Licking: It is normal for dogs to lick themselves; however excessive licking is not healthy for the dog. There is usually 2 explanations:
- There is a medical issue with your dog
- Your dog is displaying nervous behavior
How much licking is normal for a dog? If your Shih Tzu randomly licks themselves and stops after a minute or so, there is no reason to be concerned.
However, when licking is continual to the point that it seems it is all the dog ever does and this action causes loss of coat, irritation or other physical signs, this is a signal to bring your dog to the veterinarian right away.
What medical issues can cause a dog to do this?
For this reason, your dog should first have a complete checkup to rule out any of these. If they licking has caused sores or lesions, these must be tended to as well.
When a dog compulsively licks themselves this may be a manifestation of anxiety. Dogs can suffer from this affliction just as humans can. The most common reasons for this are:
- Being home alone, separation anxiety
- Excessive noise, not having a calm environment
To ease the discomfort of separation issues, you should set up a wonderful environment for your dog while you are gone. If room allows, remove a dog create and replace it with a dog play pen.
In this way, you can have many areas for your dog to stay busy; a play area with lots of toys, a resting area with soft blankets and an eating and drinking spot. See if a friend, family member or neighbor can stop by to take your Shih Tzu out for a walk, even if it is for 20 minutes or so.