Shih Tzu Grooming – Help Your Pup Look His Best
The grooming of your dog is very important. You have to make sure that your pup looks good and comfortable all the time. If you don’t groom him regularly, then he may start getting dirty easily which will lead to skin infections and other health problems. Also if he gets too much dirt or dust in his fur, it could cause itching or even hair loss.
You must remember that there are many different types of shih tzu hair and each one needs its own special care. Some breeds like the pug, chihuahua and dachshund tend to get their coats matted with dirt while others such as the labradoodle and chow mix have natural shedding that doesn’t require any extra grooming at all.
So what type of shih tzu hair do I want to look after?
Well, let’s take a look at some of them:
Pug Hair – These dogs have short hair that tends to grow out in thick clumps. They are prone to getting mats from being around too long and they also shed quite frequently. So if you’re looking for a pug, then you’ll probably want to keep your pup away from places where there is lots of grass or soil. Otherwise, be prepared to brush him a lot!
Chihuahua Hair – These dogs have thick and soft hair that tends to grow long. They are easy to maintain however since they don’t shed or get dirty excessively. All you need to do is make sure their fur doesn’t get too matted and you’ll be fine. These dogs are often kept as indoor pets just because their hair tends to get everywhere!
Dachshund Hair – Much like the chihuahua, these dogs also have short fur that does not tend to grow out too much. However these dogs have a thick undercoat which means that they shed frequently and can get dirty easily. These dogs do best as indoor pets since they can’t take the rough and tough outdoors!
What did we learn about shih tzus and their hair?
Shih Tzu Hair – These dogs have short and fine fur that grows evenly all over their entire body. While you may think that this breed would not need any grooming, you would be wrong. Since their hair grows out so slowly, any extra coat will start to form into small mats all over the dog’s body. If these mats are not brushed out on a regular basis, they can really start to hurt the dog’s skin.
In some cases the mats get so bad that they are actually unable to comfortably move their body, in these scenarios it is best just to get rid of the mat and cut off all of the hair that is matted down. This will prevent any future pain and allow the dog to run and play freely without getting hurt.
So as you can see, even the short haired breeds need a bit of extra grooming in order to stay comfortable. However if you really do not wish to do this extra work, then your best bet is to just keep them as an indoor pet.
How To Pick Out The Right Shih Tzu For You
Shih Tzu come in a variety of colors and sizes so choosing the right one for you can seem like quite the challenge at first. However, by thinking about what you want from a dog and understanding which factors matter to you, this process will be much easier. Let’s get started!
The Sizes of Shih Tzus Vary Greatly
When picking out your new puppy, one of the first things you’re going to notice is just how many different sizes there are. While some are fairly average size, others are much smaller while the rest are quite large!
So which size do you want?
Let’s take a look!
The Miniature and Toy Shih Tzu
These are the smallest of the bunch. The miniature being slightly smaller and the toy being the tiniest of them all. These dogs tend to have more health issues than their larger counterparts and will cost more to take care of as well. Due to this, it is not recommended that you get one of these unless you are really committed to caring for it.
The Small and Medium Shih Tzu
These are the most common sizes of shih tzu. The only major difference is size. The medium being slightly larger and therefore slightly stronger than the small. Both of these sizes aren’t prone to many health problems but they still have much higher expenses than their larger cousins due to food and such.
It’s also harder to find insurance for dogs of this size as well.
The Giant Shih Tzu
These dogs are by far the largest of their kind. As you might expect, these dogs tend to have a lot more health issues than their smaller cousins do. These can include heart and joint problems which will only get worse as it gets older. Due to this, it is not recommended that you get one of these unless you are really committed to taking care of it throughout its life.
Does Size Matter?
Size can be a pretty important factor when it comes to picking out your new dog. Larger dogs take up more space and have higher expenses than smaller dogs do. On the other hand, smaller dogs may be more prone to health issues due to their size. As you can see, it’s a trade-off either way.
So does size matter to you?
Let’s talk a little more about the pros and cons of each size to help you make a final decision!
The Miniature or Toy Shih Tzu
Even though these two types of shih tzus are quite small, they still require a lot of daily care. Due to their smaller size, food and general supplies are going to cost more than they would for any of the larger sized dogs. Due to their size, these dogs are prone to a lot more health issues than the other sizes are and are expected to have a shorter life span. Because of this, it is recommended that you only choose this size if you are prepared to care for it and deal with the expenses consistently.
The Small or Medium Shih Tzu
These sized dogs will require less in terms of daily expenses, however they’re still more than the large sized ones. This size will have less health issues than the miniature and are expected to have a longer life span than them as well.
The Giant Shih Tzu
This is definitely the largest you can go without running into serious health problems. While these dogs do tend to have more health issues than their smaller cousins due to their size, the larger size means that they’ll also have an extended life span. This is balanced out by the fact that food and health expenses are going to be higher for this sized dog as well.
The Right Choice For You
So which size of shih tzu is right for you?
Well, only you can decide that. We hope we’ve given you some information to help you make your final decision though. No matter which size you choose, you’re going to have a wonderful companion for many years to come!
Sources & references used in this article:
The Shih Tzu by J Markovics – 2010 – Bearport Publishing
Shih Tzu by JA White – 2010 – Howell Book House
RESEARCH INDICATES THAT DOGS CAN FEEL LOVE by K Schweitzer – 2009 – books.google.com