When you are grooming your Shih Tzu, if the coat is medium to long, you will want to comb-brush-comb. If your Shih Tzu has a short coat, you will only brush.
Note that even if your Shih Tzu is shaved or has a very close puppy coat, you still want to brush your dog on a regular basis. This is because brushing stimulates blood flow which sends nutrients to the hair follicles, helps distribute body oils, and removes fine debris.
- A cursory combing is done to separate the hairs and check for tangles.
- Then, the coat is brushed. Since you do not want to brush a dry coat, you will want to use a quality leave-in conditioner product while you do this.
- Then, a final comb is done for a finishing touch. For this, you can use your basic comb, or a special finishing comb.
This will be done every day for long show coats, every other day for medium coats, and every 3 days for short coats, including shaved.
If you find a tangle (mat), you will want to try to work it out by hand, using conditioner to make the hairs slippery. If this is not successful, you will want to have an appropriately sized, effective mat remover tool. This will allow you to remove it without damaging any other part of the coat.
There are a couple of additional grooming tasks that you may want to handle at home, such as trimming hairs around the anus or plucking hairs from the ears. Alternatively, this can be handled by a groomer (more ahead).
For the face:
Due to the structure of a brush, it is not possible to brush a Shih Tzu's face; so, you will want a face comb in order to keep the facial hairs tidy and clean.