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How to Give Your Shih Tzu a Lion Cut

Shih Tzu owners adore the breed’s glossy coat, but that beauty comes at a price. Their sleek topcoat and fluffy undercoat require frequent upkeep. Without daily brushing, painful mats set in.

So, what if you could reduce the time and stress associated with grooming? Try a trendy yet easy-to-maintain Shih Tzu lion haircut.


What Is a Shih Tzu Lion Cut?

What Is a Shih Tzu Lion Cut?

The lion cut on a Shih Tzu consists of a shaved body and long mane-like hair around the face. But why shave off such a charming coat?

The hairstyle is as unique as the breed and carries far more pros than cons.


Benefits of a Lion Haircut

The Shih Tzu lion cut is perfect for busy owners and hot climates. The trim is gaining popularity for the following reasons:

  • Maintenance reduces to 4-6 weeks
  • Requires face brushing only
  • Prevent matting
  • Keeps pets cool in extreme heat


How to Give a Shih Tzu Lion Cut

Giving a lion cut to your Shih Tzu is as simple as its upkeep.

Here is what you will need:

  • A slicker brush and metal comb
  • Pet shampoo and conditioner
  • Slip leash if your dog dislikes grooming
  • Blade clippers
  • Attachable comb
  • Chunkers and scissors


Brush and Bathe

Brush and Bathe Shih Tzu for A Haircut

Thoroughly brush your Shih Tzu, removing all tangles. The combination of a slicker brush and a metal comb will get the job done. A slicker brush targets deep dirt and mats, and a metal comb removes surface knots.

Once your Shih Tzu is tangle-free, bathe them like normal. A bath before grooming is crucial because dirt can clog clippers.

Now that your dog’s coat is clean, blow or air dry your pet. Avoid rubbing the fur with a towel as it can knot up. Give your pet one last brush to prepare for grooming.

The Teddy Bear Cut


Prep for the Groom

Place your Shih Tzu on a secure surface so you can comfortably stand during grooming. Recruit a helper and use the slip leash if your Shih Tzu is squirmish.

Another set of hands prevents accidents and saves time. Secure the slip leash around your pet’s neck. Have the helper hold the leash portion straight up as you work. This tactic keeps the dog in place without the overstimulating touch of another person.

Your pet is clean, unmatted, and secure — now what?


Begin the Lion Cut

Giving Your Shih Tzu A Lion Cut

For at-home grooming, use detachable clippers and an attachable comb (better known as clipper guards). While adjustable clippers are great, they are not compatible with clipper guards.

Clippers are dangerous if you do not have a feel for them. Their clipper blades are sharp and hot. Luckily, an attachable comb gives you complete control and expends blade heat.

We recommend shaving your pet’s body with a detachable blade and size 10 guard. A 10 guard leaves the hair 1 1/4 inches long. The attachable comb might require several passes, but safety is worth it.

Shave the top of your dog’s body, chest, and top three quarters of their legs and tail. The leftover leg and tail hair mimic a lion’s grand paws and tail tuft. Avoid the hair around their face and neck during the process — It will later shape their mane. 

After you trimmed most of the hair, begin on the more time-consuming areas.


Sanitary Groom

A sanitary groom is a trim of the stomach, groin, and behind. Before you begin, let’s cover some safety tips:

  • Remove the attachment comb. It does not offer enough precision for intricate areas.
  • Work slowly on a low setting to reduce the blade’s heat.
  • Prevent painful nicks by moving the clippers up toward sensitive areas. Never motion the clippers down or away from these regions.

Before beginning, evaluate your Shih Tzu’s coat. If the hair is overgrown, trim it with scissors first. Stand behind your dog’s rear end. Lift their tail and carefully trim their buttocks as short as possible.

Next, lift one hind leg at a time, and move the clippers up toward the center of their groin. Lastly, have your helper lift your dog’s front legs. Carefully trim their undercarriage, keeping the blade as far away from their skin as possible.

Congratulations! You finished the most difficult steps of the process. Now the fun begins.


Shape the Mane

Shaping Lion Cut on Shih Tzu

Shape the remaining face and neck hair into a mane using chunkers. Chunkers are a type of hair shear that creates textured yet natural-looking trims.

Simply comb the hair forward, then chunker it into a reverse teardrop shape. Leave the hair alone if it is not long enough to shape into a teardrop. In Shih Tzu fashion, it will grow quickly. Once long enough, chunker it into a teardrop.


Related Pet Grooming Topics:


Admire Your Masterpiece

The lion cut showcases your Shih Tzus’ eye-catching coat while decreasing maintenance time. It is as simple as a quick brush, bath, careful shave, and creative chunk!