Choosing the Perfect Crate Size for Your Shih Tzu
As a pet parent, you want to ensure that your beloved furry friend is comfortable and happy at all times. One area where this is especially important is when it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu. But with so many different crate sizes and types available, how do you know which one is the best fit for your furry friend? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! In this article, we’ll guide you step-by-step through the process of choosing the best crate size for your Shih Tzu and provide tips on how to crate train your pup effectively. Let’s dive in!
Why is Crate Training Important for Shih Tzus?
Crate training is an essential aspect of owning a Shih Tzu. It provides numerous benefits to both the dog and the owner. Firstly, a crate gives your Shih Tzu a safe and comfortable place to relax and sleep. Like most dogs, Shih Tzus love having a cozy and private spot they can call their own. The crate becomes their den and they can retreat there whenever they feel stressed, scared, or overwhelmed, ensuring they feel secure and content.
Secondly, crate training helps to keep your Shih Tzu safe, especially when you can’t supervise them. Shih Tzus are small and curious, which means they might get into trouble if left alone unsupervised. For instance, they might chew on electrical cables or items that pose a choking hazard. When you crate train your Shih Tzu, you can rest assured they are safe and secure in their designated spot.
Thirdly, crating your Shih Tzu can make traveling with them easier, regardless of whether it’s across town or across the country. Dogs that are crate trained often feel more at ease in unfamiliar surroundings so you can take your furry friend with you more places than you would otherwise, making them a welcomed travel companion.
Crate training is an important aspect of raising a Shih Tzu. It provides a sense of comfort and safety to your pet and gives you peace of mind knowing they are secure when you’re not around. To ensure that your Shih Tzu is comfortable and safe while inside the crate, choosing the right size of crate is crucial. Check out the next section to learn more about recommended crate sizes.
Recommended Crate Sizes for Shih Tzus
When it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu, it’s important to choose the right size crate to ensure your furry friend remains comfortable and secure. The appropriate size of the crate may vary depending on your dog’s age and size, but it is crucial that it is neither too big nor too small. A crate that is too big might provide enough space for your furry friend to poop or pee in, while one that is too small would restrict their movement and make them feel confined. In this section, we will go over the recommended crate sizes for Shih Tzus to help you find the best match for your furry friend. But first, did you know that crate training can benefit your Shih Tzu in many ways? Check out our crate training guide to learn more.
Crate Sizes for Shih Tzu puppies
Crate Sizes for Shih Tzu Puppies:
Choosing the right size of the crate for your Shih Tzu puppy is crucial because you want to provide them with a safe and comfortable place to rest while also ensuring they have enough space to move around. The recommended crate sizes for Shih Tzu puppies are:
- X-Small crates: 18 inches to 22 inches in length.
- Small crates: 24 inches to 28 inches in length.
- Medium crates: 30 inches to 36 inches in length.
1. X-Small crates: If you have a Shih Tzu puppy that is going to grow up to be a small adult, an X-Small crate is a good option. This size is suitable for Shih Tzu puppies that weigh under 10 pounds and don’t grow larger than 11 inches in height.
2. Small crates: If your Shih Tzu puppy is going to grow up to be a medium-sized adult, a Small crate is a good option. This size is perfect for puppies that weigh between 10 to 18 pounds and grow up to 15 inches in height.
3. Medium crates: For larger Shih Tzu puppies that are going to grow up to be large adult dogs, a Medium crate is a good option. This size is recommended for puppies that weigh between 18 to 30 pounds and grow up to 17 inches in height.
Remember, as your Shih Tzu puppy grows, you will have to transition to a larger crate size to accommodate their changing size. Don’t forget to provide comfortable bedding for your puppy to sleep on and toys to keep them entertained while they rest in their crate.
If you want more tips on crate training your Shih Tzu, check out our 10 Tips for Crate Training Your Shih Tzu article. Or, if you want to learn about common mistakes to avoid during crate training, check out our Common Mistakes to Avoid article.
Crate Sizes for Adult Shih Tzus
When it comes to adult Shih Tzus, there are several crate sizes available that can suit your dog’s needs. Keep in mind that a crate that is too small can feel cramped and uncomfortable for your furry friend, while a crate that is too large may defeat the purpose of creating a cozy and secure environment. It’s best to choose a crate that fits your Shih Tzu just right. Here are some recommended crate sizes for adult Shih Tzus:
- 24 inches: A 24-inch crate can be an ideal size for a small or medium-sized adult Shih Tzu.
- 30 inches: If your Shih Tzu is larger or prefers some extra space, then a 30-inch crate could be a good choice.
- 36 inches: While not typically recommended for Shih Tzus due to their smaller size, a 36-inch crate may be appropriate for larger Shih Tzus or those who like to stretch out.
Keep in mind that it’s important to choose a crate that allows your Shih Tzu to stand up, turn around, and lay down comfortably. The crate should not be too big, as it can make your dog feel less secure and make potty training more difficult.
Remember, crate training is an important part of being a responsible Shih Tzu owner. If you’re looking for more information about crate training your furry friend, check out our complete guide to crate training your Shih Tzu. There, you’ll find tips on how to introduce your dog to the crate, make it comfortable and inviting, and use it as an effective tool for traveling or potty training. You can also find advice on how to avoid common mistakes and create a positive experience for your furry friend.
How to Pick the Right Crate Size for Your Shih Tzu
Choosing the right crate size for your Shih Tzu can be perplexing yet critical to their well-being. Your furry friend’s crate should be comfortable, inviting and provide them a sense of security. A suitable crate size will help you prevent common issues like excessive barking, anxiety, and destructive chewing that could result from an uncomfortable or restrictive sleeping area. Finding the perfect size is not difficult, but you should bear in mind some factors that influence the decision. In this section, we’ll be discussing how to select the best crate size for your Shih Tzu by considering your furry friend’s size and behavior, measuring them, and looking out for safety features. By the end of this section, you’ll be able to identify the appropriate crate size that guarantees your pet’s comfort and security during crate training. If you’re not fully acquainted with crate training, here’s a link to our article “Shih Tzu Crate Time”, where you will find much-needed information on how to create an enjoyable crate experience for your pet.
Consider your Shih Tzu’s size and weight
When picking the right crate size for your Shih Tzu, it’s important to consider their size and weight. Remember that the crate should be big enough for your furry friend to stand up, turn around and comfortably lie down. The crate should not be so big that your Shih Tzu can use one end as a bathroom and the other for sleeping.
Consider the following factors when choosing a crate size:
- Weight: Is your Shih Tzu a tiny teacup or a big boned pup? Make sure to weigh your Shih Tzu before purchasing the crate.
- Height: Measure your Shih Tzu from the floor to the top of their head. This will help ensure that the crate is tall enough to provide adequate headroom.
- Length: Measure your Shih Tzu from the tip of their nose to the base of their tail. Add 2-4 inches to this measurement to ensure the crate is long enough for your furry friend to stretch out.
- Body Type: Consider your Shih Tzu’s body type. If they are on the larger side or broader in the chest, you might need to choose a larger size to accommodate their build.
- Growth: If you are buying a crate for a Shih Tzu puppy, keep in mind that they will grow quickly. Consider purchasing a crate that can be adjusted or buy a larger sized crate that can be divided into sections to accommodate their growth.
Remember, choosing the right size crate is crucial for your Shih Tzu’s comfort and safety. A proper-sized crate can also help with potty training and keeping your dog calm during travel.
Internal link: If you’re looking for tips on crate training your Shih Tzu, check out our article on treats to make crate training more successful.
Think about your Shih Tzu’s behavior
When it comes to choosing the right crate size for your Shih Tzu, their behavior is an important factor to consider. Is your Shih Tzu hyperactive and overly energetic? If so, you may want to choose a crate that is slightly larger to give them room to move around and release some of their energy. Does your Shih Tzu tend to be more calm and relaxed all day long? If that’s the case, a smaller crate may be more suitable for them.
Another thing to consider is whether your Shih Tzu is a chewer or not. If they tend to chew on everything in sight, you may want to choose a crate that is made of sturdy and durable materials. Otherwise, you may end up with a destroyed crate in no time.
Additionally, is your Shih Tzu nervous or anxious? If so, choosing a crate with a cover may help them feel more secure and protected. Also, consider the location of the crate. Some Shih Tzus prefer to be near their owners, while others may prefer a more secluded area.
Ultimately, you know your Shih Tzu’s behavior better than anyone else, so take some time to observe them and think about what kind of crate would suit their personality and habits. This will ensure that they feel comfortable and secure, and ultimately make the training process easier and stress-free for both you and your furry friend.
If you’re looking for alternatives to crate training your Shih Tzu, check out our article on Shih Tzu Alternatives to Crate Training. However, if your Shih Tzu cries in the crate, we have some tips to help you out in our article What to Do When Your Shih Tzu Cries in the Crate. Additionally, if you need to travel with your Shih Tzu, check out our article on Crate Training Your Shih Tzu for Travel.
Measure your Shih Tzu
One important step in choosing the right crate size for your Shih Tzu is to measure them. This will ensure that the crate is neither too small nor too big, making it a comfortable and secure space for your pet to rest in.
To measure your Shih Tzu, you will need a tape measure. First, measure your pet’s length by measuring from the tip of their nose to the base of their tail. This will give you the minimum length of the crate. Then, measure your pet’s height by measuring from the top of their head to the ground. Add 2 to 4 inches to this measurement to determine their minimum height requirement for the crate.
Tip: It’s important to measure your Shih Tzu when they are standing up and not when they are lying down, as this will give you a more accurate measurement.
Once you have the measurements, you can then choose the appropriate crate size for your Shih Tzu. Keep in mind that the crate should be big enough for your pet to stand up, turn around and lie down comfortably, but not so big that they can use one end as a bathroom and the other end as a sleeping area.
Here are some common crate sizes for Shih Tzus, based on their weight:
- X-Small (up to 10 lbs): 18L x 12W x 14H inches
- Small (up to 25 lbs): 24L x 18W x 21H inches
- Medium (up to 40 lbs): 30L x 19W x 21H inches
Keep in mind that these are just general guidelines and you should always measure your Shih Tzu before purchasing a crate. It’s always better to go a size up if you’re unsure, as this will give your pet more room to move around in.
By measuring your Shih Tzu and choosing the appropriate crate size, you will ensure that your pet has a comfortable and secure space to rest in, which is essential for their overall well-being.
Look for safety features
When looking for a crate for your Shih Tzu, it’s important to consider safety features. Your furry friend will be spending a lot of time in their crate, so you want to make sure it’s a secure and comfortable space for them. Here are some safety features to keep in mind:
- Durable: Look for crates made of sturdy materials that won’t wear down easily.
- Secure latches: The crate should have secure latches that will prevent your Shih Tzu from escaping or getting injured.
- Absorbent bottom: Choose a crate with an absorbent bottom to help contain any accidents and keep your dog dry.
- Air ventilation: Ensure that the crate has enough ventilation to prevent your Shih Tzu from becoming overheated or stuffy.
- No sharp edges or corners: Check that there are no sharp edges or corners that can harm your Shih Tzu.
- Appropriately-sized door: The door of the crate should be appropriately sized to prevent your Shih Tzu from getting their paws or head stuck.
- Crate mat or bed: A crate mat or bed can provide your Shih Tzu with an extra layer of comfort and insulation, and prevent them from slipping around on a smooth crate bottom.
By considering safety features when choosing a crate for your Shih Tzu, you can ensure that they will have a comfortable and secure place to call their own.
Tips for Crate Training Your Shih Tzu
Crate training is a great way to ensure that your Shih Tzu has a safe and comfortable space to relax in when you’re not around. However, the process can be difficult and overwhelming for both you and your furry friend. It’s essential to follow some tips to make the transition as smooth as possible. In this section, we’ll provide you with some valuable tips to help you crate train your Shih Tzu without any fuss or stress. So, let’s get started!
Introduce your Shih Tzu to the crate gradually
Gradually introducing your Shih Tzu to the crate can help make the crate a positive space for them. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it:
|Step 1||Place the crate in a common area where your Shih Tzu can see and smell it. Leave the door open and add a soft blanket or bed inside.|
|Step 2||Encourage your Shih Tzu to explore the crate by tossing treats or toys inside. Do not force them to enter.|
|Step 3||Start feeding your Shih Tzu their meals near the crate. Gradually move the food inside the crate until they are comfortable eating their meals inside.|
|Step 4||Close the crate door for a few seconds while your Shih Tzu is eating their meal. Gradually increase the amount of time the door is closed.|
|Step 5||Give your Shih Tzu a special treat or toy that they only get when they are in the crate. This will help create a positive association with the crate.|
|Step 6||Gradually increase the amount of time your Shih Tzu spends in the crate while you are home. Start with short periods and increase the time as they become more comfortable.|
|Step 7||Leave your Shih Tzu in the crate for short periods while you are out of the house. Again, gradually increase the time as they become more used to the crate.|
Remember to always reward your Shih Tzu for their good behavior and never force them into the crate. With patience and positive reinforcement, your Shih Tzu can learn to love their crate and see it as a safe and comfortable space.
Make the crate a comfortable and inviting space
When introducing your Shih Tzu to their crate, it’s essential to create a comforting and inviting space that they will enjoy spending time in. Here are some tips for achieving this goal:
- Choose the right location: Place the crate in a quiet corner of a room where your Shih Tzu can relax without too much noise or activity around them.
- Add comfortable bedding: Adding soft bedding to the crate can help your Shih Tzu feel more comfortable and gives them a cozy spot to rest. Choose a washable material that will be easy to clean.
- Include favorite toys: Place a few favorite toys or chew treats in the crate to encourage your Shih Tzu to explore their new space and associate it with positive experiences.
- Create a calming atmosphere: Add calming elements to the space, such as a soft blanket or music, to help your Shih Tzu relax and feel more at home in the crate.
- Reward good behavior: When your Shih Tzu goes into the crate voluntarily or spends time resting in it, offer verbal praise and a small treat to encourage the behavior.
By creating a comfortable and inviting space in their crate, you can help your Shih Tzu feel safe and secure while also encouraging positive behaviors and a willingness to spend time in the crate.
Don’t use the crate as punishment
Using a crate as a means of punishment can have serious consequences and should be avoided at all costs. While the crate can be a valuable tool for training and managing your Shih Tzu’s behavior, it should never be used as a place of punishment. Dogs thrive on positive reinforcement and shaming or punishing your dog in their crate can create negative associations with it, making it an unwelcoming and uncomfortable place for them.
To ensure that your Shih Tzu sees their crate as a safe and inviting space, always use positive reinforcement when introducing your dog to the crate. Use treats, praise, and rewards to show your Shih Tzu that spending time in the crate is a good thing. Additionally, never force your dog into the crate or use it to isolate them from family activities. Doing so can make them feel neglected and unloved.
Always remember to make the crate feel like home for your Shih Tzu. Add bedding, toys, and a favorite blanket to help them feel comfortable and secure. You can even leave a piece of your worn clothing in the crate to create a sense of your scent and presence while they are inside.
By using the crate as intended and avoiding punishment, you can create a positive association with the crate and make it an effective tool for training and behavior management.
Common Mistakes to Avoid
When it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu, there are certain common mistakes that you must avoid. These mistakes may lead to negative associations with the crate and may even cause harm to your furry friend. Here are some of the most common mistakes that you should steer clear of:
Leaving your Shih Tzu in the crate for too long: You should never leave your Shih Tzu in the crate for an extended period. Doing so may cause anxiety, stress, and even depression. Your Shih Tzu needs to move around, play, and interact with you and other members of the family. According to experts, the maximum time you should leave your Shih Tzu in the crate is around four hours.
Choosing the wrong crate size: Choosing the incorrect crate size is a mistake that is often made by many dog owners. If the crate is too small, your Shih Tzu will feel cramped, and if it’s too big, your furry friend may not feel secure. Always measure your Shih Tzu accurately and choose an appropriate crate size based on their weight, height, and width.
Not making the crate a comfortable place: If your Shih Tzu doesn’t find the crate comfortable, they may not want to spend time there. Make sure you include soft bedding, chew toys, and perhaps some of their favorite snacks to keep them occupied and comfortable. You may also consider putting a cloth over the crate to create a den-like environment.
Using the crate as punishment: It’s essential to communicate to your Shih Tzu that the crate is a safe and comfortable space. If you use the crate as a form of punishment, your furry friend will associate it with something negative, causing fear and anxiety to develop.
By avoiding these common mistakes, you can ensure you’re providing your Shih Tzu with the best possible experience when crate training. Remember that crate training takes time, patience, and a consistent routine. With the right approach, your Shih Tzu will soon learn to love their crate and develop positive associations with it.
In conclusion, choosing the right crate size for your Shih Tzu is crucial for their safety, comfort, and overall well-being. A crate can provide your furry friend with a secure and comfortable space that they can call their own. Crates are also essential for house training and preventing destructive behavior, as they keep your Shih Tzu confined to a safe space while you’re away.
When picking a crate size, it’s important to consider your Shih Tzu’s size and weight, behavior, and to measure them to ensure a perfect fit. Additionally, safety features such as a secure door and proper ventilation should be taken into account.
Once you have selected the right crate size, it’s time to introduce your Shih Tzu to their new home gradually, make it as comfortable and inviting as possible, and avoid using it as punishment.
Finally, one of the biggest mistakes pet owners make is selecting the wrong crate size or using the crate as a punishment tool. It’s important to remember that crates should be a positive and safe environment for your Shih Tzu.
In summary, crate training can provide numerous benefits for both you and your Shih Tzu. By following our guide and considering your Shih Tzu’s individual needs, you’ll be well on your way to selecting the perfect crate size and providing your furry friend with a safe, comfortable, and secure space they can call their own.
Frequently Asked Questions
What size crate should I get for my Shih Tzu puppy?
You should get a crate that is around 24 inches in length for your Shih Tzu puppy.
Can I put my adult Shih Tzu in a 36-inch crate?
Yes, a 36-inch crate should be suitable for most adult Shih Tzus.
What are some safety features to look for in a Shih Tzu crate?
Look for crates with secure latches, smooth edges, and no sharp corners or protrusions that could harm your Shih Tzu.
How do I measure my Shih Tzu for a crate?
Measure your Shih Tzu from the tip of their nose to the base of their tail, and add a few inches to determine the appropriate length of the crate. The height of the crate should be a few inches taller than your Shih Tzu’s shoulder height.
What should I do if my Shih Tzu doesn’t like their crate?
Try to make the crate a comfortable and inviting space with treats, toys, and soft bedding. Gradually increase the amount of time your Shih Tzu spends in the crate, and provide positive reinforcement for good behavior. Seek advice from a professional dog trainer if necessary.
Should I put food and water in my Shih Tzu’s crate?
No, it is not recommended to put food and water in your Shih Tzu’s crate as this can lead to accidents and messes. Instead, feed and give water to your Shih Tzu outside of the crate and take them for regular potty breaks.
What should I do if my Shih Tzu soils their crate?
Immediately clean the crate and remove any soiled bedding. Try to determine the cause of the accident and adjust your Shih Tzu’s feeding and potty schedule accordingly. Gradually increase the amount of time your Shih Tzu spends in the crate to help prevent future accidents.
Can I use a travel carrier as a crate for my Shih Tzu?
A travel carrier can be used as a temporary crate for your Shih Tzu, but it may not have the same safety features and durability as a crate designed specifically for crate training.
Do I need to lock my Shih Tzu’s crate at all times?
No, you do not need to lock your Shih Tzu’s crate at all times, but it is recommended to close and latch the door when you cannot supervise your Shih Tzu to prevent accidents and ensure their safety.
Should I leave toys in my Shih Tzu’s crate?
Yes, leaving toys in your Shih Tzu’s crate can provide mental stimulation and help prevent boredom. However, avoid leaving toys with sharp edges or small parts that can be swallowed and pose a choking hazard.
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