How to Groom the Shih Tzu

Updated July 20, 2017

Shih Tzu is a popular lapdog breed that has lineage ties to ancient China. This particular breed of dog has hair that’s clipped short because it can tangle easily. It’s important to groom a Shih Tzu regularly to keep the hair from tangling. Shih tzus are small dogs and usually weigh between 4.54 and 7.26 Kilogram maximum. You can groom your Shih Tzu in the privacy of your own home without going to a professional dog groomer.

Slide a #40 clip onto the end of your dog hair buzzer. No tools are necessary to attach the clip. This clip will ensure that you cut the Shih Tzu’s hair to the optimal length for this breed.

Trim the hair directly between the dog’s eyes with the buzzer. Be extra careful with the buzzer so that you don’t accidentally injure the dog’s eyes. The best way to do this is to slowly move the buzzer in a downward motion until the hair is evenly buzzed.

Trim the hair above the dog’s eyes with a pair of scissors. The hair should be kept longer to keep the sun out of the dog’s eyes. Many people like to grab the hair and put it in a bow because they find it aesthetically pleasing.

Trim the hair on the Shih Tzu’s stomach and back using the buzzer and the #40 clip. This will prevent the hair from matting and tangling.

Trim the tail with a pair of scissors. The hair on the tail should be kept longer than the rest of the body.

Use the dog nail clipper to make sure that the nails are clipped short and round between the pads on the Shih Tzu’s paws. This will help prevent broken nails and will allow the dog to have a better grip on slippery surfaces.


Be sure to have the Shih Tzu on a leash when you’re buzzing its hair. This will prevent the dog from being injured by the buzzer. Shih Tzu dogs are prone to breathing problems, so it’s a good idea to have a fan blowing during the grooming session to keep the air circulating.


Sweep up the hair from the floor quickly so the dog doesn’t eat it. If the dog shows signs of aggression before the grooming session, be sure to affix a muzzle to the dog's snout so you don’t get bit during the grooming process.

Things You'll Need

  • Dog hair buzzer
  • #40 blade
  • Scissors
  • Hair bow
  • Dog nail clippers
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About the Author

Based in Pipersville, Penn., Barbara Wilson has been writing articles on travel and lifestyle since 1991. Her work has appeared on and Wilson holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of South Carolina.