Male or Female? (Don't under estimate those boys!!!)

We are always amazed at the number of people who email or call us for a "cute or sweet female" puppy. And we look at each other and wonder "what's up with that??"

Over the years we've realized that male puppies carry a much undeserved stigma for being 'less desirable' pets than female puppies! Speaking of the battle of the sexes and 'unfair treatment and perceptions', Wow! What a misconception! Male puppies, for unmerited reasons to most breeders (and owners of male dogs!), have erroneously been cast as the 'lesser' of the genders!

We thought we would take our own unofficial poll before we put forth our own personal opinions (just to double check & make sure that we were not "one of a kind" in our opinion) and were amazed to find that our thinking and perception is popular and consistent with most people who know and breed dogs. If you type in your browser the words "male versus female puppies" you will be amazed at the amount of information (pages and pages) of people speaking about the differences, however subtle, and the myth that exists that females make better pets. We are not sure where and when this started, but many people do truly believe that female dogs are a better choice. False! False! False!

Let's talk about some facts and let us provide you with what we have seen and experienced over many years of owning and breeding Shih Tzus.

* Females do not display the 'alpha' behavior that males do. True or False? This is absolutely false. Females most always 'rule the roost' and in the canine family are typically the caretakers and the ones who decide who's in charge. In the Shih Tzu family, females are much more independent than the males. While both are extremely affectionate and loyal to their owners and not aggressive in nature, it seems that the male is much more forgiving and accommodating while the female certainly tries to exercise her dominance and get her way as often as possible. Males are much more devoted and in love with their owners following them around and will play and play (have lots of toys!) even as they get much older. The female, on the other hand, will generally follow you (and loves to be close to you) and will do that for a while and then simply tires of it and goes her way to her favorite spot or bed. It is like she says, "enough of this, I'm too dignified for this constant adoration of you". Both genders are extremely smart, but the female's purpose is typically to try to outsmart you (and they are very successful, by the way). While most Shih Tzu "own their owners" this is typically always the case if the Shih Tzu is a female.... and don't we love it!

* Females are sweeter than males. True or False? False. In fact, I will say that I've never met a Shih Tzu that was not sweet nor have I ever met a Shih Tzu that was nasty. But on any scale, males are more affectionate and more adoring to their owners than females. They also make better pets in a household of children as they are eternally playful and love to be 'part of the game'.

* Males always exhibit secondary sexual behavior. Maybe. If neutered at an early age, say 5 months, most males will not turn to "humping" as their testosterone levels have not reached, and probably will never reach, the levels that entice them to do this. And by the way, females can also exhibit this sexual behavior, as many of you may have witnessed!!

* Males lift their legs to urinate and mark territory - ruining furniture. Maybe. If neutered at an early age as indicated above, most males will NEVER raise their legs to urinate nor mark territory. A properly disciplined and trained dog, regardless of gender, will rarely be a nuisance as far as urinating and defecating in the house - discipline on the owner's part to follow thru every time and on schedule, (be consistent!) plus patience (give it a little time!) is necessary to get to this level. Most puppies (regardless of gender) can be trained in just a few weeks when good habits are learned early and we provide a set routine for the puppy. We have several neutered males together who share space and play magnificently and pal around without problems.
* Males are larger than females. True or False? This is definitely true. Males are typically, but not always 2 to 3 lbs larger than females on average and a little taller.

After you've chosen the right breed and the right breeder, the bottom line is that you should chose a puppy based on the personality you're looking for and the chemistry that is sparked between the two of you/your family. I encourage you to go on line and read about "male versus female puppies" and ask dog owners who own male dogs.....they make phenomenal pets! Don't pass up the opportunity to own a sweet and beautiful male puppy basing your decision on antiquated and erroneous information. I've learned so much about the 'why's' of behavior of our little canine friends, that given the right breed for your lifestyle, I will be happy to share my experience, information and know-how to make your shih tzu the best pet ever, regardless of gender!!

Denimay Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu Puppies, Miami, Florida

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