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How Often Should You Bathe A Shih Tzu?

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Regardless of what type of dog you have, as a dog owner, it’s important to make sure that you are staying on top of their care and maintenance routine…and that goes for regular bathing, too!

Sure, even though not all dogs like to be bathed, making sure that you are regularly bathing your dog will not only help to make sure that your dog’s coat is kept healthy and shiny but that your dog is kept clean and hygienic, too.

Shih tzu in the garden

But, when it comes to Shih Tzu dogs, how often should they be bathed? If you’re currently asking yourself this question, then rest assured that you have clicked on the right article.

Even though there’s no “one size fits all” approach to bathing a dog (let alone a curly Shih Tzu) below we are going to be talking you through how often you should clean your Shih Tzu, factors to consider before cleaning, as well as how to clean our dog, too. Let’s begin.

How Often Should You Bathe A Shih Tzu?

The first thing to remember about bathing a Shih Tzu is that you do need to keep up with their grooming routine. As mentioned above, regardless of whether or not your dog likes being bathed, keeping up with their grooming routine will ensure that your dog stays in tip-top condition.

However, if you’re wondering how often you should be washing your Shih Tzu’s fur, then here’s some information to get you started. If you’ve got a puppy, then you’ll want to start off by giving them a bath every two weeks.

This way, you can give them a chance to learn how to take a proper bath themselves. If you’ve got a young adult dog who has been living with you for several years, then you may want to wait until they reach around 2 years old.

After that point, you can start bathing them once per month. If you’ve already got a mature adult dog, then you can continue to bathe them once per month.

However, if you notice any signs of dry skin, such as cracks or flaky patches, you may want to take more care while bathing them, as well as make sure to take them to the vet’s so that your veterinarian can recommend what bathing routine will be best.

Lifestyle Factors To Take Into Consideration

As mentioned previously, one of the most important things to think about when it comes to bathing your Shih Tzu is how often you should be doing so.

In addition to this, however, there are other lifestyle factors that may mean that you need to be bathing your dog more frequently than usual. For example, if your Shih Tzu lives outdoors, then you may want them to be bathed twice per week.

How To Clean Your Shih Tzu

Grooming a shih tzu

Now that we know how often you should be cleaning your Shih Tzu from head to toe, let’s talk about how you actually go about doing so.

Regardless of whether you have a Shih Tzu that loves taking a bath or not, you should always begin by taking the time to make sure that your dog is relaxed and feeling calm. When you’re ready, you can then go ahead and encourage your dog to step into the shower or the bath, so that you can begin cleaning them.

When it comes to actually cleaning your Shih Tzu, you’ll want to start out by using a shampoo specifically designed for dogs. This way, you won’t risk damaging your dog’s hair during the process.

After you have gotten the shampoo up into a lather, you’ll want to use a lukewarm water washcloth to gently wipe down your dog’s body.

After you have done this, you can then go ahead and use a soft bristle brush to remove any dead hairs or dirt that may have built up on your dog’s coat.

Once you’ve cleaned your dog from head to toe, we then recommend rinsing your dog one more time to make sure that their coat and skin are totally clean, and then pat them dry with a towel.

Just like we have already mentioned above, while you are cleaning your dog you should make sure that you are being gentle and keeping them relaxed during the process.

Shih Tzu Coat Care Tips

It’s important to keep in mind that Shih Tzu’s have a double-coat, which means that you are going to ensure that you are bathing both the topcoat and undercoat.

With that being said, to ensure that you are able to clean your Shih Tzu effectively and safely, you should be sure to take extra care when cleaning your dog’s coat to make sure that both sides get thoroughly cleaned.

You might even find that using a brush specifically designed for double-coats will help you to work the shampoo into your Shi Tzu’s undercoat more efficiently.

We also recommend that while you are cleaning your Shih Tzu coat, you are also taking the time to inspect their skin for any signs of bumps, fleas, or rashes. Using a comb designed for double coats, gently separate the fur so that you can go ahead and inspect your Shi Tzu’s skin for any visible problems.

Final Thoughts

Sure, while it’s true that bathing your Shih Tzu isn’t exactly a fun activity for either one of you, it’s still something that you should be doing to ensure that your Shih Tzu’s coat remains healthy, shiny, and strong, while also ensuring that your dog’s skin is kept in optimum condition, too.

By taking the time to bathe your dog regularly, you’re helping to prevent them from developing certain health problems, while also ensuring that your Shih Tzu is as happy and as comfortable as can be. Thank you for taking the time to read this guide!

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About the author


Kerry White is an avid dog lover and writer, knowing all there is to know about our furry friends. Kerry has been writing for PetDT for three years now, wanting to use her knowledge for good and share everything she can with new dog owners.Kerry has two dogs herself - a German shepherd called Banjo and a chocolate labrador called Buttons. Kerry knows more than anyone how adjusting to new life with a puppy can turn your life upside down, and she wants to ease some of the burdens through her articles.