How Cleopatra of the Paw Became | How did we come to own a Shih Tzu?

How did we come to own a Shih Tzu?

After sixteen and a half years of living with two wonderful cats, called Felicia and Cilla, we found ourselves quite lost not having a pet. After some months, we realized we do need a pet and had to decide if we wanted to go down the cat road again. This is a good exercise to do, as your life and what you do, does change. We were now doing more traveling in a camper-van and had to consider,  would a cat like this? As we know, cats do travel however we felt we could not replace the girls and it would be tricky traveling with a cat, having to deal with kitty litter, other animals – mainly dogs and of course birds.

What sort of Pet will fit our lifestyle

1923765_1147631817878_2562332_nThe Girls, Felicia and Cilla were extremely active when younger however we had got used to two cool, lazy senior cats.

So what will we get?
• Nothing that requires a lot of exercise or too big.
• No kitty litter trays.
• Not too much maintenance.
• Something that can come inside.

Cousin EllaWe had visited my cousin who has a Shih Tzu called Ella, who really gave us something to think about:
• Not too big.
• Not a lot of exercise.
• Maintenance for grooming and clipping – not too hard! (Felicia and Cilla were semi long haired)
• And one really big PLUS. Shih Tzus DO NOT shed hair! (After 16 1/2 years of lots of hair from a black cat and a white cat, no shedding, was to good to be true.)

Choosing a Pet became a mission for us as we wanted to get the right one. A pet can live a long time so you need to choose wisely. Hence we did a lot of research on all small breed dogs, learning their good and bad attributes. Checking breeders and weighing up the cost of buying a pedigree, from the pet shop, rescue shelter or from the local papers. Another huge aspect of this was puppy farms, which are totally against our ethics. Another factor for us, was some owners just do not do the right thing and have their pets desexed which causes problems of:
• Unwanted puppies/kittens.
• Animals on the nonstop reproduction cycle.
• Pets being sold at pet stores or in papers for big bucks and you not knowing, what you are really getting.

Please do your research as pets are family and thankfully live a longtime. To many pets are abandoned for a variety of reasons:

  • When they are no longer a young and cute puppy/kitten.
  • Have not had puppy training and/or socialized with other dogs.
  • Do not receive attention or exercise, remember dogs are pack animals.
  • Further ongoing training eg walking on lead, traveling in cars, socialized with people and crowds.

These are standard things that should be done when you own a dog. If we do not take the time and persist with training we end up with unhappy neighbors , pets and owners. Please don’t think puppies/kittens are just to be disposed of after 6-12monts.

Cleopatra and her sisterWe found the Pet for Us

Yes, a Shih Tzu! After lots of discussions with my Cousin, we had to also go thru a little interview from the breeder, to ensure she was happy with the home one of her puppies would be going to. This was a good procedure for us to go through learning more about Shih Tzus and also for the Breeder as she is very serious and particularly with her show dogs and puppies.

Cleopatra’s Mum – Bernadette and her Dad – Declan.

Cleopatras mother BernadetteCleopatras dad Declan








Fours Years On

20151111_192945Since getting Cleopatra, who has just turned 4, boy oh boy are we awake! From two old, chilled out cats to one hilarious, ratbag on the go Shih Tzu! My Cousins wise words on her experience with Ella was “They are a great dog, not too active – not real ball chasers or big chewers, they certainly are a cat in a dogs body.”
As we know no is the same and this goes for pets. We got one that loves to run, chase balls, play in water and loves chewing on bones, pig’s ears and sticks. Even though Ella and Cleopatra are totally different, when together they are the best of friends. It is almost like they know they are cousins. We found out when collecting Cleopatra that their mothers were sisters. We always laugh knowing cousins have cousins.

I look forward to more of Cleopatra’s antics, sharing of pet information and products.

Until next time, keep enjoying each other.

Helen and Sharon

4 thoughts on “How Cleopatra of the Paw Became | How did we come to own a Shih Tzu?

  1. Linda

    Hi Helen,
    This is a wonderfully heartwarming story. Cleopatra sounds like an excellent addition to the family. I hope she enjoys traveling in the camper van? I have 2 little shelties myself who are very much a part of the family but there are days when I threaten to trade them in on a dog that doesn’t shed 🙂 Great site and good luck!

    1. Helen and Cleopatra Post author

      Hi Linda,

      Thank you and it is a major plus with the Shih Tzus as they do not shed. PS no matter the faults, as we all have a couple, we would not trade our furkids. 🙂

  2. John

    Hi Helen,

    We have 3 rescue rottweiler dogs, the opposite to Cleopatra. Every dog has a different personality even your dog, deciding on a dog instead of cats was the best choice.
    Sometimes small dogs can be more active, needing more exercise than larger dogs.
    You will love and enjoy the many years with your dog.


    1. Helen and Cleopatra Post author

      Hi John, yes I agree, the type of breed whether it is a cat or dog has different personalities and requirements. It is a major help to know the traits that make up your pet. Thanks for visiting our page and keep enjoying your Rottweiler dogs.


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