Are Shih Tzu Clingy?

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One of the oldest and the most misunderstood dog breeds is Shih Tzu. Shih Tzus are a dog breed with dignity and regal. It is rare to meet an aggressive Shih Tzu; it probably happens that only the owner’s grooming was not good enough.

Irresponsible breeding makes a Shih Tzu snarky or aloof, which the dog is not like in reality. These Shih Tzus are affectionate and have thousands of admirers all across the world.

As the AKC says, Shih Tzu’s are affectionate with the family. If you are grooming your Shih Tzu well, but it starts behaving strangely out of nowhere, such as acting clingy, aloof, aggressive or having various other behaviour problems, we are here to help you out.

This article is a must-read to discover the reasons behind various Shih Tzu behavior issues. We will cover most of the answers and reasons and how you can make your Shih Tzu overcome these issues.

Let’s start with knowing the behavior issues your Shih Tzu might have!

Are Shih Tzu Clingy?

Shih Tzu is not generally clingy, but they can become clingy. There are many reasons why your Shih Tzu may become clingy all of a sudden. Some reasons may be separation anxiety, the danger of strangers, boredom, illness, pregnancy, adopting another pet, having a stranger in the house, etc.

Let’s discuss the reasons why is your Shih Tzu getting so clingy!

Due To Separation Anxiety

Separation anxiety in Shih Tzu can be a big issue. It can happen due to fear of being alone or separate from its owner. Due to separation anxiety, the Shih Tzu won’t leave the owner alone, making it extra clingy.

Although the owners love their dogs, no one likes everything too much, so the same goes for the pet. Playing with the dog for some can be fun, but it will start bothering you when your dog doesn’t let you do anything.

It is also not good for your Shih Tzu to be as clingy as it will get anxious when it sees the owner is not around. You must try to take your Shih Tzu to the vet or give it proper training to avoid separation anxiety as much as possible.

Due To Fear of a Stranger

The kind of affection your Shih Tzu develops with you is genuine. They will love you, protect you, and guard against any danger they feel is coming.

So if your house has a stranger, you can expect your Shih Tzu to be clingy.

Your dog will stick with you to protect you from that stranger. Also, your Shih Tzu might feel jealous if you are giving this stranger more attention than it.

It will be extra clingy to guard you as well as out of jealousy.

You can train your Shih Tzu to become social by making it meet new people often. It is how it becomes aware of who is a good stranger or a bad stranger.

Though it is not just that it will not be clingy as there can other reasons triggering it to be one.

Due To Boredom

One of the reasons why your Shih Tzu is clingy might be boredom. It may be trying to convey a message to trying to communicate with you.

Probably, it is looking for your company because he wants your time.

You must try taking your Shih Tzu for a walk which will remove its boredom so that it stops clinging to you all the time.

Also, you can release them into the yard so they can play in the open space, but remember to watch during its play time to protect them from any harm, such as injuries.

Due To Illness

Illness can also cause your Shih Tzu to be clingy. It can be any type of illness, such as fever, allergies, etc. Your Shih Tzu will want you to take care of it and help it recover. It becomes lazy and wants your support all the time.

Some of the symptoms can be if your Shih Tzu is feeling lethargic, slow, or clingy. Illness can be severe, so you must take appropriate measures to treat it, such as taking it to the vet, feeding healthy food, and providing your Shih Tzu with the right medicines.

Due To Pregnancy

If you are a female owner expecting a baby, your Shih Tzu will sense the child and become more clingy.

It will feel to protect you and the baby from all dangers. You cannot do anything about it as your dog will get overprotective, so stay by your side until the baby comes.

Also, it happens when your Shih Tzu is pregnant, as they will want your help and support. You must be by their side to protect and understand them. It is all about loving your Shih Tzu.

Due To Adopting Another Pet

Dogs are like children in your house. These get jealous as any child would when a newborn takes all the attention.

Similarly, if you get a new pet, such as a puppy, cat, or any other pet that grabs your attention, your Shih Tzu will not like it.

It will lead you to be clingy so that it can take your attention as it wants you to give it attention rather than playing and spending time with other pets.

Are Shih Tzu’s Loyal To One Person?

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Are Shih Tzu’s Loyal To One Person?

Shih Tzu is known for being loyal to one person. They are selective, they decide whom they want to stay with and when they decide that, they stick with them no matter what.

They love the person they select, and staying loyal to them is a part of Shih Tzu’s personality.

Sometimes, people find Shih Tzu very aggressive and moody, and they judge them on the basis of their behaviour.

But they don’t realize that Shih Tzu is a dog that is not naturally aggressive.

The way Shih Tzu behaves shows how they have been brought up. Being aggressive or moody shows they have dealt with some irresponsible behaviour regarding themselves from their owners.

It is the reason why it is essential to have a responsible dog parent to take care of the Shih Tzu.

Why Does My Shih Tzu Stare At Me?

Just like humans, dogs express their emotions in multiple ways. And it is very common to understand these emotions, whether they are positive or negative.

Different dogs have different ways of expressing emotions, just like humans. Sometimes, a good emotion by one dog can be expressed differently by another dog.

For example, when a wolf is staring at you, it means they are being rude to you. And sometimes that is considered threatening as well. Whereas, in the case of some other dogs, it can be a stare of love.

As a dog owner, it is not difficult to understand what your dog might be trying to express by staring at you because most dogs stare at their owners to show how much they mean to them and how much love they have for their owners.

But it is always best not to stare back at your dogs or any random dog staring at you because it can also be a threatening sign and dangerous, especially when they are not moving and have a stiff posture or are not even blinking their eyes.

If your dog does this very often or does it to show aggression, then you might consult with a behaviorist for them so that you can understand the stare language and teach your dog better.

Why Is Your Shih Tzu Acting Strange?

The following can be some reasons why your Shih Tzu is acting strange:

Health Problems

One of the main reasons and causes for changing behaviour can be health. When your dog is not feeling okay, it might not be able to express its usual energy in the same way.

Being unwell would make a Shih Tzu want to cuddle or require attention more than usual. One way to check the health on routine is to keep track of their eating patterns so that you know what possibly caused discomfort in your dog’s stomach or overall health.

Releasing Energy

Dogs are full of energy, and we all know it is essential to release this energy to stay healthy and happy. Making your Shih Tzu exercise in some way will help release their stored energy and lighten their body.

It will make them feel better. Staying in the same place or not moving much can cause many dog problems. So, the easiest way to manage such a situation is to take your dogs for a walk every day for a few minutes, approximately 10-20 minutes.

Wrong Treatments

Sometimes, dog owners feel that their dogs have started acting strangely after getting groomed. Different dogs may have different issues. Sometimes, people grooming your dogs are not having one of their best days.

Their behavior might affect your dogs in some way. Asking them would be a better way to handle the situation. Some dogs don’t like nail trimmings or trimmings on a specific body area such as the ear or any other area.

Changing the groomers would be the best option in this case. Hiring a new groomer who understands your dog and focuses on its comfort as well as grooming will be the best.

Other Reasons

Some other reasons can be hormonal changes, disliking a person’s presence that they don’t like, changing age problems, etc.

Behaviour Problems Your Shih Tzu Might Have?

Why Is Your Shih Tzu Acting Strange?

Following are some common behaviors that Shih Tzu has:


Some Shih Tzu are very stubborn, and it is difficult to deal with a stubborn Shih Tzu.


Barking is common for a dog, but it is a behavioral problem when it leads to uncontrollable barking/ excessive barking.

Types of barking:

  • Barking to alert
  • Barking for excitement
  • Barking to get attention
  • Barking to deal with anxiety
  • Barking to overcome boredom
  • Barking in order to reply to other dogs


Dogs eat while chewing. But sometimes, they chew things that are not edible. It is a behavioral problem that you must fix as soon as possible.

The main reason a dog is chewing on everything is that it might have baby teeth. Another reason can be that they need to release the energy, and chewing might help in some way.


Some dogs love digging, and it is also normal. But sometimes, all you find your dog doing is digging. It is a behavioral problem.

One of the main reasons your dog might be digging most of the time is that it might hide some of its possessions, like bones or toys.

They also find digging soothing and comfort in it, so they enjoy digging. It also excites Shih Tzus as it serves their curiosity. Sometimes, it can be a way for your dog to run away. It might be digging a way out to escape.

Frequent Urination

Sometimes, you might find your dog urinating again and again. It might cause inappropriate urination as these themselves are tired of it.

These may urinate in other people’s places or places they are not supposed to urinate.

Sometimes, a dog might be doing it to mark their territories, or sometimes excitement can be a cause of the sudden release.

The best way to overcome this problem can be to consult the veterinarian about your dog’s behavior.


Shih Tzu, like all other dogs, also has behavior problems. This article above covers all the answers for if your Shih Tzu is clingy and the reasons why it may be, the behavior problems of Shih Tzu, and much more.

Yes, your Shih Tzu can be clingy for various reasons, and some of its behavior issues are similar to many other breeds. The article says it all, so enjoy reading.

Shih Tzu’s clinging is not always bad; enjoy it!

Read more Shih Tzu advice articles below:


I am the owner of Shihtzuadvice.com and the proud parent of two black and one gold Shih Tzu's. I belive that the Shih Tzu is the best all-around dog for anyone and want to share with you as much valuable knowledge as possible about this great breed!

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