There’s a lot of info in internet saying that Shih Tzu is a breed that doesn’t shed at all because they have hair instead of fur. That’s a popular misconception. Think about it – you have hair as well, does it mean that you never lose them? Of course not. The thing is, there are only two differences between hair and fur:
The hair can grow long, while the fur rarely grows over 2 inches and it’s slightly thinner than the fur. And that’s all. So, of course the hair will break and be shed, just the way it’s displayed is a bit different.
Adult Shih Tzu Shedding
For the dog breeds with fur coat the shedding is obvious – you just find a lot of short hair everywhere, or they stay in your hand after petting the animal. The Shih Tzu hair is very long and thin, so the rare hair that can be found on the floor or furniture are hardly noticeable, or sometimes are mistaken for the human hair. But most of the shed hair actually gets entangled in the coat that’s why you do not notice is falling out.
If you don’t take care of your dog’s coat you soon will noticed multiple knots and entangled hair on its coat, especially around the legs and the belly. This will cause a discomfort to a dog and spoil its looks. The best way to avoid this problem is to comb and brush your Shih Tzu regularly. For proper grooming you’ll need:
- Bristle brush;
- Misting Conditioner (optional).
The first time you brush the hair of Shih Tzu be careful, you need to reach through the coat to get to all the possible shed hair in it, but not to make your dog uncomfortable. After couple of times you’ll find the right pressure. It’s recommended to use the antistatic conditioner before the brushing or combing. Be gentle and go over the whole body, not ignoring the tender parts, such as the belly. If all is done properly, you will see the pulled out shed hair on your brush.
Use the comb after the brush, to make sure is passes smoothly through all the coat, then you can use a light leave-in conditioner to keep the moisture in the coat, to prevent dryness of the skin.
Usually the adult dogs shed during couple of weeks during the spring time and then again in fall, as a preparation for the colder weather. The Shih Tzu are following the same pattern, so that’s the season transition moment when you have to care about your pets coat the most. Though often some of the dogs that mostly live indoors are not as exposed to temperature changes and do not have same shedding schedule.
The puppy of any dog, and Shih Tzu, is not an exception, have much thinner and lighter coat then the adult dog. It’s makes the puppy look toy-like fluffy and doesn’t grow as long as the adult coat.
In the age between 3 to 9 month this baby hair will be replaces by the adult coat. And sometimes this process takes as little as one month! That’s a lot of shedding. There’s absolutely nothing to do with it and it’s an absolutely normal process that will be finished once all the hair are replaced. This one you just get to live through.
The other time your Shih Tzu might shed a lot – is during the late pregnancy or right after it. This is an absolutely normal process. Once the hormones will settle down – all the hair will grow back as beautiful as always, don’t worry.