Doggie Doors are very convenient for older dogs. Young puppies still need to be housebroken before turning them loose to a doggie door. Your doggie door should connect to a fenced-in backyard or a small fenced-in area especially for this purpose.
Be careful of doggie doors with solid, slide-in fixtures. Ifyou let your dog out another way and he attempts to return through the doggie door that has been closed with a solid fixture, it is possible he could injure himself very badly, even break his neck with a quick jump back into a doggie door that has been closed off.
Also be aware that doggie doors provide an entrance for burglars.
Some very small female shih tzu can be trained to go in a box like a cat. This can be a very convenient option for many owners unable to take their shih tzu out to potty or to provide them with a doggie door out. First you will need to paper train your tiny female shih tzu. Then put the newspaper in the box. Cut out one side to allow her to be able to get in and out of the box easily. Later change the paper box to a plastic litter box like a cat would use.
Some shih tzu will not go out in the rain, cold, ice or snow. If this occurs, try using raincoats, sweaters and coats. Bundle up yourself and your shih tzu, then go outside and try to make it a happy and fun occasion. As with other housebreaking successes, always praise and reward your shih tzu when she completes the process successfully. If she still refuses to go out in adverse weather conditions, try putting her on a leash and leading her out all bundled up as you are. If all else fails, you might just get out the newspaper box and allow her to relieve herself in the box during these times. However, with consistency and patience on your part, you most likely can convince her to potty outside even in the rain, the cold, the ice and snow.
Any kind of change in routine upsets dogs. If your shih tzu backslides with housebreaking, try to trace back to any kind of changes in your household and routine. Was there a new baby added to the family? Or was there any kind of change in routine that you can trace back to when your shih tzu began to backslide. You will need to restart your housebreaking routine just as you did when you first received your puppy. If there has not been any kind of change in routine, you might check with your vet about a urinary infection. In any case, housebreaking must begin all over again until your shih tzu is back on a regular and appropriate schedule.
Any soiling in your house must be removed with an odor remover cleaner. This is an important task to accomplish to keep your shih tzu from marking places where the scent of his urine and feces will remain for him to return to use again. Every effort must be made to get these odors out for complete and successful housebreaking. If the urine stain is fresh, you can use a vinegar and water solution which is very inexpensive. Mix one part vinegar to three parts water. Keep the solution handy in a spray bottle. If urine has really saturated the carpet, you might need to soak the area with the vinegar and water mix, then soak it all up with a thick towel. After it completely dries, sniff the area for any urine smell that may remain. If there is still odor, you can use commercial products such as Simple Solution or any type of brand you find works for you. These can be purchased from any pet supply store, some vet clinics, over the internet or pet catalogs. There are dozens of products that can be used if your vinegar solution does not work adequately for you, and most of it leaves a nice fresh smell. HealthyPetNet has an excellent line of household cleaning products that are safe to use for you, your pets and your family.
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