Everybody makes mistakes, but if your Shih Tzu seems to forget his training and starts having accidents in the house every day for more than a few days, see your vet first. Your dog may have a medical problem, such as a kidney infection or diabetes.
If your vet rules out a medical problem, consider these other reasons why your Shih Tzu’s house-training has seemingly disappeared:
- Your Shih Tzu is stressed. Changes in routine can stress your dog. The birth of a child, a divorce, a death in the family, a new home or job, and even the furniture rearranged can stress dogs, causing a housetraining setback (the same as with small children and potty training). Shih Tzu tend to take on the household’s personality, so look at what’s going on at home.
- You’re stressed. Think about how things are going in the family. Are you particularly stressed out about work? Are certain family members depressed or arguing a lot? Shih Tzu tune in to people in their family. If someone is stressed, your Shih Tzu is probably stressing, too. The best way to address this problem is to spend quiet, together-time with your Shih Tzu, and also make sure you’re keeping a regular schedule of meals and potty breaks. Remember, routines reassure dogs and help alleviate stress. Also, take measure to reduce your stress. (Routines and clearing your schedule can help you — so can petting a Shih Tzu!)
- You weren’t paying attention. Did you miss the signs that your dog had to go, or were you too busy sitting at the computer that you forgot to let her out? Check for warning signs (see “Watch for shih tzu accident warning signs” ). You may have been really busy lately, and the problem is your neglect.
- Your Shih Tzu smelled the scent of an accident. One accident can lead to more, especially if you don’t see it and never clean it up. Always clean any housetraining errors thoroughly with an enzyme cleaner that removes the odor. When a dog smells a previous pee spot, she’s more likely to pee there again.
- Your shih tzu has a behavior problem. Sometimes dogs develop behavior problems like anxiety that need professional help. House-training problems related to behavior happen often in rescued dogs who may have endured abuse or neglect in the past. Consult an animal behaviorist for an evaluation if you can’t resolve your shih tzu’s potty training issues.
Whether the problem is physical or emotional, you obviously need to do something about it. No matter how old your Shih Tzu is, you can start back at square one, cheerfully and calmly, house-training as if your Shih Tzu has never had training lessons before.
See Complete “Shih Tzu Potty Training Guide“