Are Shih Tzus Hypoallergenic? Yes, the Shih Tzu is a hypoallergenic dog and is an excellent breed for people who suffer from allergies. Although there is no totally hypoallergenic dog breed, the good news is that some breeds cause fewer allergies than others.
We get it, dog people with dog allergies don’t let that stop them from spending time with their favourite dogs. And if you’ve fallen in love with the Shih Tzu breed, you may be wondering how bad they will make your allergies.
These dogs don’t tend to cause an allergic reaction despite their large amounts of hair.
With regular grooming and daily care of a Shih Tzu, these dogs can be welcomed members in a family’s home who may otherwise have issues with dog allergies.
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Is a Shih Tzu High Maintenance Dog
Shih Tzu is a lovely little dog with a surprisingly low-maintenance and easygoing temperament. Due to their small size, they are a good choice for apartment dwellers as well.
The Shih Tzu is among the few breeds whose coat is made up of hair instead of fur. They have a gorgeous, long, and silky coat. Shih Tzus are moderate shedders and shed their hair daily.
Shih Tzu’s Grooming Needs
Let’s have a look at Shih Tzu’s grooming needs:
- The long silky coat of the Shih Tzu is deceiving and is easy t groom. They need weekly brushing with a daily quick brush to remove debris or mats and prevent tangles. It saves you from loose hair flying around your house.
- Give a weekly warm bath with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. Shampooing softens the fur and thus decreases Shih Tzu’s dirt-repelling ability. This also helps to get the shedding period over with more quickly.
- Shih Tzus get dirty after eating, and their eyes tear up readily. You must wipe their face regularly with a soft cloth dampened with warm water.
- Regular tooth brushing with a soft toothbrush and doggy toothpaste will keep their gums and teeth healthy.
- Trim your Shih Tzu’s nails monthly. This will keep your legs from getting scratched when your dog enthusiastically jumps up to greet you.
- Your Shih Tzu’s eyes should be clear with no redness or discharge.
- Once a week, check your Shih Tzu’s ears for dirt, redness, or a bad odor. If required, clean inside the ear with a cotton ball and a pH-balanced gentle cleanser. Hair grows inside the Shih Tzu’s ear canal, and this sometimes needs to be plucked if the dog gets a lot of ear infections.
- When you groom your Shih Tzu, look inside its mouth. Check for sores or signs of infection such as redness, tenderness, or inflammation on the skin.
Your regular grooming and careful weekly exam will help you spot potential health problems early.
Make grooming as pleasant as possible for both you and your Shih Tzu, starting during puppyhood.
Shih Tzu’s Grooming Tools
Arm yourself with the right grooming tools that will help you keep your pooch looking great. When it comes to finding grooming tools that can be used for grooming your Shih Tzus, here is a list that can help:
- Pin brush
- Slicker brush
- Grooming Rake
- Dog Nail clippers
- High-quality dog shampoo and conditioner
- Dog Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Ear cleaning solution and cotton balls
Shih Tzu’s Exercise Requirements
Shih Tzu is not an extremely active dog and needs a low-maintenance exercise routine. Your Shih Tzu will be content with short walks each day.
They are generally well-behaved dogs and usually wander around the house, play with their toys, or run to the door to greet visitors.
Shih Tzu’s Tolerance for Heat
Shih Tzus are among longer-nosed breeds and are vulnerable to overheating. They should remain indoors in an air-conditioned room or one with fans on hot days so they don’t suffer from heat exhaustion.
Do Shih Tzus Need a Lot of Attention?
Shih Tzus love nothing more than to follow their humans from room to room. They require enough hours of daily companionship and play sessions.
Shih Tzus need a lot of attention from their owners and family to stay happy. This attention-hungry dog will do whatever works best to get you to pay more attention to him.
The only thing they love more than following their humans around their house is being petted and pampered! They will happily sit in your lap for many hours.
Their desire to love and be loved can turn to extreme separation anxiety in the absence of their owner.
Your Shih Tzu may show one or more of the below-mentioned attention-seeking behaviours:
- Excessive barking
- Chewing behaviour
- Feigning lameness
- Chasing lights or shadows
- Strange bodily and posturing
If you consider this a bad thing, then you should know how to deal with it before it will become a burden on your part or others.
Here are some ways to manage your Shih Tzu’s attention-seeking behaviour:
- Provide your dog with exercise and enrichment. He will be more likely to rest up once he’s expended his energy.
- Pay attention to your dog’s body language when barking. Each bark expresses a different need or want. Identifying what is causing your dog to bark can help you decide how best to respond.
- Provide training to deal with separation anxiety. Make your Shih Tzu learn some basic commands like sit and stay. Your dog can even be trained to sit quietly and be left alone in the house. Teach your dog to settle down and sit comfortably. Also, crate-train your dog and make the crate comfortable for your Shih Tzu.
- Establish a positive reinforcement protocol
- Rewards like treats, playtime, and toys are the motivators for your little dog. Never punish your furry friend for negative behaviour.
- Give your dog chew toys to keep them busy.
- Provide sufficient activities and social interaction. Behavioural issues may stem if they are not socialized and trained at an early age.
How Do You Stop Dog Allergies
Everyone’s allergies are different and therefore, it is impossible to make a sweeping generalization. People with allergies can have allergic reactions from even hypoallergenic dogs.
Luckily, there are a few steps that you can take to manage your allergy symptoms with your new Shih Tzu.
1. Regular brushing
Keeping the Shih Tzu coat gorgeous is demanding. Daily brushing and combing are necessary for your pooch. This will help keep excess hair and dander off of the floor and furniture.
2. Keep coat short
To reduce allergies, you must keep your Shih Tzu’s coat short.
3. Regular bathing
Give your Shih Tzu a weekly bath to remove dander from its coat. Use a natural, moisturizing shampoo to wash away dander and excess hair. Afterward, use a conditioner that moisturizes the coat and skin.
4. Regular cleaning
Regular cleaning around the house will also keep your allergies at bay. Cleaning will catch any dander before it affects the person with allergies. Cleaning includes:
- Washing your Shih Tzu’s bedding
- Washing any soft surfaces your Shih Tzu frequents
- Regular vacuuming to keep your floor and carpets clean
- Sweeping to keep your floor and carpets clean.
- Consider an air purifier
Use efficient air purifiers and maintain good ventilation to help reduce airborne Shih Tzu allergens.
Consider allergy shots
Allergy shots or allergy vaccines will help you develop antibodies so that you won’t get allergies when exposed to some allergens.
With a few efforts and lifestyle changes, you can manage your allergies and live happily with your Shih Tzu.
If you like Shih Tzus and are allergic to most dogs, there is a good chance that this breed will work for you. Shih Tzus thrive on human company and can easily become spoiled.
They make great pets for families with children, due to their affectionate and loving nature.