Tzu dog can be a lot of fun.  It’s a great way to connect with your dog, ease tension, and give lots of possibilities for training. Including extra playtime in your dog‘s routine is one of the simplest ways to enhance their quality of life.

There are many activities to explore, ranging from classic ones like fetch to more daring ones like hiking. Consider your dog‘s personality, activity level, and hobbies to select an appropriate playtime activity. If you’re searching for some ideas, the list below will likely include some that you and your dog will love. Here are 11 fun activities to do with Shih Tzu puppies.

shih tzu with a hair bow

Go for a Picnic

Picnics have long been a summertime favorite. So why not organize a dog-friendly picnic to share with your closest companion? But, of course, it wouldn’t be a picnic without some food. Because your dog will be a part of the excitement, bring treats that you will love. Avoid bringing harmful food items, such as grapeschocolate, or raisins. However, carrots, cooked chicken, strawberries, and watermelon are some safe (and delicious!) alternatives.

You may build a tent for your dog to spend some time in the shade. The shade will keep your pup cool on hot days. Also, don’t forget to bring water to prevent dehydration. Finally, apply sunscreen to your male Shih Tzu pup to avoid sunburn and other health problems associated with sun exposure. Your dearest companion will get tired sometimes, so bring his favorite blanket or dog bed with you. Place it beneath a shade tree so he may take a little “dog” nap or just relax.

Dress Your Dog for a Party

One of the most enjoyable factors of owning a dog is dressing them up, and Halloween is the best time of year for this. So, whether you’re looking for something stylish, sweet, or humorous, you can choose any dog costume that you and your pup can enjoy. The shops are brimming with simple dog costumes, such as various types of attractive headbands that can simply change them into a dog dragon or anything else that fascinates them. 

A short search on Amazon for dog costumes yields a plethora of diverse possibilities for your dog‘s costume, including reindeer ridden by Santa, postal carrier, ghostbuster, dinosaurs, Maleficent, etc. And, of course, you must snap a million photographs of you and your pet dressed up for a festival for everybody to see. It is recommended to avoid costumes with glitter, buttons, or gemstones as these can cause choking hazards. Avoid excessively tight items, items that block your dog‘s view, or upset him in general. Keep in mind that many people at the party and the change in routine may be too much for him.

shih tzu dressed up as an old-fashioned cigarette girl

Play Frisbee

Introduce the Frisbee to your toy dog like you would with any new toy. Some dogs will get thrilled simply by looking at it, and you may grab their attention by waving it around and playing fetch. If your dog gets bored, try rewarding them with a treat for approaching and touching the disc. You may also try placing the reward inside the Frisbee or using it as a food dish. Tug-of-war with the Frisbee is a terrific technique to get your dog interested in the disc.

However, you should avoid playing high-impact sports, such as Frisbee as regular playtime could cause some health issues. Even the most active and athletic canines can get harmed by the long-term risks of this playtime activity. Disc disease, lumbar back discomfort, and ligament injuries are the most prevalent problems caused by excessive or intense disc chasing. Therefore, it is important to enjoy this activity in moderation.

Massage Your Dog

You aren’t the only one who can enjoy a trip to the spa now and then; your canine companion may as well love it. Many pet owners feel that giving their dogs a relaxing massage will boost their immune system, promote circulation, relieve stress, and improve digestion. You may not give them a Thai massage, but something gentler will be accessible for your loyal best buddy.

Dogs, like humans, may benefit from a pre-activity warm-up. A light massage enhances blood flow to joints, muscles, and nerves and may even help avoid injury and post-activity pain. In addition, a gentle massage will help calm your puppy in stressful situations like a rainstorm, fireworks display, or anything else that makes them uneasy and restless. While most dogs like massage, they pay attention to unpleasant responses and understand them. Some dogs, for example, dislike having their paws touched, so you might skip this portion of the massage.

woman's hands hold the facing of a shih tzu

Go Swimming

Swimming with your puppy is one of the most enjoyable summer activities you can do with your water-loving companion. In the summer heat, both pools and natural sources of water are quite appealing. There are, however, a few things you must be aware of before allowing your Shih Tzu mix to join you in the water.

Before going for the first swim, it is important to understand that not all canines appreciate swimming or even know how to swim. Your dog may not want to participate in this activity or may want some assistance navigating the water. If you swim with your dog in a pool, you should examine their nails and cut them if required; otherwise, they will scratch up the jacket. In addition, you might consider using a puppy sunscreen to prevent the sun’s harmful rays, as well as a canine life jacket to keep them afloat.

If you want to take your dog swimming in a pool, be sure there is an easy route for him to get out. Because your dog may not know how to express his tiredness, having a non-slip ramp, stairs, or a doggy ladder is a good idea. There are a few things to consider before swimming in a lake, stream, or other natural pool of water. Warmer, stagnant water is a haven for brain-eating amoeba and other dangerous microorganisms. Additionally, ensure no blue-green algae blooms are most prevalent during warmer weather months and are very hazardous to dogs. It is also critical to keep clear from water with faster-flowing currents to prevent any scares.

wet shih tzu next to a pond in the autumn woods

Pet Photo Shoot Session

Summer is a lovely season for a pet shoot. You may ask a friend to include you in the photo shoot too. It may be a fun experience. Gather some of your pet’s favorite toys and goodies before your session. Treats may help your dog sit still and look their best for shots, or perhaps do the trick or two. Squeaky toys are usually a favorite, and they inspire your pet to create those lovely, playful faces. Favorite meals are other effective methods for getting your dog to gaze at the camera.

If you take your dog to a groomer regularly, attempt to arrange an appointment a week before your photo shoot to ensure that your pet isn’t looking too shaggy. If you groom your dog at home, shower them and brush them before your grooming session. Also, don’t forget to keep their nails trimmed.

Play in the Sprinklers

Having a lawn may do more than simply adding to the appeal of your house. It also provides many opportunities to play with furry pets, especially if you have a sprinkler system installed. Be aware, however, that some dogs like to chew, bite, or dig your sprinklers, so you may want to invest in a few sprinkler toys, such as an inflatable shallow pool sprinkler which will keep him engaged for hours.

Give Frozen Treats to Your Dog

Frozen treats might help your dog stay cool on hot days. One easy way to do it is by taking a stuffed food toy, like a classic Kong, and then freezing it. Another alternative is to give frozen fruit chunks like strawberry cubes.

You can also make a DIY frozen treat for your Shih poo toy breed. Make bananas the basis of your dog‘s reward for a frozen fruit smoothie on a stick. Slice a few bananas and put them in the freezer for several hours. Next, in a food processor, combine the fruit with a few spoonfuls of plain yogurt until you have a smooth foundation with the consistency of a milkshake. You may now add any mix-ins your dog enjoys. For some beach fun, consider bacon pieces for a meaty snack, strawberries, blueberries, pumpkin puree, or even water-packed tuna. Once all ingredients are combined, pour into ice pop molds or paper cups, place a “stick” in the center, and freeze.

shih tzu with a red bandana

Take a Dog Training Class

Many pet owners would agree that training is vital to a dog‘s growth and ability to interact securely with its surroundings. The consequences of failing to train a dog may range from annoyance and frustration on the side of the Shih Tzu owner to serious and avoidable behavioral issues that can result in harmful consequences. In addition, a training regimen will build a basic bond between you and your puppy. Mutual respect will unfold as you spend time together, setting boundaries, sharing experiences, and coming to know each other. Your dog will learn to trust and acknowledge your judgment, and you will admire their potential and talents.

During the summer, several training institutes provide outdoor obedience sessions. You get to enjoy the weather, but you can also integrate a variety of diversions into your training. Consider attempting a dog sport like agility, dock diving, or disc dog if you’re searching for a new way to play with your dog. You and your dog will develop a relationship as you learn to operate as a team.

In their training session, you might also play the “Hot and Cold” game with the dog. According to the American Kennel Club, the “Hot & Cold” game helps your dog discover a hidden treat or toy by using verbal communication and voice tone. When your dog is not looking, hide a treat. If your dog runs away from the hidden goodie, use a calm tone. As your dog comes closer to the hidden treat, use a more enthusiastic tone.” This game improves listening abilities. It also contributes to developing your and your dog‘s own “language.”

Visit a Dog Park

Proper socialization is essential to your dog‘s health and ability to connect with your family, friends, and other pets. Being alone while you are at work or doing errands may harm your dog‘s emotional health and even their ability to behave. Allowing your puppy to play with other dogs in a secure area helps ease your dog‘s anxiety and tension after a day away from you and acquainting them with public places and interactions with other people.

Canine obesity is a genuine problem, and it may be difficult for dogs to maintain a healthy weight. This is true when you consider that several breeds demand up to three daily walks. Allowing your dog to run and play at a dog park gives them exercise that they would not otherwise receive.

Listen to your dog when you go to a dog park. If there is a group crowding the door and making it scary, wait until they have dispersed before entering. Remove your dog‘s leash as soon as you enter the gate, so they don’t feel trapped. Intervene if other dogs frequently roll your dog to the ground or attack your puppy. Especially when a dog is young, a traumatic encounter with another dog might make the scared dog suspicious of other dogs for the rest of his life.

Don’t overstay, even if your dog is having the time of his life. A 30-to-60-minute visit should give your dog enough time to run around and play without becoming tired. Respect your dog‘s needs and take him home if he just wants to hang out with you or stand at the gate. Don’t despair if you think your dog and a dog park aren’t a good fit. You might be able to invite a dog you know your dog likes over for a romp or enroll your Shih Tzu in a well-supervised class.

shih tzu running

Have a Dog Party

When organizing a dog party, make the perfect guest list. Invite pups that are familiar and friendly to your Shih Tzu puppy, like a small dog breed, poodle, and bichon frise. Also, a party isn’t complete without cakes. However, you should remember that too many sweet treats can be harmful to dogs. Offering sweet treats in small quantities is recommended, preferably a bite-sized treat would be best. For example, you can offer pups protein puffs to keep them happy and reward them for good party behavior. Also, avoid using any ingredients that would cause problems for any breed.

You can also create a theme for the party. For example, if your dog likes dressing up, it will be the perfect time to get a new costume or a hat for him. Since every party needs fun activities, you can fill a kiddie pool or set up a sprinkler on your lawn so that dogs can enjoy the water fun.

You should always keep party decorations, for example, balloons, wrapping papers, paper plates, and plastic utensils, out of reach. Dogs may suffer from intestinal blockages if they swallow such indigestible items.

Final Thoughts

The majority of canines love more than one activity. They prefer to change it up by going on walks and playing fetch or playing with toys and other games. This enables your dog to use all senses, including sight, smell, touch, and hearing. These activities, in turn, assist in strengthening your relationship with your dog. As a result, you can help nervous or timid pets gain confidence. Always make playing activity enjoyable and rewarding. This is accomplished by determining what your dog enjoys the most. Some dogs like fetching, while others enjoy tugging. In addition, many dogs like chasing games. Finally, you may educate your dog to look for toys, items, or you.

Playing fun games promotes cooperative behavior and reduces boredom. You can use activities as an effective training method by teaching retrieve, recall, item carrying, and basic obedience instructions. From a young age, actively encourage your dog to engage in proper play. Finally, many wonderful toys for your dog on the market encourage agility and mental problem-solving. As a result, choose toys depending on your dog‘s age and preferences.

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