12 Best Brushes for a Shih Tzu

Known for their long, elegant fur, Shih Tzu’s are a beautiful dog breed with a lively personality. However, they do require regular at-home grooming to keep their fur healthy, shiny, and tangle-free – and quality grooming supplies are a necessity for any Shih Tzu owner. When it comes to finding the best brush for a Shih Tzu to use at home, you may feel overwhelmed given the wide range of options available, and that’s why we’re here to help.

Best Combo Brush

Hartz Groomer’s

  • Detangles hair
  • Affordable

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Overall Best

FURminator

  • Easy to use
  • Reduces shedding

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Best Slicker Brush

Chris Christensen

  • Easy to clean
  • Two sizes

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This article is intended to help you not just find the best brush for a Shih Tzu, but to help you find the best brush for your Shi Tzu. From basic combs and slicker brushes to pin brushes, rakes, and gloves, this article will cover the very best brushes on the market for Shih Tzus of all different shapes and sizes.

8 Different Types of Brushes for Shih Tzus


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To start, you may want to acquaint yourself with the many different types of brushes available on the market, particularly those which are perfect for Shih Tzus. Here are the 8 different brush types that you may want to consider:

  • Comb – A dog comb looks very similar to a typical comb that people use. With one row of long teeth, combs come in handy when detangling your Shih Tzu’s long, matted hair that may be sensitive. Combs are perfect for those pesky tangles that just won’t go away. However, they should be used very gently to avoid causing pain to your pooch.
  • Slicker brush – Slicker brushes typically feature multiple rows of short teeth that are very close together. Using a slicker brush on your pup not only helps to remove loose hair from the surface, but they can also help to brush away dirt or other unwanted materials on the top layer of their fur.
  • De-shedding brush – De-shedding brushes are like a hybrid between a comb and a slicker brush. Featuring only one row of very short bristles that are close together, this type of brush helps to gently remove the undercoat while also stimulating your dog’s natural shedding process.
  • Bristle brush – Bristle brushes are a great all-around brush to have on hand. This type of brush is intended to be used on the topcoat only to help brush away any loose fur and dirt. The only downside to bristle brushes is that they cannot detangle matted fur or knots in the undercoat.
  • Pin brush – A pin brush typically features small, wire bristles with a small rubber pin at the tip. These brushes work best on medium and long-haired dogs and can help with the removal of minor tangles and loose fur on the topcoat.
  • Rake – Featuring a row of long, pointy bristles, a rake is designed to target your pup’s undercoat; helping to remove matted fur and tangles that are deep down. When using a rake, it’s important to be gentle, as the bristles may cause pain or irritation to your dog if used with too much pressure.
  • Glove – A glove-style brush is a grooming tool that you can wear on your hands. Featuring small bristles on the palm side, you can brush and pet your dog at the same time. While this brush will most likely not be able to get out all of your dog’s tangles, it is a great way to brush away loose hair on the topcoat while also giving you and your dog some bonding time.
  • Blade – A blade brush, or sometimes called a ‘Shedding Blade’, features a steel blade with two handles on either side. This type of dog brush works best on dogs with very thick coats and can help with removing excess fur on both the top and bottom coats. However, it’s important to remember to be sensitive while using this brush as it can cause skin irritation if used with too much pressure.

6 Key Considerations When Looking for the Right Brush for Your Shih Tzu

When thinking about the perfect brush for you and your dog, it’s important to consider your current habits, patterns, and lifestyle. Here are a few things that you should consider before buying a brush for your Shih Tzu.

  • Consider your grooming preferences – Before purchasing the right brush, think about what your grooming patterns and preferences are. Even though Shih Tzu’s naturally have long hair, sometimes Shih Tzu owners keep their dog’s fur shaved very short year-round. If this is you, you may only need to buy a basic bristle or slicker brush. However, if you intend to keep your Shih Tzu’s hair long, you may need to have a brush that is more equipped to detangle knots and matted fur. Not only that, but keeping your Shih Tzu’s hair long will most likely require an investment in multiple different tools that can work for detangling, de-matting, de-shedding, and massaging.
  • Consider your dog’s level of sensitivity – If your dog gets anxious or nervous while being groomed, you may want to stick to simpler brushes that will not cause any further irritation. A glove brush may also work well for your sensitive pup, as it allows you to gently stroke your dog while also grooming the topcoat at the same time. Oftentimes sensitive dogs can be desensitized if they are brushed regularly. Glove brushes, when used on a regular basis, can help with that process.
  • Consider how much time your dog spends outside – If your dog spends a lot of time outside, they will likely get dirt, mud, and grime in their coats frequently. If this sounds like your situation, you may want to invest in a rake or de-shedding brush that can tackle matted fur and dirt easily. However, if your dog is primarily an inside dog, you may only need a bristle brush, slicker brush, or pin brush.
  • Consider how many Shih Tzus you have – If you have multiple Shih Tzus at home, you will likely be doing a lot of brushing and grooming. If this is you, you may want to consider investing in a high-quality brush with a comfortable handle. You may also want to consider purchasing an anti-microbial plastic brush, which can help to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria while brushing multiple animals.
  • Consider how often you take your dog to the groomers – If you take your Shih Tzu to the groomers frequently, you may only need to buy one basic brush that can tie you over between grooming appointments. However, if you only make it to the groomers once or twice a year, you may need to purchase a brush or brushes that can detangle and remove hair from both the top and bottom coat.
  • Consider the length of your dog’s fur – A Shih Tzu’s fur can either grow to be very long or, it can be shaved to be quite short. When looking for the right brush, it’s important to consider the length of your dog’s hair and purchase a brush with bristles that are the right length. Longer hair requires longer bristles that can reach the undercoat. On the other hand, shorter hair requires shorter bristles that are gentler on the skin. If your Shih Tzu’s fur is long during the winter and short during the summer, you need to ensure that you have the right brushes that account for that.

Overall Best Brushes for Shih Tzus

FURminator deShedding Edge Dog Brush

Key Features:

  • Stainless-steel edge
  • Ergonomic, comfortable handle
  • Reduces shedding up to 90%
  • Curved edge that fits naturally with your dog’s shape

Best Overall – The FURminator deShedding Edge Dog Brush is a high-quality, practical brush option for your Shih Tzu. Featuring a stainless-steel edge that conforms to your pup’s shape, this brush makes removing loose fur from the top and bottom coat a breeze. Not only that, but its ergonomic handle is comfortable and easy on your hands while in use.

One of the downsides to this brush is the fact that it cannot comb through or detangle extremely matted fur. This brush is also more expensive than other dog brushes, however, the durable design of the brush is worth the price premium.

Pros:

  • Comfortable for both you and your dog
  • Multiple size options available, depending on whether your Shih Tzu has short or long hair
  • High-quality and durable design that will last

Cons:

  • Pricier than other options
  • Cannot comb through matted and sensitive tangles in longer hair

Hartz Groomer’s Best Combo Dog Brush

Key Features:

  • Double-sided, including both a pin and bristle brush
  • Stainless steel pins provide gentle detangling
  • Nylon bristles help to soften the coat and remove loose hair
  • Basic handle

Best Combo – The Hartz Groomer’s Best Combo Dog Brush is a wonderful 2-in-1 option for your Shih Tzu. Acting as both a pin brush and a bristle brush, this brush allows you to tackle tangles on the topcoat while also stimulating the natural oils in your dog’s undercoat.

This brush does not feature a curved or ergonomically friendly handle, which could potentially be a problem if you have multiple dogs or if you rarely take your Shih Tzu to the groomer.

Pros:

  • 2-in-1 design
  • Budget-friendly
  • Perfect for Shih Tzu’s with medium to long hair

Cons:

  • Basic, straight handle
  • Only one size option available

Chris Christensen Long Pin Slicker Brush

Key Features:

  • 40% more pins than Chris Christensen’s ‘Big K Slicker Brush’
  • Long pins, enabling brush to reach undercoat
  • Gentle, flexible cushion
  • Long handle that is comfortable and pain-free

Best Slicker Brush – The Chris Christensen – Big G Slicker Brush is a large, slicker-style brush perfect for a medium to large-sized Shih Tzu. The brush has a slight bend, allowing you to easily lift and de-shed your dog’s fur.

What distinguishes this brush from the others is its extra-long, ergonomically designed handle, which allows you to groom and brush your dog without experiencing pain in your hands or wrist.

Pros:

  • Ergonomic design
  • Extra-long handle
  • Lots of pins for detangling and de-shedding

Cons:

  • More expensive than most other options
  • Only one-sided

Mr. Peanut’s Hand Gloves Dog & Cat Grooming & De-shedding Aid

Key Features:

  • Ability to groom and bond with your pet at the same time
  • Adjustable design, fitting most hand sizes
  • Can be used on both wet and dry fur
  • 2 gloves included

Best Glove – Shih Tzu owners get the best of both worlds with Mr. Peanut’s Hand Gloves. As a de-shedding and detangling brush, this unique solution allows you to stroke your pup while also keeping them well-groomed. Unlike other glove brushes, Mr. Peanut’s Hand Gloves comes as a pair, allowing you to brush your Shih Tzu with both hands at the same time.

One downside to these gloves is the fact that the bristles are not as long as other slicker-style brushes, combs, or rakes. However, this product is reasonably priced and makes a great addition to any at-home dog grooming kit.

Pros:

  • Brush and stroke your dog at the same time
  • Budget-friendly
  • Great for sensitive and anxious dogs who dislike being brushed

Cons:

  • Short bristles unable to reach undercoat
  • Not self-cleaning; potentially messy

KONG Dog ZoomGroom Multi-Use Brush

Key Features:

  • Removes loose hair
  • Stimulates capillaries and natural oil production
  • Multiple sizes available
  • Made in USA

Best Multi-Use Brush – The Kong Dog ZoomGroom Multi-Use Brush is a unique option that can be used either on dry fur or while shampooing. This brush’s design not only looks good, but it feels good on your dog’s skin and stimulates their capillaries.

One of the downsides to this brush is that it does not have any bristles, meaning it cannot reach your Shih Tzu’s undercoat. Additionally, it cannot detangle serious knots in longer hair.

Pros:

  • Enjoyable for your dog
  • Nourishing for your dog’s skin
  • Suitable for use while shampooing as well as on dry fur

Cons:

  • Not suitable for deep detangling
  • Cannot reach undercoat

Safari De-Matting Dog Comb

Key Features:

  • Gently eliminates tangles and loose fur
  • Stainless steel blades
  • Blades are rounded and fit for dogs with sensitive skin
  • Anti-slip rubberized handle

Best De-Matting Brush – The Safari De-Matting Dog Comb is a great brush for when you need to target a specific and highly matted section of your Shih Tzu’s fur. This comb’s blades are made of stainless steel, making it an effective, durable, and long-lasting brush option for your pup.

Each blade on this brush features a rounded edge, which ensures the safety of your pet and makes it suitable for dogs with sensitive skin. This brush is perfect for you if your Shih Tzu frequently suffers from matted and knotted hair.

Pros:

  • Efficiently and gently smooths deep tangles and matted fur
  • Easy on your hand and wrist
  • Safe to use on any dog – even those with extra sensitive skin
  • Durable, stainless steel blades will last a long time

Cons:

  • Only one size available
  • Must be gentle when using

Safari Dual-Sided Shedding Blade Dog Grooming Tool

Key Features:

  • Stainless steel blade
  • Dual-sided design
  • Versatile handles
  • Vinyl handle

Best Shedding Blade – The Safari Dual-Sided Shedding Blade Grooming Tool is versatile, unique, and suitable for Shih Tzu’s of all shapes, sizes, and hair-lengths. Featuring a stainless-steel blade, this brush is both durable and effective at removing and detangling loose fur.

One of the best features of this brush is the fact that one side of the blade features coarser teeth and the other side features finer teeth; giving dog owners the ability to use the brush on both thick and thin coats.

Pros:

  • Multiple grooming configurations
  • Suitable for all dog sizes
  • Easy groom hard to reach places

Cons:

  • Difficult for some to use
  • Only one size

Andis Steel Pet Comb

Key Features:

  • Both wide and narrow teeth
  • Stainless steel design
  • 7 ½ inches in length
  • Lightweight

Best Comb – The Andis Steel Pet Comb is a basic, stainless steel comb that is suitable for use on any sized Shih Tzu. This comb features both wide and narrow teeth, enabling you to easily work through matted fur of various severity levels.

While this comb is great at working through complex tangles, it is not intended to be used as a regular de-shedding tool. However, given the budget-friendly price, it is a practical addition to your grooming kit.

Pros:

  • Enables you to gently smooth out tangles and matted fur
  • Suitable for Shih Tzu’s of all sizes and hair lengths
  • Budget-friendly
  • Resilient, durable materials

Cons:

  • Not an appropriate de-shedding tool
  • Must be gentle when using

4 Other Top-Rated Shih Tzu Brushes

Miracle Care Slicker Dog Brush

The Miracle Care Slicker Dog Brush features stainless steel wire pins that are both soft and gentle on your pup. This brush also works well as a detangler, helping you remove unwanted tangles on your dog’s topcoat. This brush’s pins are also long enough to reach your Shih Tzu’s undercoat, enabling you to smooth out deeply matted hair while also de-shedding.

FURminator Firm Slicker Brush For Dogs

The FURminator Firm Slicker Brush Large is a 2-in-1 style dog brush that makes grooming your Shih Tzu easy. Both sides of this brush feature a different style of bristle and its special ‘dual flex head’ design allows it to comfortably bend and curve around the natural shape of your dog. Another great thing about this brush is that it is made of anti-microbial plastic, which helps to fight against germs and bacteria.

Hertzko Self-Cleaning Dog & Cat Slicker Brush

The Hertzko Self-Cleaning Dog & Cat Slicker Brush is another wonderful choice for Shih Tzu owners. The best part about this brush is that it is totally self-cleaning. That means that after brushing, all you must do is push a button and all the accumulated fur can be easily cleaned off. This feature is well worth the price premium – especially for Shih Tzu owners who have to brush their pups regularly!

Four Paws Ultimate Touch Instant Mat & Tangle Remover

The Four Paws Ultimate Touch Instant Mat & Tangle Remover is perfect for Shih Tzu’s whose fur frequently becomes matted. Smaller in size than most brushes, this particular brush enables you to target tough to reach spots with ease.  While you may not need to use this brush on a regular basis, it can be a great tool to have around in serious cases of tangled or matted hair.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Do I need more than one brush for my Shih Tzu? Unless you keep your Shih Tzu’s hair really short, you will most likely need more than one brush to ensure that your dog’s overcoat and undercoat are taken care of. If you’re not quite ready to purchase multiple brushes, you can always opt for a combo brush to get a feel for how different types of brushes can be used.
  2. Which type of brush works best on the undercoat? If you choose to keep your Shih Tzu’s hair long, you will need to find a brush with longer bristles that can reach its undercoat. A rake is a great option for combing and removing hair from your pup’s undercoat. The length of a brushes’ bristles can vary, so it is important to make sure that the length you choose is long enough to reach your Shi Tzu’s undercoat.
  3. I take my Shih Tzu to the groomer’s regularly; do I still need a brush? Even if you take your Shih Tzu to the groomers regularly, you will still most likely need to brush your dog daily to avoid tangles and matted fur. A combo brush or basic bristle brush is great to have on hand to keep your dog well-groomed between grooming appointments. Combs are also handy to have around – just in case your dog’s fur becomes extra tangled.

Conclusion

Simply put, Shih Tzu’s have a lot of hair that requires a lot of grooming. Even if your Shih Tzu’s hair is on the shorter side, it is still wise to keep a few different brushes on hand to prevent matting and tangles.

If your Shih Tzu is sensitive to brushing, it may be helpful to try to ease them in with a regular grooming schedule. In these cases, a glove-style brush may be useful as they allow you to brush your pup while also showing them affection.

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