Shih Tzu Breed Maintenance
The distinctive long and elegant coat of the Shih Tzu requires a great deal of care. Bathing should take place on a weekly basis, and daily brushing and combing are required to keep the coat clean and healthy. Even though this breed typically has a lower shed rate than others, when they mature at around two years old they will shed more heavily for a short period of time while the juvenile coat is replaced by the mature coat. It is often helpful to accustom your puppy to the grooming routine at an early age so that they will be more cooperative with the process as adult dogs. Many owners choose to either have a professional clip and shape their dog’s fur into a shorter cut, or they learn how to do it themselves to make caring for the coat easier. Shih Tzus who have been groomed this way will still require brushing and combing every two or three days, and they should have their faces wiped down several times a day to prevent staining of the facial fur. These dogs do best when exercised for short periods at least one or two times daily to maintain their fitness, but they aren’t overly active even in small living spaces. Brachycephalic animals can be sensitive to either very high or very low temperatures, so it is important to protect your dog from excessive heat or excessive cold, and on extreme temperature days, it may be best to exercise indoors. Dental care should also be addressed on a regular basis as this pup’s brachycephalic facial structure and small size may make them more susceptible to dental disease.