Teaching Obedience to Your Shih Poo: Essential Training Tips

Shih Poos are adorable and affectionate mixed breed dogs that are a cross between a Shih Tzu and a Poodle. These small dogs are known for their intelligence, playful nature, and loving demeanor. However, like all dogs, Shih Poos require proper training to ensure they are well-behaved and obedient companions. Teaching obedience to your Shih Poo is essential for building a strong bond with them and ensuring they are well-adjusted members of your family.

Understanding Your Shih Poo

Before diving into obedience training, it’s important to understand the characteristics and temperament of Shih Poos. These dogs are highly intelligent and enjoy learning new tricks and commands. They are also known for their social nature and eagerness to please their owners. However, Shih Poos can also be stubborn at times, so consistency and patience are key when training them.

Setting the Foundation for Obedience

Start Early

The key to successful obedience training is to start early. Begin training your Shih Poo as soon as you bring them home. This will help establish good habits from the beginning and make the training process easier as your dog grows older.

Positive Reinforcement

Shih Poos respond well to positive reinforcement techniques. Use treats, praise, and affection to reward your dog when they exhibit good behavior or follow commands. This will motivate them to continue behaving well and make learning more enjoyable for both of you.

Basic Obedience Commands


Teaching your Shih Poo to sit is one of the first commands you should work on. Hold a treat above their head and slowly move it back towards their tail. As their head follows the treat, their bottom will naturally lower into a sitting position. Once they are sitting, reward them with the treat and praise.


The “stay” command is important for keeping your Shih Poo safe in various situations. Start by asking your dog to sit, then hold your hand up like a stop sign and say “stay” in a firm but calm voice. Take a step back and reward them for staying in place. Gradually increase the distance and duration of the stay as they become more comfortable with the command.


The “come” command is crucial for calling your Shih Poo back to you in case they get loose or are in a potentially dangerous situation. Use a happy tone of voice and enticing gestures to encourage your dog to come to you. Reward them generously when they respond to the command, even if they come back slowly.

Advanced Obedience Training


Teaching your Shih Poo to walk nicely on a leash without pulling is accomplished through the “heel” command. Start by walking with your dog on a loose leash and rewarding them for staying by your side. Use treats and verbal praise to reinforce good behavior and redirect them if they start to pull.

Leave It

The “leave it” command is essential for preventing your Shih Poo from picking up or eating harmful objects. Place a treat on the ground and cover it with your hand, saying “leave it” firmly. When your dog looks away from the treat, reward them with a different treat and praise. Practice this command with various items to help your dog generalize the behavior.


Teaching your Shih Poo to lie down on command can be useful in various situations, such as when you need them to settle down or stay calm. Hold a treat in front of your dog’s nose and slowly lower it to the ground. As they follow the treat, their body will naturally lower into a down position. Reward them for lying down and reinforce the command with practice.

Stay Consistent

Consistency is key when it comes to obedience training your Shih Poo. Establish a routine and stick to it to help your dog understand what is expected of them. Use the same commands, gestures, and rewards each time you train to avoid confusion and reinforce good behavior.

Challenges and Solutions


Shih Poos can be stubborn at times, which may make obedience training challenging. If your dog is not responding to a command, take a break and try again later. Be patient and consistent in your training efforts, and use high-value treats to motivate your dog to cooperate.


Training your Shih Poo in a distracting environment can be difficult. Start training in a quiet, familiar setting and gradually introduce distractions as your dog becomes more proficient with commands. Use high-value treats to keep your dog focused on you and make training sessions fun and engaging.

Seek Professional Help

If you are struggling with obedience training or your Shih Poo exhibits behavior issues that you cannot resolve on your own, consider seeking help from a professional dog trainer. A trainer can provide personalized guidance and support to address specific training challenges and help you build a strong bond with your furry companion.

Consistency is Key

Consistency is crucial when it comes to teaching obedience to your Shih Poo. Make training a regular part of your daily routine and practice commands in various settings to help your dog generalize their learning. Be patient, positive, and encouraging throughout the training process to create a positive experience for both you and your dog.

Looking to teach obedience to your Shih Poo? Check out our articles on starting obedience training for Shih Poos, socializing your Shih Poo, obedience training for Shih Tzus, and leash training for Shih Poos for all the tips and tricks you need!


Obedience training is an essential aspect of caring for your Shih Poo and ensuring they are well-behaved and obedient companions. By starting early, using positive reinforcement techniques, and practicing consistency, you can teach your Shih Poo basic and advanced obedience commands effectively. Remember to be patient, understanding, and supportive during training sessions, and seek professional help if needed to address specific challenges. With time and dedication, you can build a strong bond with your Shih Poo and enjoy a harmonious relationship based on trust and mutual respect.

Matthew Farthing

Matthew Farthing

Сontributing author at DogCareHacks, Certified Dog Behavior Consultant.

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