first post !!!!!!!

Breed specific discussion of your favorite breed.

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first post !!!!!!!

Post by doglover4ever » Thu Jun 04, 2015 6:14 am

Hello to you all

this is my first post so bare with me.

I decided tow years ago or so that I am ready to add a new fury member to my family but am finding it hard to choose between 2 breeds, I went to discover dogs around 3 yrs ago and went home to research these 2 however as I love both am still a few years later finding it hard to choose between them. I met Victoria at crufts this year and was very excited and told her im finding it hard and she told me of the forum and said there are very knowledgeable people on here, so here I am and very excited to hear from you all :D .

I have considered if a dog is right for me (cost of insurance, vet bills, flea & worming, jabs, neutering or spaying, training class's) equipment needed for a dog and exercise and what I can cope with and what I cant. I work from home (I work part time) I don't have a car and rely on trains and bus's so decided a smaller dog would be a better fit, I was also honest in that I could only provide about 1hr of exercise a day everyday in all weather conditions. im not very active so was not looking for a high energy dog. but I do enjoy long walks and spending time feeding the ducks at my local park (I live in a small town with lots of country around me) so I don't want a complete lazy dog. this would be my first dog and do plan on going to training class's and am ready for all the ups and downs that may come with training a dog.

so with all this in mind and what I like in a dog I chose 2 different breeds 1/ West Highland White Terrier (westie) , 2/ Shih Tzu. they both have traits I love and am finding it hard to choose and would be very greatful if you could help in making my decision or any knowledge on any of the breeds.

the westie I love because they are spunky and full of Character and are not really a Lap dog and think there bigger than they really are and are always ready for fun but on the downside I have read they are hard to train and not for newbies?

the shih Tzu I like how they are not very demanding with how much exercise they get (mine would always get 1hr though) and how they think there royalty I like there affectionate side and playful side. but the down side is I read that you cant train them as there not interested in learning basic commands and that they are the hardest to house train?

which do you think I should go for? I would like to say that I am not interested in doing prober obedience only learning the basics all I want to achieve is a well mannered dog who walks nice on the lead and is a great family dogs. (and my family is just me and my husband who is fine getting a small dog)

I would be very greatful if you could tell me anything about these breeds I have met both and read tons of book and spent time with owners and breeders and that did not help I would prefer to see what you think :D

Many thanks
Helen (doglover4ever) I live in the UK


Re: first post !!!!!!!

Post by Theo400 » Thu Jun 04, 2015 7:51 am


welcome to the forum

I only know a bit on the shih Tzu. I disagree with what you have read my best friend owns a black and white male shih Tzu and he is adorable is a diva and stubborn at times but she loves him so much I would not say impossible as she taught Tyson to potty outside and he knows basic commands and is very well behaved. his fave hobbies are sleeping on the sofa and playing with his sweet corn toy :lol:

I think with any dog its all to do with how there raised and how much effort you put into training

Nettle is very wise and knows a lot and has helped me many times with advice regarding breeds :)

good luck

Theo and Sarah

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Re: first post !!!!!!!

Post by Nettle » Thu Jun 04, 2015 10:26 am

Hi and welcome.

These are two very different breeds temperamentally, and temperament is usually what makes or breaks a dog/human relationship. So you might like to take another look at your chosen breeds from the inside rather than the outside.

There is a big grooming commitment in the WHW but a huge one in the SZ. There are health issues in the WHW but a great many more in the SZ. Each is bred in quantity by puppy farmers, so you will have to put in quite a bit of detective work to find a good breeder of healthy stock.

House-training should not be an issue if done properly from the start. Those first few weeks are a huge commitment. Have you honestly time to do this, given that you think you can only walk the dog for an hour a day? Of course puppies don't need that much walking, but they occupy as much of your day as a baby human would. Some days you don't get anything done except puppy care. You might of course be thinking of getting an adult dog, in which case be extra EXTRA careful you don't get a puppy-farmed dog, or take on one with health issues.

Reward-based training works for all breeds and types of dog, so you don't need to take notice of people who describe a breed as hard to train. All that means is they don't know how to train or have unrealistic expectations. :wink:

Have a think through the drawbacks and see what you are prepared to tolerate. They are both really nice dogs but both hard work in the coat and health department. Both can be noisy, too.

Terriers are very feisty, so feeding the ducks might not be an option with a WHW as a companion! :lol:
A dog is never bad or naughty - it is simply being a dog


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Re: first post !!!!!!!

Post by doglover4ever » Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:04 am

Hi Nettle

thanks for your reply. I have been thinking maybe the westie might not be a good choice as there not the best with other pets and I have a lot of birds who come in my garden and my neighbour has rabbits :wink:

grooming is fine as my husband is the owner of a dog grooming parlour so ours would be groomed for free :D

house training I can spend a lot of time on as I am home all the time and would be taking 3months of to train and socialize but as I work at home I can always spend time with my new furry friend as I work on my laptop. I would be getting a puppy and will be doing lots of checks before saying yes I ideally would like to see the breeder and there dogs when there are not cute puppies there so I can really get to know the dogs and puppies.

so the shih Tzu is just as easy or hard like any other breed its all how I raise and train him.

my husband also mentioned a Bichon Frise

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Re: first post !!!!!!!

Post by JudyN » Thu Jun 04, 2015 4:30 pm

doglover4ever wrote:as I work at home I can always spend time with my new furry friend as I work on my laptop.
Are you going to be able to adjust the hours you work? I work from home and although it means you don't have to leave pup for too long too soon, it is almost impossible to concentrate with a puppy whining for attention, chewing your furniture and sniffing around on your best rug as if he's thinking about doing a poo on it. Nettle compared it to having a new baby, but babies stay put when you put them down :lol: One of the reasons I chose a lurcher was because they have a good off switch - once tired out, they are happy to sleep for several hours (not so much when they're puppies, though!). It might work well for you if you were able to work in the evenings, say, when your husband could entertain the puppy.

I think the key to training different breeds is working out what motivates them - you want to know what will make them think 'Wow, that was worth doing!'
Jasper, lurcher, born December 2009

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