Q: If you do not have pups available, can I go to a Pet Store to purchase a puppy?
A: Do NOT go to a Pet Store to purchase a puppy. Reputable breeders would never place their pups in a pet store. Don't expect a well bred puppy if you do not buy from a reputable breeder. Your idea of a "good deal" will most likely have health and behavioral issues. If I don't have a puppy available, you are welcome to contact me and I can help you find a puppy. Whether you are local or long distance -- I know many reputable breeders all over the USA.
Q: I only want to buy a "pet" not show quality. Why is it important that you show when I am only looking for a pet?
A: The American Kennel Club has a written standard known as "the blueprint" for the Shih Tzu breed that we strive to acheive in every breeding. When breeders pay to show their Shih Tzu (which is very expensive and can cost upwards of $600.00 per show) we are asking the Judges for their opinion on how our dogs meet the standard. When you purchase a puppy from a show home, you are buying a puppy from a breeder who is trying to make that perfect Shih Tzu... which is the one you read about in all the books! Furthermore, it is important to know, that not all Shih Tzu like the show ring. It does not mean they are not wonderful pets at home, but when you purchase your puppy from champion titled parents you know that your puppy is from parents that impressed the Judges with not only conformation, but temperament as well. The only way to assure this is to buy from a breeder who spends the time, effort, and money to make sure they are breeding the best Shih Tzu puppies they can.
Q: What are the temperament differences of the sexes?
A: Generally speaking, males tend to be more affectionate than females. Typically, they are not "humpers" and usually do not lift their leg to urinate. Yes, even my grown dogs squat to potty! Males are especially great for families with children. Once you own a male, you will not want anything else. We love the males!
Q: How can I tell if a breeder is Reputable?
A: Anyone can be a "breeder." However, not every breeder is reputable. A reputable breeder is active in showing their dogs to ensure only the highest quality dogs are bred. They require all pet puppies to be spayed and neutered. They guarantee the health of their puppies, and will take a puppy back for any reason if you should no longer be able to care for it. A reputable breeder is usually involved in local dog clubs and is extremely knowledgeable about their breed and dogs in general. When you select a reputable breeder for your new family addition, it is understood that this is the person you will contact with your future puppy questions and advice for the coming weeks, months, and years to come.
Q: Why do you show your dogs?
A: We show our dogs because we wish to continue our pursuit of perfection. By competing with our dogs at local and international shows, we can positively insure the quality and value of our present dogs and future generations.
Q: What is the correct pronunciation of Shih Tzu?
A: Shih Tzu is pronounced Sheet-Zoo. Shih Tzu is singular as well as plural, whether you are speaking of one or multiples.
Q: Do you have an outdoor kennel?
A: Our dogs live in our home. We do not have a separate kennel facility outdoors. Our dogs love giving and receiving attention. We believe they thrive in a family environment and must live indoors. For this reason, we do not keep a numerous amount of dogs. Each dog knows that they are part of the family and are treated as such.
Q: Do Shih Tzu make good Therapy Dogs?
A: Absolutely... Shih Tzu were born to be Therapy Dogs.. They love people!! Therapy dogs are so vital because they are the real ambassadors of the dog world. Therapy dogs have the ability to reach the public like no other dog can -- they are in hospitals, nursing homes, libraries, schools, girl scout meetings, hospices, universities, disaster areas, courts, camps, etc... quietly shaping the publics eye view of dogs. If you live local and are interested in training your dog to become a Therapy Dog, please contact William Kopp at firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: Do you sell puppies with full registration for breeding?
A: No... I do not sell puppies or adult dogs for breeding purposes. I believe that only show champion dogs should be bred to improve the breed.
Q: What size are your Shih Tzu?
A: One of the characteristics I like about the Shih Tzu is their size. ShihTzu are sturdy and solid, despite their relatively small size. This makes them well suited for modern life in city or country, and performance events. My Shih Tzu weigh between 8-12 lbs. and most are about 9 inches at the shoulder. I show my dogs so they must be within standard size to win in the show ring. It would be unethical for me to purposely breed undersize ShihTzu.
Q: How do I know if a breeder is a show breeder?
A. The breeder will have show photos of their dogs... all show breeders have win photos posted on their website. It is something all breeders are proud of and eager to show you! If a breeder claims they sell show quality dogs, how would they know "show quality" if they are not producing winning dogs? They wouldn't know... it is something that is learned over time at dog shows and conversing with other show breeders. We pay Judges for their opinions on our dogs. That's what dog shows are for... to evaluate breeding stock!
Q: Are there any safety concerns regarding the Shih Tzu?
A: The Shih Tzu is a brachycephalic (snub nosed) breed. Shih Tzu are very sensitive to high temperatures. Extreme caution must be taken outdoors in hot and humid weather to avoid heat stroke. For example, during outdoor dog shows and activities, we use ice packs under towels to keep our dogs cool and always provide fresh water. We live in Florida where it is very hot and humid. When you take them for a long walk, do so upon sunrise or at sundown so you are not out in the hot sun. These are just a few examples on how we try our best to make them comfortable.
Q: Are umbilical hernias and tight nostrils common in ShihTzu?
A: The Shih Tzu is a breed that finds umbilical hernias and pinched nostrils (stenotic nares) common. Unfortunately, too many veterinarians would like us to believe ShihTzu are the exception. The American ShihTzu Club education committee has been working on a flyer to give veterinarians describing this and other conditions (late teething, undershot bites, tight nostrils due to teething that do not require surgery, etc) normal in ShihTzu, but not understood by most Veterinarians.
Q: What color are your Shih Tzu?
A: I specialize in golden red & white or deep red & white.
Q: What are the Grooming requirements of Shih Tzu?
A: Shih Tzu need professional grooming every six weeks. If you choose to keep your dogs in long coat, daily brushing and weekly bathing is required. For this reason, many owners keep their dogs in cute clips. We prefer the "modified teddy bear" clip as shown on Grinchie here:
Q: What is the average life span of Shih Tzu?
A: The average life span of Shih Tzu is 14-18 years.
Q: Can I do AKC Performance Events?
A: You must let me know prior to placing Wait List Deposit if you are buying a Puppy to do AKC Performance events such as Agility, Obedience, Rally, etc...
Q: Can I come visit the puppies when they are born?
A: I take pictures at birth, 4 weeks, and 7 weeks. Unfortunately, I cannot allow visitors until the litter has been vaccinated (for the safety of the mother and her babies.)