Is My Shih Tzu Depressed After a Haircut?

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My Shih Tzu has had long hair and so I though with the weather changing ( warmer) that it would be a good ideal to have him cut down.

Well the moment my Shih Tzh arrived home, he would just lay down, sleep and appeared to just not be his fun loving playful self. He didn't eat and was just not himself.

I call his doctor and they told me that he was depressed because he missed his hair.

I will not get him cut down again.

Karen Answers:

he needs extra cuddling now. same thing happened to mine. it took a few weeks & with extra loving & attention he came around

Anonymous Answers

mine acts funny when he gets his hair cut. he pees in the house and acts out. I think his skin bothers him when hes cut. I know the groomer and she is wonderful so I know he’s not hurt. tzus are sensitive little brings. I remember a dog we had, I would give him a Mohawk and laugh and he would get really upset that we were laughing at him.

Our Answer:

Poor doggie! We hope it makes you feel better to know that you and your Tzu aren’t alone. Not every dog experiences it, but it’s not uncommon for animals to feel unsure about themselves when they get home from the groomer.

Think of how strange you would feel if you’d had long hair all your life and got it all chopped off in one day. Your head would feel lighter and your neck would be cold, but at least you’d have the mental capability to understand why.

It seems from your letter this may be your dog’s first time getting a full haircut. The newness of the experience may be enough to put him off for a few days.

However, our pets’ safety is always the first priority, it is possible he was mistreated at the groomer in some way or was accidentally clipped or snipped too closely. We suggest you inspect his entire body for red spots which may indicate razor burn from clumsy clipping. It’s also possible the groomer cut a nail too short—an accident that does, unfortunately, happen from time to time even with the best groomer. If that happened your pup may not be feeling playful because he nursing a tender nail.

While a too-short clip doesn’t necessarily mean a groomer was careless, a true professional would let the owner know about the accident as soon as possible.

In addition to checking your dog for grooming mistakes, there are few things you can do to make him feel better while he adjusts to his new do.

  • Give him extra TLC. A little extra love and attention can go a long way in soothing his wounded pride
  • Wearing a shirt or coat will keep him warmer, like his hair used to, and may help him feel more secure
  • Practice obedience training with plenty of treats as a reward. Training gives you the opportunity to shower your dog with praise and rebuild his self-esteem
  • Brush him gently and stroke his feet, tail and ears. Having these sensitive parts touched regularly makes it less traumatic when a groomer touches and holds them during a trim

Even though this grooming experience has left him feeling low, we hope you won’t give up on trips to the groomer or perhaps give your dog haircuts at home instead. As you already know, Shih Tzus require hours of brushing and cleaning if you allow their coats to grow long.

There’s nothing more adorable than a Shih Tzu with a full, flowing coat bouncing around him, but it’s a major commitment of time. Painful mats form when long hair isn’t brushed regularly, and burrs and stickers can get tangled in the coat and work their way into the skin, causing sores and abscesses.

If you live in a warm area, a shorter cut will keep your Shih Tzu more comfortable and help him regulate his body temperature more easily.

It’s understandable that you don’t want to put your furbaby through another bad experience, but not getting haircuts at all could be worse for him in the long run.

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