shih tzu
|

How to Bathe a Shih Tzu: Everything You Need to Know

If you’re a Shih Tzu owner, then you know that these little dogs can get pretty stinky. That’s why it’s important to bathe them regularly.

In this blog post, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about bathing your Shih Tzu – from how often to bathe them to the best way to clean them.

We’ll also provide some helpful tips and tricks for making the bathing process as easy and stress-free as possible.

So whether you’re a first-time Shih Tzu owner or just looking for some additional bathing tips, read on for all the information you need!

First, some general guidelines

Before you start bating your Shih Tzu, there are a few general things to keep in mind:

Rule #1 – YOU. Bathe. Shih Tzu.

I can’t stress this enough. YOU (as the dog’s owner) have to be the one to bathe a Shih Tzu as often as possible.

This doesn’t mean you can’t take your dog to the groomer – you absolutely can and should. But the more often you wash your dog, the more used to it they will get.

This will make your life a hell of a lot easier when you finally do take them to the groomer and they jump in that giant dog bath.

Start with your Shih Tzu puppy

One of the most important things you can do regarding bath time as a Shih Tzu owner is bathing your dog on a regular basis.

This will help keep them clean and healthy, and it will also help to reduce the amount of hair they shed.

It’s especially important to give them frequent baths when they’re a Shih Tzu puppy, so they can get used to the process and learn to enjoy it.

Shih Tzu dogs need a daily brushing

One of the most important things you can do for your Shih Tzu is to brush their coat every day.

Not only does this help keep the coat of Shih Tzu dogs healthy and shiny, but it also helps remove any loose hairs or dirt that may have accumulated.

In addition, it can help prevent mats from forming in their hair.

Dry your Shih Tzu dog with a towel

It is important to dry your Shih Tzu off with a towel after its bath.

If it is left wet, its coat will become matted and it will be more susceptible to getting sick.

Toweling also helps the coat to air dry, which will help keep it healthy and shiny.

Don’t bathe your Shih Tzu too often

While it is important to bathe a Shih Tzu regularly, you shouldn’t have bath time too often.

Bathing a Shih Tzu too often can strip its coat of the essential oils that keep it healthy and shiny.

It can also lead to skin irritation. In general, you should clean your Shih Tzu no more than once a month.

However, you may need to wash it more often if it is particularly dirty or has a bad case of fleas.

How to bathe a Shih Tzu dog

There are a few different ways to bathe a Shih Tzu, and you can choose the one that works best for you.

(Don’t worry, I’ll go a bit deeper below).

That said, you can bathe a Shih Tzu in the sink, in a bathtub, or outdoors using a hose.

Whichever method you choose, make sure to have the following supplies on hand:

  • Dog shampoo
  • Towels
  • A cup or pitcher for pouring water over your dog’s head
  • A hose or sprayer attachment for the bathtub (if bathing in a bathtub)
  • Dog grooming brush
  • Clothespins (optional)

1. Preparing your Shih Tzu for bath time

The best way for preparing to wash a Shih Tzu is by brushing their coat. Brushing also helps remove any loose hairs or dirt that may have accumulated.

They should be cleaned on a regular basis, but not too often.

Bathing too much can strip the essential oils from the coat and may cause irritation on the dog’s skin.

At least once per month should do it, though more frequent bathing may be necessary if your Shih Tzu gets dirty or has fleas.

2. Use a tub restraint for safety reasons

A tub restraint is a strap or harness that is used to keep a dog from escaping while they are being washed.

It prevents the dog from jumping out of the tub and potentially injuring themselves.

They are usually made of nylon or other sturdy materials, and they attach to the side of the tub with Velcro or clasps.

It is important to use a tub restraint when bathing your Shih Tzu because it prevents them from escaping and potentially injuring themselves.

3. Use dog-friendly water temperature

It is important to use dog-friendly water temperature when bathing them because if the water is too hot or too cold.

It can cause them to become agitated and stressed.

This can make the bathing process more difficult and may cause them to struggle or try to escape.

In addition, it can be dangerous for them if the water is too hot.

The ideal water temperature for bathing a Shih Tzu is around 100 degrees Fahrenheit.

You can use a thermometer to test the water before you clean your dog. Then, adjust the water temperature as necessary.

4. Get your supplies

Make sure you have the right supplies on hand when you go to bathe a Shih Tzu.

This includes dog shampoo, towels, a cup or pitcher for pouring water over your dog’s head, a hose or sprayer attachment for the bathtub (if bathing in a bathtub), and a grooming brush.

You may also want to have clothespins on hand to help keep the towel in place.

Shampoo

When bathing your Shih Tzu, you should use dog-specific shampoo. This will help ensure that their coat is properly cleansed and that they don’t become irritated.

Most notably, this excludes baby shampoo. In other words, I do NOT recommend baby shampoo for washing your dog.

I’ve had fellow Shih Tzu lovers recommend using it on the dog’s coat. Being Shih Tzu people, I was shocked.

The baby shampoo will be far too harsh on the dog’s hair because baby products are made with much harsher chemicals.

They do this to kill bacteria, which makes sense for humans.

However for a Shih Tzu’s hair, I’ve seen it damage healthy skin or cause dry or itchy skin, cause dead hair or hear breakage, and just make bath time (for most dogs) miserable.

And you don’t want to get ANY kind of shampoo in a Shih Tzu’s face – let alone one that’s harsher.

There are many different types of hypoallergenic shampoos available for dogs, so you can choose one that best suits your needs and preferences.

Conditioner

While you can wash your Shih Tzu with plain water, it isn’t recommended because without proper conditioning they’ll get dry skin out or their coat will become oily.

Consequently, if you wash them with just water, it is best to at least use a dog-friendly conditioner.

The conditioner helps maintain the natural oils in their hair and gives it that extra bit of shine that makes all the difference.

If you don’t have any pre-made conditioners then you should mix together equal parts warm water and coconut oil (or olive oil).

You can also try adding some raw eggs to provide more lubrication for your Shih Tzu’s fur. Just be sure not to bathe them within two days of feeding them raw eggs as it may cause digestive problems.

Towels

You will need several towels to dry your Shih Tzu off after its bath.

It is important to towel them off completely, as wet hair can lead to mats and irritation on the dog’s skin.

A cup or pitcher for pouring water over your dog’s head

If you are bathing your Shih Tzu in a sink, you will need a cup or pitcher to pour water over their head.

This will help rinse the shampoo from their coat.

A hose or sprayer attachment for the bathtub (if bathing in a bathtub)

If you are bathing your Shih Tzu in a bathtub, you will need a hose or sprayer attachment to help rinse the shampoo from their coat.

Grooming brush

After your Shih Tzu is bathed and dried, you should groom them with a dog grooming brush.

This will help remove any remaining dirt or hair and will help keep their coat healthy and shiny.

Clothespins (optional)

If you are bathing your Shih Tzu outdoors, you may want to use clothespins to keep their coat from getting wet.

This will help keep them dry until they are ready to be bathed.

Additional supplies to use when you bathe a Shih Tzu

In addition to the supplies listed above, you may also want to have a jug or basin for water, a dog toothbrush and toothpaste, and an ear cleaner on hand when bathing your Shih Tzu.

A jug or basin for water can come in handy if you are bathing your dog outdoors. It allows you to easily pour water over their head to help rinse the shampoo from your Shih Tzu’s coat.

A dog toothbrush and toothpaste can be used to clean their teeth after bathing.

Dental health is important for dogs, just like it is for people, so it’s recommended that you brush their teeth at least once a week.

To avoid major spill on your floor, having a small bath mat is also recommended. This way, when your dog splashed water out of the tub, you’re covered.

Lastly, ear cleaner can be used to help keep their ears clean. Ears can become dirty easily, so it’s important to clean them regularly.

There are many different types of ear cleaners available, so you can choose one that best suits your needs and preferences.

Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

4. Start bathing your dog at the feet

When you bathe a Shih Tzu, it is important to start at their feet and work your way up.

This will help keep them calm and relaxed (which is good for both you and your dog). If you start at the head or the middle of the body, they may become agitated and try to escape.

In addition, it is easier to clean their feet and toes than it is to clean their head or face.

5. Bathe the body

The next step in bathing a Shih Tzu is to bathe their body. You can do this by using your hands or a handheld shower head.

Be sure to rinse all the shampoo from the dog’s coat.

6. Clean their ears with cotton balls

This is a little hack I always recommend. Clean your Shih Tzu’s ear flaps with a cotton ball while you’re bathing them.

Cotton balls are soft and gentle on the dog’s ears and by cleaning them regularly you’ll help prevent ear infections.

7. Dry them off completely

The final step is to dry them off completely. You can do this by using a hair dryer, towels, or an air dryer.

Once they are dry, groom them with a dog grooming brush to remove any remaining dirt or hair.

(More on this directly below).

After You Finish Your Shih Tzu’s Bath

Now that you’ve finally finished bathing your little furball, it’s time to dry and groom the little guy or girl.

How do you dry off your Shih Tzu?

There are a few different ways that you can dry off your Shih Tzu after bathing them.

One option is to use a hair dryer. You can either hold the hair dryer yourself or attach it to a stand for stability.

Another option is to use towels. Wrap the towels around your dog and squeeze to absorb the water.

A third option is to use an air dryer. This is a good option if you are bathed your Shih Tzu outdoors. Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

You might want to use a pet specific blow dryer, too, if you have access to one.

Finally, you can use a pin brush. A pin brush is a type of brush that has metal bristles. It is used to groom a dog’s coat and remove any dirt or hair that may be left behind.

A pin brush is a good choice for dogs with long hair, as it can help detangle their fur and make it easier to groom.

Consider trimming their nails

Shih Tzus can get pretty rambunctious during a bath. In fact, they might even shake the water on you with their paws and body!

It’s important to note that bathing your Shih Tzu without trimming their nails can lead to long scratches in your tub or sink.

So after you bathe and dry your little pup, feel free to trim back their nail length so they can’t hurt surfaces in the house when they’re playing!

A good time for this is right after you brush them too – just be sure not to cut any quick (the pink bit at the end of the nail).

Because this will bleed if it gets cut into too deeply. Be careful not to shave off too much though, or you’ll have a harder time keeping their nails trimmed in the future!

Wash your dog’s collar

It’s important to remember that when you bathe a Shih Tzu, shampoo and the dog’s hair will get in their coat and on their collar.

It’s often hard to see because they can shake it off easy – so give the collar a toss in the wash with the rest of your washing machine’s load!

It’ll come out fresh and clean in no time, and if you forgot to do this, don’t worry: just soak in cold water for 15 minutes before machine-washing.

Wash your dog’s bedding

If you have a Shih Tzu, you know that they love to sleep in their bed.

But what you might not know is that their hair and shampoo can get on the bedding – and it’s not always easy to clean.

A good way to combat this is to wash the bedding along with your dog. You can either do this by hand or in the washing machine.

Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully to avoid any damage to the fabric.

How often should I bathe my Shih Tzu?

How often you bathe a Shih Tzu will depend on a few different factors, including their breed, age, and lifestyle.

As a general rule, however, you should bathe your Shih Tzu every two to four weeks.

If they are particularly dirty or have been playing in the mud, you may want to bathe them more often.

If they are not getting dirty often, bathe them less frequently.

Remember to always use a shampoo specifically designed for dogs – human shampoo can be harmful to their skin.

Is that all?

There are a few things to be aware of when bathing your Shih Tzu.

One is that they may shake the water off their body, which can lead to it getting on you.

Another is that their hair and shampoo can get on their collar and bedding – so be sure to wash these items along with your dog.

And finally, remember that how often you bathe a Shih Tzu will depend on their age and lifestyle.

Summary

Bathing a Shih Tzu is not an easy task.

Fortunately, our blog post has given you everything you need to bathe your dog in the correct manner so they are clean and healthy.

From how often they should be bathed to what shampoo or conditioner to use, this article will have all of the information necessary for bathing any type of furball.

FAQs

Are Shih Tzus long-haired dogs?

Shih Tzus are not long-haired dogs. They have a medium coat of hair that is easy to groom and does not require much maintenance.

How often do I need to bathe my Shih Tzu?

You should bathe your Shih Tzu every two to four weeks, depending on their age and lifestyle.

What’s the best way to dry a wet Shih Tzu?

  1. Use a towel to scrunch up all the excess water – this will help speed up the dry time.
  2. Rub two towels together against your Shih Tzu’s fur to remove excess water.
  3. Use another towel to bathe their ears, feet, and tail.
  4. Make sure you don’t accidentally bathe your Shih Tzu with cool or cold water during winter!

Can I bathe my Shih Tzu in the winter?

Yes, you can bathe a Shih Tzu in the winter – but be sure to bathe them with warm (not cold) water. This will help avoid any potential health problems.

How can I prevent my dog from shaking water all over me after bathing?

One way to prevent your dog from shaking water all over you after bathing is to towel dry them as much as possible before letting them loose.

You can also try rubbing two towels together against their fur to remove excess water. Another option is to bathe them in the winter when the air is cooler, as this will help keep them calm.

Is it okay to use regular shampoo on my Shih Tzu?

No, it’s never okay to use human shampoo on your pet – even if they don’t have sensitive skin. The pH balance of dog skin is not the same as that of humans, and their natural oils are different.

Regular “people” shampoo will strip the extra oils away from your Shih Tzu’s coat while also ripping out any remaining water-resistant powder or detangler it may contain.

As a result, you’ll find yourself bathing them more often because their skin becomes dry and flaky.

This can lead to all sorts of issues with allergies and skin irritations, so always make sure to use products specifically designed for their needs during your dog’s bath.

Similar Posts