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The Ultimate Guide: Teddy Bears

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The Ultimate Guide_ Teddy Bears
By LITTLE PUPPY PAWS | March 6, 2023
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The most adorable new breed of designer puppy is the Teddy Bear. The Shih Tzu and Bichon Frisé were combined to create thes adorable pups. They are also referred to as the Zuchon or Shichon. The best characteristics of both breeds are combined to create the Teddy Bear Dog, which is intelligent, devoted, affectionate, and loving. But what makes this particular designer breed incredibly well-liked by many?

 

This is a great place to start if you’re considering keeping a Teddy Bear Dog as a pet. You can learn a ton about the Teddy Bear breed here and how to purchase, take care of, feed, and breed a Teddy Bear Dog.

What is a Teddy Bear?

Shichons are kind, cheerful, and playful dogs who enjoy spending lots of time with their owners. The bichon frise is a gentle and affectionate breed that enjoys playing around and being happy-go-lucky. Shih Tzus, meanwhile, are devoted and sociable lapdogs. A sweet-as-can-be shichon, a champion of the fluffy cuddle, is what you get when you mix these two breeds.

 

These small hybrid dogs are becoming increasingly popular, and they can make excellent pets for kids’ families or devoted companions for seniors in many different households. Shichons don’t shed much either, making them a potential perfect pet for people with allergies. They are also excellent pets for first-time pet owners because of their gentle nature. Shichons are a breed that enjoys spending a lot of time with their owners, but they do require a lot of grooming to prevent their curly coats from matting.

What Do They Look Like?

They are more prone to various health issues because of their short and flat faces. Airways and ear canals are also small due to your Bichon Shih Tzu mix’s small face and short snout. Small features make it difficult for poor Shichon puppies to breathe clearly, which can lead to complications when combined with other conditions. As a result of having both Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise as parents, your Bichon Shih Tzu mix also has a smaller nasal passage.

 

Shichon puppies are hybrids of the Shih Tzu and Bichon breeds. Shichon puppies don’t always have one parent, solely a Bichon or a Shih Tzu, though this is an important distinction. The size, weight, and coat color of each Shichon differ significantly because the precise proportion of each parent varies for each Shichon born. Over the first few years, your Shichon puppy will likely reach a height of 9 to 12 inches. According to their genetic makeup, these dogs may weigh up to 15 pounds.

 

A Bichon Shih Tzu mix’s lifespan is typically 12 to 16 years. Your Bichon-Shih Tzu mix may live longer if raised in a healthy environment. They are regarded as a small breed of dog. Families with allergic children should consider shichon puppies. Because they shed so little infrequently, cleanup is usually acceptable.

 

Your Shichon puppy will grow into a sweet lap dog that is happiest around people and other animals. Their gorgeous coats, which come in various colors, patterns, and lengths, make them distinctive dogs. While Bichon Shih Tzu mix dogs have straight, relatively long hair, much like a Shih Tzu, Shichon puppies typically have medium-curly hair. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix coats are available in various colors, including black, red, blue, beige, white, golden yellow, brown, rust, chocolate, and gray.

 

Most Shichon puppies have a bi- or tri-colored coat when they are born. Both the patterns and the elegant and distinctive colors are present. Tri-color coats are those with three colors mixed in, while bi-color coats are those with two colors. You will likely see various hues and tones on your Shichon puppy when exposed to the sun.

 

In addition to having a variety of colors, your Bichon Shih Tzu mix also has distinctive markings. A pattern resembling a mask can be seen on some Shichon puppies. The light colors of shichon puppies’ coats highlight the darker hues of their eyes. The predominant coat color of Shichon dogs is white or beige, though some are black. Shichon puppies have unusual ears and a funny “mask” coat pattern. For instance, in your Bichon Shih Tzu mix, a typical pattern is a coat that is primarily white with a gray and brown “mask” and ears.

History of the Teddy Bear Breed

It is challenging to research the past of your Shichon puppy. Though relatively new to the United States, this particular mixed dog breed. Its parents have a lengthy and extensive global history and have been around for centuries. The Bichon Shih Tzu mix has existed only in the United States for 20–30 years. But Shichon puppies have likely existed for hundreds of years without being mentioned in any records.

 

Consider that Shih Tzus have a history of more than 1000 years. The origin of these adorable, long-haired dogs is thought to be Tibet. Because Shih Tzus were bred to work alongside their owners in the chilly Tibetan mountains, they developed long, thick hair, which is why your Bichon Shih Tzu mix has them today.

 

Shih Tzu began as working dogs, which is strange because they quickly gained popularity as a status symbol worldwide. Currently, Shih Tzus are a symbol of wealth and success. Shih Tzu dogs were presented to Chinese emperors as gifts by foreigners and peasants who were traveling. They arrived in Europe and the United States for what reason? Many American soldiers brought their Shih Tzus home and kept breeding them there because they adored them. Shichon puppies, like their parents, are loved and famous worldwide for serving as a symbol of affection.

 

The Bichon Frise, the second parent of the Bichon Shih Tzu mix, was initially regarded as a luxury breed from the Mediterranean. Some dogs that resemble the Bichon Frise are depicted in paintings and artifacts from Europe and Egypt. While this is the case, they are more likely to have distant ancestors than a direct lineage in that region. Bichon Frise dogs don’t participate in sports and have thick coats to keep them warm. But in the 13th century, either in Italy or the Canary Islands, the first official count was performed.

 

The Bichon Frise dog was initially intended to be a sailing dog. However, it was later imported to France from Spain, where pet owners adored it for its beauty and “lion cut” mane. Nowadays, Bichon Frise dogs are owned and seen frequently all over the world. Bichon Frise dogs are known as show dogs because they participate in competitions. Interestingly, despite having a long and rich history, they became an official breed in 1972.

 

Shichon puppies are a cross between a Bichon and a Shih Tzu, and they were probably bred to remain small and emphasize their cute and funny features. The flat faces and big eyes of the Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise dogs were deliberately chosen characteristics. In any case, pet owners adore the distinctive and diminutive features of the Shichon dog.

Are Teddy Bears Intelligent and Easy to Train?

Puppies from the Shichon breed are brilliant. Through a Bichon Frise relative who assisted sailors hundreds of years ago, they inherited their trainability and intelligence. The Bichon Frise breed frequently competes and participates in shows and is well-mannered and communicative. Because they can engage in physical activity and spend time with their loved ones, Shichon dogs are probably simple to train and enjoy. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix is a patient and easy learner who is adept at picking up new tricks.

 

According to research, positive reinforcement is effective for training both Shih Tzu and Bichon Frise dogs. Longer walks, playdates with other dogs, and treats are offered as incentives when a dog learns something new. Early and consistent training are recommended for Shichon puppies. Because the Bichon Shih Tzu mix breed is relatively new to the world, much information about your dog comes from its parents.

 

However, socialization can aid the cognitive ability of your mixed-breed dog, according to what historians know about your Bichon Shih Tzu mix. Your Shichon puppy will adjust more readily to new situations, such as family members and other pets, if you socialize with them when they are young. Shichon dogs are brilliant, making training simple. Shichon puppies can be taught tricks and the meaning of gestures and commands. A Shichon puppy is great for families looking to adopt a small, hypoallergenic, active, and trainable dog!

How Healthy Are These Dogs?

Just like most breeds, there are specific health issues you would need to take note of. But by getting your puppy from an ethical breeder like ourselves, you can be worry-free of any genetic issue. 

Allergies

Shichon puppies are amusing; they are hypoallergenic but suffer from their allergies. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix dog is sensitive and prone to developing allergies at any time. Food, contact, and environmental allergies are just a few different allergies.

 

While not immediately fatal, allergies are extremely uncomfortable. Shichon puppies with allergic reactions should be treated as soon as possible because the symptoms can worsen. Contact allergies can bring on bacterial infections to products. While scratching and biting to feel relief, your dog may cause harm to themselves. Despite appearing small, these open wounds and cuts are a breeding ground for bacteria. You must be vigilant for changes in your Bichon Shih Tzu mix because infections spread quickly.

Airborne Allergies or Seasonal Allergies

Allergies to airborne substances include human skin, dirt, dust, fur, pollen, and other environmental contaminants. You could have an allergy to your Shichon puppy, but it won’t be fatal and usually won’t cause any symptoms.

 

Shichon dogs may lick, scratch, bite excessively, or groom their paws, bellies, and legs in response to airborne allergies, like how they would react to contact allergies. With a trip to the vet’s office, it is possible to identify the allergen in your Bichon Shih Tzu mix. A veterinarian can administer an allergen test to check for allergies. Testing for allergies is necessary because persistent allergic reactions can be dangerous.

Sensitive Stomachs

Due to its short esophagus, your Bichon Shih Tzu mix will probably have a sensitive stomach. Due to their brachycephalic shapes, these dogs have slow digestion rates. Food can sometimes come back up because of their short food pipes, which is uncomfortable and can harm the esophagus and stomach lining.

Antral Pyloric Hypertrophy

Shichon puppies inherit a genetic predisposition to antral pyriform hypertrophy from their Shih Tzu parent. Usually, only male dogs have the condition. How does it affect Shichon puppies, and what is antral pyrophoric hypertrophy? The structure necessary for transferring partially digested food from the stomach to the small intestine narrows due to this condition (the pylorus, a stomach valve of sorts). The path is physically blocked in Shichon puppies.

Acid Reflux (GERD)

The condition known as gastroesophageal reflux disease, or acid reflux, may also affect your Shichon puppy (GERD). What is GERD, or acid reflux? Dogs who suffer from gastroesophageal reflux experience an uncontrollable backflow of acid and liquid into the tube that connects the throat and the stomach. The sphincter, a muscle opening at the base of the neck, typically relaxes and opens to cause GERD.

 

Shichon puppies experience acid reflux more frequently than other breeds as they mature and form their esophagus and sphincter. Although it is typical in puppies, it can also persist into adulthood. Shichon dogs’ short, flat faces make this condition both common and inherited. Their esophagus is short, and their faces are naturally flat. Due to the short length, food and stomach acid can travel back up, leading to numerous problems.

Canine Cataracts

Shichon dogs have a high risk of developing cataracts as they age due to the genetic makeup of both parents. Shichon dogs are more likely to develop cataracts than Bichon dogs, which affects how susceptible Shichon dogs are to cataract development.

 

How do dogs get cataracts? A blue-gray film covers the eye when a Bichon Shih Tzu mix has cataracts. The cloudy blue lens covers the eye’s lens and goes through four stages. It is among the most prevalent eye conditions in Shichon puppies, is simple to diagnose, and is. Because of diseases like diabetes or gradually as people age, it can happen quickly. It can become blind, though it is not a particularly dangerous condition. In addition to cataracts, which can also cause blindness, infections can result in your Shichon puppy losing its vision. Surgery can be used to remove the cloudy film, but your Bichon Shih Tzu mix may be at risk because this breed is prone to cataract development in older dogs. This condition can affect any dog as they age, but the Bichon Shih Tzu mix is more prone to it.

Keratopathy Due to Exposure

Exposure Keratopathy Syndrome is a different condition your Bichon Shih Tzu mix is likely to experience with their eyes. The cornea is harmed during exposure to keratosis syndrome. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix’s eyes are vulnerable to damage because they protrude from their heads and bulge outward. As a result, corneal damage can happen. Dryness is the underlying factor in this condition. It may not be possible for your Shichon puppy to completely close their eyes because they most likely have dry eyes.

Ear Infections and Their Causes

Your Shichon dog’s ear canal is vertical, which makes it possible for bacteria, insects, and other debris to get lodged there. When ear wax accumulates, it is impossible to naturally remove the debris which inflames the inner ear of your Bichon Shih Tzu mix dog. Although painful, it can be avoided.

 

Allergies also bring on ear infections. Moisture is the main factor in ear infections because it can foster the growth of bacteria and yeast, frequently found in allergens. About 30% of dogs with allergic skin diseases and 80% with food sensitivities develop ear diseases due to allergies. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix may scratch their ears a lot. When they do this due to allergies, their ears bleed. Bacteria can quickly enter through the opening created by the scratches.

 

The presence of foreign objects in your Shichon dog’s ear is another factor. These foreign objects might be toys, sticks, dirt, or insects. This is a widespread cause and is probably the case if your Bichon Shih Tzu mix likes to run or be in the water. When your Shichon dog swims, their ears may flop over, exposing them to the dirt and debris in the water. It would hurt and infect them if something stuck in their ear canal.

Canine Autoimmune Hemolytic Anemia

Autoimmune hemolytic anemia: What is it? Humans can also develop autoimmune hemolytic anemia, just like canines. This immune system disorder affects the Bichon Shih Tzu mix, where the body mistakenly attacks its red blood cells after sensing a foreign threat. Once red blood cells have circulated through the body, they are attacked. Shichon puppies are susceptible to this autoimmune disease for reasons that are currently unknown. Bichon and Shih Tzu dogs are sensitive to autoimmune hemolytic anemia; the most likely explanation is due to breeding.

Injury to the Joints

Your small dog is a Bichon Shih Tzu mix with short legs and delicate spines. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix’s short legs make it simple for them to damage their joints. Jumping from heights, landing too much weight, or falling from heights and landing on one’s back or joints can cause joint trauma. Osteoarthritis and anterior cruciate ligament tears can be brought on by joint damage.

Hip Dysplasia

Shichons are most frequently affected by hip dysplasia. Hip dysplasia is a condition in which the ball and socket do not fit or develop properly; as a result, they rub and grind rather than slide quickly. As a result of the grinding, the joint gradually worsens and eventually ceases to function. Shichon pups might feel discomfort from it, which is painful.

Dry Skin

Shichon dogs’ delicate skin is prone to drying out quickly, so dry skin is more common in these dogs. Your Bichon Shih Tzu mix’s skin allergies from the environment or fleas are the two main causes of dry skin.

Coat

Shichon dogs have stunning, soft, and lengthy coats. Pet owners must regularly groom and brush their animals to maintain the health and softness of their coats. Knots can be uncomfortable and lead to excess heat, so pet owners should comb their Shichon puppies’ hair at least twice a week. Shichon puppies have short snouts and small breathing passageways and are especially susceptible to overheating and stroke if their coats are too thick and long.

Are Teddy Bears Hypoallergenic?

To maintain their adorable appearance, Teddy Bear dogs require routine grooming. Because teddy bears are hypoallergenic, they do not shed a lot of furs. They have a soft, fluffy coat that gives them the teddy bear appearance that their name implies.

How to Groom Teddy Bears?

At least once every three months should be your goal when clipping their hair to preserve their gorgeous, silky coats. They must also brush their teeth at least twice or thrice a week.

 

Tartar buildup and bad breath will be avoided as a result. Additionally, unless they’ve managed to wear them down naturally, you’ll need to trim their nails every two weeks.

 

Limit your clipping to the nail’s clear, white area. If you accidentally grab the section with the darker color, your dog might get hurt and start bleeding.

 

The best advice we can give is only to bathe your Shichon once a month. This is necessary to keep them clean. However, resist the urge to give this breed a longer bath because doing so will dry out their skin and irritate and discomfort them.

 

It’s necessary to purchase pet-friendly shampoo if you’ve never bathed a dog before. After that, gently rub it into your dog’s coat without tangling its fur, and thoroughly rinse it out.

 

Apply conditioner as needed after that and repeat the clearing process. To avoid matting, comb through your Shichon’s fur while it’s still damp.

 

Shichons ears need to be cleaned as well. Utilize a q-tip dipped in a pet-friendly alcohol solution. NEVER use a q-tip to clean the dog’s ear; instead, only clean the visible area to help reduce wax buildup.

What’s Great About Teddy Bears?

This dog has a beautiful personality. They are lively, playful, and well-behaved. There are so many things about these dogs that we adore, so we decided to make a list:

They Make Wonderful Therapy Dogs

They love living with family members and are affectionate and devoted. Shichons are excellent for entertaining children because, as we’ve already mentioned, they enjoy playing but are calm enough to live indoors. They generally take pleasure in whatever their owner does.

 

One of the reasons they make great therapy dogs is their ability to adapt quickly to their surroundings.

They Are Naturally Friendly

They are fantastic with children and other pets because they are incredibly loving. However, you must show your kids how to interact with these dogs appropriately. Unfortunately, small dogs can suffer injuries while playing with young children, mainly if the child is unaware of your pet’s physical limitations.

 

Although your dog resembles a teddy bear, you cannot permit your children to treat it as such. Even a slight fall from a height could unintentionally result in painful fractures.