Shih-Tzu is a rare breed of dog that has a coat that resembles human hair. In fact, it is the hair that gives the breed its beauty and unique appearance. Although somewhat similar to a Pekinese, Shih-Tzu is a class apart in the "toy" group of dog breeds.
Like all other dogs, a Shih-Tzu also demands great attention. Often referred to as the "living toy", dogs are prone to infections and diseases, like the ones caused by dog ear mites. A cat may become immune to cat ear mites with age, but a Shih-Tzu will need proper treatment before the condition can be cured.
Ears can be a primary source of infections and other diseases in dogs. Given the long hair of the Shih-Tzu breed, it requires regular and frequent cleaning and grooming. The need for regular grooming is actually a benefit for people who own a Shih-Tzu because regular inspection during cleaning and grooming helps in identifying the early signs of an infection.
The exceptionally long hair of a Shih-Tzu creates a damp environment for the ear mites to breed. The dampness, along with the dirt that tends to accumulate, is an invitation for ear mites to multiply and grow. Regular cleaning helps in spotting the first signs of ear mites so that early action can be taken.
Cleaning a Shih-Tzu dog’s ears is easy. Follow these simple steps:
- Spray ear powder directly into the dog’s ear. Ear powder can be purchased from any pet supply.
- Remove extra hair from the external ear with your fingers or tweezers once they are dry.
- Look for any extra wax and remove with a moist muslin cloth. It is possible at times to push the ear wax further inside the ear while trying to remove wax. Make sure that the movement is from inside out.
- Be careful to keep away from the inner ear.
- Report to a specialist or look for home remedies dog for ear mites if you see any unusual developments that are new.
Grooming a Shih Tzu takes more time than it does for other breeds. In addition to bathing, combing, drying, and nail trimming, a Shih-Tzu also requires hair clipping. Bathing should be done only after the hair has been brushed and untangled. Blow drying will give the fluffy appearance to the coat.
Matted hair can be managed for some time. After a while, the only option left is to strip off the entire coat. This should be done by a professional. If you are planning to do this at home, make sure that you take necessary precautions.
Ideally, a Shih Tzu’s coat should be dense and long. It should also have an undercoat that gives a soft and smooth feel. You may want to tie up the hair at the top with a ribbon to give a picture-perfect look to your Shih Tzu pet.