Shih Tzu Shedding – Is it a big problem?

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While dogs of all kinds are great and bring a lot of joy into your life, one thing they bring that you don’t want is shedding. It can be a real pain dealing with all that hair all over your clothing, furniture, and floor. So, it’s normal to wonder about Shih Tzu shedding and if they shed at all.

Shih Tzu Shedding – Problem or No?

For the most part, shedding isn’t an issue with Shih Tzus.

It’s one of the big advantages this little dog comes with.

Typically, they only shed when they are they are being groomed.

That means when you comb their hair you will see some of it come out in the comb.

And when you give them a bath you may see some hair shedding.

But why, with all the hair that Shih Tzus have don’t they shed?

There’s a couple of reasons for that.

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1. Shih Tzus Have Hair and Not Fur

First off, Shih Tzus don’t have fur which tends to shed a lot.

They have hair that most closely resembles human hair.

Sure, just like humans, they can have loose hair that falls out from time to time.

But, I have to say in all the years that I have had Shih Tzus I have never had to brush their hair off my clothes or anywhere else.

Compare that to my sister who has a short-haired dog and it is night and day.

She can’t even wear nice clothes in her house because they are covered with dog hair in minutes.

This is true even though she vacuums daily.

Her dog is as sweet as can be, but I wouldn’t want to deal with all the shedding.

2. Shih Tzu’s Double Coat

Shih Tzus actually have two coats of hair, a shorter inner layer, and a longer outer layer of hair.

While Shih Tzus do actually shed, the inner shorter layer catches the loose hair or dead hair from the outer coat and holds it.

That’s why you don’t see a lot of hair in your home.

In addition, Shih Tzus lose this hair all year long. 

That means you don’t see seasonal shedding in the spring as you do with other dogs.

It doesn’t come out in big clumps.

For the most part, Shih Tzus are shedding about 10 percent of their hair all the time, but as mentioned most of this hair is caught in the underlayer and you don’t see it.

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How to Keep Shedding to a Minimum

One of the easiest ways to keep shedding to a minimum is with regular brushing and good grooming habits.

Daily brushing will pull all of the loose hairs out and once you catch them in a comb, you can then throw them away.

Shih Tzus are prone to tangles and mats anyway, so as pet parents you want to do what you can to eliminate them.

Brushing often or daily will help do that as well.

Also, matting can pull at their skin and cause irritation and itchy skin.

If you shave your Shih Tzu you will eliminate some shedding as well. 

I personally keep my two with shorter coats.

It makes it easier to take care of them grooming-wise.

Just keep in mind that if you do shave your Shih Tzu then there really won’t be an inner coat to catch any loose hairs.

So, there is a payoff either way you go – thicker coat or thinner coat.

Coat care will be up to you and there is no right answer.

You just need to decide how much grooming you can handle on a daily basis with your specific situation.

Keep in mind that Shih Tzus can be prone to dry skin and skin irritations.

When giving them a bath be sure to use a high-quality shampoo and conditioner that will help keep the hair shaft and hair follicles healthy.

You might also enjoy:

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What if My Shih Tzu Starts Losing Hair?

If your adult Shih Tzu starts losing more hair than normal or it is coming out in clumps there could be health issues that you are unaware of.

You will want to take your Shih Tzu to your vet right away, so they can determine if there are any health conditions that are causing hair loss.

This hair loss could be a sign of a serious illness, so it shouldn’t be ignored and any health concerns should be followed upon.

If you have a puppy and you notice shedding, you might notice more shedding as they move from being a puppy to an adult.

This is due to the fact that as a puppy they have thin, fine hair and this will be shed as they develop their adult coat. 

This will only be a temporary situation.

You might also enjoy:

Do Shih Tzus Stink?

Can I Shave My Shih Tzu?

To Sum it All Up:

There aren’t a lot of non-shedding dogs out there and while Shih Tzus don’t fall into that category they do come close. There is very little hair loss with Shih Tzus which can make them a great choice as a family pet for someone that has allergies even though they are not technically a hypoallergenic breed.


Please Note:

This article is informational only and does not substitute for veterinary advice. Always check with your veterinarian if you are concerned about your Shih Tzu. This article should not be considered in any way as a veterinarian or advice.

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