Bringing home a new Shih Tzu puppy can be an exciting and joyful experience for any pet owner. However, house training can be a challenging and often frustrating task. Crate training has proven to be a highly effective method for potty training Shih Tzus. It involves using a crate or carrier to create a safe and secure environment for the puppy while teaching them to control their bladder and bowel movements. In this article, we will discuss the role of crate training in Shih Tzu potty training and provide a step-by-step guide to help you successfully implement this technique. Keep reading to learn more!
What is crate training?
Crate training is a method of house training dogs by using a crate, also known as a kennel or cage, to confine them for short periods of time. The crate becomes a safe and comfortable space for the dog to sleep and play, and to learn bladder control.
The crate provides several benefits for both the owner and dog:
- It helps to prevent accidents in the house, as the dog learns to associate the crate with a place to relieve itself
- It provides a safe environment for the dog to rest and relax in, away from danger or harm
- It can be used as a tool for managing behavior and separation anxiety
- It creates a sense of security and comfort for the dog, as it mimics the den-like environments of their ancestors
Many dogs, including Shih Tzus, respond well to crate training and quickly learn to view the crate as their personal space. It is important to note that crate training should not be used as a punishment or to restrict the dog’s movement for long periods of time.
Using a crate as part of a comprehensive potty training plan can help to promote good habits and make the process easier for both the owner and the dog. By following a structured schedule and gradually introducing the crate, the Shih Tzu can learn bladder control and become reliable in potty training.
To learn more about Shih Tzu potty training, check out our article on Shih Tzu Potty Training Tips.
Benefits of Crate Training for Shih Tzu Potty Training
Ensuring that your Shih Tzu is appropriately potty trained can sometimes seem like an uphill battle, especially if you’re a new pet owner. However, crate training is a popular method that has proven to be effective in helping Shih Tzu owners with potty training. Not only is it an excellent tool for preventing accidents, but it also has numerous other benefits that help with potty training your Shih Tzu. Let’s take a closer look at some of these benefits. Don’t forget to follow our Shih Tzu Potty Training Tips for best results.
Creates a den-like environment
Crate training is an effective way of potty training your Shih Tzu because it creates a den-like environment. Dogs are instinctively den animals, seeking comfort and security in small, enclosed spaces. Using a crate to potty train your Shih Tzu can make them feel safe and secure while also helping them develop bladder control.
How does creating a den-like environment help with potty training?
- It gives your Shih Tzu a designated space for their personal needs.
- It promotes discipline and self-control by restricting your Shih Tzu’s physical space).
- The enclosed space of the crate can help enhance your Shih Tzu’s natural denning instincts and make them feel more relaxed and safe during the potty training process.
- It prevents your Shih Tzu from wandering around the house and finding someplace to hide and make a mess (e.g. behind the couch, under the bed, etc.).
In addition to helping with potty training, having a crate can also benefit your Shih Tzu’s mental and emotional well-being. It can provide them with a space to retreat to when feeling stressed, anxious, or overwhelmed.
Remember that it’s important to introduce your Shih Tzu to their crate gradually and with positive reinforcement. For more information on how to teach your Shih Tzu to like their crate, check out the section titled “Teaching Your Shih Tzu to Like the Crate.”
To learn more about effective potty training methods for your Shih Tzu, visit our article on Potty Training Tips for Shih Tzus.
Instills bladder control
Crate training for Shih Tzu potty training not only creates a den-like environment but also instills bladder control. When a puppy is confined to a crate, it learns to hold its bladder until it’s taken outside. This is a crucial part of potty training because puppies have small bladders and need to relieve themselves frequently.
By using a crate, you are helping your Shih Tzu develop the habit of holding its bladder for an extended period. This skill is not only useful during potty training, but it will also be necessary later in life, especially when you can’t take your dog outside as often as you would like.
Keep in mind that the crate shouldn’t be used as a long-term confinement solution. Puppies need to be taken out to go potty every few hours, regardless of if they’re in the crate or not. Additionally, if you leave a puppy in a crate for too long, it may feel forced to relieve itself in the crate, which will hinder potty training progress.
To avoid accidents or mistakes, supervise your Shih Tzu closely when it’s out of the crate, and if you notice it sniffing around or looking restless, this may be a sign that it needs to go potty. Take your dog outside immediately by following your Shih Tzu potty schedule. Be patient and continue to use the crate as a tool to teach your puppy bladder control.
Using a crate for Shih Tzu potty training prevents accidents. When a dog is not housetrained, they may have accidents in the house. These accidents can create a mess and an unpleasant odor, which can be challenging to clean up. Additionally, when a dog has an accident in the house, they may begin to think that it is acceptable behavior. This can lead to a difficult process of breaking the habit.
However, when you use a crate for Shih Tzu potty training, you can prevent accidents from happening. The crate should be just big enough for your dog to stand in, turn around, and lay down comfortably. If the crate is too large, your dog may go potty in one end of the crate and sleep in the other. This contradicts the purpose of the crate as a potty training tool.
The key to preventing accidents is to make sure that your dog is not in the crate for too long. Dogs have a natural instinct to keep their living space clean, but if they are forced to go too long without a potty break, they may have an accident in the crate. That’s why it’s important to follow an age-appropriate crate training schedule and take your dog out for potty breaks frequently.
It’s also important to supervise your dog when they are out of the crate. Shih Tzus are known to have accidents in the house, especially when they are young and just starting to learn. If you see your dog beginning to go potty inside, interrupt them and take them outside immediately. Be patient with your Shih Tzu during the training period as there may be mistakes.
It’s crucial to remember that accidents can and will occur during Shih Tzu potty training. Be prepared for these situations by having cleaning supplies on hand, such as enzymatic cleaners that break down the odor and prevent your dog from returning to the same spot. If accidents become a recurring issue, it may be worth revisiting part of their training, such as the frequency of breaks or the method of training altogether.
By using a crate during Shih Tzu potty training, you are not only preventing accidents but also creating a safe and secure space for your pet. This is a critical step for their overall well-being, and as a pet owner, it’s your responsibility to provide this for them.
Teaching Your Shih Tzu to Like the Crate
Introducing a new environment can be difficult for any Shih Tzu, which is why teaching them to love their crate is crucial in successful potty training. A crate provides your furry friend with a comfortable and safe area to call their own, but it can be overwhelming for them at first. Luckily, there are several steps you can take to ease them into crate training and help them associate their crate with a positive experience. Let’s take a closer look at these steps.
For more tips on potty training your Shih Tzu, check out our article on Shih Tzu potty training time where we discuss common mistakes and helpful tips.
One of the most important aspects of crate training for Shih Tzu potty training is a gradual introduction to the crate. It’s essential to help your pup feel comfortable and safe in their new “den-like” environment. Remember, the crate should never be used as a punishment.
Here are some steps to follow when introducing your Shih Tzu to the crate:
- Start by placing the crate in a common area of the house where you and your family spend a lot of time. This way, your pup can see and hear you, but still have their own space.
- Place a soft blanket or bed inside the crate to make it more comfortable.
- Encourage your Shih Tzu to approach the crate by placing treats or toys near or inside it.
- Once your pup approaches the crate willingly, place treats or toys inside the crate to further encourage exploration.
- Begin feeding your pup near the outside of the crate, then gradually move the food bowl inside the crate. This will help them associate positive experiences with the crate.
- Place toys inside the crate and encourage your Shih Tzu to play with them while inside.
- Gradually increase the amount of time your pup spends inside the crate, starting with just a few minutes at a time and gradually building up to longer periods.
Remember to always keep a positive attitude and never force your Shih Tzu into the crate. The goal is to create a positive association with the crate as a safe and comfortable space for your pup to rest and relax. With patience and persistence, your pup should learn to love their crate in no time.
For more information on common Shih Tzu potty training mistakes to avoid, check out our article on the topic.
Positive reinforcement is one of the most effective ways to get your Shih Tzu to like their crate. Instead of punishing your dog for undesirable behavior, use positive reinforcement to reward the behavior you want to see. The rewards can be in the form of treats, praise, or playtime outside of the crate.
You can use an html table to organize the types of rewards:
|Type of Reward||Description|
|Treats||Small, bite-sized treats that your Shih Tzu loves. Give them when it is time to go into the crate, when they are quiet inside the crate, and when they come out of the crate.|
|Praise||Give your Shih Tzu verbal praise when they go into the crate, when they are quiet inside the crate, and when they come out of the crate. Use a cheerful voice and lots of positive reinforcement.|
|Playtime||After your Shih Tzu comes out of the crate, give them some dedicated playtime outside. Play with their favorite toy, take them on a walk, or just spend time cuddling and giving them attention.|
Remember to be consistent with your rewards and only give them when your Shih Tzu exhibits good behavior. This will motivate them to repeat the behavior in order to receive the reward.
Positive reinforcement can also be used during potty training. When your Shih Tzu goes outside to potty, give them a small treat and lots of praise. This will reinforce the behavior and encourage them to continue going potty outside instead of having accidents inside.
If you are struggling with accidents inside, check out our article on Shih Tzu accident potty training for more tips. And if you are considering using potty pads instead of going outside, read our article on potty pads vs. Shih Tzu outside for a comparison. We also have tips for apartment living in our article on Shih Tzu potty training apartment tips.
Feeding in the crate
Crate training your Shih Tzu for potty training success involves creating a positive association with the crate. One highly effective way to accomplish this is by encouraging your dog to eat meals in the crate.
Why is feeding in the crate important?
Feeding your Shih Tzu in the crate has many benefits. First and foremost, it reinforces the idea that the crate is a comfortable and safe space for your dog. The association your dog builds between the crate and food will help him or her develop positive feelings towards it.
Additionally, feeding your Shih Tzu in the crate can help minimize any anxiety or stress your dog may feel when first starting the crate training process. Eating in the crate can provide a distraction, making it easier for your dog to become accustomed to spending time in the crate.
How to feed your Shih Tzu in the crate
When starting to feed your Shih Tzu in the crate, it’s important to go slowly and take baby steps. Here are some tips:
- Begin by placing your Shih Tzu’s food dish right outside the crate.
- After a few meals, move the dish just inside the doorway of the crate.
- Eventually, move the dish all the way to the back of the crate.
- Leave the crate door open so your dog can enter and exit freely as they eat.
- If your Shih Tzu doesn’t seem interested in entering the crate, try placing a small amount of food just inside the doorway to entice them.
Additional feeding tips
– Always remove the food dish promptly after your Shih Tzu is finished eating to avoid any accidents in the crate.
– Provide plenty of water outside of the crate to prevent spills and accidents inside the crate.
– Make mealtime in the crate a calm and comfortable experience by keeping things quiet and avoiding any distractions like loud noises or sudden movements.
Crate Training Schedule for Shih Tzu Potty Training
Determining the appropriate crate training schedule for your Shih Tzu can be perplexing, especially when it comes to potty training. However, a structured routine can lead to success and a well-trained, housebroken pup. In this section, we will break down the age-appropriate timing, frequency of taking out of the crate, and length of time spent in the crate for optimal Shih Tzu potty training. Let’s dive in and make crate training your Shih Tzu a breeze!
When it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu for potty training, it is essential to follow an age-appropriate timing schedule. Every puppy is different, but as a general rule, puppies can control their bladder for approximately one hour for every month of age, up to a maximum of eight hours. This means when your Shih Tzu is three months old, they should be taken out to potty every three hours.
Here is a breakdown of age-appropriate timing:
- 8-10 weeks old: Take your Shih Tzu out every 1-2 hours, even at night. Puppies at this age don’t have much bladder control yet and need frequent potty breaks.
- 10-12 weeks old: Take your Shih Tzu out every 2-3 hours, even at night. Your puppy’s bladder control is improving at this point, but they still need frequent breaks.
- 3-6 months old: Take your Shih Tzu out every 3-4 hours, including overnight. Your puppy’s bladder control will continue to improve during this time, and they can go longer between potty breaks.
- 6-12 months old: Take your Shih Tzu out every 4-6 hours, including overnight. By this age, your puppy should have good bladder control and be able to hold it for longer periods.
It’s important to note that these are general guidelines, and every Shih Tzu puppy is different. Pay attention to your particular puppy’s bathroom habits and adjust the timing accordingly. If your puppy is whining or pacing, it may be a sign that they need to go out sooner than scheduled.
By following the age-appropriate timing schedule for crate training your Shih Tzu for potty training, you will set your puppy up for success and minimize accidents in the house. As your puppy grows older and gains more bladder control, you can gradually increase the time between potty breaks.
Frequency of taking out of crate
It is important to establish a regular schedule for taking your Shih Tzu out of the crate during potty training. The frequency of taking your Shih Tzu out depends on their age and bladder capacity. You don’t want to wait too long to take them out, as this can lead to accidents in the crate. On the other hand, taking them out too often can lead to overstimulation and difficulty establishing bladder control.
For young puppies, you will need to take them out of the crate more frequently. Plan to take your Shih Tzu puppy out every 2-3 hours during the day. Puppies have small bladders and cannot hold their urine for long periods of time. As they get older and their bladder control improves, you can gradually increase the time between potty breaks.
For adult Shih Tzus, plan to take them out every 4-6 hours during the day. However, if your Shih Tzu is drinking a lot of water or has been active, they may need to go out more frequently.
It is also important to monitor your Shih Tzu’s behavior and take them out immediately if you notice any signs that they need to go, such as sniffing, circling or whimpering. This will reinforce their understanding that going potty outside is the desired behavior.
Remember that every dog is unique and may have their own individual needs when it comes to potty breaks. Be patient, and adjust your schedule as necessary to accommodate your Shih Tzu’s needs during the crate training process.
Length of time in crate
When it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu for potty training, the length of time spent in the crate is an important factor to consider. The length of time will depend on various factors including the age of your Shih Tzu, the time of the day, and their bladder control.
Below is a table that outlines the approximate time your Shih Tzu should spend in their crate based on their age and bladder control:
|Age of Shih Tzu||Maximum time in crate|
|8-10 weeks||30-60 minutes|
|10-12 weeks||60-90 minutes|
|12-16 weeks||2-4 hours|
|4-6 months||4-5 hours|
|6-8 months||5-6 hours|
It’s essential to remember that this is a rough guide, and you should gradually increase the time as your Shih Tzu develops better bladder control. Never leave your Shih Tzu in a crate for an extended period, as it can lead to discomfort and anxiety.
It’s also worth noting that the length of time will vary throughout the day. Your Shih Tzu will need to go potty more frequently after eating or drinking water or when they wake up from a nap. Adjust the time spent in the crate depending on the cues your Shih Tzu is giving you.
By following a consistent crate training schedule, you’ll help your Shih Tzu build up their bladder control and develop healthy habits for a lifetime.
How to Deal with Whining or Barking
Dealing with whining or barking during crate training can be a frustrating experience for both you and your Shih Tzu. It’s important to understand that this behavior is not uncommon, and it doesn’t mean that your furry friend doesn’t like the crate. In fact, the whining or barking may simply be a way for your Shih Tzu to communicate their discomfort or need for attention. So, how do you deal with it? Here are some effective strategies to calm your pup and achieve successful crate training.
Do not let out immediately
When crate training your Shih Tzu, it’s important to remember that whining or barking is a natural response at the beginning. However, it’s important to resist the urge to let your Shih Tzu out of the crate immediately. This can lead to a negative association with the crate and can make potty training more difficult.
So what should you do when your Shih Tzu starts whining or barking?
- Assess if your Shih Tzu needs to go potty: If your Shih Tzu just finished eating or drinking, it’s possible they need to go potty. Take your dog outside to go potty and then return them to the crate for some quiet time.
- Provide comfort items: Make sure your Shih Tzu has comfortable bedding and toys to help them feel secure and at ease in the crate. This can help reduce their anxiety and make them more likely to settle down.
- Ignore the behavior: While it can be tempting to try to calm your Shih Tzu down by talking to them, petting them, or taking them out of the crate, it’s important to remember that this can actually reinforce the behavior. Instead, try to ignore the behavior and wait until your Shih Tzu has settled down before letting them out of the crate.
Remember, crate training is a process and it takes time for your Shih Tzu to get used to it. With patience and consistency, your Shih Tzu will learn to associate the crate with a positive environment and will voluntarily enter it.
Provide comfort items
When crate training a Shih Tzu for potty training, dealing with whining or barking may become an issue. One way to help your furry friend adjust to the crate is to provide comfort items. These can be items that remind your Shih Tzu of home, such as a soft blanket, a favorite toy, or even a piece of clothing that has your scent on it. These items can help ease any separation anxiety your pup may be feeling and provide a sense of security in the crate.
It’s important to note that comfort items should not pose a risk to your Shih Tzu’s safety. For example, avoid items with small pieces that can be chewed off and swallowed. Use the table below to help choose safe and comforting items for your Shih Tzu’s crate:
|Soft Blanket||A blanket made of soft, non-toxic materials that can provide warmth and comfort.|
|Favorite Toy||A toy that your Shih Tzu loves to play with and can provide entertainment during the crate training process.|
|Chew Toy||A toy made specifically for chewing can help relieve any teething pain and prevent destructive behavior.|
|Scented Item||A piece of clothing or fabric that has your scent on it can help your Shih Tzu feel more secure and calm.|
By providing comfort items, you are helping your Shih Tzu adjust to the crate and feel more comfortable while being trained. Remember to monitor the items you choose and remove any that may cause harm to your furry friend. With these items and other crate training techniques, your Shih Tzu will be on its way to successful potty training.
Ignore the behavior
When crate training your Shih Tzu, it’s important to expect some whining or barking. This is especially true during the initial stages of crate training when your pet is still getting used to the idea of being confined. One of the most effective methods for dealing with this behavior is to ignore it completely.
Ignoring behavior may seem counterintuitive, but it’s important to remember that dogs thrive on attention, whether it’s positive or negative. If your Shih Tzu realizes that whining or barking will get a reaction from you, they may continue to do it as a way of getting attention. By ignoring the behavior, you’re sending a message that this type of behavior will not be rewarded with attention.
However, it’s important to note that ignoring the behavior doesn’t mean neglecting your Shih Tzu’s needs. Make sure that they have access to water and that they’re not in any distress. If the whining or barking persists for an extended period, you can calmly say phrases like “quiet” or “no bark” (avoid using their name as it can reinforce their behavior). But remember to use these commands sparingly and never as a form of punishment.
It’s important to be patient during this stage of crate training, as it can take time for your Shih Tzu to adjust to their new environment. But with consistent training and patience, you can train your pet to be comfortable and relaxed in their crate, even when you are away from home.
Using a Crate During Shih Tzu Potty Training
As you begin to incorporate crate training into your Shih Tzu’s potty training routine, it’s important to understand how your pup’s confinement can play a role in successful potty training. While some may see the crate as a form of punishment, it can actually be a useful tool in teaching your pup where to go potty. By creating a consistent potty schedule and using the crate to aid in training, you can set your Shih Tzu up for success in their potty training journey. In this section, we’ll discuss how to effectively use the crate during potty training and reinforce good habits.
Create a potty schedule
One of the most important aspects of using a crate for Shih Tzu potty training is creating a consistent potty schedule. This means taking your Shih Tzu out at regular intervals throughout the day to go potty. Not only does this routine help in encouraging good potty behavior, but it also helps to prevent accidents in the house. Here are some tips for creating a successful potty schedule:
- Take your Shih Tzu out at consistent intervals: Depending on the age and bladder control of your Shih Tzu, the intervals may vary. However, on average, puppies need to go out every 30-60 minutes, while adult Shih Tzus can hold it for 4-6 hours.
- Use a timer: To ensure consistency, use a timer to remind yourself when it’s time for your Shih Tzu to go out. This helps to prevent accidents due to forgetfulness.
- Take your Shih Tzu out first thing in the morning and before bedtime: Starting and ending the day with a potty break helps to reinforce good potty behavior and prevent accidents overnight.
- Take your Shih Tzu out after meals or water: Eating and drinking can stimulate the need to go potty, so it’s important to take your Shih Tzu out shortly after meals and water breaks.
- Give a verbal command: When taking your Shih Tzu out to go potty, use a consistent verbal command such as “go potty” to help them associate the behavior with the command.
By creating a consistent potty schedule and sticking to it, you are providing your Shih Tzu with the structure and routine they need to successfully learn good potty habits. It may take some time and patience, but with a little bit of effort, you can train your Shih Tzu to go potty on command and avoid accidents in the house.
Take Shih Tzu outside immediately after release from crate
As mentioned earlier, taking your Shih Tzu outside immediately after release from the crate is an essential step in potty training. This will teach your pup that the proper place to eliminate is outside. To ensure success in this aspect of crate training, it is important to establish a consistent routine. Here’s a sample schedule:
|6:30am||Wake up and take Shih Tzu outside|
|6:45am||Feed Shih Tzu breakfast|
|7:00am||Place Shih Tzu in crate|
|8:30am||Take Shih Tzu outside|
|11:30am||Take Shih Tzu outside|
|1:00pm||Feed Shih Tzu lunch|
|1:30pm||Place Shih Tzu in crate|
|3:00pm||Take Shih Tzu outside|
|6:00pm||Take Shih Tzu outside|
|7:00pm||Feed Shih Tzu dinner|
|7:30pm||Place Shih Tzu in crate|
|8:30pm||Take Shih Tzu outside|
|10:30pm||Take Shih Tzu outside for last potty break before bed|
Consistency is key in potty training, so it’s important to make sure you are taking your Shih Tzu outside at the same times every day. When you take your pup outside, make sure to use a command such as “go potty” or “do your business” to help them associate the action with the phrase. If your Shih Tzu does eliminate outside, make sure to praise them with treats or affection to reinforce their good behavior.
It’s also important to note that accidents will happen during the potty training process. If your Shih Tzu does have an accident in the crate or indoors, it’s essential to clean it up thoroughly to eliminate any odors that may encourage them to eliminate in the same spot.
By establishing a consistent potty schedule and reinforcing positive behavior, you can successfully potty train your Shih Tzu with the help of crate training.
Reinforce desired behavior with rewards
When it comes to crate training your Shih Tzu for potty training, reinforcing desired behavior with rewards is an important aspect. This positive reinforcement helps to encourage good behavior and make training sessions more enjoyable for your pet.
But what kind of rewards should you use? The answer is simple – rewards that your Shih Tzu loves! This can be anything from verbal praise to a small treat. Using a consistent reward system will help your Shih Tzu understand what behaviors are desirable and will make it easier to train them.
Here is an example of a reward system that you can use during crate training:
|Going potty outside||A small treat and verbal praise|
|Entering the crate voluntarily||A small treat and verbal praise|
|Sitting quietly in the crate||A small treat and verbal praise|
It is important to use rewards immediately after the desired behavior occurs. This helps your Shih Tzu understand which behaviors are being rewarded. Rewards should be given consistently, so that your pet understands that good behavior will always be rewarded.
Remember to also use a consistent verbal cue when giving a reward. For example, saying “Good boy/girl!” or “Yes!” every time your Shih Tzu exhibits desirable behavior will help them associate that behavior with a positive outcome.
By reinforcing desired behavior with rewards, you are not only creating a positive training experience for your Shih Tzu, but you are also helping them learn faster and more effectively.
Maintaining Crate Training for Life
After successfully crate training your Shih Tzu, it’s important to maintain the habit for the rest of their life. The crate not only serves as a tool for potty training, but it also provides a safe and secure space for your furry friend. However, you might be wondering how to ensure that your Shih Tzu continues to use the crate without resistance. In this section, we’ll go over some tips and tricks to help you maintain crate training for life. So, let’s delve into the details!
Keep the crate in a familiar spot
One of the most important aspects of maintaining crate training for your Shih Tzu is to keep the crate in a familiar spot. This will ensure that your dog sees it as a safe and comfortable space that they can retreat to whenever they need to.
When choosing a spot for the crate, consider a location that is calm and quiet, with minimal foot traffic. It should also be away from any heating or cooling sources, direct sunlight, and any other sources of discomfort for your dog. An ideal location is somewhere that your dog already spends a lot of time, such as the living room or bedroom.
To emphasize the importance of familiarity, consider using an html table to list some of the benefits of keeping the crate in a familiar location:
|Reduces anxiety||By keeping the crate in a familiar spot, your Shih Tzu will feel more comfortable and secure when spending time in it. This can help to reduce anxiety and stress, leading to a happier and healthier dog.|
|Promotes feelings of safety||A familiar crate location can help your dog to feel safe and secure in their own space, which is important for overall well-being.|
|Helps with consistency||By keeping the crate in the same location, you can establish a consistent routine for your dog. This can help with training and behavior management, leading to a well-behaved and obedient dog.|
By keeping the crate in a familiar location and establishing a consistent routine, you can help to ensure that your Shih Tzu develops a positive association with their crate, leading to a happier and more well-adjusted dog.
Continue to use the crate during times of stress
As your Shih Tzu becomes more accustomed to being in their crate, you may find that they start to see it as a safe and comfortable space, often retreating to it on their own when they feel stressed or overwhelmed. But even as your Shih Tzu matures and becomes fully potty trained, there may still be times when they experience stress and anxiety, such as during thunderstorms or when you have guests over.
Table: Times to use the crate during stress
|Time of Stress||Reasons to Use Crate|
|Thunderstorms||Provides a secure and safe space for your Shih Tzu to ride out the storm.|
|Visitors||Prevents your Shih Tzu from being overwhelmed by guests and gives them a quiet space to retreat to if needed.|
|Travel||Can make traveling by car or airplane less stressful for your Shih Tzu by providing a familiar space.|
|Illness or Injury||Can aid in the healing process and prevent further injury or damage by limiting your Shih Tzu’s movements.|
By continuing to use the crate during times of stress, you are providing your Shih Tzu with a consistent and familiar space that can help alleviate their anxiety. However, it is important to note that you should never force your Shih Tzu into their crate during times of stress or use it as a punishment. Instead, gradually reintroduce it as a safe and positive space and utilize positive reinforcement to encourage them to enter on their own.
In addition to using the crate, there are also other ways to help your Shih Tzu cope with stress and anxiety, such as providing calming music, using pheromone sprays, and practicing relaxation techniques together. With patience and consistency, you can help your Shih Tzu feel more comfortable and secure in any situation.
Crate alternatives when necessary
While crate training is an effective method for Shih Tzu potty training, there may be times when alternative options are needed. It’s important to have a backup plan in case your dog starts to refuse or dislike the crate, or you need to travel without it.
1. Playpen: A playpen is a great alternative to a crate. It provides a confined space, similar to a crate, but with more room for movement. Shih Tzu puppies can play with toys, eat, and sleep comfortably in a playpen.
2. Baby Gates: Baby gates are another option for confinement. They can be used to block off a small area of a room, allowing the Shih Tzu to move around freely while still being contained. This option is best for adult Shih Tzus who have already been potty trained.
3. Tethering: Tethering involves attaching a leash or rope to your dog’s collar and securing it to a stable object in your home. This allows your Shih Tzu to move around within a certain radius but prevents them from wandering too far or getting into trouble. However, tethering should only be done for brief periods and under close supervision.
4. Doggy Daycare: If you need to be away for an extended period or are unable to supervise your Shih Tzu, consider bringing them to a doggy daycare. They’ll be able to socialize with other dogs and receive plenty of attention and exercise while you’re away.
5. Bathroom Breaks: If your Shih Tzu is fully potty trained, and you don’t feel comfortable confining them, you can consider providing them with regular bathroom breaks. This option requires diligence and consistency in taking them outside, so they do not have accidents.
While crate training is one of the most effective methods for Shih Tzu potty training, there are various alternative options to consider. It’s essential to choose an alternative that is appropriate for your dog’s age, training, and comfort level. Additionally, ensure that whatever option you choose, your dog still receives enough socialization, exercise, and attention.
After going through the entire article, it is clear that crate training plays an essential role in Shih Tzu potty training. Crate training helps to create a safe and comfortable environment for your furry friend, instills bladder control, and prevents accidents.
However, crate training requires patience, time, and effort. It is crucial to introduce your Shih Tzu to the crate gradually and use positive reinforcement to make them like it. Creating a crate training schedule is also important, taking into consideration age-appropriate timing, frequency of taking out of the crate, and the length of time spent in the crate.
When dealing with whining or barking, it is crucial not to let your Shih Tzu out of the crate immediately but to provide comfort items and ignore the behavior until it stops.
Using a crate during Shih Tzu potty training involves creating a potty schedule, taking them outside immediately after letting them out of the crate, and reinforcing desired behavior with rewards.
Maintaining crate training for life is also important. This involves keeping the crate in a familiar spot, continuing to use it during times of stress, and using crate alternatives when necessary.
In conclusion, crate training can be an effective tool in Shih Tzu potty training when used correctly. It creates a safe and comfortable environment for your furry friend, instills important skills like bladder control, and prevents accidents. With patience and consistency, you can successfully crate train your Shih Tzu for life.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can crate training be the sole method of potty training for Shih Tzus?
No, crate training should be used in conjunction with other methods of potty training such as positive reinforcement and consistent potty schedules.
How long does it typically take for a Shih Tzu to become comfortable in a crate?
The amount of time it takes will vary for each dog, but with gradual introduction and positive reinforcement, most Shih Tzus can become comfortable in a crate within a few days to a week.
Is it cruel to keep a Shih Tzu in a crate?
No, as long as the crate is of an appropriate size and the Shih Tzu is not left in the crate for excessive amounts of time, crate training can actually be beneficial for the Shih Tzu’s sense of security and well-being.
Can crate training be used for adult Shih Tzus?
Yes, crate training can be used at any age of Shih Tzu and can even be helpful for adult dogs who experience anxiety or need a safe space during times of stress.
What should I do if my Shih Tzu refuses to enter the crate?
Start by placing some of your Shih Tzu’s favorite treats and toys in the crate to entice them. Gradually move the treats further into the crate until your dog is comfortable entering on its own.
Should I leave food and water in the crate with my Shih Tzu?
No, food and water should not be left in the crate with your Shih Tzu. Leave water available only during times outside of the crate and feed your Shih Tzu out of the crate to avoid creating a mess.
Is it okay to leave my Shih Tzu in a crate while I am at work?
It is not recommended to leave your Shih Tzu in a crate for extended periods of time while you are away. If you are unable to take your dog outside for potty breaks every few hours, consider hiring a dog walker or using puppy pads in a designated area.
What is the proper size of a crate for a Shih Tzu?
A crate for a Shih Tzu should be large enough for them to stand up, turn around, and lay down comfortably, but not so large that they can use one end as a bathroom and the other as a living space.
When should the crate no longer be used for potty training?
The crate should no longer be used for potty training once the Shih Tzu consistently demonstrates good potty habits and can hold their bladder for the appropriate amount of time for their age.
Can crate training help with separation anxiety in Shih Tzus?
Yes, crate training can be a helpful tool for Shih Tzus with separation anxiety. The crate provides a safe and familiar space for the Shih Tzu to feel secure during times of separation from their owner.