Do Shih Tzu shed? One of my closest friends wanted a small dog for her daughters – a dog that didn’t shed too much. Why? She is a busy woman and does not have the time to clean dog hair daily.
With that in mind, she came across the Shih Tzu dog bred and thought the dog breed would be cute and make a perfect companion for her girls, despite its long hair.
To ensure that she made an informed decision, she needed to know – Do Shih Tzus Shed?
That was the situation that inspired me to create this detailed guide answering every question surrounding the shedding issue.
If you do not know much about this dog breed, here is some helpful information to help you better understand them.
Do Shih Tzus Shed? How Much Do Shih Tzu Shed?
Yes, Shih Tzus do shed. But they don’t shed as much as some other breeds, they only lose a moderate amount of hair. If you’re considering a Shih Tzu, be prepared to do regular grooming to keep your coat looking its best.
Shih Tzu has a double coat, which means they have a dense outer coat of fur and a softer, shorter undercoat. The undercoat is where most of the shedding occurs and can happen year-round.
However, you may notice your Shih Tzu shedding more during certain seasons, such as spring and fall when they are “blowing out” their coat in preparation for the warmer or cooler weather.
Why does Shih Tzus Shed so little?
There are a few reasons why Shih Tzus shed so little.
One reason is that they have a very dense coat of fur, which helps to keep their skin protected from the elements.
Additionally, Shih Tzus have a very efficient digestive system that helps to break down their food correctly, which in turn helps to reduce the amount of shedding.
Finally, Shih Tzus are typically very healthy dogs that don’t experience many health problems that can cause excessive shedding.
How Often Do Shih Tzu Dogs Shed?
Shih Tzu dogs shed minimally compared to other dog breeds. However, they go through two heavy shedding periods each year, typically during the spring and fall.
You may notice increased hair around your Shih Tzu’s ears, face, legs, and undercoat during these times. To help reduce shedding and keep your Shih Tzu’s coat healthy and looking its best, brush them regularly and give them occasional baths.
Why Your Shih Tzu Puppy is Shedding?
Like humans, different factors will affect how much your Shih Tzu sheds. These include other hair care routines, poor diet, time of the year, and sometimes even health issues.
Here are the situations that will differently affect how much your Shih Tzu sheds.
1. Puppy coat
Every single dog breed sheds its puppy coat while maturing. Puppy coats differ from adult coats in Shih Tzus. They are much softer, wispier, and thinner.
A puppy’s coat won’t grow as nicely as an adult’s, so your puppy’s coat will start shedding at around the three-month-old mark.
Some puppies will not start shedding until they have hit approximately nine months old.
2. Time of the year
Seasonal shedding is natural in the animal kingdom (including among humans and cats).
Let’s take the summer season and compare it to the winter season. You see a huge difference.
During winter, you wear clothes that will keep you warm. This concept affects Sh Tzu’s likeliness to shed in the different seasons of the year.
Since dogs do not have the luxury to go out and buy their preferred clothes that fit their daily weather reports.
Their coats have been designed to adapt quickly to the different seasons, implying that your Shih Tzu will shed more in between them.
3. Parasites, Ticks, and Fleas
Ticks, fleas, and other parasites tend to cause your Shih Tzu to become uncomfortable and itchy. This will result in more scratching and hair loss.
If you ever suspect your dog has ticks or fleas, you must do a proper and close inspection.
You can quickly treat ticks and fleas using a specialized insecticide or flea shampoo from a pet store or vet.
In these cases, your home will have to be cleaned, especially in spaces where the dog used to lie. These include blankets, furniture, and bedding, and you must go through your laundry to ensure it’s properly cleaned.
It is nothing that you can’t take your dog with ticks or fleas to a dog groomer. This may cause the parasites to spread to other dogs nearby.
4. Pregnancy or Neutered
Different hormones (mainly testosterone) can play a massive part in ensuring that hair follicles remain healthy and strong.
Significant changes in an animal’s hormones (including pregnancy or getting neutered) tend to cause changes in hair follicles and skin elasticity. This may result in significant shedding over the next couple of months.
However, do not worry! Your Shih Tzu’s coat may generally return to its normal state over time.
Have you ever felt so much stress that you started noticing that you were beginning to lose your hair? Well, dogs can generally feel the same way.
But unlike humans, they have perfected the art of hiding their stress from other animal species.
An abrupt surge in your Shih Tzu’s shedding is the first indication that something could be going on with your best friend.
In addition, you will need to look at other symptoms to confirm whether the dog is going through a stressful period.
These symptoms you should watch out for include:
- Destructive behavior
- Tail between its legs
- Ear pinned back
- Panting or drooling
Once you ascertain that your Shih Tzu might be stressed, you will need to find their stress source and get rid of it or find a better way to make them feel comfortable again.
In my experience, stress among dogs can be caused by different events, including introducing new people or pets into your home, unfamiliar places, overstimulation, or loud noises.
It could also be a disease, an upset stomach, a sprained bone, or an illness. If you try everything to make your Shih Tzu comfortable but nothing seems to work, you need to schedule a visit with your vet and see what else could be wrong.
Excessive shedding might be the symptom of something deeper with your pet, and the dog might even suffer from some physical pain.
Here are signs you should watch out for to tell if your Shih Tzu might be feeling pain:
- Lethargic behavior
- Lack of energy
If you suspect something more serious could be wrong, I urge you to seek the advice of your veterinarian right away.
Allergies can cause itchy and inflamed skin, like parasites and ticks, which might result in scratching and more shedding.
You can quickly tell if your Shih Tzu is suffering from any allergies by looking for the following signs:
- Inflamed, infected, or red ears
- Scabs from scratching or patches of fur missing
- Red, itchy skin
- Constant scratching
- Red and watery eyes
Shih Tzu allergies can either be food or environmentally-based, and you will need to consult with the vet to determine the exact cause and avoid it in the future.
8. Poor Diet
Food is the main culprit whenever excessive shedding is introduced among Shih Tzus and other dog breeds.
According to studies, excessive shedding, flaky skin, and a dull coat can be caused by a deficiency of omega 6 and 3. 30 percent of your dog’s daily protein intake can help renew its hair and skin.
A Shih Tzu’s coat and skin are susceptible to certain deficiencies in their nutrition. You ought to ensure provide balanced and high-quality dog food.
Balanced diets contain a balance of Essential Fatty Acids and Proteins that promote skin elasticity and stronger hair follicles. This will reduce shedding and keeps the Shih Tzu’s coat healthy.
How do You stop Shih Tzu from shedding?
There are a few things you can do to help reduce shedding and keep your Shih Tzu’s coat healthy and looking its best:
1. Brush your dog regularly. This will help remove loose hair and distribute natural oils throughout the coat.
2. Bath your dog every 4-6 weeks. This will help to remove any dirt and debris that may be trapped in the coat.
3. Give your dog a healthy diet. A nutritious diet will help to keep the coat healthy and promote good overall health.
4. Keep your dog well-groomed. Regular grooming will help to remove dead hair and keep the coat looking neat and tidy.
5. Check for parasites. Parasites such as fleas and ticks can cause excessive shedding. Be sure to keep your dog on a regular deworming and flea/tick prevention program.
6. Avoid using harsh chemicals on your dog’s coat. This can strip the natural oils and cause the coat to become dry and brittle.
7. Keep your dog’s nails trimmed. Long nails can cause the coat to become matted and uncomfortable for your dog.
8. Have your dog checked by a veterinarian. Sometimes shedding can be a sign of a underlying health condition. If you are concerned about your dog’s shedding, make an appointment with your vet to have him checked out.
By following these simple tips, you can help to reduce the amount of shedding and keep your Shih Tzu coat looking healthy and shiny.
Simplified history of Shih Tzus
The Shih Tzu breed descended from a cross between Lhasa Apso and Pekingese. The Lhasa Apso was a Tibetan dog breed given to Chinese emperors by the Dalai Lama toward the end of the 17th century.
The Chinese emperors did not sell these dogs but instead pampered them and used them as lap warmers. Even more interesting is that the dog breed stayed sheltered behind the Chinese empire’s palace walls for more than a century, and no one outside China had heard of them until the 1930s.
The Shih Tzu dog breed was added to the American Kennel Club’s record around 1969 and has since become a global favorite. On the other hand, the Shih Tzu Club of England was founded in 1934, and the dog breed was officially recognized by the Kennel Club (UK) in 1940.
Does Shih Tzus have an undercoat?
Yes, Shih Tzus have an undercoat. This coat is typically soft and dense and helps keep the dog warm in cold weather. The undercoat may be shed during the warmer months, or a groomer may trim it to help keep the dog cool.
Is a Shih Tzu a hypoallergenic dog?
Yes, a Shih Tzu is a hypoallergenic dog. This breed does not shed very much, and what little hair they shed is usually non-allergenic. This makes them a good choice for people who are allergic to dogs but still want to enjoy the companionship of a furry friend.
Is a Shih Tzu a good house dog?
A Shih Tzu can be a great house dog if properly trained and socialized. They are a small breed, so they don’t need a lot of space to run around. In addition, Shih Tzu are typically good natured and lively, making them ideal companions.
However, they can also be stubborn and require patience when it comes to potty training. Socialization is also important for Shih Tzus, as they can be shy around strangers if they don’t have enough exposure to different people and situations.
Overall, a Shih Tzu can be a loving and loyal pet that brings joy to the home.