I have written here before about getting a dog in the next year or so and trying to do as much research as I can before I get one. I have been looking into shih-tzu's, lhasa apso's, and miniature pinschers. I have been reading up on these breeds but I was wanting people's personal experiences. What are the pros and cons of these breeds? Has anyone had any bad health experiences with these particular breeds? That kind of stuff. I would greatly appreciate any help you guys can give me. Thank you in advance.
I have never owned any of those breeds but I know a friend who has a shih - tzu and it has allergies (that really adds up with medicine, vet appointments, and shaving fur). He's about 7 or 8 now I think and I think he's going deaf in one ear and can't see all to well so he isn't doing so well. This dog was from a pet store though so bad breeding could have a lot to do with health issues. I don't know if the breed is more proned to allergies or anything. Hopefully others can help.
A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself. - Josh Billings
The only one on your list I could help you with is the Miniature Pinscher. What characteristics, energy level are you looking for in a dog? Are there small children in the household? Other than the obvious coat differences....high grooming requirements as oppsed to minimal grooming requirements...there is a huge difference in personality between those you listed shih-tzu/lhaso vs. Min Pin. Knowing what your expectations are would be helpful.
People are like slinky's, not really good for much. But its still fun to push them down the stairs.
I'm not too worried about their energy level. I understand that that's something you need to consider but the energy level of the breed isn't one of the key things I'm looking for. The same thing goes for grooming. I obviously understand that there are huge differences in the coats and upkeep of these breeds but I can handle it either way. I'm 23 years old and have had dogs since I was in first grade. My jack russel/rat terrier mix is around 15 years old and I have had him since he was a puppy. I have a pomeranian that will be 3 in December and have had him since he was 8 weeks old. My ex-boyfriend and I had a weimeraner and a boxer together and he and I were together for 4 years. So I have some experience with various breeds. I have a job that will allow me to come home during the day so the dog won't be shut away all day. I have no kids and don't plan on it for quite a while. I am looking for a companion, not a watchdog, jogging partner, cute accessory, etc. I don't want a dog that sheds a lot, I get enough of that with my pom. I'm sure there are things that I am missing but that's all I can think of now.
I've known lots of them and the key to owning them is to make sure that you get the dog from a reputable breeder who does all the testing.
The second is to raise the dog to be a dog not a glorified stuffed animal. They can get spoiled and stubborn, which is hard to reverse. If you have the dog professionally groomed, an untrained Shih Tzu is a nightmare to work with.
If you get the Shih Tzu, you might try keeping your dog in the long coat. If you are up to brushing and combing every day, it is much cheaper than getting the dog professionally groomed. You just tie the bangs into a topknot, trim the coat around the feet from time to time and you're golden. You'll have to bathe yourself, but that can be fun.
It IS work, but if you had a doll with long hair and liked fussing with it, you'd enjoy this. Plus it looks wonderful.
If you do long walks in the country, though, it wouldn't work. You'd have a giant walking hairball, covered in every burr, seed and twig on the trail!