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Do Shih Tzus Get Cold Easily? How Cold Is Too Cold?



Reviewed By: Dr. Joel Robertson

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Many Shih Tzu owners are curious about whether or not their dog will be comfortable in cold weather. In this blog post, we will explore the truth about Shih Tzus and winter weather.

We will discuss whether or not these dogs are susceptible to the cold, and provide tips on how to keep your Shih Tzu warm during the winter months.

Key Takeaway

  • Shih Tzus do get cold easily due to their brachycephalic nature and sensitivity to lower temperatures, thus requiring extra care and precautions, especially in cold and wet weather.
  • Shih Tzus often need a jacket, especially in colder climates or if their fur is trimmed short, as they are more sensitive to lower temperatures due to their brachycephalic nature and small size.
  • Shih Tzus can enjoy brief periods in the snow, but due to their small size and sensitivity to cold temperatures, extended exposure without proper protection like a warm coat can lead to discomfort or health risks.

Do Shih Tzus Get Cold Easily?

Do Shih Tzus Get Cold Easily

Shih Tzus can get cold if they are out in the cold for an extended period of time. The Shih Tzu has a double coat, which is composed of a dense, soft undercoat and a longer, coarser outer coat.

This type of coat provides good insulation against cold weather. However, if the dog is going to be outside in very cold weather for an extended period of time, it is important to provide him with a warm shelter and/or Dog Coat to protect him from the elements.

Generally speaking, most Shih Tzus are comfortable in temperatures as low as 50 degrees Fahrenheit. Some may even enjoy playing in the snow! If your dog seems cold or uncomfortable, though, it’s best to bring him inside.

If you live in an area with cold winters, it’s important to take extra care of your Shih Tzu during this time. Here are some tips for keeping your Shih Tzu warm during the winter:

  • Dress them in a warm sweater or coat when they go outside.
  • Avoid taking them out for long walks in cold weather.
  • Make sure their bedding is warm and cozy.
  • Consider getting them a dog bed with heating elements.
  • Give them extra cuddles! They’ll love it and it will help keep them warm.

While the Shih Tzu’s coat does provide some protection against the cold, it is important to take precautions if your dog will be spending extended periods of time outdoors in cold weather. Make sure he has a warm shelter to go to and consider investing in a Dog Coat to keep him extra cozy.

Do Shih Tzus Need a Jacket?

Do Shih Tzus Get Cold Easily

If the temperature outside gets below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, then yes, a Shih Tzu will need a jacket to stay warm. Even though they are a hearty breed and can withstand cold weather quite well, there is still a limitation to their ability to handle the cold. Their coat is very dense but can only protect them to a certain point.

If you live in an area with extremely cold winters, you may want to consider getting your Shih Tzu a sweater or coat to wear inside during the day. This will help them stay warm and comfortable when they are indoors.

Picking the right clothing for your Shih Tzu in colder weather is also important. A sweater or coat can help keep your dog warm, but make sure it isn’t too tight or constricting. It’s also a good idea to invest in some booties to protect your dog’s feet from the cold and salt.

When choosing a jacket for your Shih Tzu, there are some things you need to take into consideration:

  • Choose a jacket that is comfortable and does not restrict movement.
  • Look for a jacket with a snug fit around the neck and chest, to help keep body heat in.
  • Avoid jackets with hoods, as these can be uncomfortable for dogs who are not used to them.
  • Consider getting a waterproof jacket to help protect against rain, snow, and ice.

Here are some high-quality Shih Tzu jackets on amazon.com.

Are Shih Tzus OK in The Snow?

Do Shih Tzus Get Cold Easily

Yes, Shih Tzus can play in the snow! They may not be able to stay out in it for too long, but they will have a blast running around and playing while they’re out. Just make sure to keep an eye on them and bring them inside when they start to get cold.

A very important thing that you need to consider is this: Has your Shih Tzu played in the snow before or this is their first time? There is a huge difference. If this is your Shih Tzu’s first winter snow, here is how to best prepare them for the snow:

First, introduce your Shih Tzu to the snow gradually. Take them out for short periods of time, and let them get used to the cold temperature and the feel of the snow on their paws.

Secondly, make sure you have the proper gear for both you and your Shih Tzu. This includes things like a good pair of boots or shoes for yourself, and Dog boots or paw protection for your pup.

Thirdly, start off slow when playing in the snow. Shih Tzus can get excited and run around too much, which can lead to them getting too cold or tired.

Playing in the snow is a great way to bond with your Shih Tzu and create lasting memories.

It’s also important to make sure your Shih Tzu has access to plenty of water when they’re playing in the snow. They can get dehydrated just like humans, so it’s important to keep an eye on their water intake and make sure they’re staying hydrated says Everything Shih Tzu.

If your dog starts shivering or seems to be getting uncomfortable, bring them inside and warm them up with a blanket or some towels.

How Do You Know When a Shih Tzu is Cold?

When the weather gets colder, you might start to notice that your Shih Tzu is acting a bit differently. Maybe they’re snuggling up to you more often or they seem a little slower than usual. These are all common signs that your Shih Tzu is cold and in need of some extra warmth.

One way to tell if a Shih Tzu is cold is by its body language. If a Shih Tzu is hunched over, has their tail tucked between their legs, or is shivering, they are likely cold.

Another way to tell if a Shih Tzu is cold is by feeling its body temperature. Shih Tzus have a normal body temperature of 101-102 degrees Fahrenheit. If you feel your dog’s body and it is significantly cooler than this, they are probably cold.

Lastly, another way to tell if a Shih Tzu is cold is by paying attention to their behavior. If a Shih Tzu seems lethargic or uninterested in playing, they may be feeling the effects of the cold weather.


Q: How can I keep my Shih Tzu warm during cold weather?

A: There are several ways to keep your Shih Tzu warm during cold weather. You can provide them with a warm and comfortable bed, dress them in a doggy sweater or coat, and avoid taking them outside in extreme cold temperatures.

Q: Why are Shih Tzus more susceptible to cold weather compared to other dogs?

A: Shih Tzus have a thin and double coat which makes them more susceptible to cold weather. Their coat lacks the natural insulation that some other breeds have. Additionally, their small size means they have a larger surface area relative to their body mass, leading to increased heat loss.

Q: What should I do if my Shih Tzu shows signs of being too cold?

A: If your Shih Tzu seems to be cold, you can provide them with a warm blanket or a heating pad (set to a safe temperature) to help them warm up. You should also make sure they have access to a warm and comfortable environment.

Q: Can I shave my Shih Tzu’s coat to help them stay cooler in warm weather?

A: Shih Tzus are not recommended to be completely shaved, even in warm weather. Their coat actually helps regulate their body temperature and protects their skin from the sun’s harmful rays. However, regular grooming like trimming and brushing can help keep them comfortable.

Q: What other health issues are Shih Tzus prone to?

A: Shih Tzus are prone to various health issues including eye problems, dental problems, respiratory issues, and allergies. Regular veterinarian check-ups and proper grooming are important to maintain their health and well-being.

Q: How often should I groom my Shih Tzu?

A: Shih Tzus should be groomed regularly to maintain their coat’s health and prevent matting. This often includes regular brushing (daily if possible), bathing every 2-3 weeks, and professional grooming every 4-6 weeks.

Q: Can Shih Tzus live in apartments or small houses?

A: Yes, Shih Tzus can adapt well to living in apartments or small houses. They are a small breed and don’t require a large amount of space to be happy and comfortable. They can get exercise indoors and enjoy short walks outdoors.

Q: Are Shih Tzus good with children?

A: Shih Tzus can be good with children if they are properly socialized and trained. However, due to their small size and delicate nature, it’s important to supervise interactions between Shih Tzus and young children to prevent accidents or injuries.

Q: Are Shih Tzus hypoallergenic?

A: Shih Tzus are considered to be hypoallergenic, although no dog breed is completely hypoallergenic. They have hair instead of fur, which can be less likely to cause allergies in some individuals. However, it’s recommended to spend time with a Shih Tzu before bringing one home if you have allergies.

Conclusion and final thoughts

In conclusion, Shih Tzus can get cold easily if they do not have enough protection from the elements.

Owners should take steps to make sure their pet is comfortable in cold weather by providing a warm coat or sweater, as well as avoiding leaving them outdoors for extended periods of time.

Additionally, owners should provide plenty of bedding and blankets so that their pet can snuggle up and stay warm during cold weather.

Please take the time and leave a comment below if this article helped you, or you have any additional questions.

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