Mastering Agility Tricks with Your Shihpoo: Expert Training Guide

The Shihpoo, a delightful cross between a Shih Tzu and a Toy Poodle, is a small but mighty companion known for its intelligence, affectionate nature, and adaptability. While these adorable dogs make excellent lap dogs, they are also capable of learning and performing impressive agility tricks. In this article, we will explore the world of advanced Shihpoo agility tricks and provide you with tips and techniques to help your furry friend excel in this exciting activity.

Understanding Shihpoo Agility

Agility is a dog sport that involves navigating through an obstacle course, which includes jumps, tunnels, weave poles, and more. It requires a strong bond between the dog and its handler, as well as physical fitness, mental stimulation, and precise communication. Shihpoos, despite their small size, can excel in agility due to their quick learning abilities, eagerness to please, and energetic personalities.

Benefits of Agility Training for Shihpoos

Engaging your Shihpoo in agility training offers numerous benefits, both physical and mental. Some of these benefits include:

Improved Physical Fitness

Agility training provides a full-body workout for your Shihpoo, helping to maintain a healthy weight, build muscle tone, and improve overall cardiovascular health.

Enhanced Mental Stimulation

Learning and executing agility tricks challenges your Shihpoo’s mind, preventing boredom and promoting mental well-being.

Getting Started with Shihpoo Agility

Before diving into advanced agility tricks, it’s essential to lay a solid foundation for your Shihpoo. Here are some steps to get started:

Basic Obedience Training

Ensure your Shihpoo has a strong grasp of basic obedience commands such as sit, stay, come, and heel. These commands will be crucial when navigating agility courses.

Socialization and Confidence Building

Expose your Shihpoo to various environments, people, and other dogs to build their confidence and reduce anxiety. A confident dog is more likely to excel in agility training.

Introduction to Agility Equipment

Gradually introduce your Shihpoo to agility equipment such as jumps, tunnels, and weave poles. Use positive reinforcement and rewards to encourage engagement and build a positive association with the equipment.

Advanced Shihpoo Agility Tricks

Once your Shihpoo has mastered the basics, it’s time to explore more advanced agility tricks. Here are some exciting tricks to try:

Weave Pole Mastery

Weave poles are one of the most challenging obstacles in agility. To help your Shihpoo master this trick:

1. Start with two poles and guide your dog through them using treats and praise.
2. Gradually increase the number of poles and the speed at which your Shihpoo navigates them.
3. Use a “weave” command and reward successful completion of the obstacle.

Tunnel Tricks

Tunnels are a fun and exciting agility obstacle for Shihpoos. Try these tunnel tricks:

1. “Tunnel Recall”: Have your Shihpoo enter the tunnel from one end and call them to come to you at the other end.
2. “Tunnel Hoops”: Place hula hoops at the end of the tunnel and teach your Shihpoo to jump through them after exiting the tunnel.

Jump Combinations

Combine jumps with other obstacles to create challenging and exciting sequences:

1. “Jump and Weave”: Have your Shihpoo jump over a hurdle and immediately enter the weave poles.
2. “Jump and Tunnel”: Set up a jump followed by a tunnel and teach your Shihpoo to navigate both obstacles in succession.

Teeter-Totter Confidence

The teeter-totter, or seesaw, can be intimidating for some dogs. Build your Shihpoo’s confidence with these tips:

1. Start with the teeter-totter low to the ground and reward your dog for stepping on it.
2. Gradually raise the height of the teeter-totter and encourage your Shihpoo to walk across it.
3. Use a “teeter” command and reward successful completion of the obstacle.

Distance Work

Teach your Shihpoo to navigate obstacles while you maintain distance. This advanced skill requires a strong bond and clear communication:

1. Start with a single obstacle, such as a jump, and gradually increase the distance between you and your dog.
2. Use hand signals and verbal cues to guide your Shihpoo through the obstacle.
3. Reward successful completion and gradually increase the complexity of the sequences.

Looking to teach your Shihpoo some advanced agility tricks? Check out our articles on Shih Tzu agility preparation, common mistakes to avoid in Shih Tzu agility, training tips for Shih Tzu agility, agility equipment for Shih Tzu, and agility training techniques for Shih Tzu to help your furry friend master the course!


Advanced Shihpoo agility tricks are a fantastic way to strengthen the bond with your furry companion while providing physical and mental stimulation. By starting with a solid foundation, gradually introducing new challenges, and using positive reinforcement, you and your Shihpoo can achieve impressive feats on the agility course. Remember to always prioritize safety, have patience, and most importantly, have fun! With dedication and practice, you and your Shihpoo will be well on your way to mastering advanced agility tricks and enjoying the many benefits this exciting activity has to offer.

Matthew Farthing

Matthew Farthing

Сontributing author at DogCareHacks, Certified Dog Behavior Consultant.

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