The Shih Tzu dog needs grooming and of this there is no doubt. With a long thick coat that just grows and grows you have two choices. You can clip everything away so that regular combing is not necessary or you can leave the long locks intact and get the comb to them every day.
This is all very well I hear you say but what if my dog won’t allow me to do either of those things?
The dog that dislikes being groomed can be a very difficult and wriggly monster.
The more desperate that you become to get that coat tidy the more determined the Shih Tzu is to get away from the comb. If this scenario sounds familiar then all is not lost, you simply need to get stuck into some remedial Shih Tzu grooming, here is how.
Understanding the Comb Phobic Shih Tzu
The very first thing to do if your dog is difficult to groom is work out why. What is it about grooming that your Shih Tzu dislikes so much?
Being offended by the comb is not a usual state for the Shih Tzu, remember that he was a companion dog with a lot of human contact for many generations before this one. This dog has been groomed a lot in his history and this should create a natural ease and relaxation within him.
There are two main reasons for the Shih Tzu that dislikes being groomed and both of them will have been learned within his lifetime.
- The Shih Tzu dog is unused to being handled and is showing stubbornness because grooming to him has not been part of his life so far.
- The dog is fearful of being touched and is desperate to get away.
Either of these reasons can be resolved in exactly the same way. The answer to the wriggly Shih Tzu is careful retraining of the mind of your dog.
Simple Steps to Easy Shih Tzu Grooming
When a Shih Tzu is difficult or worried about being groomed the only real approach that you should take is to back off. There is no point to wrestling the poor dog into position and desperately combing random parts of his body whilst he frets.
Gently re-introduce your dog to grooming by taking it slowly and making the grooming procedure a positive experience. If you use the steps below consistently and carefully then they will work;
- First of all you need to completely change the grooming circumstance. If you normally attempt to groom your dog outdoors then move inside. If you normally stand the sit on the ground with him. This will take away the tension that has already built up around the activity.
- Next you can show your dog that he is going to be rewarded at grooming time by bringing some treats and rewarding every singly scrap of relaxed and accepting behavior. You can’t reward a dog too much at this point but make sure your treats are really tiny and really tasty or they will soon lose their appeal.
- Finally and if necessary only groom your Shih Tzu for a minute at a time if you need to. The idea is that you begin the session, make is super rewarding and end it before your dog stops feeling relaxed. In the beginning the grooming session may only need to be thirty seconds long but when your dog gets the idea the time will soon increase.
It really is as simple as that. By using these steps you are re-training your dog’s mind and showing him that grooming a Shih Tzu is fun, rewarding and relaxing, but be patient with him for he may never have learned that in his life before now.
Soon that wriggling Shih Tzu will be a thing of the past and your dog will be styled to perfection and happy with it.