The American Kennel Membership (AKC) might have solely acknowledged the breed in 19691, however the Shih Tzu rapidly endeared itself to canine house owners. Immediately, it’s the twentieth hottest breed1 out of the 195 acknowledged by the group. This pup has rather a lot going for it, from its affectionate nature to its playfulness. About 69 million American households1 have a canine. Nonetheless, solely 14% have a canine and a cat.
When you have a Shih Tzu, you could marvel for those who can add a feline companion to the gang. You’ll be completely happy to know the reply is sure, with a number of caveats.
The Historical past of the Shih Tzu
When confronted with questions like this one, it’s useful to begin with a breed’s historical past. Do not forget that folks have selectively bred canines by way of the ages, specializing in fascinating traits. That may present beneficial clues about whether or not a Shih Tzu will get together with cats. For instance, the Rhodesian Ridgeback1 traditionally hunted lions, making it an unsuitable selection for a family with cats.
The historical past of the Shih Tzu isn’t practically as lively. This pup was the canine companion of Chinese language the Aristocracy, going again a whole lot of years. Pampering as an alternative of searching was extra doubtless the order of the day. However, some proof suggests selective breeding with the Tibetan Terrier1. Which will clarify different traits of the Shih Tzu, comparable to barking tendencies and mouthiness.
Likewise, its royal connections might account for its low wanderlust potential and vitality ranges. In spite of everything, you don’t should be an lively pup to take pleasure in life as a lap canine.
The Persona of the Shih Tzu
Different qualities you’ll see in a Shih Tzu embrace its outgoing perspective. Do not forget that this pup is used to being the focus. Being cute would doubtless end in extra reward—and treats. The latter may also account for its tendency to realize weight. In that case, having a cat round the home can spur some extra calorie-burning exercise.
The Shih Tzu is a pleasant pup that’s keen to make mates with folks and different canines. It is sensible, given its historical past. It could have had many alternatives to come across strangers. That tells us this pup is adaptable and open to new issues in its world. However, this breed undoubtedly discovered how good it had it. Subsequently, we’d count on some watchdog instincts to guard its turf.
The Shih Tzu is an clever canine that isn’t essentially straightforward to coach. Sitting round and looking out cute doesn’t take a variety of talent. AKC classifies it as a Toy Breed, though its historical past may simply put it within the Companion Group. It’s price noting that the United Kennel Membership (UKC)1 categorizes it with these animals.
The Shih Tzu isn’t a big canine, rising solely as much as 16 kilos1. It could be a good match-up with all however the largest of cats, just like the Maine Coon. However, measurement is an important consideration in stopping one pet from bullying the opposite. That’s very true for puppies and kittens. The opposite concern lies with among the bodily traits that make the Shih Tzu so cute.
Its flat face makes this pup a brachycephalic breed1. Sadly, its shortened snout makes it extra prone to respiratory points. Consequently, this canine isn’t warmth tolerant. Working round with a younger cat would possibly stress it unduly. Subsequently, you must all the time supervise playtime and separate your pets for those who discover the Shih Tzu experiencing respiratory misery.
The opposite concern is socialization. The interval between 3–12 weeks1 is a essential time in a pet’s younger life. It’s the most effective time to introduce it to a wide range of experiences, together with assembly a cat for the primary time. You’ll doubtless discover the introduction much less worrying on all scores if it happens throughout this age.
Apparently, cats range within the diploma of aggression between people and different cats partly based mostly on genetic components related to their breeds. It might play a task in how nicely issues will go between your feline and your pup. For instance, science has discovered the Russian Blue1 to be probably the most fearful amongst cats, rising the probabilities of an introduction going awry.
The Angora and Turkish Van exhibited probably the most aggression, whereas the Burmese have been most open to strangers. Socialization at a younger age undoubtedly influences the connection between your Shih Tzu and cat. A rescue animal may also be cautious of recent experiences.
Suggestions for Introducing Your Pets
We’ve touched on the significance of supervising playtime. It’s price noting that canines and cats have completely different sleep and exercise patterns. The previous will snooze for about 12 hours every day1. Then again, the latter would possibly sleep as much as 18 hours1. Felines are additionally extra more likely to be lively at evening. Nonetheless, to their credit score, many cats alter their schedules to their house owners.
Do not forget that felines have claws and gained’t hesitate to make use of them in the event that they really feel threatened. Nonetheless, we don’t advocate declawing1. As a substitute, we advise offering locations the place your kitty can take a nap and not using a pet’s fixed calls for to play.
The Shih Tzu is an cute pup, which explains its recognition. It’s a candy canine with a lot of like to share. These traits make it a good selection for households with cats. Preserve the breed of the latter in thoughts due to its affect on nicely everybody will get alongside. It’s possible you’ll discover that your canine and feline companions will grow to be the most effective of mates, particularly in the event that they develop up collectively.
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