The Shih-Poo is a small breed dog -- a cross between a Shih-Tzu and a Poodle. In general, the coat of the Shih-Poo is long, since both the Shih-Tzu and Poodle have long coats. Coat texture can be straight like the Shih-Tzu, curly like the Poodle or anywhere in between. The Shih-Poo is traditionally bred to have a low-shed coat and is intelligent, making the grooming process simpler. The full grooming regimen should be completed every four to six weeks. Light grooming is required weekly to prevent tangles from forming in the coat.
Brush out the Shih-Poo with a metal comb and slicker brush to distribute oil on the skin, remove loose hair and eliminate tangles. Always brush in the direction in which the hair is growing.
Remove knotted clumps of hair with a mat rake. Many Shih-Poos have double coats that are susceptible to matting. Smaller mats can be broken apart with the mat rake. Larger mats may need to be cut out with scissors.
Fill the kitchen sink or bath with warm water. Use your wrist to check the temperature of the water before placing your puppy in it. The bottom of the sink or bathtub should have a towel or rubber mat to prevent the dog from slipping.
Wet the Shih-Poo's coat with the warm water. Avoid getting the water into the dog's ears as this can lead to infection. Pour a quarter-size amount of dog shampoo into your palm. Massage the shampoo into the dog's coat. Rinse thoroughly, and apply a dog conditioner. Rinse out all products from the dog's coat.
Pick up the dog and place him on a dry towel on the ground. Pat the dog with a dry towel to remove excess water from the coat. Use the metal brush to comb out the Shih-Poo's coat, removing any tangles or matting you may have missed.
Trim any long hair around the dog's toes, eyes and ears with a pair of scissors. Allow the Shih-Poo to air dry or use a blow-dryer on the lowest setting. Point the airflow from the blow-dryer in the direction you want the hair to lie.
Dab a cotton ball into a bowl of saline solution. Clean around the Shih-Poo's eyes to remove any dirt or residue. Wash from the corner of the inner eye, and work in a downward motion.
Check the ears on a regular basis for ear mites. This is common in both the Shit-Tzu and Poodle breeds due to high hair growth in the ears. Clean any earwax found in the ears with a cotton ball. Make an appointment with a professional groomer to pluck out any excess hair build-up in the ears.
Firmly grasp the paw of the dog, and use your thumb and pointer finger to support the nail. Trim the very end of the nail to avoid hitting the quick. Repeat on each nail on every paw. Apply styptic or cornflour powder to the end of the nail if you accidentally cut the quick, causing it to bleed.
Reward your Shih-Poo for good behaviour with praise and a treat. This will encourage the dog to behave properly for further grooming sessions.