One of the things most admired about Shih Tzu is their beautiful coat. That long flowing human like hair! But keeping their coats beautiful does require some effort. That is why many owners choose to keep the coat cut short. And unless you plan to show your Shih Tzu a short cut is perfectly acceptable.
To minimize the risk of tangles and mats a Shih Tzu should be brushed daily. Any pet shop will have a great variety of dog brushes to choose from, including slicker brushes and soft dog brushes. A very young puppy should be handled daily by the breeder. This includes massaging the feet and face, as well as rubbing the belly.
The permanent dog parents should brush their new puppy from day one, even if his coat does not really need it at the time. This will help the puppy become accustomed to the brushing and he will in fact, come to enjoy this time. Other benefits of this daily routine include the fact that it is a great way to bond with your pet and at the same time you are doing something productive. It is also an ideal time to inspect your pet for any parasites or signs of illness.
If you find tangles or mats carefully spread them apart with your fingers before attempting to brush them out. There are detangling products available to make this task easier. Another option is to mix a small amount of conditioner with water in a spray bottle and mist your pet as you brush. Use about 1/10 conditioner to 9/10 water mixture.
Besides the daily brushing proper grooming of your Shih Tzu will include regular bathing. Depending on the age and size of your Shih Tzu, you may find that the use of the kitchen sink works better than the bathtub. Always use a shampoo and conditioner that is specially formulated for dogs. Once again, a trip to your local pet shop will provide you with lots of choices.
When bathing your pet be sure to make the experience enjoyable for him. Talk soothingly and massage his body as you wash. Use caution not to do too much rubbing or you may find that you actually cause tangling and matting.
You will need to either trim the hair around the eyes or use small rubber bands (orthodontic type) to pull the hair up away from the eyes. Hair in the eyes not only obstructs the vision of the Shih Tzu, but it can also result in an eye infection.
Shih Tzu are special dogs and require unique care in a lot of ways. If you own or are considering adding a Shih Tzu to your family you will want to learn the details of how to properly care for your little Fur-baby. You can find all the information you need right here: Just Shih Tzu