Don’t Do Too Much
How often should you bathe a shih tzu? It’s a very good question. You may feel like bathing your shih tzu every time you come back from walkies and he has mud on his paws. Or maybe he rolls around in the dirt a lot and you feel you should bathe him every time he does that.
Well, bathing your shih tzu too often is actually a bad thing. Your shih tzu secretes natural essential body oils that keep his skin soft and moist as well as keeping his coat in a shiny and healthy condition.
Bathing washes away the used essential oils so that your shih tzu can start producing more afresh. Bathe your shih tzu too often and you will be washing away the essential oils at a faster rate than he can produce them. His skin and his coat will become very dry and possibly itchy and red.
Don’t Leave It Too Long
Leave it too long between baths and there will be too much oil on his skin and coat. The pores of his skin will become blocked, leading to skin irritations and possibly pimples. His coat will become matted and greasy. He will begin to smell quite ripe.
How Often Should You Bathe A Shih Tzu?
Then, how often should you bathe a shih tzu? What is the happy medium between too much bathing and too little? There seems to be some debate in the world of shih tzu aficionados over whether the interval between baths should be as little as three weeks or as much as six weeks.
In my experience with both Bruno and Charlie, I find every month to be the correct interval between visits to the bath. My advice would be to start off with this. You may find that your dog’s individual needs dictate that you shorten the interval to three weeks, or even lengthen it towards the six week mark.
What About In Between?
Of course, if your shih tzu manges to get himself really badly soiled between schedule, then you will need to bath him earlier than planned and then immediately resume the regular interval. But if he is only lightly blemished, you can give him a wipe down with a soft, clean damp cloth or a non-perfumed, water based wet wipe. Also to keep your shih tzu fresh between baths you can consider using a specialised dry powder pet shampoo.
TIP: To further reduce the possibility of doggie odour developing between baths, wash his bedding every week.
How Do I Bathe My Shih Tzu?
Okay, that covers how often to to bathe your shih tzu, but did you know that bathing him is not just a case of putting him the bath, washing him down and drying him? If, as I’m sure you do, you want the best for your shih tzu, there’s a little more to it than that. Don’t worry, it’s not all that complicated, but there is a tried and tested method to bathing and drying you shih tzu that optimises the health and condition of his skin and coat.
This is the first of three related posts. For the next one in the series, click “How To Bathe A Shih Tzu Dog For Healthy Skin And Coat”, where I discuss not only the best way to bathe your shih tzu to ensure a glossy, tangle free coat and healthy, moist skin, but also how to prepare for bathing and the tools and commodities you will need. I hope to see you there.
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See you next time.