The Shih-Tzu breed is believed to have originated from China or Tibet. The modern-day Shih-Tzu was created in the 17th century by crossing the Lhasa Apso and the Pekingese. Called "lion dog," the Shih Tzus were revered by early Chinese and Tibetans. They were royal pets in China. The Shih-Tzu is a sturdy, lively, small and alert dog. The most striking feature of the Shih-Tzus is their long, flowing double coat, which requires considerable care to maintain.
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Tips for Grooming
Brush your Shih-Tzu's coat often to prevent formation of mats. At the age of around 10 months, the Shih-Tzu begins shedding his puppy coat and the tendency to mat and tangle is very high. Once this phase is over, caring for the Shih-Tzu coat is easier. Use a wide-toothed comb and brush through the tangles carefully. Use your fingers on particularly stubborn tangles. Don't apply too much pressure, which can rip the coat. Double check or mats around the neck, legs and ears. Never brush a totally dry coat; static electricity causes breakage. Use appropriate grooming products.
Top Knot Hairstyle
This hairstyle is ideal for dogs who compete in dog shows. All the hair from the around the face and forehead is gathered up in a knot on top of the head, leaving the rest of the coat untouched and flowing down majestically. The knot may be secured by a latex band. This style keeps hair away from the dog's eyes and face as well as his food bowl. This is a high maintenance hairstyle; constant care and grooming keeps the long coat healthy and tangle free.
The Puppy Hairstyle
The hair over the entire body is cut to a uniform length of about 1 to 2 inches. The ears are also trimmed for a nice rounded look. Trim the mustache and clip the nails to complete the look. This hairstyle requires low maintenance because of its short length and works well for owners who don't want to spend a lot of time on grooming their dogs.
The Teddy Bear Hairstyle
Cut the body hair to the same length. Leave the hair on the head and face longer than the length of the body hair, which creates a fluffy, rounded teddy bear-like appearance.
Combine the features of several traditional cuts to customize your dog's look. For example, enough hair is usually left around the face in a teddy bear cut to combine it with a top knot. Or you could opt for a blunt cut hairstyle around the face with a puppy cut for the body. A variation on this is the lion mane. The hair around the face is cut and shaped to resemble a lion's mane, with the body hair cut to a uniform length.