Are Shih Tzus Good With Kids: 18 Pros & 8 Cons To Consider

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Are Shih Tzus Good With Kids
Are Shih Tzus Good With Kids

Most parents who are dog lovers always ask are Shih Tzus good with kids which is exactly what this article is all about.

When you’re looking for the perfect family pet, it is important to consider what animal will best fit into your lifestyle.

Do you have a big backyard? Do you live in a small apartment? What about allergies?

These are all important things to consider when determining which dog breed would work best for your household.

One popular choice for those with kids is the Shih Tzu. Keep reading to find out more.

Are Shih Tzus Good With Kids

Shih Tzus being a non-aggressive breed of dog are typically good with kids, being loving and kind while still being receptive to play with kids.

However, because they are small dogs, they can be easily and inadvertently harmed by kids who are rough with them.

As a result, it is critical that all kids are taught how to behave appropriately and handle Shih Tzus.

Dogs and kids go together like peanut butter and jelly. Kids love dogs, and dogs love kids.

But there are a lot of different breeds out there, so how can you find the perfect pup for your family?

Here, is everything you need to know about the popular breed when choosing your new best friend.

This section will outline the pros and cons of owning a Shih Tzu to help you decide if this is the right dog breed for your family.

Here are some reasons why Shih Tzu is a perfect breed of dog for your kids.


  1. Shih Tzus are extremely friendly with kids.
  2. Shih Tzus small and easy to handle by kids.
  3. A properly trained Shih Tzu will protect your kids at all times.
  4. Shih Tzus have tons of energy and make perfect playmates for kids.
  5. Shih Tzus are easy to train with rewards.
  6. Shih Tzus help to improve the mental health of kids
  7. Shih Tzus can help boost the child’s self-esteem.
  8. Boosting the child’s confidence is a reason to own a Shih Tzu.
  9. Shih Tzus help to teach a child vital life lessons like responsibility.
  10. Shih Tzus help to Teach a child trust and patience.
  11. Shih Tzus are a very loyal dog breed to their family.
  12. Shih Tzus are a breed focused on companionship for both kids and adults.
  13. Shih Tzus are great with kids due to their hypoallergenic coats.
  14. Shih Tzus can live in harmony with other house pets.
  15. Shih Tzus help kids overcome stress.
  16. Shih Tzu may help your child cope with depression.
  17. Your kids can get more exercise when he or she owns a Shih Tzu.
  18. Shih Tzus will easily settle in, even if your kids are quiet or seem shy.


  1. Potential for eye problems in some cases, and kids can’t deal with it.
  2. Can be skittish or nervous around strangers who visit your kids.
  3. Shih Tzus are known to have a very high stubborn streak.
  4. Shih Tzus can develop play aggression.
  5. Shih Tzus are easily frightened by loud sounds and your kids may like loud sounds.
  6. Shih Tzus are easily obsessed with the ball and when they don’t get the ball they can nip or bite.
  7. Shih Tzus require daily brushing, and younger kids may not keep up with daily brushing.
  8. Shih Tzus are prone to heat exhaustion, kids may over play with Shih Tzus which can lead to difficult in breathing.

Do you want a dog or a cat? What sort of animal would be best for your lifestyle and family?

One group that is often overlooked when deciding on a pet is Shih Tzus.

Find out things that make Shih Tzus happy!!!

Shih Tzus are good with kids and live in all sorts of conditions.

Guidelines on teaching kids how to live with Shih Tzus

Here are some common guidelines or tips to teach your kids how to live with Shih Tzus:

Teach your kids not to scream or yell at Shih Tzus

Despite the fact that Shih Tzus are typically friendly, loud noises and yelling may terrify your Shih Tzus.

So, you have to teach your kids never to scream or yell at your Shih Tzus.

Consequences of kids screaming or yelling at Shih Tzus may be as follows:

  1. Nipping
  2. Biting
  3. Scratching
  4. Anxiety
  5. Frequent urination
  6. Destructive chewing
  7. Unnecessary freezing
  8. Unnecessary barking
  9. Restlessness
  10. Unavailable behaviors.

Teach your kids how to handle a Shih Tzu

Shih Tzus are small and cuddly, and your kids will want to squeeze them, but Shih Tzus aren’t toys.

Teach your kids how to properly care for their pup and to appreciate them as living beings who require care as well.

Your kids should understand that Shih Tzus, like humans, have needs, feelings, and suffer from pain as well.

Your kids should understand how to play with dogs without being too controlling or confined.

Teach your kids steps involved in brushing

Shih Tzus require daily brushing and after playing with your kids they will require brushing to avoid unnecessary tangles.

Depend on the age of your kids and your personal lifestyle or daily routine, you should teach your kids the basics of brushing.

There’s no reason why your children can’t help with grooming, particularly brushing the coat and bathing.

As your child matures, you will have a helper who will be able to take over these responsibilities.

Teach your kids which foods they shouldn’t share with your Shih Tzus

Garlic and onions are two of the most poisonous foods for dogs, and they may be found in a variety of meals.

While a tiny amount may only produce an upset stomach in humans, it is harmless for Shih Tzus.

Allowing a Shih Tzu to eat a bite of your child’s food can also lead to begging, which can take a long time to overcome even with intensive training.

Therefore, you should teach your kids that they must never feed the Shih Tzu a piece of their own food.

Teach your kids how to pick up a Shih Tzu

Demonstrate to your kids how to pick up a Shih Tzu puppy until they are used to picking up your pup.

Approach the pup from the side, stooping down to cradle it, one hand on the rump, the other softly but firmly supporting the tummy/chest area.

Make sure your kids practice with you at the same time.

When holding a dog, teach your kids they should never: run, spin, leap, or swing the dog about.

Integrate your kids in training your Shih Tzu

Make sure your children help you train your Shih Tzu, especially if you have a young Shih Tzu.

When your child participates in teaching the puppy how to act and behave around you and others, the bonding process will be accelerated.

Teach your kids when to leave Shih Tzus alone

When your Shih Tzu is eating, sleeping, or needs some time alone, teach your kids to leave the puppy alone.

Your dog’s development depends on eating and resting, and your puppy will need their own space.

If your kids are always crowded and preoccupied with being around your dog at all times, this might be a good guideline to help build in some natural pauses and relaxation for your puppy.

Teach your kids the difference between a stuffed animal and a real live dog

Clear contrast between a stuffed animal and a live canine must be taught to children.

Real dogs, whether a tough Shih Tzu or another dog breed, can be injured if handled incorrectly by children.

This may cause your Shih Tzu to become anxious or skittish around your children.

How to help a Shih Tzu to be good with kids

Here are some common ways or tips to help a Shih Tzu to get along with kids:

  1. Always walk your Shih Tzus next to your kids.
  2. Begin by teaching your dog to obey you and establishing yourself as the alpha.
  3. Your children should be included in the training and education of your puppy so that it understands that youngsters are more than simply playmates.
  4. It is critical to socialize your Shi Tzu from an early age.
  5. You should practice handling your puppy in the same way that your children would.
  6. Teach your Shih Tzu the basics of positive reinforcement early.

Warning signs you should not ignore

Here are some things to look out for:

  1. When your kids continues to punch, kick, grab, and pull at the dog because he or she doesn’t understand how to handle it.
  2. The dog always growls with bared teeth at the child, even if the child isn’t disturbing the dog in any way.
  3. When the dog refuse to come close to your kid’s room or space.
  4. The dog has been snapping at your kids, continues for no apparent reason.
  5. The dog always run away from your kids for no reason.


Shih Tzus are non-aggressive and popular for a good reason and gets along with kids very well, they can form great bonds with kids.

However, because of their sizes, it is advised that you properly teach your kids how to handle them.

Most importantly, they can’t play for too long to avoid unnecessary heat exhaustion, so educate your kids before letting them be with a Shih Tzu.

Beware of play aggression to avoid biting or nipping of your kids.

Read more: Shih Tzu Barking At Night: 8 Reasons & Solutions.

By Samuel Akira

Samuel Akira has 12 years of experience with dogs his a major author in Pet Creeks and currently living and taking care of 2 different breeds of dogs, Samuel Akira is here to write and share his years of experience with dogs.