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Should you decided to change your puppy’s food to something other than what it has been receiving, do it gradually over 2-3 feedings, gradually working in the new food. I switch my puppies to adult food at around 12-16 weeks old. I have used Purina Dog Chow for some time and the dogs have always done real well on this. They do get small portions of meats, eggs, rice, vegetables that we are having also. Purina Pro Plan, Purina One, Bil Jac, Nature's Choice are liked and used by many, and considered good choices.  I am of the personal opinion that a toy breed such as the Shih Tzu whose basic purpose and function is that of a house dog shouldn’t need a high protein food such as many of the dog foods contain. High protein would be more suitable for working/hunting dogs that need the added fuel.  I personally prefer a food that contains around 21-23% protein and around 10-15% fat. Make sure you feed your young pet at least 2-3 times a day to prevent hypoglycemia (low blood sugar.) I prefer to free feed and most other Shih Tzu breeders/owners I know do too. Although during housebreaking you may find you need a feeding schedule. Should your puppy ever appear lethargic, try putting a dab of white karo syrup on their tongue 3-4 times over a hour or two period. If low blood sugar is the problem, they should be up and going within a few minutes. (This is usually only an issue with a small infant, but just as a precaution I am sharing this information with you. I have never had this happen, but I have talked to others that have, and should the blood sugar drop it is very important to be aware of the symptoms and be prepared to take appropriate action.)  By the time your puppy goes home with you, it will be mostly on hard food. You may wet the food some if you like, but it will need it dry also to help with teething. (Never wet the food with cow’s milk, only water.) Never feed a dog, cat’s food or a cat, dog’s food. Should your shih tzu puppy develop a loose stool, you may try giving it a teaspoon of plain canned pumpkin (not with spices) 2-3 times a day. This remedy usually does the trick to firm up a loose stool. I also like to have  Pepto Bismol or Kaopectate on hand to use to remedy a loose stool.

 There are certain foods that should not ever be given to a Shih Tzu. Some are onions or anything containing them, grapes, raisins, chocolate, or anything else that contains caffeine. “Sugar-free” products containing xylitol may prove fatal. Also never give a dog Acetominophen (Tylenol).  You choose to give it small amounts of lean chicken, turkey, beef, venison, lamb or fish. Also small amounts of broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, and baby carrots are good. I give mine a few cheerios occasionally. Shih Tzu like this for a treat.  I wouldn’t offer these until after it is over 4 months of age. I’m not fond of all the treat biscuits, strips and such available. If you do get these type of treats I would limit it to one kind (not several varieties), and preferably nothing containing dyes. I like to keep tabs on what they are having in case there is any issue, and if you are given multiple items that is harder to do.

Also I have learned that an occasion teaspoon (one every day or so isn’t too much) of cultured plain yogurt is beneficial to a dogs health as it contains probiotics which boost the immune system. Do not give your Shih Tzu any meat bones as they can splitter and puncture it's digestive tract. Treats shouldn’t make up more than about 5-10% percent of a dogs over all diet. Very much may also result in loose stools. A good quality dog food will contain what they need and is foremost what they should be eating. Beware that occasionally your Shih Tzu could vomit a little yellow bile. This is not uncommon, and nothing to be alarmed about. Sometimes they will get nauseous and this can be the result. It has been suggested that a small treat before bed time can help reduce this tendency if one is doing this.










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